Saturday, April 6, 2013

Favorite Music Quotes

If I were to open a t-shirt store, and who knows, I just might, I think it would feature t-shirts with my favorite music quotes. The fact is that most quotes about music are about as interesting as recordings of painters painting: swish, swish. It is amazing how inarticulate most musicians are. There are a thousand versions of "I just try to make the music real, man!" But there are some good ones occasionally. Here are some of them:
  • "Stockhausen serves imperialism" --Cornelius Cardew
  • “All the good music has already been written by people with wigs and stuff.” ― Frank Zappa
  • "Most people wouldn't know music if it came up and bit them on the ass." --Frank Zappa
  • "The music business is a cruel and shallow money trench, a long plastic hallway where thieves and pimps run free and good men die like dogs. There's also a negative side." --Hunter S. Thompson (but this may be apocryphal)
  • "It is cruel, you know, that music should be so beautiful. It has the beauty of loneliness of pain: of strength and freedom. The beauty of disappointment and never-satisfied love. The cruel beauty of nature and everlasting beauty of monotony." --Benjamin Britten
  • "Of all noises, I think music is the least disagreeable." --Samuel Johnson
  • "Why waste money on psychotherapy when you can listen to the B Minor Mass?"
    --Michael Torke
  •  "If I were to begin life again, I would devote it to music.  It is the only cheap and unpunished rapture upon earth." --Sydney Smith
  • "Most people use music as a couch; they want to be pillowed on it, relaxed and consoled for the stress of daily living.  But serious music was never meant to be soporific." --Aaron Copland
  • "All the shopping malls and restaurants and airports are riddled with low-fidelity loudspeakers, which apparently have developed the ability to reproduce by themselves; these are all connected to a special programming service called Music That Nobody Really Likes, and you cannot get away from it." --Dave Barry
  •  The whole problem can be stated quite simply by asking, 'Is there a meaning to music?' My answer would be, 'Yes.' And 'Can you state in so many words what the meaning is?' My answer to that would be, 'No.' --Aaron Copland
  • "If, someday, we all go to prison for downloading music; I hope they separate us by genres." --Unknown
Now let's have some music. There were only two people who supplied more than one quote to my collection. One of these especially articulate musicians is Aaron Copland. Here is his 'hit' Fanfare for the Common Man:

And the other is Frank Zappa. Here is his "Son of Mr Green Genes" from Hot Rats:


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