But as the monty python pope said ; I don’t know much about art but I know what I like. And these notes are about what I like)
I am a BIG fan of Mozart. There, I said it. I know, I know. I really hate it when the classical music people look down on you just because you think Mozart is a fricking genius.
"Mozart? Really? Mozart? I myself am more into the early works of grabozinsky. Grabozinsky. You never heard of him? He lived in a village of two hundred people , wrote only three concertos and died at the age of twenty two. You never heard of him? No…Mozart is good. Yes. Sure…pffff…."
This is why I enjoy knowing less and feeling more. And in mozart's case it is easy. It is not a coincidence he is the people's favorite composer. The snobs would say it is so because we hear him everywhere, from tv show intros to a wanker's cell phone ring. We heard it in commercials, we heard it whenever classical music was played for the 'masses'.
But my point is that I do firmly believe that it is so popular because it is special and not special because it is popular. Mozart has a unique magic to him that not only is contagious but is also extremely easy to digest. He is not an "acquired taste". He is just tasty.
Personally I am almost convinced he is not human. An alien. Not metaphorically. A real alien. I looked at the situation from all angels, I listened, I meditated, I prayed, and the only answer I found was no. cannot be human. Sorry.
I have this annoying habit of thinking "what could come here instead" when I hear music. Seeing if anything can be improved on the melody, the harmony, the theme. Easier to do in jazz then in classical music, as you have more possibilities, and although I did enjoy my fake humility regarding my musical education, I have to admit I can feel when something sits right or not. No matter what kind of music or what style. Sometimes I can even think of how it can be improved. Sometimes. It's a fun game I play in my head.
With Mozart it just doesn’t work.
After trying a couple of times to think of alternative phrasing, a different arrangement, even if it is just a solo piano, all the circuits went blank and the result card that came out of my ear was empty. Does not compute.
You want to change what? Change that? How? Mozart is annoyingly impossible to improve on. I started looking at his work, or listening to them, as something that is equivalent to what religious people think of the old testament bible. There is not one letter that can be changed, not one comma that can be moved. it is as perfect as it can be. Don’t touch.
It is not music. Not a language anymore , a harmonic tongue of non verbal stories and panoramic views of arpeggios and fugas. It is a code. A computer code. A formula that makes you feel a certain feeling. Think certain thoughts.
Thanks to Mozart, I completely understand the importance the enlightenment movement gave to music, composers at large, and Mozart in particular. The keepers of the key.
My first Mozart record. Deutche gramophone of course, was mozart's requiem. Yes, I know, a strange choice for a forteen years old with his first stereo inherited from a big brother. Just to avoid any offers for discounted psychological treatment and free counseling, no, I did NOT choose the requiem when I was forteen.
An old aunt who was on her way to the departure gates, gave me part of her record collection.
I came back home with a bunch of records, and the two I remember now were Mozart's requiem and horowiz playing rachmaninof. (which ruined classical music for me for years to come, as anything else sounded so tame and gutless in comparison to that record, with it's black and white cover photo still burnt into my souls' retina).
She had good taste, my aunt. Strange taste, a bit dark, maybe not the most suitable gift for a fourteen year old, but hey, if you are thrown into the deep water, you drown and die. Wait. No. that isn’t how it goes…oh, if you are thrown into the deep water , you learn to swim faster. Yes.
Recently I have discovered another use for the internet (now, with cute sneezing panda videos and porn, we have already three uses for the internet! Progress is amazing.) and that is the access to visual manifestation of music. Not video clips or stoned red eyed hallucinogenic colorful animation, but real visual representation, translation if you will, of the music.