Wednesday, October 21, 2020

Dreaming of Brahms

I have been joking with my friends about this dream I had about one of my favorite musicians of all time, Johannes Brahms.

For better or worse this was the older, bearded Brahms ... 


... not the young version that Howard, the guy I married, always says somewhat snarkily looks like Clint Eastwood. That is the Clint Eastwood Brahms at the top of this post. I used him as click bait.

Anyway, I approached this older, bearded Brahms, and I asked him, "Herr Doktor Brahms, do you like to go out and hear live music?"

Herr Doktor Brahms said ja, jawohl.

I said, "Because my friends and I, we like to go out and hear music. If this Covid craziness ever ends and we are allowed to go out and hear live music again, would you like to go with us?"

And he said he would!

So I was really happy about that.

Of course then I awoke, and ... no Johannes Brahms, no plans to go out with him to hear live music.

I consoled myself by finding on YouTube that wonderful little recording we have of Brahms speaking.



Then he plays the piano. But you know what, I have never really heard the piano part. I just keep rewinding the speaking part. 

One day maybe I will get to the piano. But meanwhile, I listened to Brahms speak a few times. He says something to the effect of this is Herr Doktor Brahms, Johannes Brahms. I used to think it was in English but it is not.

It is so cool, the things you can find on YouTube.

So cool!

Friday, October 2, 2020

Introducing The Mozart Bookshelf

I got on AbeBooks and I ordered this novel about Mozart. It is called "Sacred and Profane" and it is by an author called David Weiss. I remembered this book from when I was a teenager. I know I read it though I have forgotten most of the details.

"Sacred and Profane" is a terrible title because it does not make you think of Mozart. You could write pretty much any book and call it "Sacred and Profane." Perhaps I will title my biography of Leonard Pennario that! On the other hand look, I remembered it after all these years. So what do I know.

I paid something like $5 for "Sacred and Profane" on AbeBooks shipping included. I am excited about getting it. When I was a kid I got it out of the library. I am sure the library has de-accessioned it long ago.

After a few decades at it, I have amassed a pretty good collection of books about Mozart. I have a few children's books and an ancient copy of the biography of Mozart by Edward Holmes, who I recently learned was a friend of John Keats. Get out, who was a friend of John Keats? But Holmes was. I put it together and figured out they knew each other through Vincent Novello, who with his wife Mary wrote "A Mozart Pilgrimage."

I have that book too. The library de-accessioned it, surprise, surprise. But that book is another story for another day!

I also own several novels about Mozart. All of them are kind of weird -- the authors do not seem to get Mozart, they don't get the Catholic Church, they don't get music, they just don't get it. You know what I should do? I should start writing about all the Mozart books I have. I will title my miniseries "The Mozart Bookshelf." 

Haha.. I should actually call it "The Mozart Bookcase," or, "The Spare Room That Has Been Eaten Up By All My Mozart Stuff." That would be more accurate!

 Back to "Sacred and Profane." I just looked it up on Amazon and cannot believe the reviews. Five stars, from reader after reader!

One gentleman who describes himself as a musician and a Mozartian writes, "It's one of the greatest books I ever read!"

It looks as if it has been reprinted several times.

Well, there goes this plan I had. I was thinking that in the week or so before this book gets here, I should write my own novel about Mozart. Just a mini-novel, see how it goes. I know enough about him, that is for sure.

But now I wonder what is the point.

I am looking too forward to this one!