08-28: CBGB : Suicide 1978 | Bad Brains 1982 | Damage 1986 | Vibrators 2000 - Mussorgsky / Golovanov : Pictures at an Exhibition 1952 | Night On Bald Mountain 1948 - Martinů Symphonies / Neumann

Thoroughly chronological. Go here for tagged image.

430 – St. Augustine of Hippo (North African bishop, theologian, writer & philosopher)
1572 – Claude Goudimel (French composer, music editor, music publisher & music theorist)
1647 – Johann Dilliger (German church musician & composer)
1767 – Johann Schobert (German composer & harpsichordist)
1864 – Anton Schindler (German violinist & early Beethoven biographer)
1885 – Julius Hopp (Austrian composer)
1903 – August Labitzky (Czech composer & conductor)
1905 – Ioannis Apostolou (Greek operatic tenor)
1914 – Anatoly Lyadov (Russian composer, teacher, conductor & pianist)
1958 – Nikolai Golovanov (Russian conductor, composer & pianist)
1959 – Bohuslav Martinů (Czech composer, violinist & teacher)
1960 – Anton Lajovic (Slovenian composer)
1964 – Aristide Baracchi (Italian operatic baritone)
1972 – René Leibowitz (Polish-born French composer, conductor, music theorist & teacher)
1982 – Nini de Boël [Leonie Van Nuland] (Belgian actress & soprano in operettas & musical revues)
1984 – Ahti Sonninen (Finnish composer & teacher)
1994 – Pieter de Cort (Belgian rock guitarist, Betty Goes Green)
2007 – Hilly Kristal (American club owner & musician, CBGB)
2010 – William P. Foster (American marching band pioneer, Florida A&M University 'Marching 100')

St. Augustine, a musician? Well, he's the patron saint of brewers, among other things. That alone earns him some serious cred in the music racket. But indeed he was well acquainted with the mathematical science of music (harmonics in the Pythagorean tradition - the study of the ratios and proportions of musical intervals, as it would later form part of the medieval quadrivium), and is said to have composed music for the early Church, although who knows if any traces of it survive, given that it would have been passed down through oral tradition. It would be centuries later before even the most rudimentary forms of musical notation would come into common usage. (The great leap forward was in the invention of staff notation about 1000 years ago, but in its earliest forms even it is virtually unrecognizable as the notational system we use today.) Nevertheless, just marvel at that magnificent image of Saint Augie. Regardless of your opinions on this religion or that religion, or religion in general, you can't deny that it's inspired some amazing iconography... and of course, some amazing music. Sure is making my blog look like a million bucks today!

Truth be told, Augustine did make a significant contribution to the subject of liturgical music in his writings, one that has been well preserved. De musica, among his earlier and lesser-known treatises, describes what would come to be called the responsorial style of chanting and singing - in which the congregation keeps answering the celebrant repeatedly. Augustine also had some important theoretical ideas about rhythm and meter, and expanded on the variety of poetical feet that had been established in Classical antiquity. This became an extremely important model for later composers when the practice of polyphonic composition began to grow in the 2nd millennium, causing the temporal organization of multiple parts to become more crucial. Augustine also warned against music that would arouse the passions too much and distract its hearers from the contemplation of the divine. Well, that makes sense, coming from the patron saint of brewers. Arousing the passions is beer's job.

We're not precisely sure which day Claude Goudimel died. It was sometime between the 28th and the 31st of August, 1572. Goudimel was murdered in the St. Bartholemew's Day Massacre, a purging of Huguenots (French Calvinists) which lasted longer than a day, several weeks actually, beginning with targeted assassinations by Catherine de' Medici and the monarchy in Paris on August 23rd, and continuing with Catholic mob violence that eventually spread to other urban centers and the French countryside through September. Goudimel, being a fairly prominent figure in the Huguenot cause, perished quite early in the bloodbath. Esimates of the death toll range between 5000 and 30,000. A contemporary depiction of the events of August 24th:

Although Dubois did not witness the massacre, his depiction is consistent with contemporary accounts. Admiral Coligny's body is hanging out of a window at the rear to the right. To the left rear, Catherine de' Medici is shown emerging from the Louvre to inspect a heap of bodies.

The death of Johann Schobert was a rather more prosaic, and frankly embarrassing one. Like Goudimel, he died in Paris, and like Goudimel, he was not the only one to perish in the event. Schobert died along with his wife, one of their children, their maidservant, and four of their best friends who they were having over for dinner, after insisting to those gathered that certain highly poisonous mushrooms were quite edible and harmless. Still, Schobert redeems himself in that he influenced the very young Mozart, who "borrowed" some movements from Schobert's piano sonatas to use in some of his earliest piano concertos.

I'm not 100% certain which member of Belgian band Betty Goes Green is Pieter de Cort, but I'm pretty sure it's the guy the second from the right, in the beige jacket. I've seen other pics of the band in which only four members are shown, and he's the only one not in them. Poor guy died of cancer at the age of 25.

My list originally contained the name of Christian Anders, Austrian Schlager singer, one-time teen idol, composer, and actor. It said he died in 1991. I'm not sure why. He's still very much alive, and just came out with a new album this year. Check out his blog to reassure yourself. Here he was in his teen idol days:

Christian Anders: Love Dreamer (1976)
Und so, entschuldige mich ich bei allen Sie Mädchen heraus dort, deren Schlüpfer in der Erwartung naß ist. Kein Christian Anders für Sie heute! Hahahahahaha....

Nikolai Golovanov was one of the more idiosyncratic and radical figures among orchestral conductors. Much like Hermann Scherchen, he has achieved, after death, an almost cultish following among collectors of 78s and early LPs. And for good reason. "Based upon the evidence of his recordings," says the Wikipedia, "Golovanov's characteristic performance mode was full-blooded and nearly vehement in tone, with a powerful, almost overloaded sense of sonority, and extreme flexibility in matters of tempo, phrasing and dynamics." Yup, that's my Golovanov. He really has to be heard to be appreciated... (Read more below)

The Czechs produced two undeniably world-class composers in the 20th century. One, whom we remembered on the very first edition of YiDM, was Leoš Janáček. The other was Bohuslav Martinů... (Read more below)

It was a seedy dive at the corner of Bowery and Bleeker. To the north and south were the East Village and Chinatown, to the east and west the Lower East Side and Little Italy. Hilly Kristal called it CBGB OMFUG - "Country, Bluegrass, Blues, and Other Music For Uplifting Gormandizers." But really it was Ground Zero for early punk rock, new wave, and hardcore punk in the U.S. from the mid-70s onward. And now it's gone, and so is Hilly. But there's still a whole lot of memories. And where there are gaps in the memories, there's still a whole lot of magnetic tape to fill in what's missing... (Read more below)


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