January 01, 2006

About the Book

Matthew's book, a cultural history of the opening of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony, is forthcoming from Alfred A. Knopf (their logo is a dog! Moe approves). Is there anything at all more to be said about such an ubiquitous warhorse? Well, yeah, as it turns out—and a lot of what already has been said is long-lost fun, to say the least. A sample:
Press corps parrot abducted

NICOSIA, Cyprus—A British journalist offered a $100 reward Wednesday for the safe return of Coco, the whistling parrot of the foreign press corps who was abducted by gunmen from a west Beirut hotel in last week's fighting.

The cash reward was made in messages sent by Coco's owner to west Beirut newspapers.

Coco, who for 10 years has lived at the Commodore hotel frequented by foreign journalists, was locally famous for imitating the whistling of an incoming shell. It also whistled the opening of Beethoven's Fifth Symphony and the French national anthem.

—United Press International, February 25, 1987

As far as I can tell, Coco was never heard from again.

Score Columns for The Boston Globe

May 31, 2015: John Taverner's Dum transisset Sabbatum in light and shadow
May 24, 2015: Sounding out the origin of "Taps"
May 10, 2015: Blanqui to Benjamin to Ferneyhough, rewound
May 3, 2015: Remembering Thomas O'Brien Butler
April 26, 2015: On Varèse's Déserts
April 19, 2015: The Shepherd on the Rock and the political pastoral
April 4, 2015: Earl Kim and Nagasaki, Now and Then
March 29, 2015: Bach's Passions, fluid and frozen
March 22, 2015: Percy Grainger and The Power of Rome and the Christian Heart
March 15, 2015: Ends and beginnings, from Machaut to Babbitt
March 8, 2015: J.C.R. Licklider, through pitch perception to prophecy
March 1, 2015: On Hugo Distler
February 22, 2015: Yoko Ono and Stefan Wolpe, exiles in sympathy
February 15, 2015: Milhaud's Création at the point of possibility
February 8, 2015: Xenakis, Kottos, and the politics of myth
January 25, 2015: Rhapsody in Blue and its guises
January 18, 2015: Berlioz's Le Corsaire, heartbreak, and memory
January 11, 2015: Jacques Duphly's 300th
January 4, 2015: Rzewski's Les Moutons de Panurge
December 21, 2014: Schnittke's "Silent Night"
December 14, 2014: Versailles, Esterháza, and Haydn's 35th
December 7, 2014: William Byrd, recusant
November 30, 2014: Charles B. Fisk, building organs and atomic ordnance
November 16, 2014: On Ivor Gurney
November 9, 2014: Richard Strauss's contractual obligation album
November 2, 2014: Britten's Russian Funeral, politics, and pacifism
October 25, 2014: Édith Piaf and Poulenc's Improvisation no. 15
October 18, 2014: John Cage's Williams Mix
October 11, 2014: Michael Tippett and Boyhood's End
September 28, 2014: R. Larry Todd and lost-and-found Mendelssohn
September 20, 2014: On Erard Pianos
September 13, 2014: Remembering Lindsay Cooper
August 30, 2014: "Bread and Roses," the labor movement, and feminism
August 23, 2014: On Gil Mellé
August 16, 2014: Pius X and Lorenzo Perosi
August 9, 2014: R. Nathaniel Dett and The Chariot Jubilee
August 2, 2014: On Foss's The Prairie
July 26, 2014: The Gadfly, via Voynich and Shostakovich
July 19, 2014: Erskine Hawkins' 100th
July 12, 2014: William Albright's ragtime
July 5, 2014: Edward Kilenyi, Sr. and Gershwin's Lullaby
June 28, 2014: Hanns Eisler and the Red Scare
June 21, 2014: James Cruze's Old Ironsides
June 14, 2014: Casiotone glories (and the Fuck Buttons)
June 7, 2014: Janáček's 1.X.1905 (and Roman Jakobson)
May 24, 2014: Robert Johnson and Shakespearean music
May 17, 2014: Mussorgsky, Jesus Navin, and Russian Orientalism
May 10, 2014: The New England Phonographers Union and the history of water music
May 3, 2014: Anton Raaff's 300th
April 27, 2014: On Jonathan Harvey
April 20, 2014: Danny Elfman and Pee-Wee's Big Adventure
April 13, 2014: Brahms' op. 34, in all its guises
April 6, 2014: Mozart and the mechanical clock
March 30, 2014: On Albi Rosenthal
March 23, 2014: Michael Gordon's Rushes
March 16, 2014: The rise (and fall) of Marie Jansen
March 9, 2014: The politics of The Ruins of Athens
March 2, 2014: Vilmorin, Poulenc, and "Il vole"
February 23, 2014: The HMHS Britannic and the Welte Philharmonic organ
February 16, 2014: William Byrd and "Will Yow Walke the Woods Soe Wylde"
February 9, 2014: On Toshiro Mayuzumi
January 26, 2014: Berio, Lévi-Strauss, and O King
January 19, 2014: Tosca, Bernhardt, and Escoffier
January 12, 2014: Copland's Vitebsk and Joel Engel
January 5, 2014: The Atari 2600 and the Phrygian mode
December 22, 2013: Paul Whiteman's last "Experiment on Modern American Music"
December 15, 2013: On Walter Marchetti
December 8, 2013: Britten's Ceremony of Carols and Sir Hans Sloane
December 1, 2013: On John Knowles Paine
November 17, 2013: JFK memorials, from Bernstein to The Beach Boys
November 10, 2013: Mozart and Salieri, again
November 3, 2014: The upkeep of "Ein' Feste Burg"
October 27, 2013: Jonathan Swift, musical malcontent
October 20, 2013: Marie Fel's 300th
October 13, 2013: On Mauricio Kagel
October 6, 2013: On Jehan Alain
September 29, 2013: Gozzi and The Love for Three Oranges
September 22, 2013: The Legendary Pink Dots
September 15, 2013: Henry Brant's 100th
September 1, 2013: Frederic Fradkin, Boston Symphony striker
August 25, 2013: Duck That! and other avian noisemakers
August 18, 2013: Hitchcock's Waltzes from Vienna
August 11, 2013: Joseph Schuster and musical misattribution
August 4, 2013: Carter and Nancarrow
July 28, 2013: Cardinal Francesco Barberini, patron and Vatican insider
July 21, 2013: Schubert and Schnabel
July 14, 2013: John Jacob Astor, piano man
July 7, 2013: On the Lyricon
June 30, 2013: Francis Hopkinson, songwriter and signatory
June 23, 2013: The Apollonian origins of musical competition
June 16, 2013: Arnold Dolmetsch and Ulysses
June 9, 2013: John Cage's Variations III
June 2, 2013: Bach multiples, for multiple Bachs
May 26, 2013: Mozart's 40th and its Bollywood moment

Appearances in 2012-13

Tuesday, November 27 at 7:00 PM at the Greenwich Library in Greenwich, CT

Friday, November 30 at 7:00 PM at the Harvard Book Store in Cambridge, MA

Wednesday, December 12 at 6:30 PM at the Heard Museum in Phoenix, AZ, presented by Zócalo Public Square and the ASU Center for Science and the Imagination

Thursday, January 17 at 6:00 PM at the Boston Public Library

Tuesday, January 22 at 12:00 noon at 92Y Tribeca in New York City