Recent Faculty Publications

Joseph N. Straus

Extraordinary Measures: Disability in Music
(Oxford University Press, 2011)

Approaching disability as a cultural construction rather than a medical pathology, this book studies the impact of disability and concepts of disability on composers, performers, and listeners with disabilities, as well as on discourse about music and works of music themselves. For composers with disabilities—like Beethoven, Delius, and Schumann—awareness of the disability sharply inflects critical reception. For performers with disabilities—such as Itzhak Perlman and Evelyn Glennie—disability performance and music performance are deeply intertwined. For listeners with disabilities, extraordinary bodies and minds may give rise to new ways of making sense of music. In the stories that people tell about music, and in the stories that music itself tells, disability has long played a central but unrecognized role. Joseph N. Straus is a distinguished professor of music at the Graduate Center.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Leo Treitler

Reflections on  Musical Meaning and Its Representations
(Indiana University Press, 2011)

In this book, distinguished scholar Treitler explores the relationships among language, musical notation, performance, compositional practice, and patterns of culture in the presentation and representation of music. He addresses such questions as: How is it possible to talk or write about music? What is the link between graphic signs and music? What makes music meaningful? The author engages a wide variety of historical sources to discuss works from medieval plainchant to Berg’s opera Lulu and a range of music in between. Leo Treitler is distinguished professor of music emeritus at the Graduate Center.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Philip Lambert

To Broadway, To Life! The Musical Theater of Bock and Harnick
(Oxford University Press, 2010)

To Broadway, To Life! is the first complete book about Fiddler on the Roof composer Jerry Bock and lyricist Sheldon Harnick, one of Broadway’s most important songwriting teams. Drawing from extensive archival sources and from personal interviews and communications with Bock and Harnick and their most important collaborators, Lambert explores the essence of a Bock-Harnick show: how it is put together and what makes it work. The book includes discussion of songs such as “Sunrise, Sunset” and “If I Were a Rich Man” as well as a vast catalogue of lesser-known songs from their many other shows and works, including a musical puppet show on Broadway, music for the 1964 World’s Fair, and a made-for-television musical. Also included is the first look at the songwriters’ professional beginnings in revues and television shows and summer retreats in the 1950s, and an assessment of the careers they have forged for themselves with new collaborators in the decades since their partnership dissolved in 1970. Philip Lambert (Prof., Baruch) is on the doctoral faculty in music.

Interested in purchasing this book? Click HERE.

Antoni Pizà

Nits simfòniques
(Ensiola, 2010)

A selection of the author’s concert program notes in Catalan, this volume provides listening guides to mainstream works of the orchestral, chamber, and solo repertoire (Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Rachmaninov, Schoenberg, etc.), as well as appreciations of lesser-known musicians including Roman Alis, Maria del Mar Bonet, Benet Casablancas, Cristobal Halffter, Antoni Literes, P. M. Marques, Antoni Parera Fons, Juan Pons, Josep Prohens, Miguel Angel Roig-Francoli, Baltasar Samper, Carlos Surinach, and Manuel Valls. An extensive introductory essay discusses the history and genre complexities of concert program notes. Antoni Pizà (Adj. Prof., GC) is on the doctoral faculty in music and is director of the Foundation for Iberian Music.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Allan W. Atlas

Victorian Music for the English Concertina: Recent Researches in the Music of the Nineteenth and Early Twentieth Centuries, Vol. 52
(A-R Editions, 2009)

Developed by the physicist Charles Wheatstone around 1830, the English concertina was extremely popular in art and music circles of Victorian England until late in the nineteenth century. This edition includes fifteen works that present a cross section of the instrument’s concert and salon repertories, and includes music by the “mainstream” composers Macfarren, Benedict, and Molique, as well as original compositions by such concertina virtuosos as Giulio Regondi and Richard Blagrove. Also included are pieces by two little-known female composers/arrangers, Hannah Rampton Binfield and Rosina King; an arrangement by George Case, demonstrating how the baritone concertina was used in small parish churches; two works for concertina ensembles; a duo for treble; a baritone concertina by Blagrove; and a transcription by Regondi of the final movement of Mozart’s Prague symphony for concertina quartet. Allan Atlas is a distinguished professor of music at the Graduate Center.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Richard Kramer

Unfinished Music
(Oxford University Press, 2008)

Unfinished Music draws its inspiration from the riddling aphorism by Walter Benjamin that serves as its epigraph: “the work is the death mask of its conception.” The work in its finished, perfected state conceals the enlivening process engaged in its creation. An opening chapter examines some explosive ideas from the mind of J. G. Hamann, eccentric figure of the anti-rationalist Enlightenment, on the place of language at the seat of thought. These ideas are pursued as an entry into the no less radical mind of Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, whose bold idiosyncrasies, like Hamann’s, disrupted the discourse of Enlightenment aesthetics. Bach is a central player here, his late music the subject of fresh inquiry; but there are others whose unfinished works are addressed—among them, Beethoven, Haydn, Mozart, Schubert—as the author explores the uneasy relationship between the finished work and the elusive traces of profound labors buried in its past. Richard Kramer is a distinguished professor of music at the Graduate Center.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Mark Spicer and John Covach, eds.

Sounding Out Pop: Analytical Essays in Popular Music
(University of Michigan Press, 2010)

The nine essays in this volume work together to map the myriad styles and genres of the pop-rock universe through detailed case studies that confront the music from a variety of engaging, thought-provoking perspectives—from historical to music-analytic, aesthetic to ethnographic, with several authors drawing liberally from ideas in other disciplines. The bands and artists covered range from the Coasters and Roy Orbison to Marvin Gaye, Bob Dylan, Radiohead, Beck, Genesis, Tori Amos, and the Police. Together these diverse essays cover a broad spectrum of studies ideally suited for classroom use and for readers interested in gaining a deeper knowledge of the way popular music works. Mark Spicer (Assoc. Prof., Hunter) is on the doctoral faculty in music.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Raymond Erickson, ed.

The Worlds of Johann Sebastian Bach
(Amadeus Press, 2009)

Erickson’s carefully edited work on Bach brings to light further discoveries about one of Western music’s most central figures. With the fall of the Iron Curtain, increasing amounts of scholarship have been undertaken regarding Bach’s personal and family life. Information and images not seen even as recently as 2000 are included in this volume, as well as an exploration of the composer’s social, political, and artistic environment. Scholars of religion, architecture, literature, theatre, and other fields of study offer reflections on how these disciplines relate to Bach’s environs. A final essay looks at the challenges and limitations of modern research on the composer. Raymond Erickson is professor emeritus of music at Queens College.

Janette Tilley, ed.

Andreas Hammerschmidt: Geistlicher Dialogen Ander Theil Including a Setting of Martin Opitz’s Salomons des Hebreischen Königes Hohes Liedt
(Recent Researches in Music of the Baroque Era, vol. 150. A-R Editions, 2008)

Andreas Hammerschmidt’s Geistlicher Dialogen Ander Theil (1645) is a collection of fifteen sacred lieder, twelve of which use texts from Martin Opitz’s paraphrase of the Song of Songs, which had long been a popular choice of text for musical treatment. Hammerschmidt is one of the few composers to approach Opitz’s poetry in a systematic way with the intention of setting the entire collection. Arguably one of the most popular and widely heard German composers of his generation, Hammerschmidt writes in a simple yet subtle style appropriate for private and amateur performance. The vocal and instrumental parts are naturally undemanding and could easily be attempted by students. This apparent simplicity should not belie the music its charms and the possibility of tasteful variation in performance. The present contribution makes Hammerschmidt’s volume available to modern performers and scholars for the first time. Janette Tilley is an assistant professor of music at Lehman College and the Graduate Center.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

Royal S. Brown

Film Musings: A Selected Anthology from Fanfare Magazine
(Scarecrow Press, 2007)

For nearly twenty years, scholar and critic Royal S. Brown contributed a regular column, “Film Musings,” to Fanfare magazine. Film Musings assembles the material from these columns and presents Brown’s reviews of significant recordings of movie scores. Although many of the reviews are of “original soundtrack recordings” for films released during the column’s run, a number of the reviews also cover reissues of earlier recordings, as well as newly recorded versions of “classic” scores. In certain instances, Brown was even able to include in his column interviews with composers such as David Raksin (Laura) and Howard Shore (The Silence of the Lambs) concerning new recordings of their music. His perceptions are presented in an accessible style that will lead even readers who are new to the subject to discover many of the treasures of what once was a neglected art. Royal S. Brown, chair of the Department of European Languages and Literatures at Queens College, is a professor of French and music at the Graduate Center.

Interested in purchasing a copy of this book? Click HERE.

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