Tuesday, July 04, 2017

Celebrate the 4th of July with #USclassics

I've written several times about the oddity of celebrating the 4th of July with that most patriotic of classical works -- Tchaikovsky's "1812 Overture." I get it. The cannons at the end are just part of the fireworks.

But really. Especially after all the controversy involving the recent election, does a Russian piece really belong in our American holiday celebrations?

There's plenty of substantial patriotic music written by Americans that would serve (albeit without cannons written into the score). See any of my previous July 4th posts for musical examples.

This year I'm going a little bit further. For the #ClassicsaDay Twitter feed I'll be posting music exclusively by American composers for the month of July. Each tweet will also have the hashtag #USclassics to make it easier to find.

And you don't even have to be on Twitter. Just do a search for the hashtag and you'll see the posts -- and the links.

I'll be posting music from the colonial period through to the 21st Century.  For the most part, I'll be avoiding the obvious choices, such as Sousa, Copland, Gershwin, and Bernstein. Instead, I'll be focusing on the composers who are just as talented but aren't as well-known (like Randall Thomson, below).

I'll be posting music by composers born in the US, as well as immigrants who became citizens. You'll see links to music by male composers, female composers, and composers of color. Follow the feed the entire month and you'll find that American classical music is as rich and diverse as America itself.

Next month I'll also post an annotated list, as I did for the previous #ClassicsaDay themed month.

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