A couple days ago, I received $25 in the mail for Easter from my Aunt Catherine. My Aunt Catherine is awesome, and I'm grateful for the gift. So I thought about it, and decided that I wanted to get myself something that I would really enjoy - something worthy of my Aunt's gift. I knew already that I wanted the Passion of the Christ on DVD, so I got myself that. However, that only took $18 from my pocket. So what was I to do with the rest? Something I haven't done in a long while...
I decided I was going to shop for a new CD. Now, lately I've been buying all my music on iTunes. However, sometimes its really difficult to find the recording you are looking for on there, or maybe you want the extra stuff with it, and sometimes its just nice to get a physical copy to hold on to. In any case, tonight I was just looking for something new to listen to. So after I left Wal*Mart after buying the Passion, I decided to go to Circuit City. Bad idea.
I mainly like classical music. I didn't have a lot of money to spend, so I figured I'd go ahead and find a Naxos edition of something I hadn't heard before. So for about $4 I can hear something completely new to my ears and be happy with it. When I finally found the classical music section in Circuit City (labeled: Musica Latina), my jaw dropped. They had three tiny shelves, not even a full row or section, devoted to classical music. They had 1500 years worth of music shoved into 3 tiny 3ft wide shelves. Ok, I know what you are thinking. "Matt how can you be shocked at that, its Circuit City." I guess its just the fact that I haven't noticed it in a while. Since its my main kind of music I listen to, and a lot is available through iTunes now, I guess I'm sort of living in a bubble.
Next I went to BestBuy figuring they had a bigger music selection. I was right, they did, but it was only slightly better. At least they had half a rack devoted to my favorite music. Mind you, Rap and R&B get an entire department comparatively.
Not finding what I wanted, I finally gave in and went to Border's, where I knew for a fact I'd find at least something. Border's is typically more expensive though. So I went there and almost as soon as I walked in, a beacon of light hit me: "Select Classical Music $4.99" Wonder of wonders! I found a great CD with an awesome group. I bought "The King's Singers Madrigal Tour" by the Consort of Musicke and Anthony Rooley.
I guess the point of this is that I think its really sad that in a world so blessed to have all the recordings of music we do today, that companies and people are so disinterested in anything other than whats new and out today. These aren't new concepts for me, but it did hit me again tonight. 200 years ago, it would have been impossible for me to pull out a recording of Josquin Deprez. I would have had to gather singers together, figure out the old style notation, practice the piece with them, or hire someone to do all this...just to hear it. Today I can just open my iTunes and listen! Its absolutely amazing.
In recent years, I have opened my ears more to more modern music. I'm glad I have, because there are a lot of great writers and artists out there these days. There is talent for every generation. I guess my hope for the talent of yesterday is that more of us will go out there and listen to their stuff, music that they worked so hard on. Don't ever forget how blessed we are to be able to hear this music.
I reccomend the King's Singer Madrigal History Tour to anyone.