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Monday, September 10, 2018

Classical Musician Bach Ordinary Man used in Extraordinary Ways

Known often by his last name only Johann Sebastian Bach was one of the great classical musicians. Born near the end of the 1600's in 1685 through the mid 1700's Bach was a German Composer and musician during the Baroque period of time. Bach is known for both instrumental compositions as well as vocal music.

Johann Sebastian Bach was the last child of a musician who lived in Eisenach. At the age of 10 he became an orphan and until his early teens he would live with his eldest brother. During his teen years Bach studied musical development in Linebarg. At the age of 18 he  began working at Protestant churches and later at Weimar courts. Bach would compose music for the Lutheran churches as well as for university musicians. Around 1726 Bach would publish work for keyboard and organ. Later in life he reworked many of his earlier compositions.

Bach would enrich the musical styles in Germany. His adaption of rhythms, harmonies, format and motive not to mention the ability to introduce textures from his travels through Italy and France. Bach's works include cantatas both sacred and secular, church music, motets, and others. While known as an organist

During his lifetime he worked a variety of jobs such as keyboard and string player, teacher and cort or church composer. He was married twice and fathered 20 children. Ten of his children survived into adulthood Four of his children would also become famous composers. Bach gave the glory to God and hard work. He did not believe he had talent but knew his work and worked hard.

Bach had a temper and shared his thoughts often very loudly. In 1717 Bach would be arrested and put in jail partially because of his temper. While working as a composer under the Kapellmeister and Vice-Kapellmeister both of which were son and father Dresse When the older man died Bach believed he should have inherited the job but rather the son became the boss. So Bach left to become the Kapellmeister of Anhalt Corben. The problem was that his first job was not going to let him go so easily. As Bach continued to try to leave his place he cotinued to be told "not happenin" Bach threw a tantrum and was tossed in jail.

Bach was never honored during his lifetime for his musical abilities. Many considered the music he played to be contemporaries and too complicated, too estoreric , too long and in "odd style" In fact, following Bach's death much of his unfinished work as well as that which was simply unpublished was tossed into a dumpster and lost forever. Bach was remembered more as an organist and harpsichordist than as a composer.

After Bach's death for approximately 80 years the music he composed would go unused. Mozart and Beethoven admired his work but it would be a German composer Felix Mendelssohn to perform the Passion of St. Matthew to once again appreciate Bach the composer.

Bach's popularity has grown and the combination of rhythm French dances, the gracefulness of Italian song and intricacy of German counterpoint in one composition could only be Bach. Bach wrote music that expressed how one felt and he demonstrated his devotion to Christ through many pieces that he wrote.

Bach wore many faces through his life time. I believe God used him an extraordinary way 
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  1. This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

  2. I had no idea Bach was an orphan, or that he was arrested. Thanks for this!

  3. What a fun and informative read. Thank you for sharing all about Bach!

  4. What a fascinating profile! Twenty children? My goodness. Also a shame that his music went unnoticed for 80 years!

  5. How informative! I am a huge fan of Bach's compositions but did not know he was such an interesting person.

  6. 20 children? Wow! And 4 of them composers too! While not a big fan of classical music there is no denying that Bach had talent.


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