Despite many dire predictions of its demise, performances and recordings of European classical music, which I root in the works of the greatest triumvirate of composers from the 18th and 19th centuries — Johann Sebastian Bach, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, and Ludwig von Beethoven — continue to adapt and thrive in our postmodernist, digital world.
As New York Philharmonic violinist Fiona Simon said in a article about Internet distribution of classical music concert and studio recordings, “Downloading is probably the way that classical music is going to be distributed in the future.
MTV Networks’ Michael Bloom quipped, “We’re going to give classical as much love as we give hip-hop or pop” (Jepson, ).
I also searched for streaming audio content through all the major free audio players: Windows Media Player [ Real Player [ and Win Amp [
Real Networks also distributes a free combo player-music download application called Rhapsody [ that lets you download for free and listen to up to 25 songs a month from a database of 1.5 million.
The default list of search engines includes Gracenote [ a commercial database with over 4.6 million CDs and 59 million songs.
You can use the copy/paste commands to construct discographies.
To use this music-based query feature, a la Music Information Retrieval (see the sidebar interview with Professor J.
Stephen Downie starting on page 44), you need to reconstruct the melody through an onscreen piano keyboard.
I could simultaneously query the All Classical [ part of All Music.com], the APC Music Society (Appreciating Classical Music Society), [ and Tim’s Classical Music Database under the composers category.
One of the most intriguing search tools, created by Ryuichi Iwamura, is Classical Music Search [ a “melody search engine” with over 1,500 melodic phrases.
Based on a 2004 user survey, Singingfish reported that 61 percent of visitors came there to search for audio files [ viewed Feb. I ran a typical search for audio-only MP3 files in the music and radio category with the keyword classical and came up with about 9,000 fewer hits than Alta Vista’s audio search.