I’m counting on you, Bill Svendsen!

Oct 30, 2019 | 1 comment

Bill Svendsen

Tomorrow, Bill Svendson (who, with his wife Sue, founded the Long Beach Peninsula Acoustic Music Foundation and operates the Peninsula Performing Arts Center) is going to talk at the Oysterville Schoolhouse.  I am SO looking forward to it!  I’m hoping to fill in a lot of gaps in my musical education.  No pressure, Bill.

His subject is “How To Hear The Music of Our Fathers” and is a response to a question from Diane Buttrell.  Diane is organizer of the very popular  Oysterville Town Hall Lecture Series and this fall’s offerings focus on “The Stories and Songs of Our Fathers.”  The question she posed to Bill:  “How can I tell what genre I’m listening to?  Is it Country or Western, Blues or Slow Jazz?  Or maybe Fusion?”

In answer, Bill promises to take us on a tour of American music, beginning with the immigrant populations who brought their native music with them.  How it changed and merged and was labeled will be the subject of his talk tomorrow, beginning at 10 a.m.  At least, I hope so.

Which Genre?

Like Diane, I feel that my music education is sorely lacking.  I know far more about the visual arts than I do about musical genres.  Diane, at least, plays and sings.  I grew up in a family that almost prided itself on being musically inept.  (Truly!)  I remember going to the Boston Pops and to the New York Philharmonic Symphony when I was twelve.  And I saw a fair amount of musical theater in San Francisco when I was growing up.

But, except for forty-five minutes a week during the first semester of sixth grade when we all went to the auditorium for “Music Appreciation,” that was about it.  I’ve acquired more musical knowledge from the musicians at our House Concerts over the past twenty years than I ever learned elsewhere.  Even the much-touted History of Western Civilization course at Stanford had far more to say about visual art genres than about music.

Schoolhouse Clock

It’s not that I’m expecting Bill to fill in all the gaps.  But I do hope I have a better understanding of what I’m listening to after tomorrow.  Plus, did I say…  he’ll be illustrating some of his information by playing his guitar!  Yay!  See you there.

1 Comment

  1. Diane Buttrell

    The fact that the Oysterville Town Hall and Lecture Series has resurrected itself;
    the level of relevance and excellence offered by the first two speakers: Cyndy Hayward
    and Fred Carter; and the prospect of the enrichment yet to be offered by Bill Svendsen, Steve Frost, Barbara Poulshock, and Ann Gaddy leave me awed and speechless!

    Reply

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