In keeping with the news cycle, Terry Teachout revisits his earlier comments about the guitarist Julian Bream.
Julian Bream, who gave a recital Tuesday at Alice Tully Hall, made his professional debut a half-century ago. When he started out, guitar recitals consisted of fluff: second-rate Spanish pieces, miscellaneous arrangements and transcriptions, encore-type lollipops. Today, classical guitarists have a huge repertoire of challenging music on which to draw, much of it—including most of the best of it—either discovered or commissioned by Bream. No one since Andres Segovia has had so powerful an influence on guitar playing, and no one has played the guitar better.
I recall Matanya Ophee saying that if all you want to do is play "lollipop" music and your audience wants that, great, but that if you aspire to more challenging and ambitious music to not follow the herd instinct.
more links after the break