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White Supremacy & Music Theory

For several years my grandparents lived in a small house on the same property on Bainbridge Island as my nuclear family—nuclear in more than one sense, since our home was…

SuperBowl Hits & Histrionics

SuperBowl Hits & Histrionics

Who says America doesn’t have a natural aristocracy? From young Bar(r)on von Trump to Lady Gaga, this country has produced legions of men, women, ADD teens, and hypoallergenic designer dogs,…

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Inauguration

A Funny Thing Happened On The Way To The Inauguration

The funniest thing about presidential inaugural ceremonies is that anyone takes them seriously at all.  This latest edition reached new heights—and depths—of comic excellence. To his credit, Barack Obama had…

The Ironies Of ‘La La Land’

The Ironies Of ‘La La Land’

Irony is the not-so-new normal. Somewhere back in the swirling dry-ice mists of history, round about the time of the one-and-only Clinton Administration, this venerable figure-of-speech stretched its wings and…

Jesu: Bach’s Timeless Broth

For many it remains an open question whether the tricentenary of one of J. S. Bach’s most famous tunes—or, to be more precise, the work that eventually spawned that tune—should…

Brahms & The Tears of Britain’s Oppressed

London — ‘Tis the season to think about the next season. Before letting the wave of Christmas gifts crash of over their heads and/or into the digital stockings, and before…

Dirges for the Living Dead

Dirges for the Living Dead

At any political funeral, especially one as sorrowful and grandiose as Hillary’s ongoing obsequies, there will inevitably be abundant tears and cathartic sighs, long faces and stiff upper lips, doleful…

Ceremonial Bugles: The Latest Insult To Veterans

Ceremonial Bugles: The Latest Insult To Veterans

Another Memorial Day has come and gone in Ithaca’s ramshackle nineteenth-century civic graveyard that sprawls over some twenty hillside acres between the flats of downtown and the campus of Cornell…

Organistic In Frisco

I’m in San Francisco for an organ concert tomorrow night at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church on the edge of the city’s Tenderloin District, and a stone’s throw from St. Mary’s…

Bach On The Election

Even amidst the bluster, lies, and anger unleashed by the presidential election—the last of these captured this morning in a vivid photo essay in Germany’s leading daily, the Süddeutsche Zeitung,…

Trump & Hitchcock in the Age of Conspiracies

The Age of Trump is an Age of Conspiracies. In lock step with the zeitgeist, elements human, natural, and perhaps even ethereal conspired against last night’s screening at the Syracuse…