I think it was Franz Liszt who, as a young composer, walked into a music publisher’s and asked to show his music. He then produced a sheet of music with a plaintive Lied (song).
After studying it for a few moments, the publisher said, “young man, you have lots of talent but your music is too sad. Write me something happier and I promise to publish it.”
Liszt returned a couple of weeks later with another Lied, this one titled, “Walking to my grave with a smile on my face.”
I love this apocryphal anecdote because it reminds me that, just like language, music has an alphabet of its own. And it loves to be shared.
Have you ever wondered how people shared music before Spotify or MP3?
As My Modern Met explains, most composers like to handwrite their sheet music. However, over the years there have…
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