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Everything is connected: The Power of music

3.8  ·  Rating Details ·  222 Ratings  ·  33 Reviews
Daniel Barenboim's book vividly describes his lifelong pursuit of knowledge and understanding, not only of music and of life, but of one through the other. The topics covered range from the problems of timing to the philosophy of Spinoza and its relevance to musical interpretation.
Hardcover, 216 pages
Published 2008 by Weidenfeld & Nicolson
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Apr 27, 2009 Yuval rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Barenboim is a true genius and one of my heroes, but I don't know if Verso did very well putting together a sampling of his writing: the book is strangely organized and repeats itself a LOT (a late chapter on the West-East Divan Orchestra is basically a verbatim recount of what he talks about in the first half of the book). Great insight throughout, but anyone interested would do better to read PARALLELS AND PARADOXES, his book with Edward Said.

On a pickier note: this is the second music/philos
Feb 16, 2009 Rachel rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a little worried that this dude thinks that he could fart and it would sound like Vivaldi. He's obviously smart, but he could probably remove the stick from his butt. So that the Vivaldi farts could escape.
Stephen Redwood
Jul 29, 2011 Stephen Redwood rated it it was ok
I approached this book with great anticipation. The reviews I had read primed me to expect a text of deep philosophical insights borne of parallels between music and life at large, from one of the great musicians of our time. Well, yes, it was sort of philosophical in the sense that many people of a thinking and reflective bent are, but some of the perspectives were more a statement of beliefs than a result of robust logical argument. And parallels between music and life were laced throughout, b ...more
Jan 19, 2017 Evan rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Daniel Barenboim could write about his dippy eggs and it'd be interesting. But that doesn't mean he should. Here's a book made up of two sides of entirely different coins. Side one: a semi-structured musing on the ways music as an art form affect us, and how we could engage. Side two: a whistle stop tour through the practical, political and ethical minefield that is the the West-East Divan Orchestra. They are, one suspects, meant to be related – the metaphysical manifested in the intensely polit ...more
Oct 31, 2015 Pietro rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition

Genio ingenuo

L'accessibilità non la dà il populismo; l'accessibilità è data da interesse, curiosità e conoscenza maggiori.

Barenboim, un nome che riempe la bocca, che rimbalza, giocoso e frizzante; uno dei (pochi) pilastri della direzione orchestrale, un ex bambino prodigio che a dieci anni conosceva intimamente tutte le 24 tonalità de Il clavicembalo ben temperato di Bach e che a tredici anni veniva invitato in Francia a suonare Bartók. Insomma, una personcina comune. Possiamo parlare quasi cert
Persephone Abbott
The author’s name in the cover is printed larger than the title of the book. Granted, Mr. Barenboim’s intellect is capable of overriding any one statement, such as “Everything is Connected,” however he rarely dares come to a rounded conclusion, in manner of a true sonata form or the sequence of an essay by Mr. Montaigne and if he did I wonder what danger he might uncover. Reading the comments on music, I enjoyed many his descriptions of music, and obviously he has much to say given his extraordi ...more
Ian Murray-Watson
Disappointing, and in general, rather stolid and unimaginative. Be prepared for more about politics than music. Barenboim's analysis of the Middle East situation will make a lot of sense to many people, but unfortunately I bought the book expecting to read about music, so skipped most of the political stuff.
Must of what is written about music, though interesting, is hardly original and will be completely meaningless to the layman. I mean - do you happen to know off hand what the bass line in Ba
Feb 25, 2009 John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Barenboim knows what he's talking about. I especially enjoyed his discussion of how silence is part of music, as well as his interview on Mozart, where he takes to task "authentic performance practice." He also understands Wagner at least as well as any other conductor alive (including his friend Pierre Boulez); although he discusses Wagner only sporadically here, he makes an especially apt point about why Wagner's stage directions at the beginning of his operas are so important.

His discussion
Kate Gould
Feb 18, 2010 Kate Gould rated it liked it
In 1999, Daniel Barenboim and Edward Said set up the West-Eastern Divan Project, enabling young Middle Eastern musicians to work together. Now, in a collection of essays and articles that is part manifesto, part memoir, and part discourse, Barenboim discusses the place of music both in the lives of individuals and as a global phenomenon.

He transports music from notes and the orchestra pit to its repercussive effects and potential as an instrument in the peace process.

The book is, in parts, a li
James Stephenson
Jun 20, 2011 James Stephenson rated it it was ok
Despite the great respect I have for Barenboim as a musician and humanitarian, I can't get past the patronising and dogmatic tone of much of this book, especially the early parts. I realise in hindsight that I should have read 'Parallels and Paradoxes' (Barenboim's book with Edward Said on the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra) first, since 'Everything is Connected' repeatedly drifts from the abstract and philosophical to specific examples from that landmark project - a shame, because it renders the ...more
Katrina Becker
Oct 09, 2010 Katrina Becker rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ok, very much mixed reactions to this book. For the most part, I absolutely loved it far more than I thought I would- beautiful writing, and clearly a brilliant, kind, and passionate mind. That said, I really know nothing of music at all, more's the pity. So, the first 3 chapters, with their copious classical music references & music terms were pretty much lost on me, as were much of the content on his essays about various music personas. Still though, brilliant, and overall a pleasure to re ...more
Jack Laschenski
Dec 28, 2008 Jack Laschenski rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Daniel is the greatest musician alive today!!

He has no competition!! Pianist (the greatest interpreter of Beethoven), conductor, and founder of the East West Divan Orchestra - Israeli and
Arab kids playing classical music together!

I revere him without qualification.

This is a book of meditations (delivered as the Norton Lectures at Harvard in 2006)on music, life, Israel and Palestine.

A deep man.
Oct 17, 2012 Wackedout rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: music
It was insightful to glimpse the musical mind of such a seasoned conductor and it really helped sparked some new thoughts in my personal musical understanding and learning. I wish there was more focus on musical interpretation and ideas in the book, but also appreciate the passion with which Daniel Barenboim and Edward Said have for their cause. I am inspired to read the earlier book they co-wrote.
José Luis
Jan 16, 2015 José Luis rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
The musician Daniel Barenboim, worldly recognized, tells us his experience on trying to achieve some peace between jews and palestines, through an orchestra whose members are from both sides. Music feeds the soul. I wrote something about this on my blog, sorry it is in portuguese, fortunately can be easily translated to any language.
Jan 11, 2011 Mangoo rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Per quanto l'autore sia chiaramente competente, questo libro è una dimostrazione di come, a meno di non entrare nei dettagli tecnici (e anche li, con esiti al massimo parziali), parlare di musica è un esercizio personale e di solito vano. (Poi lui non può non indulgere nelle considerazioni sul conflitto israelo-palestinese, vissuto anche in prima persona tramite la sua orchestra multietnica (Divan).
Ma questo in particolare fa venire voglia, finalmente, di leggere Spinoza.
An immensely profound and wide-ranging book, ranging in its discussions from Schumann as a radical mind to anecdotes from the Western Divan Orchestra, from cultural understanding of Mozart to Israeli-Palestinian relations. Barenboim emphasizes above all that music brings all of the elements of humanity together. Musicians, artists, and performers who read this books will be happy to meet a very old friend; politicians and social activists who read it will be surprised to find a common ally.
Non aspettatevi niente di che purtroppo. Cioè, riflessioni condivisibili, però scritto (o forse solo tradotto) con la peggior rappresentazione di "registro medio", il che fa sembrare tutto mostruosamente didascalico e poco coinvolgente, nonostante, mi ripeto, la ricchezza del tema (ricchezza, ouf, nessun affondo di classe, una riflessione generale e personale... meglio che smetta di rifletterci, più ci penso e meno mi va di salvarlo).
Garth Johnson
Jun 29, 2015 Garth Johnson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed some parts of this but not others. The writing about music is first rate but I find the political sections difficult. I greatly admire Barenboim's attitude to the Palestinian problem but I'm unsure about his musical analogies. He is an idealist and that is great but I'm not sure of the real influence of his East West orchestra initiative outside the actual players.
Sep 29, 2015 Ashley rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found it an interesting book, partly because I learnt more about music but also because cooperation without words but with language always brings people closer. Music, art and sport are perhaps what should be precursors to any political discussions. The formation of the Orchestra by amazing people is worth reading about
Sep 22, 2010 Scott rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: essays, books-i-own
This wasn't the most well-edited book I've ever read, but Barenboim is certainly at the top of his game, both musically and intellectually. A lot of what he has to say about music, music education, and politics (among many other more and less specific topics) is highly pertinent and should be more widely recognized.
Ana Hernandez
Jan 04, 2013 Ana Hernandez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is largely the story of his work with Edward Said in Palestine and Israel, the formation of the West-Eastern Divan Orchestra, and the power of music to bring us together to explore how we live in community, as well as music's power to help us navigate the seemingly intractable issues we face as a species.
Dec 15, 2012 Jessica rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It was fascinating to read about the Israel/Palestine conflict from the viewpoint of this world-renowned conductor and pianist. He brought to light how music is able to transcend the political differences and allow a Palestinian and an Israeli to find friendship in their mutual love of music.
Nov 08, 2009 Steve rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An interesting book that goes as much into the author's vision re: the Israel/Palestine situation as it does music. I enjoyed it very much.
Dec 08, 2010 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy, music
Worth owning if only for the opening chapter: "Sound and Thought". All of Barenboim's interpretive genius as a performer and conductor seems to articulates itself in this deeply thought-out essay.
Jun 28, 2009 Elizabeth rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A great thinker. Clearly written. Developed from Norton Lectures of 2006. On the connection between music and life.
Some very interesting ideas from a very thoughtful and intelligent man. Got a bit muddled and philosophical at times, but overall a cool quick read for fans of this pianist/composer.
Zé Santos
Sep 04, 2014 Zé Santos rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Changes my perception of what is music and what you can achieve with it. It also talks about the middle east conflict from a very neutral perspective.
Aviva Dierckx
Aug 29, 2012 Aviva Dierckx rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own
Een boek om te lezen en herlezen, geschreven door een echte "mentsch". Voor mij was dit hét boek van deze zomer, heeft me veel lees- en denkplezier bezorgd.
Aug 13, 2008 Cornflower rated it really liked it
It gets only four stars because I'd like it to have been longer.

More thoughts here:
Will Sherwood
Aug 17, 2012 Will Sherwood rated it really liked it
Barenboim gives us not only a fresh idea of the evolution of sound, he also gives us the history of the West/Eastern Divan Orchestra.
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Daniel Barenboim is an Argentine pianist and conductor. Currently, he is general music director of La Scala in Milan, the Berlin State Opera, and the Staatskapelle Berlin; he previously served as Music Director of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Orchestre de Paris. Barenboim is also known for his work with the West–Eastern Divan Orchestra, a Seville-based orchestra of young Arab and Israeli ...more
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