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The Life of Bach

2.75  ·  Rating details ·  4 Ratings  ·  2 Reviews
Like Shakespeare, J.S. Bach is known largely by his works. Peter Williams asks many questions in this examination of the man as well as the composer. What was Bach like as a youth, father, and, eventually, church elder? What music did he know and how did he compose and perform such an amazing amount? Ultimately, Williams questions the effects of unremitting acclaim on obje ...more
Paperback, 228 pages
Published March 1st 2010 by Cambridge University Press (first published December 18th 2003)
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Oct 11, 2015 rated it liked it
200 pages seemed like a reasonable length for an introductory biography. But it starts inauspiciously. The first chapter is supposed to be about Bach's early life, but its mechanism is overwrought (shall I say baroque?) analysis of an obituary. As I go on, I find it tolerably readable, but clearly this is meant for readers who know the music and the history much better than I. I'm finding this to be the case often enough with biographies and histories I pick up - that I don't know enough context ...more
May 14, 2010 rated it it was ok
Shelves: music
This mostly straightforward biography of Bach was extremely well-researched and had a lot of interesting information. I love Bach's music and am trying to read more materials about him and his works, and this was a pretty good place to start. I feel like I got a really good foundation for further studies. However, I wish that the experience itself (of reading this book) had been a bit more pleasurable. Unfortunately, Williams' framing device of exploring the information given in Bach's obituary, ...more
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Sep 13, 2013
Jack Perng
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Nov 24, 2016
marked it as to-read
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Zack Hamingson
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Jan 21, 2015
Jonathan Liebowitz
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Full name Peter F. Williams; publishes as Peter Williams

University of Edinburgh 1962-1985
Duke University 1985-1997
University of Cardiff 1996-
More about Peter Williams...

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