7 February 2014
I had a copy of the first edition of Ian McDonald’s “Revolution in the head”. On the back was a quote from legendary Classical composer Aaron Copland “If you want to know about the sixties listen to the music of the Beatles”. The book also states that Leonard Bernstein also admired the Beatles music. However, I believe that the famous classical pianist Glenn Gould was unimpressed by the Beatles. I was wondering whether anyone is aware of any other opinions (positive or negative) that distinguished classical composers or performers gave about the Beatles.
Did the likes of Shostakovich, Stravinsky and Britten ever express their opinion of the Beatles music?
14 December 2009
No idea, sorry. But supposedly Stravinsky was a fan of James Brown! (3rd-hand source has him supposedly calling JB one of the “Three B’s” along with Bach & Beethoven, his three favourite composers of all time.)
Does that Copland quote really mean he was a fan of the music, or just that they “reflected the times” or whatever? It’s kinda ambiguous.
One day, a tape-op got a tape on backwards, he went to play it, and it was all "Neeeradno-undowarrroom" and it was "Wow! Sounds Indian!"
-- Paul McCartney
9 August 2011
Anecdotally, I know a number of classical musicians who appreciate the Beatles, but can’t speak for any well-known composer.
"Into the Sky with Diamonds" (the Beatles and the Race to the Moon – a history)