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Ultimate Guide for Classical Music Listening Beginners

'Da-Da-Da-Dum,' do you have any clue of what this classical music is? If you recognize this motif in just a second as Beethoven's famous 5th Symphony, you might not be eligible for this blog. This time, we would like to give you an ultimate guide for those who have no idea of what classical music is but who are eager to start listening to it. We welcome those who always failed to find your favorite classical music, not knowing where to start their search. We will offer you a little knowledge on how to find your favorite classical music, and eventually, you will be able to proudly introduce your favorite one to your friends!



Method 1: Start from the Most Famous Composers


Definitely, the easiest way to start your journey would be by listening to the most famous composers! Beethoven, of course; who would not have heard his name? Starting with Beethoven's music is not only understandable but also highly encouraged. His music has had a significant influence on music up until now, even including pop music like the Beatles! His music is conventionally described as heroic and magnificent. If you want to delve into such impactful music, here is a recommendation of Beethoven's music. You may start from there.


The most famous motif ever on earth! 'Da-Da-Da-Dum.' It's a symphony in which you could say composing it was one of the most challenging tasks, as it involves coordinating eight to twelve instruments within a single piece. Tightly composed, it starts with the famous motif and then expand it into the whole music as a piece. If you like this type of music, it means that you're also Beethovenian. There are a lot of Beethovenian in classical music composers who followed his musical style. If you liked Beethoven, chances are you'll love listening to their music too! Brahms, Mahler, Wagner, Berlioz, and Schumann are among those who claim to be influenced by Beethoven.


If you are not Beethovenian but wanting to find something that is more emotionally written with fewer instrument, you might find Chopin attractive. Chopin, often referred to as

the "poet of the piano," will give you an absolute gem of piano music.


To help those who didn't enjoy Beethoven's heroic music, here's the opposite musical style from Chopin. Nocturnes Op.9, no.2 is the prime example of calming and soothing music, featuring a single instrument, the piano, and displaying a multitude of beautiful harmonic variations. If you loved listening to it, it's likely you will also appreciate the works of following composers: Schumann, Schubert, Debussy, and Ravel. These composers may guide you toward the most expressive type of music, immersing you in a sea of profound emotions.



Method 2: Find Your Favorite Era


If you've successfully followed the above guide, it's time for you to discover the musical style that you'd like. The style of classical music, like any art form, can be categorized based on different historical periods. These musical styles have consistently changed and are typically divided into several eras: Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, Classical, Romantic, Modernist, and Postmodernist. While this might seem a bit difficult, but don't worry! We're here to offer you a brief description of how each era sounds, and we'll recommend you focus on the period from the Baroque to the Romantic era, as some of the other eras might be a bit challenging for beginners.


1. The Baroque era

The Baroque style emerged from the 17th century to the 18th century, featuring consistent bass line with melody ornaments. It may give you a soothing and calming music as it is mostly designed for religious contexts. If you find yourself drawn to this vibe, the works of Bach, often referred to as the "father of music," might be a perfect fit for your taste.




2. The Classical era

If you have found the Baroque style boring, how about moving on to the Classical era? Spanning from the 18th to the 19th century, the Classical era shows a more homophonic style, which means it brings more harmonization than the Baroque style. The music is also more formalized. Composers like Mozart, Handel, and Beethoven shine in this era.



3. The Romantic era

Do you want to immerse yourself into music with more emotional depth? Look into the Romantic period! From the 19th century to 20th century, the Romantic style features developed harmonization, beautifully composed melody, and more complex forms. Composers like Chopin, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, and many others who are well known for their gorgeous music are here to wait for your attention!




If you have found your favorite style, that means you can start looking into similar type of music that was composed during that time. We highly recommend start listening to your favorite era and then gradually expand your musical taste to other periods as well. This journey will open doors to a complete new world that you have never experienced before!



Method 3: Find Your Instrument


It's incredibly important to discover an instrument that you would love to have forever. In the world of classical music, the choice of instrument is as significant as finding a preferred composer or era. For those who have just started listening to classical music and have no familiarity with instruments, there's an incredibly helpful musical piece that can enhance your understanding: Ravel's "Bolero." This composition is exceptionally illuminating as it maintains the same melody throughout the piece but employs different instruments. Sounds boring? Luckily, this piece is well-written and composed so you will never get lost throughout the piece! This enables you to differentiate the timbre of instruments, allowing you to perceive the significant differences they create.

Conclusion


We agree to a point where starting a new discovery in such an immense world of classical music may seem extremely overwhelming. But with the right approach, it can be an incredibly eye-opening experience. Whether you're a beginner or not, we hope that this guide has offered you a brief roadmap that you can start from to navigate through the vast forest of classical music. So, pick up your headphones or attend a live concert, let the music guide your emotions, and soon enough, you'll be sharing your favorite pieces with friends and loved ones, adding your voice to the timeless conversation of classical music.


 
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