The First Four Notes: Beethoven's Fifth and the Human Imagination, Guerrieri

Add to cart
Author Matthew Guerrieri
Illustrator N/A
Format Paperback
Pages 384
Publisher Vintage
Publication Year 2014
ISBN-13 978-0804170192

TIME Magazine Top 10 Nonfiction Book of 2012
A New Yorker Best Book of the Year
Los Angeles Magazine‘s #1 Music Book of the Year

This revelatory book of music history examines what is perhaps the best known and most-popular symphony ever written—and its famous four-note opening. Reaching back before Beethoven’s time, Matthew Guerrieri uncovers premonitions of the opening notes in the rhythms of ancient Greek poetry and the music of the French Revolution. He discusses the Fifth’s impact when it premiered, tracing the artistic, philosophical, and political reverberations across Europe to China, Russia, and the United States, from Romanticism to ring tones, from propaganda to pop. This fascinating piece of musical detective work is a treat for music lovers of every stripe.

About Matthew Guerrieri:

Matthew Guerrieri writes regularly on music for The Boston Globe and NewMusicBox, and his articles have also appeared in Vanity FairPlaybill, and Slate. He is responsible for the popular classical music blog Soho the Dog. He lives in Framingham, Massachusetts.