Bach: Inventor of the first music books?

October 4, 2010 on 8:56 pm | Written by: | In Uncategorized | Comments Off on Bach: Inventor of the first music books?

When I was younger, I often listened to a book on tape during car trips about Bach. (It was similar to Beethoven Lives Upstairs, but it was about J.S. Bach’s life.) In this tape, I remembered that it mentioned something about how Bach would write and put together compilations of music for this children and one wife. I thought it was very interesting because I had never heard of composers putting together books of music for the use of others that were similar to the music books today. They obviously would write down pieces of music they had written, but never compile them into booklets of music for people to learn or play from.
I did a little research and discovered that he put together a book called “ Little Organ Book” for his son Wilhelm Friedemann. He also put together two notebooks, referred to as “Notebook for Anna Magdalena Bach” for his second wife. The first notebook was a compilation of pieces that were all written by Bach himself, while the second notebook contained pieces written by Bach as well as other composers.
During this research I also found out that Bach’s Inventions and Sinofonias were also written and compiled as exercises and easy pieces for his piano students. I thought this was particularly interesting because I played many of his Inventions when I played the piano and never realized what they were intended for. I thought they were simply a group of simple piano pieces his composed. Now that I know the reason for these pieces, it makes sense, as they are perfect warm-up pieces for piano students. They are also fairly simple pieces that help prepare students for more complex piano pieces.
Not only was Bach a composer and performer, but also a kind of inventor and author as well. As far as I could discover, he was one of the first composers to actually compile written works of his pieces for others and publish works for the public. (I did some research and could not find any other composers or composers before Bach who did this.) In this sense, I feel that he kind of invented the modern piano book or music book that we buy and play from toda

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