If you were alive and experienced music in 1970 this is a must read. I have purchased copies of this book for all of my friends who turned 60 last year and this year - all of them loved it. A great story about great musicians. I wish I were 17 again..... and I wish they made music like that today....anyway this book is a great time travel.
Is there anyone else out there who like me has always appreciated Bach's music? I consider Bach one of the absolutely best classical composers (alongside Beethoven), and his music has always inspired me and provided great satisfaction.
If you have that background, this is really something for you. The courses are insprining and the narrator is enthusiastic about his topic, and he knows it very well. I advise you to listen one course at the time, then listen to some Bach music in between and then go on to the next course. If you try to take in all at the same time, it will be too much.
One thing that bugs me, however, is that professor Greenberg does not know how to pronounce Bach's name, at least not to a listener who like me speaks German. His consistent incorrect (=American) pronounciation ("Bock") could lead to the wrong conclusion that the good professor does not know what he is talking about. But he does and he is good at it, even though his German is deplorable (his Italian and French are possibly worse). A little language exercise: try to figure out who the composers "Wiwolde" and "Cooperand" are? (That is the way these baroque composers names are pronounced in this book).
So a really good course is tainted by bad language. However, if you can live with that, don't hesitate to buy this.
Robert Greenberg does a wonderful job. If you are into music his lectures are not to be missed. This is the seventh lecture I have enjoyed from the composer great courses.Two more to go Mahler and Shostakovich. Get them all you will love them and learn all the good stuff about how music is written and the lives of these amazing dysfunctional men.