Musical Borrowing
An Annotated Bibliography

Individual record

[+] Morgan, Robert P. "Charles Ives und die europäische Tradition." In Bericht über das Internationale Symposion "Charles Ives und die amerikanische Musiktradition bis zur Gegenwart," Köln 1988, ed. Klaus Wolfgang Niemöller, Manuel Gervink, and Paul Terse, 17-36. Kölner Beiträge zur Musikforschung 164. Regensburg: Gustav Bosse Verlag, 1990. Republished in an expanded English version as "Charles Ives and the European Tradition," in Ives Studies, ed. Philip Lambert, 3-26. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1997.

Ives's music reflects the musical situation of its time as well as the music of his contemporaries. He was the earliest composer to engage the musical legacy of previous centuries, tonality and form, as an issue unto itself. His closest predecessor was Mahler, with whom he shared an interest in combining the very simple or even banal with the extremely complex, and an interest in using popular materials that are transformed, deformed, and fragmented in their application. Among his contemporaries, Ives most resembles Schoenberg in his willingness to conclude works in an atmosphere of tonal uncertainty, but he rejects Schoenberg's evolutionary vision, which sees atonality as an historical necessity, representing an impermeable barrier between the old and the new. Ives explores the issue of tonality as a dead language, not by excluding tonality from his music, but by including tonal fragments, or "ruins," in an atonal context. Detailed analysis of the song "The Things Our Fathers Loved" demonstrates how Ives used tonal melodies recollected from his youth explicitly in order to associate tonality itself with a lost past.

Index Classifications: 1900s

Contributed by: David Lieberman

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