Classical Composers' Favorite Keys

This is pretty heady- but my composer friends should get a kick out of it.    Below is a breakdown from the creator of it explaining the methodology.

Classical Composers

by VizualStatistix.

Explore more infographics like this one on the web's largest information design community - Visually.






"For this visualization, I’ve broken composition key data down by composer. The values are displayed as a heat map, which I’ve made into the shape of a piano keyboard. For the non-pianists, I’ve put a key (pun intended) at the top so that you can see what the notes represent. The top half of each note represents percentage of minor compositions in that key, and the bottom half of each note corresponds to major compositions in that key. The highest percentage for each composer is labeled. Each composer’s heat map is scaled the same (0 to 20%), so you can compare one composer to another. The N-values next to the names show the number of compositions I was able to include in my database for that composer - these are not comprehensive lists! However, the samples sizes are large enough that the probability distributions should be at least reasonably accurate (to within a couple percent). A few noteworthy (yeah, pun intended again) trends pop out. Beethoven, Haydn, and Mozart all show strong preferences for a specific key. Other composers, particularly Dvorak, Brahms, and Mendelssohn, show less favoritism; these three had no keys associated with >10% of their compositions, with Brahms having the smallest standard deviation (2.14%). All three composers whose most-used key was minor were from the Romantic era (perhaps they were sad about the Industrial Revolution). The least used key across the board was g# minor, with Brahms using it most (in only 1.5% of his compositions). Rachmaninoff was the only composer to produce more pieces in minor keys than major keys; Haydn and Mozart most frequently wrote in major keys. Finally (I’ll spare you the details of my Friedman test), Tchaikovsky is the closest to the notion of an average composer; in other words, his probability distribution most closely resembles the distribution created by averaging all ten composers together."  Lovingly shared from here

Should you applaud? - a Carnegie World Premier

After attending a World premier concert at Carnegie Hall last week I stumbled upon this and found it to be quite funny.  It is too often the case that people not knowing the music they are listening to break up a perfectly good pause with ill-timed applause. 

Normally, I would write a lengthy review of my experience at Carnegie, however I believe that there is nothing much I could say outside of the words of Steve Smith and the New York Times and it is admittedly a bit difficult to put into words just how special that night was-  with the ensemble I played in, my conductor/mentor (and father) in the audience with me and to be surrounded by so many fantastic friends and colleagues. -- I will say that Mohammed Fairouz has written an intriguing, powerful composition that will go down as one of the great new wind works of the 21st century.  I had the pleasure of  spending time with Mr. Fairouz as well as conductor Paul Popiel and am eagerly awaiting the release of the work on CD through the Naxos Wind Band Classics imprint (which I curate) next November.  I believe this album will be a game-changer for wind recordings.  Time will tell.

Taco Taco! Texas Music Educators recap

Ok Folks, I am sorry.

I am the worst Blogger ever!  But in my defense, this has been a busy spring.  My next blog post will illuminate you as to what I have been up to... I originally typed this February 17 and forgot to post it... so here it is!!!

I just returned from the Texas Music Educators Association convention (TMEA)-  or to the uninitiated... the "everybody who matters and has anything of value for the world or music education" convention.

All I can say is WOW!  This was my first TMEA even though I am quite the legacy.  My Grandfather was President of TMEA in the 1950s!


TMEA is by all accounts much larger than TBA (Texas Bandmasters Association)- or any other conference I attend on Music Education for that matter.  Overall, despite a lousy economy the attendance was really quite good.  Many of my friends from education land were there and the overall picture I got from the state of budgets (at least in TX) was that most were actually doing alright (take a note California).  If Texans know how to do anything- it is play football and field a marching band- both of which they fund mightily.

TMEA was not only a time for me to catch up with my buddies, but also a great time to meet up with old and new clients to discuss current and future projects.  I decided rather than delivering a list of my clients as a recap, I would make a photo montage of them and spent one afternoon taking photos of their booths, products, etc.  These photos are on our Naxos Music Library facebook page here.  Other clients in attendance were Alfred Music Publishing, Hal Leonard, Ivasi, SmartMusic, Professor Carol, and a few I cant seem to remember.

All In All this was a GREAT conference.  The weather did not cooperate as it rained much of the time we were there and it was quite cold, however we made the best of it by imbibing in great Mexican food and our fair share of Margaritas.  Hopefully next year the weather will be better as this is going on my Educational conference list permanently.

Til next time, Over and Out!