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Gilbert Chase

revised by Neely Bruce

(b St Paul, April 23, 1872; d New York, Jan 20, 1952). American composer, critic, editor and proponent of community music. As a boy he took violin lessons but had no thought of devoting himself to music. He prepared for a career in electrical engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, from which he graduated in 1893. Meanwhile the experience of hearing the Boston SO and the influence of Rudolph Gott, an eccentric musician, convinced him that music should be his career. He studied with Norris and Chadwick in Boston, and was encouraged by MacDowell. He then went to Germany for further study with Humperdinck and Pfitzner (1897–9); he also studied briefly with Guilmant in Paris. Returning to the USA he accepted a lectureship at Cornell University (1899–1901), but his ambition was to be free of academic obligations. His failure to find a publisher for his ...


John Warrack

revised by Cecelia H. Porter

(b Sulza, Thuringia, March 7, 1783; d Leipzig, Aug 27, 1846). German critic, editor, theologian and composer. The son of a Reformed pastor, Gottfried was a chorister at Naumburg. In Leipzig he studied music and theology (1804–9) and served as a Reformed pastor (1810–16), establishing and directing a theological seminary (1814–27). He also composed many songs and in 1808 began writing for the Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung, of which he succeeded Gottfried Christoph Härtel as editor (1827–41). He taught at the Leipzig Conservatory (1838–43) and was briefly its director in 1842.

Fink was initially neutral in the controversy between Classicism and Romanticism, and was friendly with Weber, who gave his Sechs Lieder (1812) a warm review in the Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung and printed one song, Die Liebenden, in full. However, Fink later took up a stubborn stand against the younger Romantics. He published only half of Schumann's enthusiastic review (...


Karl Kroeger

(b San Francisco, CA, April 27, 1861; d Boston, MA, Dec 18, 1948). American music editor and writer on music. His early musical training took place in Oakland, New York, and London. He studied with horatio Parker , and at the National Conservatory with Antonín Dvořák. He taught briefly at the National Conservatory and in 1897 became editor and director of publications for the Oliver Ditson Co., Boston; from 1926 to his retirement in 1937 he served as vice-president of the company. He gained some reputation as a songwriter, and is still remembered for setting the words “Goin’ Home” to the melody of the second movement of Dvořák’s New World Symphony.

Fisher was one of the earliest historians to recognize the vitality and value of 18th and early 19th century American music. His Notes on Music in Old Boston (Boston, 1918) treats its subject sympathetically and accurately, presenting many facsimiles and illustrations of music, musicians, and advertisements. ...


Patrick J. Smith

revised by Jacquelyn Sholes

(Moragne )

(b New York, NY, Dec 2, 1929; d Augusta, GA, March 10, 2005). American editor and music critic. She completed her studies at Smith College, Northampton, Massachusetts (BA 1952, MA 1954), and taught there concurrently. She was Assistant Music Editor of Hi-Fi Music at Home between 1958 and 1960, and then of High Fidelity, before becoming editor of Musical America, a position she held from 1967 to 1991. She wrote reviews and many features for The New York Times and was a music critic for the New York Post beginning in 1978; she continued to contribute to the latter publication until shortly before her death. Fleming was a record reviewer for American Record Guide between 1958 and 1964 and again beginning in 1992. She also wrote liner notes for various record companies starting in 1960, and she served as Secretary of the Board of Trustees for Composers Recordings, Inc. She was especially knowledgeable about the string repertory and literature of the 18th and 19th centuries. In ...


Travis D. Stimeling

[Chester W., Jr. ]

(b Fort Worth, TX, Oct 21, 1943; d Nashville, TN, June 19, 2013). American music critic, biographer, and editor. With contemporaries Ed Ward, Martha Hume, Dave Hickey, and Alanna Nash, Flippo helped bring country music criticism to the mainstream press in the 1970s. He earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Sam Houston State University and a master’s degree in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin. As a freelance journalist and Rolling Stone Contributing Editor, he covered the progressive country music scene in Austin before being named Rolling Stone’s New York Bureau Chief (1974). From 1977 until 1980, he served as Senior Editor for Rolling Stone, using his position to significantly increase the magazine’s coverage of country music. During the 1980s Flippo wrote several book-length studies of country and rock artists, including Hank Williams (1981), the Rolling Stones (1985), and Paul McCartney (...


H.C. Colles

revised by Frank Howes

(b Norwich, Sept 14, 1859; d Dinton, nr Salisbury, May 2, 1948). English musicologist, critic and editor. He was educated at Wellington College and Balliol College, Oxford (MA, 1882), and studied music for two years at the Berlin Hochschule für Musik. He became a schoolmaster at Dulwich College (1884–6) and a form master at Wellington (1887–1910), where he succeeded Alan Gray as the music master in 1893, a post he held until 1901, when he was made house master in college. During these years he wrote a Wellington College German Grammar and visited India, which aroused his interest in Indian music. When he left Wellington in 1910 he returned to India for eight months, collecting material for a book which is still a classic on its subject, The Music of Hindostan (1914); he also acted as Rabindranath Tagore's unpaid literary agent, ...


(b London, April 7, 1856; d Carnforth, Lancs., March 30, 1936). English critic, editor and musical scholar. Poor health disrupted his early nonconformist education and apart from three terms at Westminster School he was, by necessity, taught privately. His musical education began in 1872 when he took piano lessons with Ernst Pauer. In 1875 he entered Trinity College, Cambridge, where he became friends with Stanford and W.B. Squire, whose elder sister he married in 1885, and with whom he participated fully in the flourishing activities of the Cambridge University Musical Society. After graduation in 1882 he studied the piano with Dannreuther and Rockstro; both took a keen interest in early music, but it was Rockstro who introduced him to harpsichord playing. Although he cultivated a reputation as an exponent of the piano and harpsichord, it was in the field of antiquarian studies and musical journalism that he found his true vocation. He was invited by Grove to write articles for his ...


Ora Frishberg Saloman

(b Cambridgeport, MA, May 23, 1810; d off Fire Island, NY, July 19, 1850). American author, translator, editor, journalist, and literary critic. After leading Boston “Conversations” primarily for women on literature, fine arts, and mythology, Fuller edited the Transcendentalist journal the Dial (1840–44) in its initial two years. She became the first literary critic of the New-York Tribune (1844–6). Transmitting an aesthetic appreciation of diverse styles in seven contributions on music to the Dial and at least twenty-nine to the Tribune, Fuller expressed pleasure in African and Chinese melodies, German and Italian opera, and symphonies as well as solo instrumental pieces. Fuller encouraged readers to broaden their musical interests. She preferred a universal, rather than a subjective, tone: although admiring Ole Bull’s programmatic pieces composed in America, she praised highly works such as Beethoven’s symphonies.

Fuller’s essay “Lives of the Great Composers, Haydn, Mozart, Handel, Bach, Beethoven” is one of the earliest original American writings to consider biographies of European musicians. Judging J.N. Forkel’s biography of J.S. Bach to be the best, she recommended its publication in an American edition. To improve concert practices in the 1840s, she suggested that the movements of symphonies be performed without interruption and that ticket prices remain reasonable for inclusive access. Fuller fostered respect in America for creative and performing musicians....


Daniel Zager

(b New York, Dec 18, 1928; d Feb 23, 2019). American writer. After attending the University of Missouri (1946–50) and Columbia University (1950) he worked for Prestige Records (1950–55). With Leonard Feather he collaborated on The Encyclopedia of Jazz (1955), for which he was an assistant writer and editor, and The Encyclopedia of Jazz in the Sixties (1966), and he was an author with Feather of The Encyclopedia of Jazz in the Seventies (1976) and the Biographical Encyclopedia of Jazz (1999). Gitler wrote for such periodicals as Metronome, Jazz Magazine, Down Beat (of which he was an associate editor), and Jazz Times, produced film scripts on Louis Armstrong and Lionel Hampton for the US Information Service, and was a commentator for radio station WBAI, New York; he also taught at CUNY. Among his more notable writings is ...


Robert Gannon

(b London). English writer. As a critic he has written on both jazz and classical music, providing articles for The Times and numerous jazz periodicals, and his wide knowledge in one field has often led to insights into the other. As well as being a regular contributor to Jazz Monthly and Jazz and Blues, he was editor of the latter from December 1956 until the journal’s demise in 1971. He contributed to Albert McCarthy’s Jazz on Record (1968) and thereafter wrote two further critical guides to the recorded repertory; the second of these, The Essential Jazz Records, i: Ragtime to Swing (1984, written with Charles Fox and Eric Thacker), places each of 250 selected recordings in its musical context and offers a detailed critical review. Harrison is the author of the major article on jazz in The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians (...