Yesterday, I drove (at $2.69 a gallon) down to Santana Row in San Jose to pick up the Degunking Windows computer book. While there, I saw the Oxford Dictionary of Musical Works. It seemed like my kind of book, so I flipped open to this first:
Dead Man Walking. Opera in two acts by Jake Heggie to a libretto by Terrence McNally after Sister Helen Prejean's book Dead Man Walking: An Eyewitness Acount of the Death Penalty in the US (1993) (San Francisco, 2000).
Ok, great, Jake Heggie is in the book, I'll get it. Since the book basically lists compositions by name from Abduction from the Seraglio, The to Zyklus (a Stockhausen percussion piece), I wondered how the author would handle all those works called Symphony No. 1, Concerto for Piano, String Quartet No. 1 etc. Reading it now to my surprise, any work without a title or nickname is omitted, which makes for a much shorter book. I do think reasonable schemes for disambiguation exist.
I'm still degunking my PC...
By the way, I see in today's SF Chronicle ""Pink Section" Susan Graham is singing songs of Ives and Heggie among others at UC Berkeley on Wednesday. The ad says that Graham was the Musical America 2004 Vocalist of the Year (with apologies to The Standing Room. No word on San Jose State's premiere graduate yet, I assume).
Update: I need to get on with life but as I am in the middle of frequent reboots, I have time to finish the Pink Section and blog about it. I see that Wayne Shorter, the jazz musician, is playing in Berkeley tonight and has cooperated with a biographer. This book sounds interesting, as I never understood why, in the seventies, Shorter subsumed his musical personality into the group Weather Report.
Joshus Kosman has the little man jumping out of his chair for CDs by The King's Consort and Emmanuelle Bertrand/Pascal Amoyel but the little man is only applauding for Susan Graham's CD of Chausson, Ravel, and Debussy. Aidin "the man" Vaziri gives Mariah Carey's CD an empty chair. He also interviews Butch Vig of the band Garbage:
Q: It seems that Shirley [the group's lead singer] might have a bit of temper:
A: I think we all have a mean streak of pessimism and a healthy sense of self-loathing in us.
Q: Did you ever check out the things Shirley has to say about you on her Web log:
A: Not really.
Q: That's probably a good idea.
A: I think the online journals are a form of therapy as well as a document of what's been going on.
The comic strip Bloom County takes on that burning issue of why there are, arguably, no female animal characters in comics and cartoons. And, two great Hitchock films at the Stanford Theatre: Sabotage and Stranger on a Train. Finally, the computer just reported "Compressing System Hive...Successful."