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By Gregory S Butler PhD, George Stauffer, Mary Dalton Greer

That Johann Sebastian Bach is a pivotal determine within the heritage of Western tune is hardly ever information, and the importance of his fulfillment is so gigantic that it may be tricky to understand. In About Bach, fifteen students exhibit that Bach's value extends from choral to orchestral song, from sacred song to musical parodies, and in addition to his scribes and scholars, his predecessors and successors. additional, the individuals display a range of musicological techniques, starting from shut reviews of Bach's offerings of musical shape and libretto to wider analyses of the ancient and cultural backgrounds that impinged upon his creations and their lasting effect. This quantity makes major contributions to Bach biography, interpretation, pedagogy, and performance.

Contributors are Gregory G. Butler, Jen-Yen Chen, Alexander J. Fisher, Mary Dalton Greer, Robert Hill, Ton Koopman, Daniel R. Melamed, Michael Ochs, Mark Risinger, William H. Scheide, Hans-Joachim Schulze, Douglass Seaton, George B. Stauffer, Andrew Talle, and Kathryn Welter.

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Olearius, Biblische Erklärung, vol. S. Bach,” Bach: Journal of the Riemenschneider Bach Institute 34 (2003), 1–71.  In his gloss on First Chronicles 25:1, Olearius explains that, in this context—namely, a chapter devoted to “The Singers” (“CANTORES, Die Sänger”)—the term “prophets” implies that Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun were gifted composers. In the Biblische Erklärung, First Chronicles 25:1, together with Olearius’s explanation, reads: “And David with all the field captains set apart for offices among the children of Asaph, Heman, and Jeduthun, the prophets, with harps, psalteries, and cymbals, and they were numbered for work according to their office .

In a letter to Erdmann dated Octo- 18 Old Testament Roots for the Bach Family Tree ber 28, 1730, in which he seeks Erdmann’s help in finding another position, Bach invokes God four times (the emphasis, shown through underlining, is mine): it pleased God that I should be called hither to be Director Musices and Cantor at the St. Thomas School. Though at first, indeed, it did not seem at all proper to me to change my position of Capellmeister for that of Cantor. Wherefore, then, I postponed my decision for a quarter of a year .

37 22 Old Testament Roots for the Bach Family Tree Bach and Asaph as Capellmeisters Other annotations in the Calov Bible suggest that Bach identified strongly with King David’s Capellmeister, Asaph, and the two other leading Levite musicians, Heman and Jeduthun. First Chronicles 25, cited earlier, the very chapter that Bach identifies as the true foundation of church music, directly concerns these three musicians and their descendants. Moreover, Bach underlined the names “Asaph,” “Heman,” and “Jeduthun” in red ink in the preface to the Psalter in the Calov Bible: “the prophet Asaph, King David’s Capellmeister,” “Heman is called a seer, that is, a prophet of the king ‘according to the promise of God to exalt him’ (1 Chron.

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