Tuesday, February 5, 2008
Music 101 Smackdown
Today my students got into a heated discussion of who was the greater artist, Frank Sinatra or Michael Jackson. I have to say it’s debatable. I hastily decided to add an impromptu assignment for next class: to listen to the Jackson 5’s first hit, the 1969 “I Want You Back,” paying special attention to the astonishing emotional maturity with which the young Jackson sings the song. That kind of emotional/musical verisimilitude is the true hallmark of musical prodigy.