Books of Tomorrow editor Adam Eden, interviewed noted author, Fosco Guidizio, about his soon to be published "Sounds of Music and Language". An excerpt of the interview follows:
A.E. : So your saying in your book that all music has a "national accent" give me an example
Fosco: Ok let's take the German composers- Beethoven and Wagner as examples. Listen to their music, like "Eroica" and "Parsifal" and compare it with the Russians. Tchaikovsky and Borodin. The Germans evoke visions of beer and sausages with the Russians it's vodka and blinis. Even a little familiarity with the two languages will allow you to hear the rhythms of speech in the music and vice versa. When I listened to recordings of Hitler's speeches as a child I always heard Wagner.
A.E. :What about American music, how does it reflect our language or does it?
Fosco: Certo! Of course. The truly American composers like Copeland, Bernstein, Gershwin , Ellington are as American as apple pie and the slurred, rapid speech of the American city street
and country furrow is deep in all their music. Like you say in this country, "You can get the boy out of the country but you can't take out the country boy" Or something like that.
A.E.:How about the Asian countries?
Fosco: That's even more closely connected, especially in China and the other countries who have tonal languages.
A.E.: Can you explain to our readers what a "tonal" language is for those who are not familiar with the term?
Fosco: Certo! In Chinese, the tone, whether rising, falling etc. will determine the meaning of the word. "Ma" for instance, can mean "horse", "mother" or a curse, depending on the tone you give it. So the language is inherently musical - much more than Italian even though westerners might not recognize it easily.
Man learned to make music before there was language. They've found musical instruments that date back 50,000 years. So it's true that music came first. Maybe we could have evolved like birds, with music- songs & whistles being our main means of communication. Just imagine that.
A.E. That's really fascinating Professor, I'm definitely looking forward to reading your book and I know our readers will be to.
Fosco: Certo! I hope so. I need to sell at least 10,000 copies just to cover the advance.