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Comments about the soundtrack for Star Wars: The Phantom Menace (John Williams)

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Re: John Williams is a petty theif
• Posted by: Aaron
• Date: Sunday, May 15, 2005, at 10:03 p.m.
• IP Address:
• In Response to: John Williams is a petty theif (Aaron)

I ran across this review the other day and thought it would be a good idea to type a follow-up. I wrote the original posting some time ago and now have a much broader understanding of music and the art of composition, so perhaps I can portray my opinions in a better way. (Maybe I can spell a few more words correctly, too)

I still stand by my criticism of Mr. Williams' propensity to "borrow" from other composers. As a current music composition major in college, I certainly understand the challenge of writing original music. It's not easy by any stretch of the imagination. What is easy, however, is borrowing other people's ideas and incorporating them into your own work. While I can certainly appreciate his music, I also have to recognize where it comes from. In fact, what I love most about Williams' music... isn't his music at all. It is the work of other composers such as Stravinsky, Mussorgsky, Persichetti, Holst et cetera... that I hear reproduced through Williams' pen. In an field defined by originality and creativity, Maestro Williams is neither. He is a good composer, but not a great composer. His music will not survive the test of time.

Now, the above comments refer only to his film scores. His lesser known classical works feature much more original ideas. They are much harder to listen to- in fact, I don't care for most of them- but at the same time, I recognize the dramatic increase in genuine musical quality from his film works.

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