Music Critic Alan Rich Dies at 85

Noted music critic Alan Rich has died.

He was a famous music critic in New York and Los Angeles for decades. We almost never mentioned him here, mostly because he was usually really good. It didn't hurt, however, that he retired from--er, make that was retired by--the L.A. Weekly in early 2008 (soon after the construction of Detritus Towers).

I don't have too much to say that you can't find anywhere else.

I've lifted this excerpt/quote from the New York Times article:

When a reader wrote to him at LA Weekly to admonish him about a harsh review and asserted that “there is no composition of any era” that should be described as “trash” or “abomination,” Mr. Rich responded in a 1993 column that dealt with the complaint head on:

“Ah, if only it were true,” he wrote, “the post of music critic could then be abolished, and we professional listeners could spend our days eating lotos and wallowing in the trashy abominations of the Scharwenka Fourth Piano Concerto or the Rach 3,” the last a reference to the Rachmaninoff Third Piano Concerto.

Heh. Good one, Mr. Rich. Rachmaninoff's Third is musical onanism.

[Edit: fixed mis-typed publication name.]


Gustav said...

That's a pretty spectacular response. You'll be missed, Mr. Rich.

And strangely enough, I had "onanism" in the first draft of my last post too (before editing it out), and had a battle with blogger over the spelling. It had me second guessing myself...thank god dictionary.com had my back.