It is that strange, unsettled feeling that is evoked in Charles Ives' Central Park in the Dark. Ives is one of the most independent and unique musicians on my list. He was born in Danbury, Connecticut, the son of a bandleader. Charles' father George would be the most important musical influence in his life. George was no ordinary bandleader, he experimented with polytonal composition, alternative tunings, and other musical experimentation. Charles even recalled an instance where his father had two bands play a different song on opposite sides of the town square and then march towards each other to create a blending of two unrelatred pieces. Charles would also play organ in churches around Connecticut, and in his days at Yale he would compose popular marches while at the same time being a standout athlete.
|Ives in 1909, shortly after composing Central Park.|