Well, this month really isn’t getting any better. And today definitely contributed to the downhill slide into dismal oblivion with the news that my very first composition teacher, Eric Gross, has died. Prof Gross was really a lovely man and a very fine composer, although I didn’t really get either of these things when I first started learning with him and for a long time I thought that he was just the wrong teacher for me.

But today I’ve been doing a lot of thinking about that experience and I suspect that a large part of the blame lies with me. If I had been less timid and a bit more confident in my own abilities, if I had asked more questions in particular, what might that first year have been like? At the time I thought his music was terribly modern inaccessible. Now, after 20 years’ worth of listening and studying and writing and thinking, I find this is most definitely not the case and I wonder what I could have learned from him were he my teacher now instead of then.

So I’ve written a blog post about it which will go up on tomorrow afternoon.

Rest in peace, Eric. I’m looking forward to exploring your music properly and learning as much as I can from it that I wasn’t ready to learn from you 20 years ago.

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