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If you’re like me, you like to listen to TED Talks. They are addicting and I can easily find myself going down the TED Talk rabbit hole on YouTube until I get to something like, “How Armadillos Changed the World,” and I snap out of it. For those of you that don’t know, TED (Technology, Education, Design) is an organization that puts on conferences featuring 10-20 minute “talks” on a wide array of topics. I have learned a great deal from watching these talks, bu, what does that have to do with the deceased conductor/composer Leonard Bernstein?

Leonard “Lenny” Bernstein was one of the most instrumental (horrible music joke, I’m sorry…please keep reading) conductors and composers of the 20th century. What I love about him is that he was suave and sophisticated, but yet down to earth. Music Education was of the utmost importance to him and he was also responsible for making classical music “cool” again in the 60s and 70s. He not only fit in with the McStuffersons of the music world, but he also brought the ivory tower of musical criticism down to the ground. He was the sort of proverbial sun that melted the pretentious cloud around the art music scene at that time.

Causally being a badass on the piano.

Bernstein was a very fashionable man and often wore a tuxedo with tails when directing the New York Philharmonic. I’m chasing after those coattails in my mission to create a resurgence of appreciation for beauty in today’s culture. Bernstein perfectly embodied all 3 Pillars of my blog – Humor. Art. Inspiration. If Lenny had Facebook, Snap, or Instagram, he would have easily been one of the top influencers in all of those spaces. I gave you his background because I wanted you to watch the video at the end of this post.

In this video, you will see that Lenny was ahead of his time. It really is a TED Talk before those were a thing. In the video he is speaking to a group of music majors at Harvard in 1973, so don’t worry about some of the musical jargon that he throws around. Just enjoy the fact that in just under 6 minutes, he gives you the entire progression of music from the beginning of time to now in a way that is fun and easy to understand. Please let me know what you think of the video and if it helped you.

This is what I’m about, folks. This is what I aspire too. This is my passion. Look to see something like this from me very soon…

TED Talk by Bernstein of the History of Music