Clementi, Crack and Cronkite

0718-clementiA little Muzio Clementi never hurt anybody. The guy may have been reviled by piano students (he was the Paganini of the keyboard) and under-appreciated by DJs (Parisian radio stations rarely played his stuff in the 18th century except for a brief and inexplicable stretch during the Terror). But his music has a spirited quality that pingpongs between Mozart, Haydn and Wilie Coyote. If he was to go on tour these days he’d be sponsored by an arthritis medicine. Or crack, if pharmaceuticals weren’t calling it something else. He had his mellow moments. This adagio from a sonatina in G would play nicely at Walter Cronkite’s wake, especially since Cronkite (?-2009) and Clementi (1752-1832) were almost contemporaries. When CBS releases the long-lost interview tapes, there’s sure to be the one of Cronkite interviewing Clementi in 1781, year of Muzio’s Michael Jackson-like concert tour through Europe. Here’s the sonatina. Enjoy. And Cronkite, rest, if Muzio will let you, in peace.

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