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The Recorder: some Historical Landmarks
efforts have met with varying degrees of success: some of the modern compositions have proved to be very suitable for the instrument; others show only too clearly that the composers do not fully understand the capabilities of the instrument.
The purpose of this book is not to teach the elements of music and some knowledge of music must be assumed. Rather is it to help those who are interested in music and who have toyed with the idea of playing the recorder to take the instrument more seriously than would otherwise be the case; to practise it more rigorously and to try to raise the general level of playing which, with far too many players, is deplorably low.
Some attention will be paid also to bringing before the would-be player the large amount of music available, for until this music is known, the vast potentialities of the instrument will remain a closed book. It may also help some teachers to look beyond the mere blowing of a folk tune with their children to the greater delights of ensemble or consort playing, information about which will be found in chapter n.
Another possibility is that some recorder players may become so enamoured with wind instrument playing that they will feel the urge to learn some modern orchestral wind instrument. They will find that the recorder has prepared them for participating in the more modern music in which the recorder is not required. But whether the recorder is regarded as an end in itself, and many will find the instrument completely and absorbingly satisfying, or whether it is regarded as a step to learning a modern wind instrument, is for the individual to decide.
One big advantage of learning the recorder rather than another instrument is that the recorder player is much more likely to find other players to join him for ensemble playing in