BBC Radio 4's History of Western Music

If you enjoy classical music, or always wondered what type of music human beings listened to ages ago, or just wanted to learn more about classical music–now’s your chance.

And it’s all For FREE.

BBC Radio 4 has a new radio program called The Making of Music. It is a monumental survey of European Early and Classical music from the High Middle Ages to Modern times.

The program is ambitious, with daily one hour programs, plus 15 minutes of historical commentary, M-F, for the next 5 weeks.

The commentary and series is on BBC Radio 4. The one hour music programs are on BBC Radio 3. You just click from Radio 4 to Radio 3.

Unfortunately, the first week is no longer available for listening. This first week ended with the Early Rennaisance. Once the program is aired, it is only available for one week after it’s broadcast for archival listening. You can listen at any time, at your leisure via the internet, but only for 7 days after it’s aired (that includes the seventh day and about 30 minutes after the new weekly program is aired. London is 6 hours ahead of Eastern Standard Time).

And just one comment about the series: the BBC has few kind words about the Catholic Church. Since the Catholic Church gave birth to Western music, they’re going to mention it, and usually say nothing positive about it. As a matter of fact, some of the programs this week deal with the Reformation and Counter -Reformation. But, other than that, the program is really, really well-done.

The second week of the series is already almost a week old, so if you want to hear about the Reformation up to the Birth of Opera, you should at least listen to one program this weekend.

Starting Monday, these programs will start to disappear into oblivion. You won’t be able to listen to them.

This series, in my opinion, would be great for anyone who has children. This would be a great opportunity to show children that today’s music is not really music at all, and is a music industry, geared to making big monetary profits based on whatever musical junk sells to one demographic group or another.

Even if your children have never listened to classical music, I can guarantee at least some of the kids out there (not all), if they listened to this series, their lives will change for the better.

If you have children who are able to listen to any music, they can listen to this series. I started listening to classical music when I was age 10, and probably could have appreciated it earlier, at age 5 or 6. I know fellow students were listening to Rock n’ Roll by Third grade. Even if your child doesn’t like the music, I bet some day, maybe many years later, they’ll thank you for making them do so.

Instead of rotting their brains with the junk on television all summer long, they could listen to this (well, at least some of it, if not all; granted, it is a lot of programs. But what else do they do during the day, watch 4 or more hours of TV?).

You’ll lay a foundation that perhaps someday they’ll build on later. And they’ll certainly know for the rest of their lives that music did not begin with The Beatles, The Rolling Stones, or Elton John.

I love music. But I don’t know how to access BBC 1, or 2, let alone 3 and 4. How does one do that?


The link above will get you to BBC Radio 4. That is the Making of Music series per se, then you simply click on the BBC Radio 3 link at the bottom of each Episode description to get to the one hour music programs…

You can also always BBC Radio, BBC Radio 4, or BBC Radio 3. That should get you to the BBC.

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