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THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC draws on the strengths of author Craig Wright's larger volumes--outstanding listening pedagogy, clear writing, state-of-the-art online ancillaries--and delivers them in a style that is designed to connect with today's students and inspire a lifelong appreciation of music. In this concise book, scholar and master-teacher Wright focuses on the key concepts and works presented within a typical Music Appreciation course, avoids lengthy discussions on side topics, and includes a set of integrated digital resources that make it easier--and fun--for students to master the material. THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC is approximately 60 percent shorter than the large volume and is priced much lower than our larger texts. This chronological text discusses musical examples from each historical period, each discussed within its social context. This provides students with a sense of a piece's construction, as well as its historical and cultural meaning. THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC includes a wide range of resources designed to develop listening skills and challenge students: a free "Introduction to Listening" CD, packaged with each copy of the text; Listening Exercises built into the book and online (unique to Wright's text); streaming music ; computer-enhanced Active Listening Guides; and listening quizzes for all of the music in the text. All of these are included within CourseMate--for use with or without your school's LMS. Students can download all of the music that is covered in the text -- directly to a music library -- using the Sony Music Download Card that is bound into the book. A full set of lecture-based digital resources provides you with the tools you need to prepare for class, and an optional two-CD set is also available. As an instructor, you can also customize THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC to fit your specific needs by including pop and global music from the larger edition of LISTENING TO MUSIC.

Craig Wright, Yale University

Craig M. Wright received his Bachelor of Music degree at the Eastman School of Music in 1966 and his Ph.D. in musicology from Harvard University in 1972. He began his teaching career at the University of Kentucky and for the past forty years has been teaching at Yale University, where he is currently the Henry L. and Lucy G. Moses Professor of Music. At Yale, Wright’s courses include his perennially popular introductory course, Listening to Music (also part of the offerings of Open Yale Courses); his large lecture course Exploring the Nature of Genius; and most recently his Coursera course Introduction to Classical Music. He is the author of numerous scholarly books and articles on composers ranging from Leoninus to Bach. Wright has also been the recipient of many awards, including a Guggenheim Fellowship, the Einstein and Kinkeldey Awards of the American Musicological Society, and the Dent Medal of the International Musicological Society. In 2004, he was awarded the honorary degree Doctor of Humane Letters from the University of Chicago. And in 2010 he was elected a member of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, joining fellow inductee, banjo player Steve Martin. In addition to LISTENING TO MUSIC and LISTENING TO WESTERN MUSIC, EIGHTH EDITION, Wright has also published THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC, SECOND EDITION; LISTENING TO MUSIC, CHINESE EDITION (Schirmer Cengage Learning/Three Union Press, 2012), translated and simplified by Profs. Li Xiujung (China Conservatory, Beijing) and Yu Zhigang (Central Conservatory, Beijing), both of whom worked with Wright at Yale; and MUSIC IN WESTERN CIVILIZATION, MEDIA UPDATE (Schirmer Cengage Learning, 2010), with coauthor Bryan Simms. He is currently at work on a volume titled MOZART’S BRAIN: EXPLORING THE NATURE OF GENIUS.
  • NEW This briefer, less expensive edition has a streamlined 16-chapter organization covering Western (or classical) music.
  • NEW In order to keep this edition as brief as possible, the larger text's Listening Guides and many of its Listening Exercises have been replaced with Listening Cues, containing such key information as genre and form, "What to Listen For," and where to find interactive Active Listening Guides and Listening Exercises on the website. Print Listening Guides are available in the Active Listening Guides and may be customized with the book.
  • NEW Margin-based references point to the text website, as well as to online iTunes, Rhapsody, and YouTube playlists; podcasts; musical style checklists; and Craig Wright's Open Yale Course in music appreciation.
  • NEW Listening Guides for many additional works not covered in the text are included on the instructor's PowerLecture, and a library of additional streaming music is available on the book's website. These give the instructor more options for teaching the repertoire they want.
  • NEW The musical repertoire selected by Craig Wright for this brief edition is praised by reviewers. This edition offers a free Introduction to Listening CD with 26 selections and a two-CD set of 35 carefully selected pieces. All musical selections are also available streaming and as downloads.
  • CourseMate, available as a standalone online environment or for use within your LMS, is included, free of charge, with all new books. It includes an interactive eBook, Listening Exercises, Active Listening Guides, flashcards, tutorial quizzes, an interactive eBook, Engagement Tracker, and more.
  • The text is authored by Craig Wright, a renowned music historian, who has taught, and continues to teach, music appreciation for more than 30 years. By teaching the course every year, Wright remains in touch with what today's students need to become personally engaged in the act of listening to music.
  • Full coverage of women as composers, performers, and patrons of music exposes students to the significant contributions of women to the music world. Women composers covered include Hildegard of Bingen, Barbara Strozzi, Clara Schumann, and Ellen Zwilich.
  • The instructor's PowerLecture includes lecture materials, as well as Listening Guides for many additional works not covered in the text. These give instructors more options for teaching the repertoire they want.
1. The Appeal of Music.
2. Rhythm, Melody, and Harmony.
3. Color, Texture, and Form.
4. Music in the Middle Ages and Renaissance.
5. Baroque Art and Music.
6. Late Baroque Music: Bach and Handel.
7. Introduction to Classical Style: Haydn and Mozart.
8. Classical Forms.
9. Classical Genres.
10. Beethoven: Bridge to Romanticism.
11. Romanticism and Romantic Chamber Music.
12. Romantic Orchestral Music.
13. Romantic Opera.
14. Late Romantic Orchestral Music.
15. European Impressionism and Modernism.
16. American Modernism and Postmodernism.
Each MindTap product offers the full, mobile-ready textbook combined with superior and proven learning tools at one affordable price. Students who purchase digital access can add a print option at any time when a print option is available for their course.

This Cengage solution can be seamlessly integrated into most Learning Management Systems (Blackboard, Brightspace by D2L, Canvas, Moodle, and more) but does require a different ISBN for access codes. Please work with your Cengage Learning Consultant to ensure the proper course set up and ordering information. For additional information, please visit the LMS Integration site.

Standalone Digital Access — Ultimate Value

Recommended and most popular

  • ISBN-10: 1285382137
  • ISBN-13: 9781285382135
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $84.00
  • RETAIL $84.00

Textbook Only Options

Traditional eBook and Print Options

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  • STARTING AT $76.49

  • ISBN-10: 1111342024
  • ISBN-13: 9781111342029
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $71.25
  • RETAIL $95.95

  • ISBN-10: 1133309208
  • ISBN-13: 9781133309208
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $81.00
  • RETAIL $107.95

"I really enjoyed the fresh approach. There is much more in this text that current students can relate to. . . . The overall tone of the writing is right on the money, and perfect for today's students."

"Yes, the writing is extremely clear and it is at the appropriate level. I found myself reading all of the text (even when I only expected to skim some passages). The material is presented in an interesting and up-to-date manner, especially, with references to modern pop composers.... I particularly liked the biographical materials on the composers. The information reflects current scholarship and it is accurate. I also liked the material on . . . society, which shed light on the period and helps students understand the social and cultural issues surrounding the composer and his works."

"I am very fond of the musical examples and the references to YouTube. This is an increasingly important tool for teaching if used well, and I think the incorporation here is well done. I am considering online instruction for this course, and I think this material is well suited to spark discussion and interest. . . . The brevity, with good musical examples, looks like it would fit well into a semester's coverage."

"This text is a chronological journey through music history that is significantly shorter in length than most, hence the title, focusing on the most important composers and genres from each era without an overload of unnecessary terms or concepts. Therefore, it is a better fit for non-majors taking their first music course, as it introduces musical terms and guidelines of how to listen to Classical music."

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.


Website with Instructor's Resource Manual, PowerPoint®

ISBN: 9781305115071
Everything you need for your course in one place! This collection of book-specific lecture and class tools is available online via Access and download PowerPoint presentations, instructor's manual, word testbank files and more.

Cengage Learning Testing, powered by Cognero® Instant Access

ISBN: 9781305114838
Cengage Learning Testing Powered by Cognero® is a flexible, online system that allows you to import, edit, and manipulate content from the text's test bank or elsewhere, including your own favorite test questions; create multiple test versions in an instant; and deliver tests from your LMS, your classroom, or wherever you want.