Classical Imagine Dragons
Midnight String Quartet performs Imagine Dragons, "I Bet My Life"
In the 1960s, when the Beatles were new, their songs were adapted and played as classical compositions. The results were beautiful. At the time, I remember commentators saying that the Beatles represented classicism (or a classical period) in the development of modern popular music.
Consider, today, Imagine Dragons and their song "I Bet My Life," as reimagined by the Midnight String Quartet. This classical quartet has specialized in taking today's popular music and reimagining it in the hands of classical composers of the past. The results for most modern popular artists is, I think, unconvincing. The Beatles shine, as we might expect, in their hands—but so does Imagine Dragons, and, in particular, "I Bet My Life." The Midnight String Quartet's Classical reimagining of this song is possessed of the kind of precise (almost mathematical) scoring and of the sudden dynamic changes we expect in a Classical masterpiece—but also of the unexpected joy and surprise that we find in, for example, Boccherini.
Give a listen to this delightful piece, and see if you agree with me. The four members of Imagine Dragons composed this song together in 2014 (who says a committee can't come up with something good!). I think that at least some of these men must have had classical training, and that it infuses their best work.
Here is the Midnight String Quartet, performing the song "I Bet My Life," by Imagine Dragons (from the 2016 album MSQ Performs Imagine Dragons):
I created "Their Brows with Roses and with Myrtles Bound," the image above, in 2006. It is based on Mandelbrot fractals. The title is from Alexander's Feast; or, The Power of Music: An Ode in Honour of St. Cecilia's Day, by the English poet John Dryden (1631 - 1700). The ode is 180 lines long (I post here only the first seven lines—but the entire ode is a glory to read!):
'Twas at the royal feast, for Persia won
By Philip's warlike son:
Aloft, in awful state,
The godlike hero sate
On his imperial throne.
His valiant peers were placed around;
Their brows with roses and with myrtles bound.