Classical Tyro

A Beginner's Guide to Great Music

Welcome to “Classical Tyro”

This website is designed for people who are new to classical music. Whether you are sixteen or sixty and would like to know more about classical music you have landed in the right place.

The term “classical,” when applied to music, is often misused and difficult to define. For now, we’ll say it refers to European-based art music of the last 500 years. The term “tyro” refers to a person who is just beginning to learn something, a person who has only recently become acquainted with a subject.

And there it is. This site is for
classical tyros, people looking for a little help understanding classical music and some guidance in how to enjoy it.

Classical music is generally longer and more difficult to understand than so-called "popular" music. It not only requires well-trained musicians, it also requires knowledgable audiences. It's a type of music that is loaded with content (musical, historical, and biographical), and people often need some assistance getting started.

And that is the purpose of this site — to help people get started. Technical terms will be kept to a minimum, and music will be explained in a way that people with little or no musical knowledge should be able to understand it.

It may take a little effort to get going, but the rewards are worth the effort. Music has the ability to purify our souls, calm our minds, and bring joy to our lives. It can help make our world a little kinder and more humane. At the very least, it can provide us with a few nice moments during those difficult times when our lives are full of stress. Although all types of music do those things, it’s the mission of this website to help more people discover the unique power of
classical music to heighten our emotions and elevate our spirits.

“So long as the human spirit thrives on this planet, music in some living form will accompany and sustain it and give it expressive meaning.” – Aaron Copland

Site Contents
Videos for Tyros
Periodically (every week or so), the performance of a classical masterwork will be embedded on this page. The videos will help those who are new to classical music become acquainted with the classical repertoire. They should also have a terrific time listening to some of the greatest music ever composed.

Blog for Tyros
Jim Smith will periodically post articles that introduce tyros to the world of classical music. Now and then, the blog will also include information about other types of great music — from pop to rock.

A Tyro’s Guide to Music
This section includes several pages providing encyclopedia-type information that can be used as an introduction to classical music.

This section will include links to articles and books by Jim Smith (and others) that explore the art of listening to classical music.

This page provides information about Jim Smith and the mission of this website.

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