Theme and Variations

Thoughts and experiences of exploring classical, jazz, and other art music.

Sunday, August 15, 2004


Welcome to our new weblog. Mike Thomas and Robert Shearer (that's me) will be writing about our explorations and experiences with what I call "Great Music", what most folks refer to as classical and jazz music.

Our short list of qualifications is as follows: we have none. Neither of us are musicians, nor do either of us currently play an instrument (although I have played woodwinds and guitar in the past, and I can tell you the name of the keys on a piano). However, like many people we are great music enthusiasts, and have an interest not only in the music, but also in the people who compose and play great music.

I think we can bring a unique outlook to great music. While we were high school buddies (and debate partners - you have been warned), we have taken different paths. Mike lives in Texas with his beautiful wife, a very charming son, and a cat which is my sworn mortal enemy, and works as a journalist. I live in Vermont with my beautiful wife and a very gregarious dog, and am an electrical engineer and computer scientist.

Texas is a very big place. Vermont is a very small place. It's amazing how much the two states have in common like that. But I digress.

It is our goal to make at least one entry a week.

We each have other weblogs that we write, but this is our first collaborative effort. If you have any curiosity about classical music and/or jazz, I hope you will find this an interesting place to visit.