A loss

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parsifal
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A loss

Post by parsifal » Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:41 am

I just heard that my friend John W Francis just passed away. A terrible loss for us, his friends and a loss for CMG.
Kjell Nilsson.
Sweden

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:37 am

parsifal wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:41 am
I just heard that my friend John W Francis just passed away. A terrible loss for us, his friends and a loss for CMG.
Kjell Nilsson.
Sweden
Absolutely dreadful; shocking news. He will be very much missed. What a dreadful year it's been.

Beckmesser
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Re: A loss

Post by Beckmesser » Wed Dec 04, 2019 6:49 am

That is very sad news, indeed.

John Francis was the only member of this forum whom I actually knew in person. Whenever we attended an opera at the Met on Monday nights I always stopped into the library next door (where John served as a volunteer) to say hello and have a brief chat.

I will miss his friendship and his deep knowledge of music which he shared with us.

lennygoran
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Re: A loss

Post by lennygoran » Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:43 am

I've known John since around the year 1999-Sue and I have gotten together with him over the years so many times it's hard to count them all-a wonderful conversationalist and so much knowledge he imparted-this is a big loss for us. We saw him at the last CMG forum dinner at Pomodoro-he was in bad shape then struggling to walk but he came and provided great stories on music for the rest of us. RIP Regards, Len and Sue

Lance
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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Wed Dec 04, 2019 10:08 am

WHAT??? This is very shocking news to me. I had no idea he was in bad shape. He contributed to this forum regularly and knew his stuff - and we texted frequently. I am just very sorry. RIP John Francis, and thank you for being our good friend here. You will be sorely missed.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
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When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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Donald Isler
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Re: A loss

Post by Donald Isler » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:35 am

I am shocked, and very sorry to hear this. John was a friend, and one of the most valuable, and knowledgeable members of this group.
Donald Isler

maestrob
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Re: A loss

Post by maestrob » Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:49 am

This is shocking news! When John and I exchanged contact information, I assumed we would have many years ahead of us to discuss music. John was a fine scholar, educated at Harvard, and while we didn't always agree, I respected his well-informed opinions. Very sad to hear of his passing. His well-informed posts will be sorely missed. Condolences to his family.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:20 pm

It's early morning here in Australia and I've had a very bad night - thinking about our family dramas and now this!! So very very sad I cannot get my head around it. And I looked back on his comments about the death of Clive James and note that he anticipated a posthumous book from that author - and John's anticipation of being able to buy that book!! :(

You do get to know people in these kinds of forum interactions; very much so. I had early disagreements with John about Mozart and Charles Rosen but these were soon swept aside by huge respect and my enthusiasm to continue engaging with him - always so positive, with the great love of music upper-most in the exchanges. He sent me notes in the mail from New York which he'd photocopied at his Lincoln Centre Library.

Even my spouse knew about John Francis as I'd often tell him about our discussions - as, indeed, did our music group. Only last week they presented me with a book to thank me for my leadership of the group as I'm not doing the organizing anymore; in his speech at the presentation a very good friend told our group about my engagement on an "American music board" and the many anecdotes I'd recounted to him about all you people and the great knowledge, experience and discussions.

John had physical ailments but, by god, his brain as a sharp as any really intelligent 30 something!! John Francis was unique. No question about that. Nothing will be the same here again on CMG.

Lance
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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:38 pm

Sue, yes, I read that post about Clive James, too. He was looking forward to getting that book. However … the best laid plans of mice and men. I'm still grieving over this myself and cannot let it go. I know John Francis loved CMG and he would only want us to continue to forge ahead for all of us music lovers. You, too, are very important to CMG, as is all our members, many of whom we collectively call "family." I'd like to keep it that way in John Francis's memory if possible. When I think of all the people we have lost on CMG through death, it becomes very discouraging.
Belle wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:20 pm
It's early morning here in Australia and I've had a very bad night - thinking about our family dramas and now this!! So very very sad I cannot get my head around it. And I looked back on his comments about the death of Clive James and note that he anticipated a posthumous book from that author - and John's anticipation of being able to buy that book!! :(

You do get to know people in these kinds of forum interactions; very much so. I had early disagreements with John about Mozart and Charles Rosen but these were soon swept aside by huge respect and my enthusiasm to continue engaging with him - always so positive, with the great love of music upper-most in the exchanges. He sent me notes in the mail from New York which he'd photocopied at his Lincoln Centre Library.

Even my spouse knew about John Francis as I'd often tell him about our discussions - as, indeed, did our music group. Only last week they presented me with a book to thank me for my leadership of the group as I'm not doing the organizing anymore; in his speech at the presentation a very good friend told our group about my engagement on an "American music board" and the many anecdotes I'd recounted to him about all you people and the great knowledge, experience and discussions.

John had physical ailments but, by god, his brain as a sharp as any really intelligent 30 something!! John Francis was unique. No question about that. Nothing will be the same here again on CMG.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

Image

barney
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Re: A loss

Post by barney » Wed Dec 04, 2019 5:25 pm

Thank you Kjell for letting us know. I had noticed John hadn't posted for a couple of days, and wondered why, as he was such an ardent communicator.
I too will miss John deeply. His knowledge was prolific, and often authoritative, his capacity and willingness to research and answer questions was unparalleled. He had strong opinions, which he held to with great firmness, but I have no problem with that. He had some entertaining exchanges with another late, lamented John, JohnB.
Vale, John, and RIP.

Philip M
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Re: A loss

Post by Philip M » Wed Dec 04, 2019 5:47 pm

That’s such sad and unexpected news. I’d known John since c1994 when I moved the USA for work for 3.5 years. Met him many times. I last saw him at The Barbican in 2013. We went to Brussels together in January 2000 (with Donald Dean) for Peter Brook’s amazing Don Giovanni.

He was 82 I think.

RIP

Philip

lennygoran
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Re: A loss

Post by lennygoran » Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:25 pm

Belle wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 1:20 pm
You do get to know people in these kinds of forum interactions; very much so...John had physical ailments but, by god, his brain as a sharp as any really intelligent 30 something!! John Francis was unique. No question about that. Nothing will be the same here again on CMG.
Belle Sue and I had the pleasure of knowing him beyond forum interactions--what you say about his brain is so true! Regards, Len

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Wed Dec 04, 2019 8:57 pm

Philip M wrote:
Wed Dec 04, 2019 5:47 pm
That’s such sad and unexpected news. I’d known John since c1994 when I moved the USA for work for 3.5 years. Met him many times. I last saw him at The Barbican in 2013. We went to Brussels together in January 2000 (with Donald Dean) for Peter Brook’s amazing Don Giovanni.

He was 82 I think.

RIP

Philip
Actually, I think he was in his mid 70's. He told me how old he was a few years ago and I remember thinking he was younger than my husband (76).

Philip M
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Re: A loss

Post by Philip M » Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:38 am

John was 78.

See the Rattle Ax LSO thread in Concert Reviews.

Philip

mikealdren
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Re: A loss

Post by mikealdren » Thu Dec 05, 2019 4:06 am

Very sad indeed, I never met or even communicated directly with him but, through this site, I benefited enormously from his encyclopedic knowledge and wonderful use of language.

Ricordanza
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Re: A loss

Post by Ricordanza » Thu Dec 05, 2019 6:26 am

This is very sad and shocking news. I met John on only two occasions--CMG "meet-ups"--but I felt that I knew the man through his numerous posts on this forum. I admired him for his incredible knowledge of music and many other subjects, and I admired him even more for his willingness to share that knowledge with us. To say that he will be missed is an understatement.

HM

parsifal
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Re: A loss

Post by parsifal » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:51 am

John visited my wife and me several times in Sweden. Once he came for the premiere of Stjedrin´s opera "Lolita" in Stockholm and stayed with us for some days Once we sat talking until 3 in the morning. We always had a good time together. I also visited him in Brooklyn. I never forget when he played Strauss´s "Ein Heldenleben" from 1928 (Mengelberg) for me, which encouraged me to get this glorious recording as soon as I could. As he knew everything, and I mean everything about classical music he had much to teach me. We kept up a comprehensive correspondence. Some days we exchanged three mails per day. Our friendship went back to the 1970s
I had him to tell about his travels in Europe and tell about operas and concerts he attended. he saved all programs so he was able to list all the great singers he heard then.
I miss what he posted on CMG and I miss the wonderful correspondence and phone calls we had.
Requescat in Pace my dear friend.
Kjell.

AlanM
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Re: A loss

Post by AlanM » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:14 am

I met John in the 1990s. We corresponded by email a nd by phone regularly. I last spoke with him by phone probably a week or two ago. He was always very helpful. He was a wonderful person. I knew he was not well but this is a shock. Hopefully there is good music wherever he is.

diegobueno
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Re: A loss

Post by diegobueno » Thu Dec 05, 2019 11:26 am

Whoa! I'm seeing posts from him here dated, Nov. 29, 2019.

The loss of John F is certainly quite a blow to this forum, since it seems like at least 40-50% of all posts were from him. He was very knowledgeable and very opinionated. I disagreed with him often enough that I got the feeling that he regarded anything I posted as an attack, direct or indirect, against him. I refrained from posting a lot of times just to avoid contention. And I'm not generally one to avoid contention.

I assume he's now in a place where no one plays the saxophone.
Black lives matter.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:02 pm

parsifal wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:51 am
John visited my wife and me several times in Sweden. Once he came for the premiere of Stjedrin´s opera "Lolita" in Stockholm and stayed with us for some days Once we sat talking until 3 in the morning. We always had a good time together. I also visited him in Brooklyn. I never forget when he played Strauss´s "Ein Heldenleben" from 1928 (Mengelberg) for me, which encouraged me to get this glorious recording as soon as I could. As he knew everything, and I mean everything about classical music he had much to teach me. We kept up a comprehensive correspondence. Some days we exchanged three mails per day. Our friendship went back to the 1970s
I had him to tell about his travels in Europe and tell about operas and concerts he attended. he saved all programs so he was able to list all the great singers he heard then.
I miss what he posted on CMG and I miss the wonderful correspondence and phone calls we had.
Requescat in Pace my dear friend.
Kjell.
Thank you for telling us all that. Whatever will happen to his wonderful collection of music and books? We have talked about these legacies issues before on CMG.

Philip M
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Re: A loss

Post by Philip M » Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:18 pm

I hope they will go to a suitable institution.

My collection, which has many unique live recordings, will go to the British Library.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:39 pm

diegobueno wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 11:26 am
Whoa! I'm seeing posts from him here dated, Nov. 29, 2019.

The loss of John F is certainly quite a blow to this forum, since it seems like at least 40-50% of all posts were from him. He was very knowledgeable and very opinionated. I disagreed with him often enough that I got the feeling that he regarded anything I posted as an attack, direct or indirect, against him. I refrained from posting a lot of times just to avoid contention. And I'm not generally one to avoid contention.

I assume he's now in a place where no one plays the saxophone.
I gather John was felled by a heart attack or stroke - and it's quick. I guess it beats the lingering horror of cancer, but it's rather tough on friends and relatives all the same. And I had no idea that he abhorred the saxophone - a somewhat 'sexy' instrument which my nephew (a medical doctor) also plays.

barney
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Re: A loss

Post by barney » Thu Dec 05, 2019 3:25 pm

It's one of the ironies of death that this outpouring of admiration and affection, richly deserved, couldn't be enjoyed by John in life. Still, he got plenty of respect on this forum.

diegobueno
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Re: A loss

Post by diegobueno » Thu Dec 05, 2019 3:42 pm

Belle wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:39 pm
I had no idea that he abhorred the saxophone - a somewhat 'sexy' instrument which my nephew (a medical doctor) also plays.
He, along with the also recently departed jbuck, felt the saxophone was not a suitable instrument for classical music. I couldn't convince him otherwise. I don't know what he thought of it in the context of jazz, or whether he listened to jazz at all.
Black lives matter.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Thu Dec 05, 2019 4:46 pm

There was something of the musical puritan in John Francis - but that's OK: he was standing up for the art form he loved and was anxious to see it preserved in the way he best remembered.

We had many arguments about HIP but there wasn't the slightest chance that this would devolve into insult and name-calling - a feature of most other message-boards I've used over the years, and the dominant trolls you'd find there (who don't have a scintilla of John's intelligence) who were and are essentially puffed-up dilettante pretenders and hostile keyboard dragoons.

A friend has recently observed to me the anti-intellectual nature of the age and the dearth of really bright people with whom one can engage. I'll drink to that.

barney
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Re: A loss

Post by barney » Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:16 am

Vince Lombardi: Show me a good loser and I'll show you a loser. that's the spirit of the age. It seems much more competitive than when I was young - winning is not everything, it's the only thing. So I have to cover my ears and shout louder than you.

As you say, John never did that. He could be quite dismissive, but of arguments rather than people.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Fri Dec 06, 2019 3:29 am

I'm not afraid of fierce argument; I welcome it because it contests my own ideas. We cannot afford to ossify in our declining years - the brain is often the only thing left when all other things have succumbed to the law of entropy!!

Today I was out at a Christmas function with women from the community of our farming years; a couple are savvy businesswomen, retired teachers, a doctor's wife. The spectrum of people. To a woman not one of them was able to discuss either politics, music or culture. All enthused about travel but I found the going tough after about 2 hours of nodding like a mad relation. When I said I was hugely grateful for the internet and being in touch with like-minded people one woman said, "I don't care for it; I just want to retire to my farm, my animals and my grandchildren". They're decent people, but it reminded me of why I was bored witless during those years and how grateful I am now for the internet in retirement and the stimulating company it affords at the touch of a button!!!

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Sat Dec 07, 2019 4:03 pm

Somebody has just written this about me for publication in our city's 'third age' learning community and you'll see that CMG gets a mention, though 'un-named'!!

SUSAN ****** MUSIC APPRECIATION,
NEWCASTLE U3A – A TRIBUTE
Sue is the epitome of passion about music, with an unswerving commitment to opening listeners’ ears to the inner workings and emotional power of this art form. Her eclectic tastes range from classical, romantic, baroque and earlier through to contemporary, film and music theatre. She loves nothing better than spending her days linking with overseas music lovers via various online sites, to swap opinions about music and the latest recordings by a specific performer or composer. Her deep and vast knowledge, along with the occasional personal anecdote enlivens our sessions. Sue believes music is a “…continuing source of joy and I’ve never stopped learning about it.”

(The rest won't be of any relevance.) Merry Christmas to everyone on CMG.

lennygoran
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Re: A loss

Post by lennygoran » Sat Dec 07, 2019 7:52 pm

Belle wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 4:03 pm
Somebody has just written this about me for publication in our city's 'third age' learning community and you'll see that CMG gets a mention, though 'un-named'!!
Congratulations-any idea who wrote this! Regards, Len :)

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Sat Dec 07, 2019 10:06 pm

A retired academic in our area, who is in our music group. I posted it because he told people about music messageboards and afterwards I explained all about CMG!!

Lance
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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Sat Dec 07, 2019 11:42 pm

Sue, what a lovely tribute! You are CMG's "sweetheart," and you are appreciated here more than you might even guess.
Belle wrote:
Sat Dec 07, 2019 10:06 pm
A retired academic in our area, who is in our music group. I posted it because he told people about music messageboards and afterwards I explained all about CMG!!
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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Lance
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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Sun Dec 08, 2019 12:13 am

Strange, I've heard that from others with negativity regarding the saxophone and classical music. Well, I hope, at least in his new "home," John F will hear some music by Jean-Baptiste Singelée who wrote some fabulous music for the instrument. Saxophones worked with Monti's Czardas as rendered by Saxpak along with Yankee Doodle, transcriptions, of course, which come off very well. And then there's Glazunov's Sax Concerto not to mention John Duffy's Sax Concerto. Eric Coates wrote an interesting piece, Saxo-Rhapsody. Hey: I'm all for the saxophone and thank Adolphe Sax joyfully!
diegobueno wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 11:26 am
Whoa! I'm seeing posts from him here dated, Nov. 29, 2019.

The loss of John F is certainly quite a blow to this forum, since it seems like at least 40-50% of all posts were from him. He was very knowledgeable and very opinionated. I disagreed with him often enough that I got the feeling that he regarded anything I posted as an attack, direct or indirect, against him. I refrained from posting a lot of times just to avoid contention. And I'm not generally one to avoid contention.

I assume he's now in a place where no one plays the saxophone.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

Image

Holden Fourth
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Re: A loss

Post by Holden Fourth » Sun Dec 08, 2019 2:26 am

John Francis was his own man, stood strongly behind his opinions and was not afraid to call you out on yours. I know because this happened to me a few times. However, it was never you the person who he took to task but your ideas instead and I can easily run with this. That said, he would also affirm ideas that you had that he agreed with.

John Francis, Requiescat in Pace. I will do tonight what I always do when someone of significance passes on - listen to the Verdi Requiem.

parsifal
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Re: A loss

Post by parsifal » Sun Dec 08, 2019 12:54 pm

I know that John W. Francis didn´t warm to the saxophone. It is well known that the saxophone is mostly used in jazz music. I have some immortal favorites like Lester Young and Charlie Parker. I started with jazz and if course I came across those giants, and i still give my records with them an airing now and then. But some great exponents of this instruments are also to be found within classical music with fine musicians like Sigurd Rascher and Marcel Mule. It is mostly a question of alto saxophone.
Kjell Nilsson
Trelleborg, Sweden

barney
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Re: A loss

Post by barney » Sun Dec 08, 2019 5:15 pm

Well, you know what the definition is of a gentleman: somebody who can play the saxophone but doesn't.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Sun Dec 08, 2019 7:11 pm

barney wrote:
Sun Dec 08, 2019 5:15 pm
Well, you know what the definition is of a gentleman: somebody who can play the saxophone but doesn't.
I'm going to pinch this quote and re-frame it for my friend who is a Trombonist!!

parsifal
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Re: A loss

Post by parsifal » Mon Dec 09, 2019 4:41 am

An instrument with (to my ears) got an ugly sound is the soprano saxophone. "Classical" music with a sound of a saxophone must be written after the invention of Sax. Of course any saxophonist can play music of Bach just for the fun of it. Once in Germany I heard a man play Bach´s Toccata and Fugue in D on an accordeon. It sounded better than could be expected. Dennis Brain played music on a garden hose in one of the Hoffnung concerts! But now we are maybe beside the point.

Kjell Nilsson.
Trelleborg, Sweden

diegobueno
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Re: A loss

Post by diegobueno » Mon Dec 09, 2019 9:51 am

The actual definition of a gentleman is someone who plays the saxophone and refrains from playing transcriptions of early music on it.

There's plenty of wonderful modern music for, and with, the instrument.
Black lives matter.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Mon Dec 09, 2019 4:43 pm

Australian Brett Deans composed this: Water Music for saxophone quartet and chamber orchestra (2004)

Deans used to play viola with the Berlin Philharmonic.

THEHORN
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Re: A loss

Post by THEHORN » Tue Dec 10, 2019 7:38 pm

So sorry to hear about this . I often disagreed with John, but he was certainly a highly knowledgeable and enthusiastic music lover . He will be missed at this forum .

Lance
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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:44 am

I keep watching Brooklyn NY obituaries but can find nothing on John Francis. Anyone else seen anything?
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

Image

parsifal
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Re: A loss

Post by parsifal » Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:21 pm

Here follows an obituary of John W. Francis sent to me by his sister-in-law.

John Winthrop Nelson Francis, author and discographer, died at home in Brooklyn, NY, on December 3 at the age of 78.
Born in Lancaster, PA, he was an alumnus of William Penn Charter School in Philadelphia and a 1963 graduate of Harvard University, where he was classical music director for the university’s WHRB-FM radio station. He was a staff announcer and producer of classical music programs for WBAI-FM in New York before serving in the U.S. Army in Korea and Germany from 1964 to 1968. He returned to New York to become an editor of college and trade books for W. W. Norton and St. Martin’s publishing companies from 1971 to 1984.
He had a lifelong love for opera and classical music and performers, as well as for theater and literature. In addition to writing numerous articles, reviews, discographies, and radio presentations, he was a record, book, and video reviewer for Fanfare magazine and the Association for Recorded Sound Collections.
He was publications assistant for Central Opera Service from
1986 to 1990 and did freelance work for the Metropolitan Opera National Council. From 1992 until the present, he did
extensive volunteer work for organizations at Lincoln Center, including the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Lincoln Center Institute, and Film Society of Lincoln Center.
Most recently he was a valued resource at the information desk of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts.
One of his major contributions was a 2015 program, “Treasures from the Sound Archive,” which he researched and presented with audio examples. His extensive collection of recordings and tapes will be donated to the library.
Contributions in John’s memory to the “Music and Recorded Sound Division, LPA” may be sent to Music and Recorded Sound Division (Attn: Jonathan Hiam), NY Public Library of the Performing Arts, 111 Amsterdam Ave., New York, NY 10023.
Kjell Nilsson.
Trelleborg, Sweden.

Belle
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Re: A loss

Post by Belle » Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:29 pm

Thanks very much for this. A life well lived and I'm so glad his valuable arts possessions will find a suitable home.

lennygoran
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Re: A loss

Post by lennygoran » Wed Dec 11, 2019 8:15 pm

parsifal wrote:
Wed Dec 11, 2019 1:21 pm
One of his major contributions was a 2015 program, “Treasures from the Sound Archive,” which he researched and presented with audio examples.
Thanks so much for this-Sue and I were at that presentation he gave and it was wonderful-John Brosseau from our CMG was also there-John B died a short time ago-both John's are big losses for us. Regards, Len :(

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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Thu Dec 12, 2019 2:11 am

Thank you, Kjell, for sending placing John Francis's obituary notice hereon. John had quite a wonderful background, and was, indeed, a scholar who accomplished much in his lifetime.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

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lennygoran
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Location: new york city

Re: A loss

Post by lennygoran » Thu Dec 12, 2019 5:07 am

Lance wrote:
Thu Dec 12, 2019 2:11 am
Thank you, Kjell, for sending placing John Francis's obituary notice hereon. John had quite a wonderful background, and was, indeed, a scholar who accomplished much in his lifetime.
Here's his obituary from the NYTimes. Regards, Len

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1941 - 2019John Winthrop Nelson Francis, author and discographer, died at home in Brooklyn, NY, on December 3 at the age of 78.

Born in Lancaster, PA, he was an alumnus of William Penn Charter School in Philadelphia and a 1963 graduate of Harvard University, where he was classical music director for the university's WHRB-FM radio station.

He was a staff announcer and producer of classical music programs for WBAI-FM in New York before serving in the U.S. Army in Korea and Germany from 1964 to 1968. He returned to New York to become an editor of college and trade books for W. W. Norton and St. Martin's publishing companies from 1971 to 1984.

He had a lifelong love for opera and classical music and performers, as well as for theater and literature. In addition to writing numerous articles, reviews, discographies, and radio presentations, he was a record, book, and video reviewer for Fanfare magazine and the Association for Recorded Sound Collections.

He was publications assistant for Central Opera Service from 1986 to 1990 and did freelance work for the Metropolitan Opera National Council. From 1992 until the present, he did extensive volunteer work for organizations at Lincoln Center, including the Metropolitan Opera Guild, Lincoln Center Institute, and Film Society of Lincoln Center.

Most recently he was a valued resource at the information desk of the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts. One of his major contributions was a 2015 program, "Treasures from the Sound Archive," which he researched and presented with audio examples. His extensive collection of recordings and tapes will be donated to the library.

John Francis is survived by his brother Samuel H. Francis and sister-in-law Roberta W. Francis of Chatham, NJ; stepsister Nearlene J. B. Francis of Sherman Oaks, CA; niece Erika L. Francis-Raniere of Sudbury, MA; nephew Christopher S. Francis and his partner Barbara A. Bryan of Hoboken, NJ; and grandnieces Emma and Marin Raniere and Delilah Francis.

He was predeceased by his father W. Nelson Francis, founding chair of the Linguistics Department at Brown University, and stepmother Nearlene J. Francis of Providence, RI, and by his mother Anne F. Francis of Roanoke, VA, and stepfather William B. Figgat of Bedford, VA.

He was a direct descendant of John Winthrop, first governor of Massachusetts, and James B. Francis, 19th-century inventor of the Francis turbine and chief engineer for the industrial mill complex in Lowell, MA.

Interment in the Godwin Cemetery in Fincastle, VA, will be private. Contributions in John's memory to the "Music and Recorded Sound Division, LPA" may be sent to Music and Recorded Sound Division (Attn: Jonathan Hiam), NY Public Library of the Performing Arts, 111 Amsterdam Ave., New York, NY 10023.

https://www.legacy.com/obituaries/nytim ... =194693135

maestrob
Posts: 7184
Joined: Tue Sep 16, 2008 11:30 am

Re: A loss

Post by maestrob » Thu Dec 12, 2019 11:51 am

Lance wrote:
Thu Dec 12, 2019 2:11 am
Thank you, Kjell, for sending placing John Francis's obituary notice hereon. John had quite a wonderful background, and was, indeed, a scholar who accomplished much in his lifetime.
Second the motion. Also thanks to Len for posting the NY Time obit as well.

Heck148
Posts: 3569
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Location: New England

Re: A loss

Post by Heck148 » Fri Dec 13, 2019 10:19 am

so sorry to hear this....I met John when he was in Boston....very fine visit. John was very intelligent, knowledgeable and articulate..he will be missed...

Lance
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Re: A loss

Post by Lance » Fri Dec 13, 2019 1:36 pm

And thank you to Lenny for showing the New York Times obituary notice.
Lance G. Hill
Editor-in-Chief
______________________________________________________

When she started to play, Mr. Steinway came down and personally
rubbed his name off the piano. [Speaking about pianist &*$#@+#]

Image

AlanM
Posts: 71
Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2008 4:37 pm

Re: A loss

Post by AlanM » Fri Dec 13, 2019 5:11 pm

Was the obit in the hard copy of the NY Times? I get it every morning and have not seen it there. Did any one read it in the hsrd cooy?
Alan

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