Robert Greenberg own composition I actually really dislike as well.
I'm perfectly capable of making my own mind on what is good or not.
Your suggestion is what I am actually doing. I have just finish listening to Paul McCartney classical albums.I heard some Sufjan Stevens work. in fact so far Bryce Dessner from the Nationals seems to be most talented rock composer so far from what I heard.
However I am interested in what is consensus critical agreement not just what I personally like.
Whether I personally like something or not I like to know what's the consensus is and why the consensus exist and who is considered the "great composers" who is part of musical canon and to be familiar with them.
I feel that being familiar with the canon is interesting enough independent on whether I personally enjoyed them or not.
I dislike Schoenberg music however I do not regret learning about his musical theories, understanding why many people were influence by him and learning about his life because learning about why a composer is important and significant as well as personally listening to many of his composition.
That's why it's highly interesting that Zappa is rated even I dislike his music and I want to know why people feel that way.
So the idea that I just follow authority instead of making my own mind is ridiculous.
IMO, Classical Music will die due to the values of the authority on what makes good music is in complete contrast to the values of the general public.
However to follow your own mind, you still have to learn about what is consensus even from at least "knowing your enemy" point of view.
In any case I have a listen to Zappa London Symphony Orchestral Volume 1+2 and predictably I dislike it but I am curious about what is it about his music that makes people rate it highly and why he is considered an important composer
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