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Matthew Guerrieri

Sudbury, MA   

Matthew Guerrieri is a musician and writer whose work explores a wide range of music—classical, jazz, pop, avant-garde and early music, opera and music for dance—in search of surprising connections not just between disparate genres of music, but between music and currents of thought in history, politics, philosophy, and science. He regularly has written about music for the Boston Globe and NewMusicBox, and his articles have also appeared in Vanity Fair, The American Scholar, Playbill, Musical America, and Slate. He is the author of The First Four Notes: Beethoven’s Fifth and the Human Imagination (Alfred A. Knopf, 2012). He is currently working on a history of music of the 1950s.

Guerrieri holds degrees in music from DePaul and Boston University, and was a composition fellow at the Tanglewood Music Center. He lives in Massachusetts.

Articles by Matthew Guerrieri:

Articles December 12 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
This Year’s Model (or, That’s What They Don’t See)

In C, Taylor Swift, and Cultural Canonization: A reflection in 53 phrases.

Headlines December 5 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Boston: Passports and Layovers from Lorelei and Roomful of Teeth

I sometimes wonder if, several decades from now, people will look back on the current era of new music and characterize it in terms not far removed from tourism.

Uncategorized October 31 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Disguise the Limit

Some NMBx thoughts on Halloween: costume ideas with Matthew and critic-at-large Moe.

Headlines October 16 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Boston: A Fight for Love and Glory—Pipeline! at 25

Boston loves its exemplars—those acts that either are so singular as to make (and, sometimes, break) the mold, or that so fully embody a sound, or a genre, or an...

Listen October 14 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Sounds Heard: Christian Wolff—Pianist: Pieces

In Wolff’s music, one might say that the implied history of each piece, the fact of its composition, its notation, its interpretation and performance, is elevated to the point where...

Articles August 29 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Unexpected Song

You can make a Broadway musical out of anything.

Articles August 27 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Style Points

Looking around, listening around, culture is as stylistically non-hegemonic as I’ve ever experienced. But parallel to that is a kind of greater semiotic compartmentalization: the vast majority of cultural artifacts...

Listen August 5 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Sounds Heard: The Things We Did [This] Summer

A wide-ranging Boston summer playlist featuring tracks from Pulitzer Prize Fighter, the Boston Modern Orchestra Project, Mehmet Ali Sanlıkol, Neil Cicierega, and the Boston Symphony Chamber Players.

Headlines July 28 2014 | By Matthew Guerrieri
Tanglewood: Sessions and Lessons on Successful Composition

Not being exactly what one wants to hear seems like a pretty thin rationale for judging whether a piece of music succeeds or doesn’t.