One of the most profoundly inspired and
masterful composers in history, Johann
Sebastian Bach was born into a musical family
in Eisenach, Thuringia - until recently part
of East Germany. His father, Johann Ambrosius
Bach, was a talented violinist, and taught
his son the basic skills of string-playing;
another relation, the organist at Eisenach's
most important church, instructed the young
boy on the organ.
In 1695, Johann Sebastian was orphaned; he
went to live with his older brother, Johann
Christoph, in Ohrdruf. Johann Christoph was aIt's a good report Good Job, and Great attention to detail!
professional organist, and continued his
younger brother's education on that
instrument, as well as on the harpsichord.
After several years in this arrangement,
Johann Sebastian won a scholarship to study
in Luneberg, Northern Germany, and so left
his brother's tutelage.
A master of several instruments while still
in his teens, Johann Sebastian first found
employment at the age of 18 as a 'lackey and
violinist' in a court orchestra in Weimar;
soon after, he took the job of organist at a
church in Arnstadt.
Here, as in later posts,
his perfectionist tendencies and high
expectations of other musicians - for
example, the church choir - rubbed his
colleagues the wrong way, and he was
embroiled in a number of hot disputes during
his short tenure. In 1707, at the age of 22,
Bach became fed up with the lousy musical
standards of Arnstadt (and the working
conditions) and moved on to another organist
job, this time at the St. Blasius Church in
Muhlhausen. The same year, he married his
cousin Maria Barbara Bach.
Again caught up in a running conflict between
factions of his church, Bach fled to Weimar
after one year in Muhlhausen. In Weimar, he
assumed the post of organist...