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A Family Affair

During his lifetime, people thought of J.S.Bach as just an ordinary working musician. Today Bach is seen as one of the greatest geniuses in music history. He wrote all kinds of music for all kinds of instruments. Some of his music is for pipe organ, harpsichord, orchestra, choirs and for many different instrumental combinations.

He came from a long line of composers and musicians, in fact by the time Bach was born there had been over 300 years of Bach musicians.

If this were your family that would mean your family line started as musicians when J.S. Bach was alive and everyone in your family tree would be a musician. Imagine the music and dancing when everyone got together.

Bach worked for a Duke, then for a Prince and finally in the Church. In his spare time he conducted a music group who performed at local coffee houses. J.S. Bach was addicted to coffee and sources say he drank up to 30 cups a day. He even wrote a song about a lady attempting to overcome her addiction to the beverage.

His first wife died while he was away on tour. The great composers toured just like pop groups do today.

His second wife was called Anna-Magdalena, she had a note book of songs that she played. Some were written by her husband, Johann, some by other composers like Christian Petzold and some by her step son Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach.

The Musette, in the performance section of level one, is based on a dance by the same name. The composer is unknown but it is attributed to, or thought to be, written by, C.P.E. Bach.


Johann Sebastian Bach and his sons Carl Philipp Emanuel, Johann Christian, Wilhelm Friedemann, and Johann Christoph Friedrich


  • J.S. Bach was born in 1685

  • W.F. Bach was born in 1710

  • C.P.E. Bach was born in 1714

  • J.C.F BAch was born in 1732

  • J.C. Bach was born in 1735

  • J.S. Bach died in 1750

  • C.P.E. Bach died in 1760

  • Beethoven was born in 1770

  • Carl Czerny was born in in 1791

To help see this is perspective;

  • The piano was invented in 1709

  • The first musical was staged in New York in 1750

  • Australia was discovered in 1788

  • Bicycles were invented in 1791

  • The first train ran in 1804

Download the Story

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Listening Journal

Listen and Complete the Worksheet below

Listening Journal Worksheet

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Junior Listening Journal Worksheet

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This is the level one version


Learn to play this by booking a piano lesson with Stalybridge Music Academy.

Lessons after 2pm or at Weekends

Lessons for those born before 1958

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