Composer of the Month: Johann Pachelbel

Composer of the Month_ Johann Pachelbel.jpg

Welcome back to our Composer of the Month series here at The California Conservatory of Music! With two music school locations in the Bay Area, we’re constantly working to improve our techniques as we foster a love for music within the next generation. Whether it’s our hard-working music teachers in Santa Clara or our awesome team of musicians at our Redwood City location, our goal is to make music possible for every individual who wants to learn it. There is no one who is unable to learn an instrument and we’re passionate about providing a place where music students of all ages can gain confidence in their musical craft, and grow their love and passion for music. As music instructors, we make it our business to never stop learning. Because we believe that the best teachers are lifelong students, you’ll never come across a California Conservatory of Music teacher who is done learning! If you’re ready to give music lessons a try, contact our Bay Area music school today!

In remaining true to our Composer of the Month series, we’re going to feature Johann Pachelbel for the month of September. Though he’s best known for his Canon in D, or often called the “Pachelbel Canon,” Johann Pachelbel, one of the last middle Baroque composers, did so much more than compose this elegant, well-known song that’s often played at weddings and fancy events. Let’s discuss more about his life and many other accomplishments.

Early Life

Johann Pachelbel was born in 1653 in Nuremberg, Germany in late August to a middle-class family. During his early childhood, Johann started taking music lessons from Heinrich Schwemmer, who later became the cantor of St. Sebaldus Church, and Georg Casper Wecher, who worked as an organist at the same church. In addition to these influential teachers, Pachelbel was also instructed by Kaspar Prentz, and it was through him that Johann developed a deeper love for contemporary Italian music and music of the Catholic church.

Musical Career

In 1677, Johann Pachelbel moved to Eisenach, where he worked as a court organist. It was there that he became acquainted with the Bach family. Over the next few years, he’d move from one organist position to the next, all the while, composing beautiful work for church services. It was also during these years that he married and had seven children.

Famous Works

During his lifetime, Pachelbel was best known as a composer of organ music, and he also wrote plenty of vocal pieces. There are at least a hundred of those works that survive today. The “Pachelbel Canon,” which is a piece of chamber music written for three violins, a basso continuo, and a gigue in the same key, has definitely become one of his most well-known pieces and helped to make his name better known throughout the musical world.

Pachelbel would never have found the musical success that he did had it not been for his teachers and the musicians who invested in him. If you’re ready to talk to our Bay Area music school about music lessons, it’s time to contact us at the California Conservatory of Music. We have violin lessons, cello lessons, piano lessons, guitar lessons, and so much more! Reach out to us today.