The Well-Tempered Ear

Classical music: The Well-Tempered Ear turns 3 years old today. Let me know what you of the blog and what you think of upcoming changes. | August 20, 2012

By Jacob Stockinger

Today, Aug, 20, 2012 marks the third anniversary of The Well-Tempered Ear.

In that time, the blog has surpassed more than 500,00o hits with more than 1,100 postings, more than 500 subscribers and more than 3,000 comments. I think that qualifies as a success, don’t you?

Here is a link to the very first post, back on Aug. 20, 2009, to explain some of the background.

You can use the search engine on the home page or web site to find all sorts of topics by performer, composer, title, subject or writer’s name. I am anxious to hear what you think of the blog and any suggestions you have about how to make it better.

BUT: I also have some news to announce.

Because of the time that writing the daily blog takes up, I will be cutting back on it. I remember reading somewhere that the average life of a blog is 2 or 3 days because it involves much more work than the writer initially imagined.

An I have found frrm my own experience of researching and writing, finding words and photos, that that is indeed true.

So for various reasons, I will be cutting back.

That will mean fewer posts and not daily posts,

That will mean shorter posts.

That will mean more guest writers.

That will mean more aggregating – the Internet term for finding and linking to other important stories or blog postings.

I do not expect or want to close the blog down completely. But various projects and circumstances dictate that some kind fo accommodation be made to reality.

I hope that you – faithful readers who have made the blog such an unexpected success – will continue to follow it.

I would like to know your favorite blogs over the past three years.

And I am open to suggestion for future blog posts, which you can leave in the COMMENT section.

Thank you, all, for your help and loyalty. Happy Birthday to all of us!

For the moment,

The Ear



  1. Wow, is the “Ear” ringing? It should be. I second, third… all the glowing and well-deserved praise. You said you started this blog to fill a void. Now, it’s indispensable, and we are hooked. But, we’ll gladly adjust to your new pace. Thank you and Happy Birthday. LC

    Comment by LC — August 31, 2012 @ 8:37 pm

    • Thank you so much, Linda, for the vote of confidence and the generous praise.
      I will still try to be a good and necessary read as much as time and other activities allow.
      Be well.

      Comment by welltemperedear — September 1, 2012 @ 7:58 am

  2. Jake- thanks for everything you do for all of us in Madison. I read your blog daily and really enjoy it. I like your coverage of the local scene as well as your commentary and news about musical happenings elsewhere. I’ll be grateful for whatever you chose to do. And, a very personal thanks for everything you have done to get the word out about the Middleton Community Orchestra, now starting it’s third year with a roster of 92 players ready to perform 4 movements of the The Planets in November. Your blog has been a huge help to us!

    Comment by Mindy Taranto — August 27, 2012 @ 11:52 am

  3. Thanks so much for all you have done to keep Madisonians in touch with developments in music. I have especially appreciated your blogs about local ensembles and concerts. It has baffled me how you have been able to be so productive, so it’s not surprising that you’re cutting back. I hope you will focus your efforts on informing us about developments in the Madison music scene.

    Comment by Barbara Furstenberg — August 23, 2012 @ 10:12 am

  4. If you had been writing just what you know about music, you might have run out of material short of three years. But you are an endurance athlete. You regenerate yourself with curiosity, new learning, new topics and personalities, and new questions to pose to your readers. Like the teacher you are, you know how to keep it interesting because you hate to bore others and refuse to bore yourself. You love to make news and share scoops.

    You may think you’re cutting back but I have a feeling the difference will be small. Bravo, Jake.

    Comment by Ron McCrea — August 23, 2012 @ 8:01 am

  5. I can’t begin to imagine how much this daily blog has taken of your time and talent. Thank you for every bit of it! It is completely understandable that you are cutting back, but I’m relieved to know we will still be hearing from you on a regular basis. You contribute so much to the Madison music scene – you are my go-to source not only for what’s happening but also for its history, meaning and importance. Vive L’Ear!

    Comment by Margaret Irwin — August 22, 2012 @ 12:26 pm

  6. Happy birthday to the Ear! and congratulations on your success.

    Comment by Sandy Tabachnick — August 21, 2012 @ 3:59 pm

  7. Greetings Jake! Happy Birthday to the “WTEar”–
    and wishing you many more!

    What a great help you have been to me (and many others!) in keeping up with the Madison classical music scene. In particular, I have appreciated your interviews with many of the artists.

    Viva la musica!

    Comment by David J. Susan — August 21, 2012 @ 2:44 pm

  8. Dr. Ear, we have been so grateful for your enlightened enthusiasm, clarity and depth of purpose, and astonishingly prolific output on behalf of classical music. Your readers will appreciate continued communication in any manner you choose. Thank you and congratulations at Three!

    Comment by Anne — August 21, 2012 @ 11:17 am

  9. The Well-Tempered Ear is a gift to all of us who love to know about the musical events offered in the greater Madison area plus other articles of interest to music lovers. It is a blog I enjoy starting my day with. I will be grateful for any amount of blogs you provide us with. Your years of reviewing the arts offer a unique prospective. You give the readers a lot of background on both the artists and the music. The interviews you do with artists are also fascinating. Happy Birthday to the Well-Tempered Ear and thank you for giving so much of your time to writing these articles.

    Comment by Renee Farley — August 21, 2012 @ 7:18 am

  10. Thanks for all you’ve done. Reading your first column, I’d say you have done a good job of fulfilling the mission you laid out for yourself. You cover that which other media in Madison won’t or can’t and you do it well. You have helped new groups to find an audience with your kind words and you have helped the audience find groups that would otherwise still be obscure. As others have said, less is better than none. I’ve wondered how you kept up this schedule with a day job. (At least I think you once mentioned your day job.)

    Comment by Steve Rankin — August 20, 2012 @ 3:27 pm

  11. Jake – Happy third birthday (that would be to the blog, not to you. I think you’re a couple of years older than that:) Love the blog, appreciate the way it keeps me in touch with the classical music scene in Madison. And I surely understand the need to cut back a bit. As others have said, I will continue to enjoy whatever you have time to put together. Best wishes.

    Comment by Phil Haslanger — August 20, 2012 @ 11:32 am

  12. Dear Jake, I’ve read the blog since Day 1, and have so greatly appreciated your thoughtful commentary on past events and heads up on what’s to come. You perform such a magnificent service for the musical community – thank you! Whatever you have time to write, I will continue to read.

    Comment by Marika Fischer Hoyt — August 20, 2012 @ 11:08 am

  13. My dear Mr. Ear,

    I have so loved your blog for the past couple of years (I wasn’t in on it from Day 1). It’s the only thing I read every single day, and I’ve forwarded it on too many times to count.

    Thank you so much for all you’ve done – and will do in the future! I’ll continue to read whatever you send my way.

    With much appreciation,

    Comment by R Anderson — August 20, 2012 @ 11:02 am

  14. You have done magnificent work for music in Madison, and I second the comment made by Ann Wallace.

    Comment by Laurence Everard — August 20, 2012 @ 10:01 am

  15. Jacob,

    Your blog is one of, if not THE, best serious music site online, especially in terms of Dane county offerings. I read every post and have counted on you for which concerts I’ll attend, especially those by the Madison Symphony that are free like the annual young artists programs. I’m also particularly indebted to you for your enlightening commentary dealing with keyboard recitals, etc. Because you’re a pianist, I count on your opinions, commentaries. Even cut back, especially cut back, I’ll not miss your work. Thanks for all you do.

    Comment by Larry Retzack — August 20, 2012 @ 9:24 am

  16. […] By Jacob Stockinger Today, Aug, 20, 2012 marks the third anniversary of The Well-Tempered Ear. In that time, the blog has surpassed more than 500,00o hits with more than 1100 postings, more than 500 subscribers and …  […]

    Pingback by Classical music: The Well-Tempered Ear turns 3 years old today. Let ... | Music House | — August 20, 2012 @ 8:25 am

  17. Jake, We appreciate all the effort you have put into the blog, especially all you have done to promote our youth and their musical pursuits. Fewer blogs most definitely better than no blogs.

    Comment by Bridget Fraser — August 20, 2012 @ 8:17 am

  18. Yours is the only blog I read. I’ve told many friends that I don’t know how I navigated the classical music scene in Madison before your blog existed. I’ll be happy with it as many times a week as you have time to write. Thank you!

    Comment by Ann Wallace — August 20, 2012 @ 8:12 am

  19. The Blog is terrific and I so look forward to the announcement of musical events in Madison and the reviews/comments on performances. Once newspapers could be relied upon to keep the music narrative alive. Not now. Please keep us in touch with the local scene–your coverage is the best. Thanks for all you have done and I will look forward continued commentary–even in reduced volume.

    Comment by Faye Whitaker — August 20, 2012 @ 7:32 am

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