- German composer, Johann Sebastian Bach was born on March 21, 1685.
- Bach was born in Eisenach, Germany.
- Music as we know it today began with Johann Sebastian Bach.
- Bach taught many of his 20 children to play musical instruments. He composed the Little Book for the Keyboard for his nine-year-old son, William Friedemann.
- Bach ranks as one of the world's greatest composers. Most of his music was written to be played or sung in churches.
- Many of Bach relatives were musical. Once each year the Bachs held what they called "family day." For the whole day they all sang, danced, and played instruments.
- Before Johann was ten years oíd his parents died, and he went to live with an older brother.
- Once his brother refused to let him use a big book of difficult music. Johann then took the book secretly and copied all the music by moonlight. The strain on his eyes may help account for his blindness towards the end of his life.
- Bach began to earn his living when he was 15. He sang in a church choir. Before long he was given a position as organist. He became the greatest organist who had ever lived.
- In 1707 Johann married his second cousin, Maria Barbara Bach. She bore him seven children, four of whom survived him.
- After his first wife died, Bach married Anna Magdalena, they had thirteen children, only six of whom survived him.
- In Bach's time he was famous as an organist, not as a composer.
- It was not until 1829, almost 80 years after his death, when Mendelssohn led a performance of the St. Matthew Passion, that Bach's music was accorded the recognition it deserved.
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