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THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC draws on the strengths of author Craig Wright's larger volumes--outstanding listening resources, clear writing, state-of-the-art online resources--and delivers them in a direct, conversational style that is designed to inspire a lifelong appreciation of music. In this concise book, scholar and master-teacher Wright focuses on the key concepts and works presented within a typical Music Appreciation course, avoids lengthy discussions on side topics, and includes a set of integrated digital resources that make it easy--and fun--for you to master the material. THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC is approximately 60 percent shorter than the large volume and is priced much lower than our larger texts. This chronological text discusses musical examples from each historical period, each discussed within its social context. This provides you with a sense of a piece's construction, as well as its historical and cultural meaning. THE ESSENTIAL LISTENING TO MUSIC includes a wide range of resources designed to develop listening skills and challenge you: a free "Introduction to Listening" CD, packaged with each copy of the text; Listening Exercises built into the book and online (unique to Wright's text); an optional two-CD set; streaming music and downloads; computer-enhanced Active Listening Guides; and listening quizzes for all of the music in the text. All of these are included within CourseMate, a comprehensive online learning environment.