John Zielinski photo

John Zielinski

composer - saxophone - flute - synth - voice


Over the years I’ve written pieces that have appeared in various publications and blogs. Here are a few to amuse you.

On Music Education

This piece appeared in the music trade paper Billboard back in September of 1991 under the headline Labels Should Raise Their Sights; MUSIC EDUCATION NEEDS NEW ATTITUDE. That was their title, not mine. I wrote it as a response to a piece by the guy who was the president of NARAS (the Grammy people) back then.

The Technophobic Composer

This piece was written in 1992 for a magazine for composers that folded before the article was published. While music technology – and technology in general – have changed significantly in the decades since then, many of the ideas set forth then are still applicable now.

In Search of the Lost Chord

This piece first appeared in Central Standard Time. It was a coincidence that the publication date was the anniversary of my birth. I’ve retired from the ordinary work world since then. I’m still making music.

Bits and Pieces

First showing up in Central Standard Time, this was published in January of 2020. That was almost exactly one year before the insurrection in Washington, DC and the unsubstantiated claims that the presidential election had been stolen through (among other tactics) manipulation of electronic voting machines. Little did I know what was to come when I wrote, “In some cases (such as electronic voting machines that have no physical audit trail that can be consulted to verify accuracy) the potential consequences are dire.” 

I Know What I Like (and I Like What I Know)

Have you ever considered why you like the things that you like?

This was published in June of 2019 in Central Standard Time. In the days since the pandemic of 2020 started many people have been stuck at home and binging on electronic media. Not surprisingly (to me), a number of those people have expressed increasing dissatisfaction with what's been pumped out. Perhaps this explains it. 

Home for the Holidays?

This first saw the light of day in the December, 2018 installment of Central Standard Time. Sadly, the stereotypes mentioned persist and people of a certain ideological bent appear determined to maintain those stereotypes in perpetuity. Also sad is that due to the COVID-19 pandemic the church shelters are temporarily closed. 

“Never” Is a Really Long Time

I wrote this piece in January of 2019. The ideas that it presents, though, have rumbled around in my head for decades. The folks at Central Standard Time made it available to their audience. Now, I share it with you.

It’s the Top 10 Countdown!

There are about 7.7 billion people riding together on this rock that we call Earth as it flies through space. We’re quite literally all in it together. The narrower and more provincial one’s view and opinions, the less likely that person is to look at and contribute to the common good. If you say, “So what?” then you may be surprised when someone or something from outside your purview comes along and radically changes things. Then again, in 50, 100, 1,000 or 1 million years that thing probably won’t even make a Top 10 list.

Throw the Bums Out – Or Don’t

I wrote this back in October of 2014 for an e-zine titled The Chicago Progressive. Since then the exact numbers have changed, but the essentials pointed out haven’t. While there are so many who don’t vote, but who do whine, there’s a small group who see the opportunity to press their agenda by getting their candidates seated.