Richy Wagner did get away occasionally from doh-me-soh, which was more than some others did. He had more or less of a good brain for technical progress, but he seems to put it to such weak uses - exulting, like a nice lady’s purple silk dress, in fake nobility and heroism, but afraid to jump in a mill pond and be a hero. He liked instead to dress up in purple and sing about heroism - (a woman posing as a man.)
Music has been, to too large an extent, an emasculated art - and Wagner did his part to keep it so. What masculation he has in it, is make-believe. Even today probably about 83% of the so-called best musical programs - that is the large city symphony orchestras, of educational institutions, and of the opera - lean more toward molly-coddle than the rough way up the mountain. And 98% of all radio music is worse than molly-coddle - it’s the one-syllable gossip for the soft-ears-and-stomachs, easy for their bodies, and it is fundamentally art prostituted for commercialism.
Charles Ives, Memos