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This music speaks for itself. So any attempt at characterization should be hedged with a warning that it might deflect the listener’s attention. The very fact of the attempt supposes the pre eminence of ‘character’. In Epilogue , one of his Essays Before A Sonata, Charles Ives made a strong case for what he called ‘substance.’ Substance, he wrote, “has something to do with character.” But what of sheer beauty? For Ives, ‘beauty’ was a problematical concept: “We like the beautiful and don’t like the ugly: therefore, what we like is beautiful, and what we don’t like is ugly - and hence we are glad the beautiful is not ugly, for if it were we would like something we don’t like. So having unsettled what beauty is, let us go on.” Ives contrasted ‘substance’ with ‘manner’ which “breeds a cussed cleverness only to be clever (a satellite of super industrialism) and perhaps to be witty in the bargain - not the wit in mother wit, but a kind of indoor, artificial, mental arrangement of things quickly put together which have to be learned and studied