Peter Schickele is principally a composer. For various reasons, he invented an extra, mythical son of the composer Johann Sebastian Bach, named P. D. Q. Bach, which allowed Schickele to vent all his instincts to parody everything from Handel to Gershwin and Cole Porter through the prolific pen of P. D. Q. Bach. In addition, as the 'discoverer' and tame musicologist whose obsession was this son of J.S.Bach, Schickele had free rein to first create numerous musical works, and then proceed to analyze them into the ground, first, of course, having performed them for everyone's coarse entertainment.
In the nineties, Schickele began a regular feature--principally on public radio--called Schickele Mix, which made musicology accessible to typical music-lovers, especially those whose tastes were on the broader side, because there were fewer opportunities for these folks to explore their instinctive feeling that phenomena that were attractive and interesting to them were to be found in most kinds of western music. Today, popular musicologists spring up like mushrooms, and YouTube provides a ready forum for them, but Schickele was a pioneer. The musicological connections between classical music and popular music was not the characteristic tool in Schickele's conceptual arsenal; it was rather just one approach, which was particularly powerful. I don't remember details, but in a post (forgive me for talking about Schickele Mix as if it were a blog) about The Circle of Fifths--or rather, the sequence of fifths, since the circle was rarely completed--there were a number of references to popular songs that used the sequence.
The level of musical performance on Schickele's records is exceptional, featuring numerous legitimate talents, which cross over beautifully into comedy.
For anyone who has the patience and the energy, perusing the archives of Schickele Mix is going to be extremely rewarding. If there are bootleg tapes or any sorts of recordings of these episodes--there, I used the correct word; they're not posts, they're episodes--they would make interesting listening for long, cross-country rides.
Schickele's main stream compositions are less familiar to this writer. He has written for movies and for the Walt Disney production of Fantasia 2000. One of these days, I'll get around to listening carefully to some of these works, and make an addendum to this post.Arch