1. As a young boy, Bach had a beautiful soprano singing voice, which helped secure him a spot at the boy’s school in Lü When his voice changed, he switched his focus to playing violin and harpsichord.
  2. Bach was an orphan by the age of 10. His older brother Johann Christoph took him in.
  3. In 1705, Bach walked 200 miles from Arnstadt to Lübeck to hear organist Dietrich Buxtehude play. He was only granted four weeks leave from his position as organist in Arnstadt but ended up taking off four months, without permission.
  4. Like many composers of his time, Bach wrote in a contrapuntal style. However, his style tended to be denser than that of his contemporaries and explored more dissonant harmonies.
  5. Bach was the father of 20 children. He was married twice. He and his first wife, Maria Barbara, had seven children. He had thirteen children with his second wife, Anna Magdalena. Four children from his first marriage and six from his second marriage survived to adulthood. Of his six sons, only one didn’t become a professional musician.