Henry Cowell

Author: Joel Sachs
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0190227923
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Joel Sachs offers the first complete biography of one of the most influential figures in twentieth-century American music. Henry Cowell, a major musical innovator of the first half of the century, left a rich body of compositions spanning a wide range of styles. But as Sachs shows, Cowell's legacy extends far beyond his music. He worked tirelessly to create organizations such as the highly influential New Music Quarterly, New Music Recordings, and the Pan-American Association of Composers, through which great talents like Ruth Crawford Seeger and Charles Ives first became known in the US and abroad. As one of the first Western advocates for World Music, he used lectures, articles, and recordings to bring other musical cultures to myriad listeners and students including John Cage and Lou Harrison, who attributed their life work to Cowell's influence. Finally, Sachs describes the tragedy of Cowell's life, being sentenced to fifteen years in San Quentin -- of which he served four -- after pleading guilty to a morals charge that even the prosecutor felt was trivial. Providing a wealth of insight into Cowell's ideas and philosophy, Joel Sachs lays out a much-needed perspective on one of the giants of twentieth-century American music.

The Wind Band Music of Henry Cowell

Author: Jeremy S. Brown
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1351239244
Format: PDF, ePub
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The Wind Band Music of Henry Cowell studies the compositions for wind band by twentieth-century composer Henry Cowell, a significant and prolific figure in American fine art music from 1914-1965. The composer is noteworthy and controversial because of his radical early works, his interest in non-Western musics, and his retrogressive mature style—along with notoriety for his imprisonment in San Quentin on a morals charge. Eleven chapters are organized both topically and chronologically. An introduction, conclusion, series of eight appendices, bibliography, and discography complete this comprehensive study, along with an audio playlist of representative works, hosted on the CMS website.

Henry Cowell

Author: Joel Sachs
Publisher: OUP USA
ISBN: 0195108957
Format: PDF, Kindle
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Henry Cowell: A Man Made of Music is the first complete biography of one of the most innovative figures in twentieth-century American music. It explores in detail the complexities and impact of his life, work, and teachings.

New Musical Resources

Author: Henry Cowell
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521499743
Format: PDF, ePub, Mobi
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Since its original publication in 1930, Henry Cowell's New Musical Resources has become recognized as one of the few seminal technical studies to be written by a twentieth-century composer. In 1971, Virgil Thomson hailed it as "a classic." For this new edition, David Nicholls has provided an explanatory essay and annotations to Cowell's text. The essay traces the sources for the book and attempts to place Cowell's theories in the broader context of musical modernism.

Grainger the Modernist

Author: Suzanne Robinson
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1317125010
Format: PDF, Docs
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Unaccountably, Percy Grainger has remained on the margins of both American music history and twentieth-century modernism. This volume reveals the well-known composer of popular gems to be a self-described ’hyper-modernist’ who composed works of uncompromising dissonance, challenged the conventions of folk song collection and adaptation, re-visioned the modern orchestra, experimented with ’ego-less’ composition and designed electronic machines intended to supersede human application. Grainger was far from being a self-sufficient maverick working in isolation. Through contact with innovators such as Ferrucio Busoni, Léon Theremin and Henry Cowell; promotion of the music of modern French and Spanish schools; appreciation of vernacular, jazz and folk musics; as well as with the study and transcription of non-Western music; he contested received ideas and proposed many radical new approaches. By reappraising Grainger’s social and historical connectedness and exploring the variety of aspects of modernity seen in his activities in the British, American and Australian contexts, the authors create a profile of a composer, propagandist and visionary whose modernist aesthetic paralleled that of the most advanced composers of his day, and, in some cases, anticipated their practical experiments.

The Music of Conlon Nancarrow

Author: Kyle Gann
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 0521028078
Format: PDF, Mobi
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Conlon Nancarrow has written the most rhythmically complex music the world has ever known, so complex that it can only be realized on a mechanical player piano. Yet Nancarrow's whirlwinds of notes, sometimes as many as eighty per second, are jazzy and infectiously joyous. The music he composed in almost complete isolation from 1940 on has only recently achieved international fame, and this is the first book to cover in detail Nancarrow's life and compositional achievements. The book includes analysis of sixty-five works and previously unpublished biographical information.

Making Music Modern

Author: Carol J. Oja
Publisher: Oxford University Press on Demand
ISBN: 0195162579
Format: PDF, ePub
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New York City witnessed a dazzling burst of creativity in the 1920s. In this pathbreaking study, Carol J. Oja explores this artistic renaissance from the perspective of composers of classical and modern music, who along with writers, painters, and jazz musicians, were at the heart of early modernism in America. She also illustrates how the aesthetic attitudes and institutional structures from the 1920s left a deep imprint on the arts over the 20th century. Aaron Copland, George Gershwin, Ruth Crawford Seeger, Virgil Thomson, William Grant Still, Edgar Varèse, Henry Cowell, Leo Ornstein, Marion Bauer, George Antheil-these were the leaders of a talented new generation of American composers whose efforts made New York City the center of new music in the country. They founded composer societies--such as the International Composers' Guild, the League of Composers, the Pan American Association, and the Copland-Sessions Concerts--to promote the performance of their music, and they nimbly negotiated cultural boundaries, aiming for recognition in Western Europe as much as at home. They showed exceptional skill at marketing their work. Drawing on extensive archival material--including interviews, correspondence, popular periodicals, and little-known music manuscripts--Oja provides a new perspective on the period and a compelling collective portrait of the figures, puncturing many longstanding myths. American composers active in New York during the 1920s are explored in relation to the "Machine Age" and American Dada; the impact of spirituality on American dissonance; the crucial, behind-the-scenes role of women as patrons and promoters of modernist music; cross-currents between jazz and concert music; the critical reception of modernist music (especially in the writings of Carl Van Vechten and Paul Rosenfeld); and the international impulse behind neoclassicism. The book also examines the persistent biases of the time, particularly anti-Semitisim, gender stereotyping, and longstanding racial attitudes.

Nicolas Nabokov

Author: Vincent Giroud
Publisher: Oxford University Press
ISBN: 0199399913
Format: PDF, ePub
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Composer, cultural diplomat, and man about town, Nicolas Nabokov (1903-78) counted among his intimate friends everyone from Igor Stravinsky to George Kennan. While today he is overshadowed by his more famous cousin Vladimir, Nicolas Nabokov was during his lifetime an outstanding and far-sighted player in international cultural exchanges during the Cold War and admired by some of the most distinguished minds of his century for his political acumen and his talents as a composer. This first-ever biography of Nabokov follows the fascinating stages of his life: a privileged childhood before the Revolution; the beginnings of a promising musical career launched under the aegis of Diaghilev; his involvement in anti-Stalinist causes in the first years of the Cold War; his participation in the Congress for Cultural Freedom; his role as cultural advisor to the Mayor of Berlin and director of the Berlin Festival in the early 1960s; his American academic and musical career in the late 1960s and 1970s. Nabokov is unique not only in that he was involved on a high level in international cultural politics, but also in that his life intersected at all times with a vast array of people within - and also well beyond - the confines of classical music. Drawing on a vast array of primary sources, Vincent Giroud's biography opens a window into history for readers interested in twentieth-century music, Russian emigration, and the Cold War, particularly in its cultural aspects. Musicians and musicologists interested in Nabokov as a composer, or in twentieth century Russian composers in general, will find in this book information not available anywhere else.

Early Music Printing in German Speaking Lands

Author: Andrea Lindmayr-Brandl
Publisher: Routledge
ISBN: 1315281430
Format: PDF, ePub
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The first century of music printing in Germany had its own internal dynamics, affected by political and social events such as the Reformation. Yet it also had an international dimension: German printers set up shops all around Europe, taking materials and techniques with them, or exporting necessary materials such as type. For the first time, this collection brings together the different strands that define the German music printing landscape from the late fifteenth to the late sixteenth century. From the earliest developments in music printing and publishing, to printing techniques and solutions, the commerce of music printing, and intellectual history, the chapters outline broad trends in the production of different genres of printed books and examine the work of individual printers. The book draws upon the rich information gathered for the online database Catalogue of early German printed music / Verzeichnis deutscher Musikfrühdrucke (vdm), the first systematic descriptive catalogue of music printed in the German-speaking lands between c. 1470 and 1540, allowing precise conclusions about the material production of these printed musical sources. The result is a highly original and varied picture of the beginnings of music printing in a geographical region that, until now, has been somewhat neglected.