John Zorn is one of the most prolific and active American composers/performers working today. He has been a fixture of New York's "Downtown Scene" since the mid-70s as a tireless proponent of avant-garde and experimental music. Despite the acclaim and respect he has achieved in America and abroad, very little attention has been paid to Zorn by musicologists or music theorists. Author John Brackett suggests that the reason for the relative paucity of writing on Zorn's music and musical thought has to do with the difficulties and challenges they present both for listeners and scholars. Zorn's musical language--an amalgam of seemingly incongruous techniques, sounds, styles, and genres--creates complex and sometimes confusing listening experiences that are difficult to categorize in terms of overarching thematic or narrative design. Brackett offers a number of perspectives for understanding Zorn's music and musical practices, while challenging certain assumptions that limit the ways in which contemporary music is typically addressed.
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"A historically situated set of analyses is just what John Zorn deserves as a major artist of our time. The present volume will be important in furthering an understanding of his work." --George Lewis, Columbia UniversityAbout the Author:
John Brackett lives in Chapel Hill, North Carolina.
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