Feldman in all probability was crucial American composer of his technology, he interacted with the main NYC painters of his time, and it seems he’s a splendid author as effectively. His observations are to the purpose, typically with a Nassim Taleb form of sting. Right here is one bit:
Lately within the Sunday papers an article about Messiaen appeared through which an incredible advantage was fabricated from his political “disengagement.” Studying this text, we find out how deeply spiritual this composer is, how a lot he appears ahead to his holidays in Switzerland, how proud he’s of Boulez, and the way concerned he’s with hen calls. Can we are saying man is basically disengaged? His chief occupation appears to be this disengagement. There’s something curiously official in the way in which his pursuits and views are described — as if nothing might now disturb all this.
However he has nothing to fret about, that chap in Tempo. He’s going to have all of it. Pitch relationships, plus sound and likelihood thrown in. Complete consolidation. These two phrases outline the brand new academy. You’ll be able to tie all of it up within the well-known formulation, “You made a small circle and excluded me; I made a much bigger circle and included you.” A form of Jonah-and-the-whale syndrome is happening. Every thing is being chewed up en masse and for the mass…
It might appear unusual to name Boulez and Stockhausen popularizers, however that’s what they’re. They glamorized Schoenberg and Webern, now they’re glamorizing one thing else. However likelihood to them is simply one other process, one other car for brand new points of construction or of sonority unbiased of pitch group. They may have gotten this stuff from Ives or Varèse, however they went to those males with too deep prejudice, the unfairness of the equal, the colleague.
Extra books ought to have sentences like: “[Virgil] Thomson disliked me on sight, as a youth, and it’s by no means modified.”
The complete title is Give My Regards to Eighth Road: Collected Writings of Morton Feldman,” edited by B.H. Friedman.
I believe Feldman two biggest works are For John Cage, and likewise String Quartet #2, which is about 5 hours lengthy. This yr I’ve been listening to the Philip Thomas 5-CD set of Feldman’s piano music extra than simply about every other CD. It’s not the easiest Feldman, however it’s a number of the greatest Feldman to take heed to, if solely as a result of the items usually are shorter.