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3.59  ·  Rating details ·  29 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
This study explores the minimalist style of music. It details its beginnings in the music of Terry Riley and La Monte Young, focuses on its major exponents, Steve Reich and Philip Glass, and reviews its broader influences both in the USA, with the work of John Adams and Meredith Monk, and in Europe, with the work of Michael Nyman, Louis Andriessen and Arvo Part. Musical di ...more
Paperback, 239 pages
Published May 30th 1996 by Phaidon Press
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Dec 04, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: biography
This is the third or fourth book I've read in the Phaidon "20th Century Composers" series and it's also a success. They've created a series of books analyzing the work of various composers and included biography, but intended for the general reader. My only complaint with this volume is that the last two chapters feel kind of pieced together. The info in them is fine, but five composers are covered in the two chapters and it all just kind of runs together. That's a minor complaint though and I'd ...more
Jan 30, 2008 rated it liked it
A pretty good introduction to American Minimalism. My one major issue is that the more commercially successful Minimalists like Glass and Reich get way more coverage than others, most criminally LaMonte Young. I'm very aware of Young's self-conscious distance from the other folks in this book (sans Terry Riley), but a bit more on Young's tuning methods, radical conceptions of time, etc would have been cool.

Though to be fair I think the author is primarily a Glass/Reich interpreter, if I'm not mi
Dec 31, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: music
This book is a breezy, almost chatty look at the major minimalist composers, covering Terry Riley, LaMonte Young, Steve Reich, and Philip Glass, with shorter sections on John Adams, Meredith Monk, Louis Andriessen, Michael Nyman, and Arvo Part. Minimalists is a decent overview and introduction to the genre and its main proponents, however, it doesn't go beyond that. It would be a decent place to start, but there is little depth or analysis here.
Aubrey heichemer
Dec 22, 2008 rated it really liked it
San franciscian musicianship and the articulation of sound as an asthetic. This book allows for a rational look at composition in the post modern sense pretty much meaning to me free range of all the tools of composition. composers such as terri riley, la monte young, and steve reich who where bold enough to demand attention to their compositional efforts as strange as they once seemed. A great book to read when attempting to relate to the experimental efforts of 20th century composers.
Darren Murr
Oct 04, 2011 rated it really liked it
A well written but brief set of biographies on the main players in the development of minimalism. Schwarz gives the stories of each great narrative drive, esp. Reich, who the author obviously favours.
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