John Cage, whose pieces dazzled and confounded audiences for six decades, hardly seems the easiest of subjects for the biographer, but this is a well-researched, coherent, quite readable account of the composer and his work. What comes across is a man who was ferociously driven to create music and to promote it to those who could most effectively advance it. Cage was an iconoclast, yet he developed relationships—often symbiotic—with some of the iconic artists of the past century, including Arnold Schoenberg, Jasper Johns, Marcel Duchamp, Buckminster Fuller, Pierre Boulez, Robert Rauschenberg, and longtime companion Merce Cunningham. What also comes across is a humanity and openness that served Cage well in his personal life and his work, personified in his advice to young percussion student Cunningham: “You were playing everything absolutely perfectly. Now go a little further and make a few mistakes.” --Alan Moores
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
“Begin Again is a much more nuanced picture of Cage’s personal life than has currently been available . . . What emerges most powerfully is Cage’s enormous capacity for work, together with his exceptional self-discipline as an artist and his willingness to approach every new challenge with a ‘beginner’s mind.’ For this alone it is a book worthy of being read by anyone, young or old, who is faced with the daunting task of a new creative beginning.” —John Adams, New York Times Book Review
“The life of Cage is meticulously told.” —New Yorker
“Not just an exemplary biography, but a significant contribution to the cultural history of American music.”—Kirkus, starred review