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Conversations with Glenn Gould

4.2 out of 5 stars 4 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0226116235
ISBN-10: 0226116239
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Editorial Reviews

Review

"This book reminds us once again that however eccentric [Gould] may have been, he was not merely so. Gould's lively and erudite voice, revived here, convinced us that even at his most far-fetched, his ideas were fully thought out and firmly related to the sensible practicalities of his craft." - Eva Hoffman, New York Times"

About the Author

Jonathan Cott is a contributing editor at Rolling Stone and has written for the New York Times and the New Yorker. He is the author of the forthcoming On the Sea of Memory, a collection of poems, a critical biography of Bob Dylan, a number of collections of interviews—including Visions and Voices—and a collection of writing on music, Back to a Shadow in the Night: Music Writings and Interviews 1968-1991. He is the editor of Studs Terkel's forthcoming book And They All Sang, a collection of Terkel's interviews with musical personalities.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: University Of Chicago Press (November 15, 2005)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226116239
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226116235
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.6 x 8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #830,170 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This slim volume greatly exceeded my expectations. I was expecting an interesting but essentially non-essential book to be read and then largely placed aside or forgotten. To my pleasant surprise, however, the book is so densely packed with Gould's philosophy, wit, and ideas that it ranks among his better records. I suspect that, like a good recording, I will return to this from time to time, not only to illuminate his musical ouevre but to re-examine the original thoughts it contains.

The book contains two interviews conducted over the phone by music journalist Jonathan Cott. Cott is a solid interviewer, but sometimes can't keep up with Gould, who apparently talks off the cuff with a complexity most of us would be glad to achieve in writing and few could hope to match in terms of density and erudition. As a bonus, the book contains Gould's side of the story regarding his much-recounted meeting with conductor George Szell, who famously remarked about Gould, "That nut's a genius."

I would recommend this book absolutely to anyone with more than a passing acquintance with Gould's unique music.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I have been fascinated with Glenn Gould for a number of years, so to find anything about him or his life is very interesting. I enoyed this book very much and recommend it to anyone who likes to read about extraordinary people.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
A great little book offering a wild splash of the supremely confident thought of one of the great artists of the 20th century. I know a lot of Gould, and Cott's engaging interview brings new material forward, framing a distinct portrait of Gould's indisputable gifts. One of the best aspects of the interviews (for those who appreciate Gould's humor) is Gould's plucky references to the Watergate hearings (which were being telecast during the time span of the interviews included), managing an elfish weaving of John Dean testimony into a discussion about Orlando Gibbons, among other examples. Gould's divine quixotic humor quickens everything, and Cott wisely lets it play. The pace of the book is admirable. While question and answer interview formats can wear, here the query is intelligent, even knowing, and Gould's characteristic replies gather and converge to form, as expected, a seamless and ever-inspired compendium of vital analysis of and love for the art of music. Nothing rivals Gould's mystical penetration of his art. Essential for the Gould-engaged.
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By Laura on September 18, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Getting to know him, more complex than could be predicted.
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