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Henry Cowell: A Man Made of Music Hardcover – July 11, 2012
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"Sachs leaves us thinking of Cowell as not just a great American musician but a
great American, period." --Booklist
"Gorgeously written...Sachs sets a furious narrative tempo from the get-go, each page seemingly revealing a nugget of information that history was hitherto reluctant to divulge...This man made of music deserves this first biography and a revival too; let's hope Sach's book seals the deal." --Gramophone
"A magisterial biography...Essential." --Choice
"A more complete picture of these years than we could have hoped for. Henry Cowell is a compelling read, but it also offers a remarkable contribution to studies of American musical culture in the twentieth century...Sachs has offered both a captivating biography for the general reader interested in American music and an excellently documented version of the composer's life in which even a dedicated Cowell scholar is sure to find something new and of interest." --ARSC Journal
"Offers a rich discourse not only on the life of Henry Cowell (1897-1965), but also a
commentary on the many prolific figures close to him...Joel Sachs has not only deftly navigated through an extraordinary amount of source material but also delivered a riveting
account of Cowell the musician. This book will provide a rich resource for anyone with
an interest in American music, ethnomusicology, music and politics, and music and
society in the first half of the twentieth century. Henry Cowell: A Man Made of Music is
an extraordinary contribution to the field." --Notes
"An expert sleuth, Sachs is able to tease a trustworthy narrative out of conflicting reports, correcting, corroborating, and expanding upon the account of events given by both Henry and Sidney Robertson Cowell, his wife...This careful approach is fully displayed in Sachs's treatment of Cowell's arrest, jail term, pardon, and unusual marriage...Joel Sachs is to be commended for his detailed attention to the wide variety of documents and sources in the Cowell Collection at the New York Public Library and elsewhere, a patient and major undertaking of several decades...With Sachs's monumental new biography we can now examine all facets of Cowell's entire life and career. His book is a major contribution to U.S. musical scholarship and points scholars of early twentieth-century experimental music in new directions."--Journal of the Society for American Music
About the Author
Joel Sachs is Professor of Music History, Chamber Music, and New Music Performance at The Juilliard School, where he conducts the New Juilliard Ensemble.
Top Customer Reviews
Should be required reading for anyone interested in the cultural history of the United States in the first half of the 20th Century.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
This is an important book on the life of a little understood American pioneer inventor/composer.
I remember meeting Joel Sachs at the Juilliard school where he was championing... Read more
A good biography can be as engrossing as any fiction and now I add Joel Sachs's "Henry Cowell: A Man Made of Music" to my short list of those that in and of themselves make for a... Read morePublished on November 27, 2012 by victoria
This is a thorough, sympathetic and detailed (over 500 pp.) biography of one of America's most important musicians and composers. Read morePublished on October 27, 2012 by Kuru