I started reading Sound within Sound: Radical Composers of the Twentieth Century and the first subject, Mexican composer Julián Carrillo, is a welcome and inspiring addition to my listening. His primary contribution is in the area of microtonal composition,1 but the author, Kate Molleson, delights in Carrillo’s self-mythologizing, and places it in equal importance to Carrillo’s artistry. If he was neglected, she says, it wasn’t for lack of trying. He was a real character, prone to revision and even fictionalizing his own history, giving himself credit for developments in composition and music theory that could not have been his, and it’s not entirely clear that anyone was even reading these accounts. He was a prolific self-publisher and proselytizer, a passionate tooter of his own horn. What matters most now, of course, is his music. Here’s the search results from Apple Music. It seems to be a reasonable survey of his work, but like all such things, there is probably more to be found elsewhere.
🎵 Listening to On Giacometti, by Hania Rani
- An area of musical praxis that sort of eludes me. I imagine that this is due in part to my being mostly auto-didactic, musically, speaking, so that Carrillo’s music, for example, sounds unusual to me but not in a way I can articulate. More study, no doubt, to follow. ↩