Arcana has ratings and 12 reviews. Gåry! said: It’s meticulous, it’s dry, it brought a tear to my eye. These texts are for the seriously deranged opp. ARCANA edited by John Zorn. ISBN: paper: $ Preface by John Zorn READ >> Press: comments by Steve Reich and Meridith Monk READ >>. Results 1 – 30 of 53 Arcana by Zorn, John and a great selection of related books, art and collectibles available now at

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Rather than attempting to distill or define musician’s work, ARCANA illuminates it with personal vision and experience. Andrew Anderson rated it really liked it Nov 12, I am usually all for diversity, but you get the impression that some of these people would have never even of picked up a pen if Zorn hadn’t persuaded them to do it, which is a shame because some of the bits in here are really interesting.

Arcana: Musicians on Music

Luke Page rated it it was amazing Jan 17, Mark Gallay rated it it was amazing Oct 22, Sam Gill rated it it was amazing Jul 18, Some of these essays are not technically well written nor do they try to be.

Answering a need for critical attention towards experimental and avant-garde music, Arcana is a ground-breaking work–as far-ranging and dynamic as the current generation of musicians. Want to Read Currently Reading Read. Some musicians write really well and some really don’t. Masta Lee rated it liked it Oct 23, New Bestsellers Trade Academic D. It’s meticulous, it’s dry, it brought a tear to my eye. Mar 19, Charlie rated it liked it.

Want to Read saving…. For centuries musicians have tapped into mysticism, magic and alchemy, embracing ritual, spell, incantation and prayer, and experimenting with esoteric approaches to harmony, pitch and vibration.


Some pages are actual hand-written scores from the musicians involved in the book, showing examples of their non-conformist approach to composing. Some essays I’d read over and over again, get inspired by, take something from. I had very different expectations for this book, and I had for years.

Musicians on Music by John Zorn Editor. That said, he is a genius and a major influence on a diverse array of musicians from classical, through to metal. Jul 07, John marked it as to-read Shelves: His compositions rank amongst the most profound musical experiences I have ever had. This combination of insight, theoretical arguments, pretentiousness, and humor make Arcana a representative cross-section of the scene it sets out to define. Jun 18, David Scott rated it really liked it Shelves: Feb 12, Tristan rated it really liked it.

Sep 24, Adam rated it liked it. Give it a go if you want a sneak peek into the madness that is the creation of music and be ready for a ride, be ready to throw out your preconceptions of what is to be a musician and what music is. Distributed Art Publishers, Inc. Christopher Delamater rated it it was amazing Apr 30, Now in its fourth installment, with a fifth in preparation, John Zorn’s acclaimed Arcana series provides insight into the work and methodologies of some of the most creative musical minds of our time.

Musicians on Musicavant-garde composer and saxophone player John Zorn wrote: Thanks for telling us about the problem. Preview — Arcana by John Zorn.

Feb 12, Phil rated it liked it.

Arcana: Musicians on Music by John Zorn

The writings vary wildly in style and quality. Wide variety of stuff here. One of the most useful parts of the book is the Recommended Listening section at the end. Anverlyb rated it liked it Oct 21, Definitely for musical prodigies stricken with chronic individualism.

I’m reading them all over again, starting with this one and purchasing the ones that I don’t have yet I didn’t realize how quickly John Zorn started publishing these texts after the third one came out.


These texts are for the seriously deranged opponent of conformity. The essays work at different purposes. I was expecting an essay or two by John Zorn, rather than a brief extremely introduction and a list of images. His ability to blur genre lines, and also his contribution to each genre is unparalleled in John Zorn is not that well known by your average music listener.

His ability to blur genre lines, and also his contribution to each genre is unparalleled in my opinion, and anyone truly passionate about music should take the long and winding road through the Tzadik catalogue. Musicians on Music Edited by John Zorn. Definitely contains some worthwhile gems, but Zorn’s seemingly hands-off editing approach has resulted in a pretty scattershot collection.

Published January 2nd by “Granary Books” first published July 1st Jan 10, Mike rated it really liked it Shelves: Refresh and try again. For example, Scott Johnson has a long essay on aesthetics and Bill Frisell shows how he uses open strings on the guitar to create resonant melodies. I would call the experience of reading these essays a re-education; by giving these eclectic individuals an opportunity to elucidate what music means to them, John Zorn has provided us with a link to the unknown, the juices that make musicians create.

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up. For reproduction permissions, contact the copyright holders. This book is to lite reading what nuclear war is to Ghandi. Mar 27, Geoffrey Olsen rated it it was amazing.