2016 Pulitzer for music

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Ted Quanrud
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2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by Ted Quanrud » Mon Apr 18, 2016 11:21 pm

The 2016 Pulitzer Prize for Music has been awarded to Henry Threadgill for “In for a Penny, In for a Pound”

Mr. Threadgill, described as "the pathbreaking 72-year-old saxophonist, flutist and composer who has expanded the horizons of jazz," won for this 2015 recording featuring his quintet, Zooid, which the Pulitzer board described as “a highly original work in which notated music and improvisation mesh in a sonic tapestry that seems the very expression of modern American life.”

Finalists included Timo Andres for “The Blind Banister” and Carter Pann for “The Mechanics: Six From the Shop Floor”

Frankly, I've never heard of any of these people.

You can read more about Mr. Threadgill here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Threadgill

Thoughts?

John F
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by John F » Tue Apr 19, 2016 2:09 am

Threadgill is sometimes described as a jazz composer and though I don't know any of his music, that seems right to me from what I've heard about it. Throughout the 20th century, jazz was excluded from the Pulitzer Prize for Music, and when in 1965 the Pulitzer jury recommended Duke Ellington for a special award, the board refused and awarded no prize for music that year. But in 2004 the board formally opened the music category to jazz and also musicals and movie music; the first living jazz musician to receive a Pulitzer was Ornette Coleman in 2007.

The Broadway musical "Hamilton" would presumably have been eligible for the prize in music, under the new criteria. Instead it won the Pulitzer Prize for Drama, only the 9th musical to do so. Not only is that the more prestigious (and economically consequential) of those prizes, but the show's hip-hop music may have been a hop too far for the music jury.
John Francis

some guy
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by some guy » Wed Apr 20, 2016 2:53 am

Ted Quanrud wrote: Thoughts?
You need to get out more?

I dunno. But I always wonder when people say they've never heard of something.

I know that's supposed to be a super snarky diss of the something, but what it really is is a super revealing comment on how little the person knows.

I'm sure I'll take the usual flack for saying it, but really Ted "Frankly, I've never heard of any of these people" is just not a putdown of any of them.

(Also, I am expecting the usual disclaimer--plausible deniability, you know--but that "Frankly" tacked on to the front is pretty much a dead giveaway.)

Anyway, fine. It's OK to be snarky about new music but definitely not OK to object to the snark.

That does seem to be one of the rules....
"The public has got to stay in touch with the music of its time . . . for otherwise people will gradually come to mistrust music claimed to be the best."
--Viennese critic (1843)

Confusion is a word we have invented for an order which is not understood.
--Henry Miller

John F
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by John F » Wed Apr 20, 2016 3:41 am

some guy wrote:You need to get out more?
Now that's a truly snarky comment.

When I saw your handle in the list of new posts, I looked forward to you telling us about those unknown (to me) composers, maybe even commenting specifically on the winning composition, “In for a Penny, In for a Pound,” because if any of us is most likely to have heard it, it's you, our resident new music maven. Instead, you're picking a fight. If, as you say and I agree, Ted Quanrud's comment is not a putdown of this year's Pulitzer finalists, then what's your point?
John Francis

Ted Quanrud
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by Ted Quanrud » Wed Apr 20, 2016 12:11 pm

My apologies if I came across as "snarky;" I certainly had no intention to do so or to be dismissive or critical of Mr. Threadgill or the other nominees. I was simply admitting my own ignorance, a rather frequent admission of mine. As I get older, it is increasingly apparent that the more I know, the less I know.

I have since read a biographical sketch of Mr. Threadgill and listened to one of his compositions, recorded by the Library of Congress and available on YouTube. I must confess I did not like most of it, but that is simply a reflection of my own rather conservative musical tastes.

some guy
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by some guy » Fri Apr 22, 2016 4:51 pm

Ted and John, my apologies.

I was out of line.
"The public has got to stay in touch with the music of its time . . . for otherwise people will gradually come to mistrust music claimed to be the best."
--Viennese critic (1843)

Confusion is a word we have invented for an order which is not understood.
--Henry Miller

jbuck919
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by jbuck919 » Fri Apr 22, 2016 5:07 pm

some guy wrote:
Ted Quanrud wrote: Thoughts?
You need to get out more?

I dunno. But I always wonder when people say they've never heard of something.

I know that's supposed to be a super snarky diss of the something, but what it really is is a super revealing comment on how little the person knows.

I'm sure I'll take the usual flack for saying it, but really Ted "Frankly, I've never heard of any of these people" is just not a putdown of any of them.

(Also, I am expecting the usual disclaimer--plausible deniability, you know--but that "Frankly" tacked on to the front is pretty much a dead giveaway.)

Anyway, fine. It's OK to be snarky about new music but definitely not OK to object to the snark.

That does seem to be one of the rules....
That is a puzzling riposte to someone who offered a very reasonable statement without the intention of offense of any sort. I have frequently posted of things and people I have never heard of, to my potential embarrassment. Thank goodness for the civility of the forum you apparently didn't see any of those posts. Remember, Ted is a classical radio DJ, a rare bird these days, and if he has not heard of a composer or other musician, it is a significant statement. That is not to prejudge the Pulitzer committee's award, something that might invite true snarkiness which you will notice that no one on this thread has attempted. The Pulitzer in music has always been a bit of a puzzle, but I don't think many of us would rush to judgment without at least hearing the music first. I think you owe Ted an apology.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

jserraglio
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by jserraglio » Sat Apr 23, 2016 6:56 am



Mosaic Records has devoted an eight-disc box to Henry Threadgill. One of the founders of the AACM in Chicago.
http://www.mosaicrecords.com/prodinfo.a ... gQodA2wK0A
I have certainly heard of Threadgill but don't have any of his records. Except for Anthony Braxton, I never listened much to the Chicago avant garde musicians (Jarman, DeJohnette, et al).

some guy
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Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by some guy » Sun Apr 24, 2016 2:38 pm

jbuck919 wrote: I think you owe Ted an apology.
And I think you should read the post that immediately precedes yours.
"The public has got to stay in touch with the music of its time . . . for otherwise people will gradually come to mistrust music claimed to be the best."
--Viennese critic (1843)

Confusion is a word we have invented for an order which is not understood.
--Henry Miller

jbuck919
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Joined: Wed Jan 28, 2004 10:15 pm
Location: Stony Creek, New York

Re: 2016 Pulitzer for music

Post by jbuck919 » Sun Apr 24, 2016 4:54 pm

some guy wrote:
jbuck919 wrote: I think you owe Ted an apology.
And I think you should read the post that immediately precedes yours.
Thank you for doing the right thing, and I am sorry that I was not attentive enough to the state of the thread.

There's nothing remarkable about it. All one has to do is hit the right keys at the right time and the instrument plays itself.
-- Johann Sebastian Bach

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