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Koven Smith

5easypieces@book.dansmonorage.blue

Joined 4 months, 3 weeks ago

Arts grantmaker living in Austin, TX. Jazz, museums, pre-Kurtzman Star Trek, so forth and such as. Also in the fediverse at @5easypieces@social.coop.

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Koven Smith's books

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2022 Reading Goal

72% complete! Koven Smith has read 18 of 25 books.

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Dilla Time (Hardcover, 2022, McMillan) 5 stars

Equal parts biography, musicology, and cultural history, Dilla Time chronicles the life and legacy of …

Wish all music books were like this

5 stars

This book was fabulous. Well-researched and compelling, it doubles as a history of Detroit in addition to a study of both the musical and social importance of Dilla himself.

Debussy (Hardcover, 2018) 3 stars

A beautifully written and original biography of one of the greatest and most popular of …

A bit more of a slog than I would have liked. There are occasional moments of real insight here, but mostly the book feels like neither fish nor fowl—not technical enough to read as a thorough analysis, but also without enough biographical detail to really bring Debussy alive as a person. Nice, but hardly definitive.

Debussy (Hardcover, 2018) 3 stars

A beautifully written and original biography of one of the greatest and most popular of …

The persistent slow music occasionally drags its heels, and the choral final act, in Paradise, has that slight flatness that often afflicts the music of Heaven by composers who have no particular desire to go there.

Debussy: A Painter In Sound by  (Page 221)

Love this quote, but it points up a problem with the book: Walsh’s writing is far more pointed and enjoyable when discussing Debussy’s failures than it is when it attempts to assess his successes.

Debussy (Hardcover, 2018) 3 stars

A beautifully written and original biography of one of the greatest and most popular of …

All three pieces show that Debussy was not in rebellion against tonality, only against the rules by which it supposedly worked.

Debussy: A Painter In Sound by  (Page 128)

Finding this book generally to be a bit more of a slog than I’d hoped, but there are periodically little revelatory bits like this.

Sea of Tranquility (Hardcover, Knopf) 3 stars

Edwin St. Andrew is eighteen years old when he crosses the Atlantic by steamship, exiled …

Fun, lightweight

3 stars

A breezy, fun(ish, given some of the subject matter) read. The resolution of the book hinges, somewhat, on a twist that is revealed near the end, and I must confess that I was finding the book far more satisfying up to the point that the twist was revealed. It just felt a bit too “plotty” to me in a book that otherwise revels in nice details.