More Zorn

One of the pleasures of living is growing into oneself, and finding that deep satisfaction of enjoying others growing into themselves. That’s why I’m approaching this month’s John Zorn @ 60 concerts with so much excitement. I believe the first time I heard him was in 1984, on the great Ganryu Island disc, and his has been a great musical journey to follow, in parallel to my own from classical->jazz->free->improvisation->noise->electronic music->classical.

I’ve got a big feature on Zorn in the current Brooklyn Rail, but that was still constrained by print considerations. Full listing of concerts is here, and below is a supplemental critical discography:


He’s always got something new:

I know I’m leaving out bests and favorites, but there are something like 400 recordings, and I think this gives a fair view of both quality and range. Of course, I’ve come to think his greatest work is the metal bands Painkiller and Moonchild, but that’s subject to change. There are also some invaluable audio documents to be found on the internet, a two part BBC radio documentary and a program from WNYC in the early 1990s when Zorn played some of his favorite records (both can be found and downloaded with a little patience and gumption).


I'm a composer and musician, and I write about music—I do that here, for the New York Classical Review, at the Brooklyn Rail (I edit the music section there) and any place else that will have me, like New Music Box and Music & Literature. I also wrote the Miles Davis' Bitches Brew book in the 33 1/3 series.