Now That the Audience Is Assembled

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Product Details
Duke University Press
Publish Date
6.0 X 0.5 X 8.9 inches | 0.45 pounds
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About the Author
David Grubbs is Professor of Music at Brooklyn College and The Graduate Center, City University of New York, and author of Records Ruin the Landscape: John Cage, the Sixties, and Sound Recording, also published by Duke University Press. As a musician, he has released fourteen solo albums and appeared on more than 180 commercially released recordings. Grubbs is known for his cross-disciplinary collaborations with poet Susan Howe and visual artists Angela Bulloch and Anthony McCall, and his work has been presented at the Museum of Modern Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Tate Modern, and the Centre Pompidou. Grubbs was a founding member of the groups Gastr del Sol, Bastro, and Squirrel Bait, and has appeared on recordings by Tony Conrad, Pauline Oliveros, Will Oldham, and Matmos, among other artists. Grubbs has written for The Wire, BOMB, Bookforum, and the Süddeutsche Zeitung.
"Now that the audience is assembled, a new book-length poem by musician David Grubbs, reminds us that listening can feel stranger than dreaming."--Chris Richards"Washington Post" (04/13/2018)
"A formally adventurous prose poem. . . . I've only read the 140-page book once, and I know I missed many of its nuances, but its audacity and provocation nonetheless moved me."-- (04/13/2018)
"Now That the Audience is Assembled is an interesting and compelling exploration of the boundaries between literature and improvised music, of waiting for the work to age, and between various and different media presentations of its content. . . . Grubbs presents a noisy vision of an improvised musical performance through a different form of writing. Come early, stay all night, get on the stage with the performer, participate or you won't feel a thing."-- (12/01/2018)
"Primarily, in the beginning, this is a discourse on--and through--rhythm, on what it means to pause and to repeat, on all t he many shades of the same and its other, of noise and silence. That the book is able to make you pause and think about all these things while being itself rhythmically (and musically) interesting is no small feat. On top of that, it also manages to be very funny. And like all best comedy, now that the audience is assembled is ultimately a matter of ... timing."-- (04/01/2018)
"Imaginative.... A work that combines the directness of an actual improvisation with the well-chosen language afforded by after-the-fact reflection."-- (04/16/2018)
"This long form poem is as much a reflection on the contemporary music audience and their responses to an unnamed musician's experimentation as it is a commentary on the act of spontaneous creation.Grubbs's writing style - ephemeral and esoteric, with patches of lucidity and remarkable wit - is highly engaging and entertaining, offering a thoughtful experiment in music writing that invites the reader in to participate themselves, performing as one of the assembled audience."-- (06/01/2019)
"Now That the Audience is Assembled shows the possibilities of an imagined and unfolding musical event. This book also offers an excellent example of how specifically musical performance, and generally all performance, might be made to perform and sound on the page through the use of a poetic and descriptive form of writing. Engaging this prose poem invites the reader to be part of Grubbs's assembled audience of witnesses. And the experiments of music, sound, and writing are offered for you to add to and transform through your own desires, expectations, and presence."-- (07/16/2018)
"The slim volume is a masterful metaconceptual play on conceptual art and a pleasure to read. But it is more than just a suggestion for a reader's own private, internal performance. Grubbs's writing does triple duty as a poem, a book, and a score for live performance--like almost all of Cage's writings. . . . The best thing about this book, for me, is that it demonstrates that great scholarship can be great art and that scholarly inquiry on the nature of experimentalism can itself be experimental."-- (09/01/2019)