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" The day Jackson Pollock died I called a certain man I knew- a very great painter-and told him the news. After a long pause he said, in a voice so low it was barely a whisper,' That son of a b---he did it'. . . . With this supreme gesture Pollock had wrapped up an era and walked away from it." Feldman was very much part of that era, the Fifties when American art was becoming the most important post-war art there was its unique expressions. Sure Europeans tried to copy us but only became more academic about as Boulez and his excursions into chance/aleatoric gesturing. This collection of essays very clearly reveals how important American expeimentalism was to music. Feldman's forever endeavor to merely create, create at a high intensity working like a Dutch diamond cutter,or lens grinder,toying with creative means as his use of indelible ink, this he said makes you think about what your writing than how you are writing, puts the creative process back into the head.Or composing at the piano, which slows you down so you need to think more. He followed the intellectual currents, anything that brought a sense of richness and other dimension to his art, he knew for instance Henri Bergson's concept of memory and time,how that might affect his music,and painterly means was second nature to him hanging out at the Cedar Bar in New York talking for hours on Light,texture,perception,shape,design,concept, facility,gesture,timbre,tone,chiarscuro, there is ample historical data here as well, almost like a subtext of these ,like an unwritten history of the avant-garde, a "Conversation with Stravinsky"(not really),his first meeting with John Cage(after a performance of Webern), Earle Brown, Christian Wolff, also his travels to Berlin, and England and experiencing the avant-garde through Cornelius Cardew, and British experimentalism.His last years was devoted to long durational compositions, and he merely said he had more time to compose in these years,but Feldman here is filled with marvelous quotes,things,items,shapes for the mind"I knew I was going to be a professional the day I first became practical.Practicality took the form of copying out my music neatly,keeping my desk tidy and organized-all the unimportant things that seem unrelated to the work,yet somehow do affect it.". He also knows how to look from greater heights from mountains, tothe substance of modernity, those who stopped creating and became more interested in themselves as Stockhausen were "Modernists"; for Feldman allowing your materials,the shape,structures of your music tell you the secrets of creativity was most important and became a cause.