When Philip Glass was 15, his father, who owned a record store in Baltimore, put him in charge of buying classical albums. Mr. Glass was then a precocious freshman at the University of Chicago and taking the first steps on the path to becoming a composer. When he learned of a new recording of the complete Schoenberg string quartets played by the Juilliard String Quartet, he ordered four copies. Aghast, his father asked if he was trying to put him out of business. To teach his son a lesson, he told him to put the recordings of these atonal chamber works on the shelves with the more mainstream classical records and report back when the last copy had been sold. That took seven years. The lesson Mr. Glass learned? “I can sell anything if I have enough time.”
That is one of many revealing anecdotes in Mr. Glass’s warm, low-key and often delightful new memoir.
Read the rest of the review Review: Philip Glass’s ‘Words Without Music’ Tells of a Life Full of Changes in Rhythm – NYTimes.com.