The Ron Kane Files

Writing About Music

Friday, January 30, 2009

Philip Glass


1-30-09 Philip Glass


I searched my index for a blog on 20th century NYC classical composer Philip Glass, but I couldn’t find an entry. Seems like I’ve written about those guys before (Glass, Steve Reich, Michael Nyman et el). I first heard Philip Glass when “North Star” came out on Virgin Records UK – somehow, I was sent a promo LP of it, about 1977.


LP 1000 AIRPLANES ON THE ROOF VIRGIN US 91065.1

1989 13 TRKS

CD ANIMA MUNDI (O.S.T.) NONESUCH US 79329.2

1993 7 TRKS O.S.T.

CDx2 DANCE NOS. 1 - 5 CBS US M2K 44765

1980 5 TRKS

LP DANCE NOS. 1 and 3 TOMATO US TOM-8029

1980 2 TRKS

LPx4 EINSTEIN ON THE BEACH (4LP boxed set) CBS US M4 38875

1979 14 TRKS Boxed set – really must find out which is the best CD set of this title!

LP EINSTEIN ON THE BEACH (Single LP) TOMATO US TOM-101

1978 9 TRKS promo version, 1 LP

CD GLASSCUTS (V.A. - PHILIP GLASS REMIXED) ORANGE MOUNTAIN 23

2005 13 TRKS remixes

LP GLASSWORKS CBS US FM 37265

1982 6 TRKS

CD GLASSWORKS re CBS US SK 90394

1982/7 11 TRKS ('03 issue) 95 x bonus tracks = '87)

LP INTERVIEW WITH PHILIP GLASS, AN promo COLUMBIA US AS 1410

1982 2 TRKS promo-only, 'GLASSWORKS'

CD KOYAANISQATSI (O.S.T.) ANTILLES US 90626.2

1983 6 TRKS

LP KOYAANISQATSI (O.S.T.) ANTILLES US ASTA 1

1983 6 TRKS

CD KUNDUN (O.S.T.) NONESUCH US 79460.2

1997 18 TRKS O.S.T., slipcase

CD LOW SYMPHONY POINT US 438150.2

1993 3 TRKS Brooklyn Phil. Orch.; Bowie / Eno

CD MISHIMA (O.S.T.) NONESUCH US 79113.2

1985 14 TRKS

CD MUSIC FROM 'THE SCREENS' (with Foday Musa Suso) POINT US 432966.2

1992 18 TRKS

CD MUSIC FROM THE THIN BLUE LINE ORANGE MOUNTAIN OMM 007

1989 19 TRKS ('03 issue)

LP MUSIC IN SIMILAR MOTION and MUSIC IN FIFTHS CHATHAM SQ LP 1003

1973 2 TRKS 2nd

CDx3 MUSIC IN 12 PARTS (3CD boxed set) VIRGIN US 91311.2

1987 12 TRKS ('74 recording?)

LP MUSIC IN 12 PARTS, Parts 1 & 2 CAROLINE UK CA 2010

1974 2 TRKS 3rd

CD MUSIC WITH CHANGING PARTS NONESUCH US 79325.2

1971 1 TRK

LPx2 MUSIC WITH CHANGING PARTS CHATHAM SQ LP 1001/2

1971 4 TRKS debut album

CD NORTH STAR VIRGIN UK CDV 2085

1977 10 TRKS

LP NORTH STAR VIRGIN UK V 2085

1977 10 TRKS 5th; promo

CD PASSAGES (with Ravi Shankar) PRIVATE US 2074.2-P

1990 6 TRKS

CD PHOTOGRAPHER, THE CBS US MK 37849

1983 4 TRKS

LP PHOTOGRAPHER, THE CBS US FM 37849

1983 4 TRKS insert

CDx3 SATYAGRAHA (3CD boxed set) CBS MASTER US M3K 39672

1985 9 TRKS (booklet is missing)

LP SOLO MUSIC SHANDAR FR 83515

1975 2 TRKS 4th

CD SOLO PIANO CBS US MK 45576

1989 7 TRKS

CD SONGS FROM LIQUID DAYS CBS US MK 39564

1986 6 TRKS

LP SONGS FROM LIQUID DAYS CBS US FM 39564

1986 6 TRKS booklet, autographed

CD SONGS FROM THE TRILOGY (Collection) CBS US MK 45580

1989 12 TRK Collection

LP STRUNG OUT (V.A.) CP2 US CP2/6

1976 4 TRKS XENAKIS etc

CD TWO PAGES; CONTRARY MOTION etc. NONESUCH US 79326.2

1973/5 4 TRKS


I like Mr. Glass’ work. I think the shorter pieces on “North Star” make his electric minimalist message easier to reach new ears. I still absolutely love his Chatham Square (independently produced / manufactured) LP’s – I think I have ‘em all!


I once saw Mr. Glass perform at The Roxy in Hollywood. There were some famous people in the audience that night (I remember recognizing Magma’s keyboard player, Francois “Faton” Cahen!). (When I saw Michel Polnareff at The Roxy, I saw Vangelis walking down Sunset Blvd.!) I remember Mr. Glass asking the audience to not smoke during their performance – because of the style of breathing necessary for the wind instrument players etc. This was shortly after the time of “North Star”, I think.


It would seem to be not possible to keep up with Glass’ Orange Mountain label. Looks like a lot of initial releases, as well as some re-issues. I try and keep it to titles where Mr. Glass actually performs – I don’t think he’s on the “Anima Mundi” O.S.T. CD, but it sure sounded good, when I played it recently. I have a similar problem with the works of Michael Nyman – I’d really like to keep it to where the composer is playing, too. (And I haven’t seen many titles on his own label, NM Records).


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2 Comments:

Anonymous Jim Donato said...

I saw the Philip Glass Ensemble in 1985 at the Enzian Theatre in Orlando, Florida. Actually Winter Park to put a fine line on it. It was absolutely the best sounding musical performance I've ever heard. Where else does the sound engineer [Kurt Munkacsi] get equal billing with the players?

7:52 AM  
Blogger Ron Kane said...

I saw him well before that, and I, too, remember excellent sound. Maybe we were just used to muddy-sounding rock bands?

6:30 AM  

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