'My only purpose in this book was for me, as a music lover, to have a discussion of music with the musician Seiji Ozawa that was as open and honest as possible. I simply wanted to bring out the ways that each of us (though on vastly different levels) is dedicated to music.' Haruki Murakami's passion for music runs deep. Before turning his hand to writing, he ran a jazz club in Tokyo, and the aesthetic and emotional power of music permeates every one of his much-loved books. Now, in Absolutely on Music, Murakami fulfills a personal dream, sitting down with his friend, acclaimed conductor Seiji Ozawa, to talk about their shared interest. Transcribed from lengthy conversations about the nature of music and writing, here they discuss everything from Brahms to Beethoven, from Leonard Bernstein to Glenn Gould, from record collecting to pop-up orchestras, and much more. Ultimately this book gives readers an unprecedented glimpse into the minds of two maestros.
"Hardly a soul writes of the listening and playing of music with such insight and tenderness" -- Patti Smith New York Times Book Review "Their words tessellate perfectly, forcing the neurons in your brain into a brave new quest for artistic divinity... A book for people transfixed by the minutia of creativity." Shortlist "High Fidelity for classical music fans." Publishers Weekly "The novelist flatly states that "you can't write well if you don't have an ear for music", and that all good prose "has to have an inner rhythmic feel that propels the reader forward." ... These dialogues...add up to a sprawling feast of Mahler-style "polytonality" - or, alternatively, the sort of protean jam-session that Monk and Parker relished." -- Boyd Tonkin Arts Desk "Murakami is Japan's greatest living writer" Washington Post