// you’re reading...



Toronto-based composer and percussionist Kristofer Maddigan lists some favorite books on musical history and theory...

READERSVOICE.COM: Did you watch a lot of old Fleischer Brothers cartoons, and Disney, to get the feel of the music they used?

KRISTOFER MADDIGAN: We knew early on that we were going to be going for more of a big band vibe than that old cartoon ‘chamber orchestra’ sound, so I spent most of my time listening to early jazz and ragtime artists. The only real cartoon research I did was to study a number of the title cards that typically have a short vocal introduction while presenting the credits before the cartoon proper begins.

RV: You like to read anyway, apart from music research, and I was wondering what were some fiction or non-fiction books you’ve especially liked over the years?

KM: Some of my all-time favorites are – Perfume: The Story of a Murderer by Patrick Suskind, House of Leaves by Mark Danielewski, Steppenwolf by Hesse, anything by William Gibson, Vurt by Jeff Noon, any of the Richard Pevear/Larissa Volokhonsky translations of classic Russian literature, numerous graphic novels.
I go through phases. Right now it’s a lot of musician bios, books on zen and meditation, and macrobiotic cookbooks. Last year it was every Gibson novel in a row and books about performance practice, the creative process, and the concepts of talent. A few years ago it was classic sci-fi (Asimov, Le Guin, Clarke, Dick) and the histories of various punk culture hotbeds.

RV: Which books on music like the Gary Lindsay book Jazz Arranging Techniques from Quartet to Big Band, or any historical books on Swing era music or ragtime or Big Band music have you especially enjoyed?

KM: Gary Lindsay Jazz Arranging and Techniques, Early Jazz and The Swing Era by Gunther Schuller,
Duke Ellington: Jazz Composer by Ken Rattenbury, They All Played Ragtime by Rudi Blesh and Harriet Janis, Arranging for Large Jazz Ensemble by Dick Lowell and Ken Pullig, Scott Joplin Complete Piano Works, The Jazz Theory Book by Mark Levine, The Barbershop Arranging Manual, published by the Society for the Preservation and Encouragement of Barber Shop Quartet Singing in America, Inc.

-continued next page
-copyright Simon Sandall