[f_minor] Where is Sony's head?

maryellen jensen maryellenjensen28 at hotmail.com
Sun Dec 19 17:15:06 EST 2010

First off thanks to Timothy Conway for correcting my double "http://" hyperlink mistakes - it's a Microsoft Hotmail thing. Hotmail "generously" provides its clients with a prewritten hyperlink intro - http:// - which means that the quick and easy copy-paste of a complete URL becomes hazardous and in my case it was  hazardous because I was distracted by the astounding beauty of a snow tempest outside my window. Hotmail users are condemned to copy/paste URLs without the "http:// " which is lots of fun for no one.

 The double-headed hydra is $ony and The Glenn Gould Estate; the Glenn Gould Foundation has nothing to do with new issues and/or reissues of Gould's catalogue nor has it any legal power of copyright over the name Glenn Gould. I would have thought that that was made quite clear from the links I sent here from Angus Carroll's site and the earlier link I sent of the GGE vs Stoddart court case(s). When a few of us were trying desperately to submit a "doodle" for a Google doodle to commemorate Gould's birthday we had to ask permission from The GG Estate - which was willingly (and promptly) granted us with their best wishes for our success. Unfortunately we did not succeed with Google but we sure tried hard. Perhaps we'll try again but frankly the whole Google thing sort of puts me off as I know it did Pat even at the time.

 Michael, are you referring to The Glenn Gould Edition or The Glenn Gould Collection? The GG Edition is still available in my local "good" music stores but the extent to which all of the catalogue is 'on the racks' is another story - par contre The GG Collection (1992? Monsaingeon) was only ever available on VHS but can be found for download on the Net in its entirety, get back to me on that if you care to. As far as '32 Short Films' is concerned: who would pay over the average cd price? Not me.  It's been around on torrents almost as long as any cult film - probably longer. A quick warning to anyone who would respond to my frankness with a sanctimonious lecture on "piracy": Get a grip. If $ony and The Glenn Gould Estate can't get their act together and organize the release of Gould's vast musical, audio/visual legacy in a FAIR AND COMPLETE offering at fair market prices then all they can reasonably expect is the formation of an 'underground' - which has already  taken shape: 
 "Gould, Gould outrage, Gould brise, Gould martyrise, mais Gould libere, libere par lui meme..."; my sincere thanks to Charles de Gaulle and sorry that I could't include the accents on the vowels. 

 An interesting aside is in order: Edward Said mentions in one of his many essays on Gould something on the order of Gould quit public performances but for what exactly? What was the bargain? Had it not been for the RARE indulgence of Columbia Masterworks Gould's career would have been over. Said was commenting on the universal dilemma of an artist and I think that it's a question which hasn't been answered in spite of what Gouldians proclaim loudly about "kits" and "do-it-yourself-albums". Gould may have been prescient playing the stock market (with a lot of help from his 'friends') but he was ultimately naive about the corporate music business which was to devour forever and ever every note he ever played under draconian copyright contracts? There seems to be a willing suspension of disbelief somewhere: either Gould was having his public on and he didn't really care, or Gould was convinced that his every note and appearance would be so sought after that he didn't do anything about it. Here was a man that knew and hated "The Horowitz Syndrome" yet by leaving the stage knew he was to become more like Horowitz than even Horowitz. Do not underestimate either Gould's sense of irony or drama. He was a drama queen, a nice one but born to it all the same even without the sweeping exits and concert capes. There's more than one way to skin a cat, as his father would have told him.                

 Where is the Glenn Gould Foundation's head? That's what I'd like to know. The logo on the homepage is frankly dreadful, the archives have disappeared, people who send in pertinent info on a timely basis aren't published or are published but aren't acknowledged; there isn't a single 'link' to music, on and on and on. The Glenn Gould Foundation should serve as "the spearhead", the posthumous face of Glenn Gould for people all over the world who are newly curious and desperate for decent information on the artist and his life as well as for those who are already well acquainted but would like to know more and contribute as well (au fur et a mesure) but instead it's a neo-corporate convenience island operating under the aegis of BLAND and BLIND. Dear GG Foundation, don't forget your responsibility is first and foremost in the service of Glenn Gould - there is a character in Dickens' Bleak House which sort of reminds me of you. Get back to me on it, like the Menuhin plaque at Glenn Gould's grave.


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