Highbrow: Experimental

From the moment my eighth grade music teacher decided it would be a good idea to expose unsuspecting adolescent ears to Henry Cowell’s incredibly weird “The Banshee,” I’ve had a fascination with different ways of thinking about the border between music and noise. Kay Larson’s Where the Heart Beats: John Cage, Zen Buddhism, and the Inner Life of Artists maps some of the territory and teaches you how to map new planets on your own.