Kyle Gann points out that Robert Carl's book on In C is out.
From the first sentence in the Amazon description of the book:
Unquestionably the founding work of minimalism in musical composition...
I'm certainly no musicologist, even if Four Musical Minimalists is my favorite music book. Regardless, while In C is arguably the crowning achievement of minimalism, isn't La Monte Young's Trio for Strings, from 1958, the founding work?
For the record, Keith Potter's Four Musical Minimalists lists the following early influences on Terry Riley:
- Piano Concerto. Francis Poulenc
- Three Piano Pieces, Opus 11. Arnold Schoenberg
- Six Little Piano Pieces, Opus 19. Arnold Schoenberg
- Zietmasze. Karlheinz Stockhausen
Despite his relationship at the time with La Monte Young, Riley missed the student performance of Trio for Strings.
Potter also describes how Riley was interested in both non-Western music and the jazz of Miles Davis and John Coltrane:
One of the only two records he carried with him on his travels was a French BAM disc of Moroccan music. The other -- Cookin' With The Miles Davis Quartet (1961), with its explorations of the different ways in which repetition and modality could refocus the relationship between a melody and the rhythmic basis familiar from earlier jazz -- invited Riley to explore the links between Moroccan music and jazz, and to see more clearly the potential for his own work.