Music: $25,000 Worth

Writing music (unless you include Tin Pan Alley hits) is no way to get rich quick. So it was news that a tall, gangling musician named Leroy Robertson had got $25,000 for a long-haired orchestra piece. Probably no piece of classical music had ever been so handsomely paid for.* The money Robertson got for his Trilogy would have supported Mozart or Schubert for life.

The $25,000 came from Detroit's music lover Henry Reichhold, who runs the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. Reichhold's publicity men snagged newspaper space by calling Prizewinner Robertson a cowboy-composer. Actually, though Robertson did herd sheep in Utah as a boy,...

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