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What's interesting is not his claims -- which I'm sure were as hyperbolic as the rest of his oversized personality -- but rather his goal, namely, to write a serial piece that also appeared to follow the conventions of "common-practice" harmony.
But apart from a few exceptions - trumpeter Dominic Farinacci, notably, who went on at the ridiculously early 6:15 p.m. time slot - there wasn't much that felt like common-practice, blues-and-swing-and-standards jazz.
I'd say composers, in general and including myself, are neither highbrow, craft-aware, nor self-aware: we're simply common-practice - averse.
It IS common-practice, however ... 11-year-old's (and even most college students) are NOT lugging around 30lbs of books and homework.