Book review: Listening and paying attention take centre stage in The Creative Act, Rubin’s New Agey guide to being

Record producer Rick Rubin’s occasionally banal, self-help-style advice in finding a path to creativity emphasises the art of playing to play rather than playing to win

Rick Rubin: ‘Through the ordinary state of being, we’re already creators in the most profound way, creating our experience of reality and composing the world we perceive.’ Picture: Showtime

Few music producers have achieved the prestige of Rick Rubin. Since helping to pioneer hip hop in the 1980s, the New Yorker has won nine Grammy Awards for his collaborations with the Red Hot Chili Peppers, Adele, The Strokes and others. During the 1990s his signature pared-back production style rekindled Johnny Cash’s career, introducing the Man in Black to a new generation.

The Creative Act is Rubin’s attempt to harness what he’s learned about making ...