Journey Through The Age Of Electronic (Re)Production Of Music

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Class presentation on the topic in 2009...

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http://soundculture-s09.blogspot.com/2009/06/videos-on-music-in-age-of-electronic.html

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Journey Through The Age Of Electronic (Re)Production Of Music

  1. 1. Music in the Age of Electronic (Re)Production A commented journey through time… Jan Smeddinck (#1976868) jan83@tzi.de Sound Culture, Petra Klusmeyer HfK Bremen, Germany (2009) http://3.bp.blogspot.com/_D9aXFbJvKO0/SYxLGAScLWI/AAAAAAAAAGQ/RG7Wgz1uOkw/s400/reticulumrex.gif http://i83.photobucket.com/albums/j281/Kriziavb/electronic_music_flowers_by_nullbom.jpg
  2. 2. The Book • Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music – Continuum Inter. Publis. (7. Oktober 2004) • Daniel Warner & Christoph Cox (Eds.) • Chapters 22, 24 & 25 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 2 http://www.flickr.com/photos/pdourish/3103575261/sizes/o/ http://mitpress.mit.edu/images/products/books/0262041960-f30.jpg
  3. 3. Mechanical Reproduction of Music • 14th – 18th century: barrel organs etc. • 1857: Phonautograph – Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville – Recordings made audible in 2008 • 1877: Phonograph Cylinder – Thomas Edison – First real recording • 1885: Gramophone – Emile Berliner – „cheap“ copying (from master) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 3 http://getfantasticdeals.com/library/Gramophone.jpg
  4. 4. Music Across Time & Space • “The effect of recording is that it takes music out of the time dimension and puts it in the space dimension.” – Brian Eno (late 1970s) • Recording makes music all present – Mc Luhan • “So not only is the music with us now, in some sense, on record, but the whole global musical culture is also available.” – connect to present & internet 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 4
  5. 5. Electronics ~ 1900 • 1906: Electronics (Triode) – Lee De Forest – vacuum tube / electronic amp. • 1920s: Microphones, loudspeakers, usable electronic instruments • 1930s: Steelwire recorders • 1935: AEG K1 Magnetophon – Fritz Pfleumer • 1939: John Cage: “Imaginary Landscape #1” – First composed piece to use means of electronic reproduction (var. speed phonographs) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 5 http://www.tonaufzeichnung.de/images/Tonband/magnetophon_K1_gross.jpg
  6. 6. Culture & Technology • also 1930s: Jazz becomes recorded – no full coincidence • Brian Eno (p. 128) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 6 http://justbooks.org/calendar/images/Jazz%20NIght.jpg
  7. 7. Walter Benjamin • 1935: „Das Kunstwerk im Zeitalter seiner technischen Reproduzierbarkeit“ • Argues about photography and film • The reproduction can take a position concerning the original • The reproduction can put the original in a different context • While the original may remain untouched, it‟s here-and-now is devaluated (ref. towards Eno on space & time) • Loss of ‚originality„: traditional role of art -> politics • link to visual culture / art – e.g. montage, collage, borrowing, … (Cutler, p. 144) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 7 http://www.braungardt.com/Theology/Benjamin/Benjamin.jpg
  8. 8. Tape Recorders • 1947: Improved electric tape – John T. “Jack” Mullin • Music is opened to environmental sounds – nature & technology • music, brains & the universe: music & math • Tape vs. discs – mutable, cuttable, reversible … 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 8 http://www.hifiengine.com/images/model/revox_pr99.jpg
  9. 9. Improved Electronic (Re)Production • 1950s: Stereo becomes commercial (Ampex) • Musique Concrète (Pierre Schaeffer & Pierre Henry) • 1951: John Cage: “Imaginary Landscape #4” – Radios as instruments • 1956: Karlheinz Stockhausen: “Gesang der Jünglinge” – natural sounds (voices) mixed with electronic, 5 channel sound 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 9
  10. 10. 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 10 http://www.medienkunstnetz.de/works/gesang-der-juenglinge/images/1/
  11. 11. Improved Electronic (Re)Production • 1960s: Cassette, Synthesizers & Experimental Digital Recording • Multi-Track recording – towards studio composing & „crowded‟ rock music • 1964: Compact Cassette • Glenn Gould goes studio only! – subverted authenticity • 1966: Dolby Noise Reduction • Dub • 1967: James Tenney: „Viet Flakes“ – pop + classical + asian music • antedating mashup 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 11 http://www.briangreene.com/april12/i/Tdkc60cassette.jpg
  12. 12. 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 12 http://gallery.photo.net/photo/6287115-lg.jpg
  13. 13. Chris Cutler • * 1947: Percussionist, composer, music theorist • 1968: Henry Cow (@ Cambridge): avant-garde rock • „Indeed, from the moment recordings existed, a new kind of „past“ and „present“ were born – both immediately available on demand. Time and space homogenised in the home loudspeaker or the head phone, and the pop CD costs the same as the classical CD and probably comes from the same shop. All commodities are equal.“ (p. 147) – Young musicians grow up in the electronic recording age – Now they (~ we) are the first digital natives! • Good writings: SCALE & The Age of Virtual Communities of Taste • Sound declines to disappear (p. 138) – Organic response: RECYCLE 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 13 http://www.ccutler.com/ccutler/Images/electrifiedKit.jpg http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/9/99/HenryCow_AlbumCover_Concerts_inside.jpg
  14. 14. Plunderphonia • John Oswald: „Plunderphonic“ (~ 1985) – sued by Michael Jackson • Antedates Youtube, remix- culture, sampling, UGX • Consciously self-reflexive (Cutler, p. 141) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 14
  15. 15. 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 15 http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/5/56/MsJacko%2Cdab.jpg
  16. 16. Plunderphonia • Using „macrosamples“ and „electroquotes“ – Since arrival of recording: copyright no longer simple… • To refer, or not to refer? • The power of pure atomic recordings… • Sound freed from the reference… – Steal this Film II: around 33:00 min.. • about the good of copying for music 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 16
  17. 17. Art Widespread • 1970s: Radio-Cassette (“Boombox”, 2 tracks), Walkman, Commercial Digital Recording (PCM), Quadraphonic Sound • Stockhausen: „Opus 1970“ – players control loudspeakers and distortion • Miles Davis: electric records • Turntable culture: – NY Hip-Hop DJs, scratching • 1975: Brian Eno: “Another Green World” – Invention of „Ambient‟ • 1977: Kraftwerk: “Trans-Europe Express” – Sequencers 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 17
  18. 18. 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 18 http://music.hyperreal.org/artists/brian_eno/images/cig.jpg
  19. 19. Brian Eno • * 1948: Art school, glam rock, ambient, avant-garde (Bowie) • Electronic composer – Producer: e.g. U2, Coldplay, • Can„t read or write music, or play an instrument well – ref. music escaping sheets (Chris Cutler) Working towards different music, because constraints of classical composition are shifted - Oblique strategies Ode To Gravity: Pt. I: 59 min. 30 sek. - 1:02:35 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 19 http://smith3000.files.wordpress.com/2008/10/brianeno.jpg
  20. 20. The Studio as Compositional Tool • interplay of live vs. recording – many times mixed • lifting musical constraints • “…working directly with sound, and there is no transmission loss between you and the sound – you handle it.” – Brian Eno (p. 129) • summary on the history (Ode Pt. II first 3 min.) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 20
  21. 21. Digital (Re)Production • 1980s: CD, DAT / DAB – WAV & AIFF – Samplers become affordable • 1982: MIDI & Roland Baseline and Drum Machines • Rise of electro and techno – Detroit: Auto-city! • Ambient -> chill-out • 1989: Max • (Re)Producing sound by writing (code)… – Cage„s Williams Mix (1952) took a year now 5 min. – Math turns directly into music (NIN, LOSD, Kiln) • also natural science – conversion between digital media! 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 21
  22. 22. Unlimited Reproduction • 1991: MP3 (Fraunhofer IIS, Erlangen) • 1992: Minidisc • 1997: Max/MSP • 1998: Portable MP3 players • Embracing glitches and errors of electronic music (e.g. scratches, compression) – also 8Bit • Oval – Post-Post • People Like Us – Recyclopedia Britannica (2002) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 22
  23. 23. Studio as the Instrument • 2008: Brian Eno: Bloom (iPhone app) • Technology becomes mobile and ubiquitously available • Focus returns to the performance – Which often involves recording… • Even less transmission loss… • Everybody can be a composer 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 23 http://www.buzzoutroom.com/main/images/bloom.jpg
  24. 24. 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 24 http://archive.v2.nl/v2_events/2000/deaf_00/symposium/kodwoeshun_symposium_2.jpg
  25. 25. Kodwo Eshun • * 1967: Writer and theorist, Prof. @ Goldsmiths • Black music & afro-futurism – it„s black, but it isn„t !?! • the „soulful“ vs. the „postsoul“ • „Alien Music is a synthetic recombinator, an applied art technology for amplifying the rates of becoming alien. Optimize the ratios of excentricity. Synthesize yourself.“ (p. 158) • Science of machine music • Unlimited reproduction & the anxiety of missing out (video interv. 03:00 ~ 2 min.) 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 25
  26. 26. 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 26 http://artword.net/artwordlist/wp-content/uploads/2008/10/CLC_hymn_sunra.jpg
  27. 27. Generative Music • „Leakage, seepage, adoption, osmosis, a bstraction, contagion: these describe the life of sound work today.“ (Cuter, p. 152) • Eno on evolution… • Steal This Film II: – 19:00 about how the internet is for reproduction… • Neural Network music composition: – http://cssp.us/pdf/D_Watts_Six_Degrees_CSSP.pdf 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 27
  28. 28. Summary • culture <-> technology • (or music, or society) • ? -> (notation) -> reproduction -> production -> generation -> self- reproduction -> self-generation -> ? • Milestones: Tape, Digitalization 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 28
  29. 29. That’s it! !?! 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 29 http://timesonline.typepad.com/photos/uncategorized/brian_eno.jpg
  30. 30. Sources & References • History: – http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sound_recording_and_reproduction – http://www.caipirinha.com/Film/modulations/timeline.html • http://de.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walter_Benjamin • http://www.google.com/url?sa=t&source=web&ct=res&cd=2&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.arteclab.uni- bremen.de%2F~robben%2FKunstwerkBenjamin.pdf&ei=iNImSubfO8SksAazvMHZBQ&usg=AFQjCNGRprfP1sRRE3EE PSJdNAf_qQ-Hjw&sig2=2_aIh8nzZzytTqGPk6ibaw • http://www.ccutler.com/ • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henry_Cow • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chris_Cutler • http://music.hyperreal.org/artists/brian_eno/ • http://www.myspace.com/ambientlegend • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brian_Eno • http://radiom.org/detail.php?omid=OTG.1980.02.02.A • http://cssp.us/pdf/D_Watts_Six_Degrees_CSSP.pdf • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-RivGWjlLoQ • http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kodwo_Eshun • http://www.spikemagazine.com/0400brilliantsun.php • http://www.jahsonic.com/BSF.html • http://www.heise.de/tp/r4/artikel/6/6902/1.html • http://fr.truveo.com/Generative-Music-eng/id/1313610500 • http://www.epitonic.com/artists/losd.html • Steal This Film I & II • Please also refer to the links on the slides… 6/8/2009 Music Age of (Re)Production 30

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