Synopses & Reviews
andldquo;The smartest book on the German roots of the music and media arts that happened once electricity joined sound to make music. With the advent of these innovative art forms, new technological possibilities were hacked, and recordings stopped repeating themselves and performed something new.andrdquo;andmdash;Douglas Kahn, author of Earth Sound Earth Signal: Energies and Earth Magnitude in the Arts
andldquo;Instruments for New Music is a fascinating story of the technological music instrumentarium that not only gives composers and improvisers new sounds and new ways to play but also engages all of us in new social and philosophical insights.andrdquo;andmdash;Pauline Oliveros, Composer and Professor of Practice,and#160;Department of the Arts, Rensselaer Polytechnic Instituteand#160;
andldquo;Every so often a book comes along with something new to say about a familiar topic. Through meticulous new research on electronic music in Germany during the Weimar Republic, Thomas Patteson recovers the forgotten history of the music. He provides the most detailed account we have of how electronic music became tainted by the Nazis and how Stockhausen rewrote its history in his Cologne studio. Incredible instruments were developed during this early periodandmdash;not least the trautonium used by Hitchcock to make the scary sounds of The Birds! This book shows how todayandrsquo;s sounds were born long before the age of electronics.andrdquo;andmdash;Trevor Pinch, author of Analog Days: The History and Impact of the Moog Synthesizer
Pierre Schaefferand#8217;s In Search of a Concrete Music (and#192; la recherche dand#8217;une musique concrand#232;te) has long been considered a classic text in electroacoustic music and sound recording. Now Schaefferand#8217;s pioneering workand#151;at once a journal of his experiments in sound composition and a treatise on the raison dand#8217;and#234;tre of and#147;concrete musicand#8221;and#151;is available for the first time in English translation. Schaefferand#8217;s theories have had a profound influence on composers working with technology. However, they extend beyond the confines of the studio and are applicable to many areas of contemporary musical thought, such as defining an and#145;instrumentand#8217; and classifying sounds. Schaeffer has also become increasingly relevant to DJs and hip-hop producers as well as sound-based media artists. This unique book is essential for anyone interested in contemporary musicology or media history.
"Few books have described with such precision the evolution of thoughts and concepts behind the invention of a new music as A La Recherche dand#8217;une Musique Concrete
. In this book Schaeffer has unveiled the major philosophical problems of music of the second half of the twentieth century. An excellent translation by Dack and North." and#151;Daniel Teruggi, Head of Institut National Audiovisuel, Groupe de Recherches Musicales, Paris
and#147;A fascinating glimpse into the mind of Pierre Schaeffer, the creator of the very first kind of electroacoustic music, the Concrete music, here in a stellar translation. In this diary combined with musical considerations, Schaeffer gives the necessary keys and invites the reader to follow, step by step, how Concrete music became a major trend of the twentieth century." and#151;Marc Battier, Professor of Musicology, University Paris-Sorbonne
and#147;Pierre Schaefferand#8217;s writings are fundamental to our understanding of twentieth-century music in general and all the sound arts that use technology. This book reveals a truly experimental journey with its detours and frustrationsand#151;yet with determination, dazzling imagination and insight, Schaeffer pieces together a coherent and radical theory of music made through sound as perceived. Christine North and John Dackand#8217;s translation brilliantly captures Schaefferand#8217;s painstaking reinvention of the vocabulary of music.and#8221; and#151;Simon Emmerson, Professor of Music, Technology, and Innovation, De Montfort University
At publication date, a free ebook version of this title will be available through Luminos, University of California Pressandrsquo; new Open Access publishing program for monographs. Visit www.luminosoa.org to learn more.
Player pianos, radio-electric circuits, gramophone records, and optical sound filmandmdash;these were the cutting-edge acoustic technologies of the early twentieth century, and for many musicians and artists of the time, these devices were also the implements of a musical revolution. Instruments for New Music traces a diffuse network of cultural agents who shared the belief that a truly modern music could be attained only through a radical challenge to the technological foundations of the art. Centered in Germany during the 1920s and and#39;30s, the movement for new instruments encompassed a broad spectrum of aesthetic orientations, from the exploration of microtonal tunings and exotic tone-colors to the ability to compose directly for automatic musical machines. It involved composers, inventors, and visual artists, including Paul Hindemith, Ernst Toch, Jandouml;rg Mager, Friedrich Trautwein, Landaacute;szlandoacute; Moholy-Nagy, Walter Ruttmann, and Oskar Fischinger. Pattesonandrsquo;s fascinating study combines an artifact-oriented history of new music in the early twentieth century with an astute revisiting of still-relevant debates about the relationship between technology and the arts.
About the Author
Composer Pierre Schaeffer
(1910-1995) was the inventor of musique concrand#232;te music created by combining and manipulating recorded sounds (rather than being played on conventional musical instruments).
John Dack is Senior Research Fellow and Director of the Sonic Arts Department at Middlesex University. Christine North is retired as Lecturer in French at Middlesex University.
Table of Contents
I. First Journal of Concrete Music (1948and#150;1949)
II. Second Journal of Concrete Music (195and#150;1951)
III. The Concrete Experiment in Music (1952)
Chapter 14. The Concrete Approach
Chapter 15. The Experimental Method
Chapter 16. The Musical Object
Chapter 17. From the Object to Language
Chapter 18. From the Object to the Subject
Chapter 19. Inventory
Chapter 2. Farewells to Concrete Music
IV. Outline of a Concrete Musical Training