Start of topic | Skip to actions

An exploratory search for totally new kinds of user interfaces for musical instruments and the semiautomatic generation of music have been among Kurenniemi's main goals throughout all these years.
The first "automated instrument" he invented was the Andromatic, a synthesizer purchased in 1968 by the Swedish composers
According to Kurenniemi's own "principle of unity", all his projects - articles, plans, visions of the future, films, home videos, lectures, TV interviews, his work at the Heureka Science Centre, musical compositions and the fantastic electric instruments he has built - reflect the same holistic ideas.
MT: What do you feel about the younger generation's recently awoken interest in your projects from the 1960s? EK: It's a bit irritating, but understandable. Young people who have lived the whole of their lives with computers, are interested in how we got here. For us in the 60s the question was more: what is all this actually leading to?
I have been lucky to the extent that I happened to be born in 1941 and to live my life in the second half of the 20 MT: Which of your works do you yourself now in retrospect consider the most important? EK: None of them. Art has never been a goal or end in itself for me. More important has been the process. My projects have been no more than scratching the surface, bringing technology and art together. The main thing has been the collaboration MT: Does none of them stand out from the others?
EK: Perhaps I have retained an affinity for my own first composition MT: What do you think of the electronic instruments you designed?
EK: They may have some historical curiosity value, from the time before microprocessors and home computers. But in their day they never went into serial production as was hoped. MT: What kinds of role models have you had on the art scene?
EK: Well, generally speaking dadaism and surrealism have always attracted me and still do. I have had no permanent role models. But important individual names have been the musical philosophies of MT: What are you working on at the moment?
EK: I am currently lecturing at the Sibelius Academy about the relationship between music and mathematics. I am investigating the theory of musical harmony and it really is, to put it mildly, prompting doubts among the composition students. I have not published much about it in written form yet. I did actually publish several articles in the 80s and 90s, but not about the results of the last few years, which are the 'best'. The theory of scalelessness has been hard to sell. My theory will diverge considerably from what has been taught about scales for over 200 years. Musical theory has stayed totally unchanged since the days of
from: http://www.frame-fund.fi/news/dimi.html see also: - http://www.heureka.fi/portal/englanti/heureka,_finnish_science_centre/
- http://www.beige.org/studyinlight/pic53.jpg.html
## The structure of rational scales and intervals in music - a geometrical viewMr. Erkki Kurenniemi Musical structures such as intervals, chords, scales, tuning systems, and rhythms are studied in a geometrical representation as point sets or distributions in tonal space, defined as the integer lattice of prime exponent vectors. If f is a rational frequency or frequency ratio, it can be written as a product of factors p_i^x_i, where p_i is the i'th prime. The integer exponents x_i are uniquely determined by f according to the fundamental theorem of arithmetic. A logarithmic measure of pitch is then a sum of terms x_i * log(p_i). Defining the constant 'pitch vector' P componentwise as P_i = log(p_i), the logarithmic pitch is obtained as the inner product x . P, where x is the prime exponent vector. The advantage of this representation is that while rational divisibility relations are lost when one takes ordinary logarithms, the tonal space lattice vectors obtained by taking logarithms prime-wise, preserve divisibility relations. Because of the infinitude of primes, the full tonal space is infinite-dimensional but luckily, for almost all music theory, only the first three dimensions corresponding to the first three primes 2, 3, and 5 suffice. A principal tool is a linear rotation operator which performs a change of basis such that one of the basis vetors is in the direction of the pitch vector. The remaining orthogonal basis vectors then span the 'enharmonic dimensions' which chart rational approximations to a given pitch in a musically meaningful way. The simplest subsets in the tonal space are parallelepipeds defined by pairs of integers in each tonal dimension. They are called divisor sets or divisor hamonies because they consist of those multiples of one fixed number which also divide another fixed number. Tonal theory seems to propose that divisor harmonies should be taken as the natural chords and scales in music. They yield a measure for musical chord tension, the volume of the smallest harmony containing the given chord. This was first observed by Euler.
Tonal theory makes several predictions that can be tested with listening experiments or electrophysiology: - It gives a plausible explanation of the audible difference between major and minor triads through their common spanned harmony, the divisor set of 60.
- There are 'mellow' settings of major and minor triads, obtained by stacking a fifth and a major sixth in the two possible ways.
- The most natural diatonic minor scale has its second degree flattened.
- The just chromatic scale is obtained as the divisor set of 345600; it comes in major and minor forms and several chromatic modes in between.
- Tonal theory gives a systematic way to classify microintervals and microtonality.
- It suggests some properties of the neural code of auditive signals. Sound spectrum peaks that are close in the tonal space should often have the same physical source as phase-locked oscillation modes of a nonlinear physical body. It would have been a clever strategy by evolution to develop mechanisms that employ phase-locked neural circuits to detect such exact number ratios to help to group spectral peaks to individual sound sources.
As technological applications tonal theory suggests: - A musical instrument that constantly retunes itself according to the music played and is able to maintain just tuning despite of tonal modulations
- A navigation method for blind. Because the standard tonal space is 3-dimensional, arbitrary distributions of shapes in the environment can be encoded into harmonious sounds.
from: http://sigwww.cs.tut.fi/TICSP/PRESENTATIONS/2002%20Summaries/2002_09_17.html
## more links
- http://www.kiasma.fi/on-off/essay.html
- http://www.math.niu.edu/~rusin/papers/uses-math/music/sounds
- http://www.phinnweb.com/early/erkkikurenniemi/
to top Edit | Attach image or document | Printable version | Raw text | More topic actionsRevisions: | r1.6 | > | r1.5 | > | r1.4 | Total page history | Backlinks Copyright © 1996 - 2006 by hiaz.
All material on this collaboration platform is the property of the contributing authors. Ideas, requests, problems regarding TWiki? Send feedback. |