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Hiaz.MusicOfSoundr1.1 - 05 Jul 2005 - 13:16 - TWikiGuesttopic end

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Music of Sound


ErkkiKurenniemi: 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 Rameau in the 18th century. We are needlessly the prisoners of traditional instruments and notation, since computers have already liberated us from them. The flypaper of tonal music does admittedly caress the ear, but it is interesting to investigate atonal music through some larger form. Such as sculptures or architecture. I am interested in what happens when we go from the art of music to the science of sound. [...]


LaMonteYoung: ... In Dream Music there is a radical departure from European and even much Eastern music in that the basis of musical relationship is entirely harmony. Not European harmony as textbooks have outlined it, but the intervallic proportions and acoustical consequences of the particular ratios which sound concomitantly in the overtone series when any simple fundamental is produced. Melody does not exist at all (The Disappearance of Melody) unless one is forced to hear the movement from group to group of various simultaneously sounded frequencies derived from the overtone series as melodic because of previous musical conditioning. Even before the first man moved successively from one frequency to another (melody if you like) a pattern for this movement, that is the relationship of the second frequency to the first was already predetermined (harmonically) by the overtone structure of the fundamental of the first sound.

As in the life of the Tortoise the drone is the first sound. It last forever and cannot have begun but is taken up again from time to time until it lasts forever as continuous sound in Dream Houses where many musicians and students will live and execute a musical work. Dream Houses will allow music which, after a year, ten years, a hundred years or more of a constant sound, would not only be a real living organism with a life and tradition all its own but one with a capacity to propel itself by its own momentum. This music may play without stopping for thousands of years, just as the Tortoise has continued for millions of years past, and perhaps only after the Tortoise has again continued for as many million years as all of the tortoises in the past will it be able to sleep and dream of the next order of tortoises to come and of ancient tigers with black fur and omens the 189/98 whirlwind in the Ancestral Lake Region only now that our species has had this much time to hear music that has lasted so long because we have just come out of a long quiet period and we are just remembering how long sounds can last and only now becoming civilized enough again that we want to hear sounds continuously. It will become easier as we move further into this period of sound. We will become more attached to sound. We will be able to have precisely the right sound in every dreamroom playroom and workroom, further reinforcing the integral proportions resonating through structure (re: earlier Architectural Music), Dream House (shrines, etc.) at which performers, students, and listeners may visit even from long distances away or at which they may spend long periods of Dreamtime weaving the ageless quotients of the Tortoise in the tapestry of Eternal Music ...

(from concert program notes, 1964 La Monte Young 1968) sics


-- HiazHhzz - 28 Apr 2003
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