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Fresh Sound on John Cage's 100th Birthday

The Fresh Sound series returns to Space 4 Art, Wednesday September 5th. As the series often highlights experimental approaches to music making it is quite fitting that this installment will take place on John Cage’s 100th birthday.

To help commemorate the date, a new version of the late experimental sound-artist’s piece Williams Mix will be revealed. The original was a groundbreaking exploration of what could be done with short audio samples manipulated by 8 reel-to-reel tape recorders. It was perhaps the very first tape piece created in the US. Cage devised an entire system to categorize the samples - such as city sounds, manually created sounds, electronic sounds, and whether they were constant or varied in pitch and timbre. In addition, he included a score showing how to splice and twist the tape across the machine’s play-back head. The resulting effect was a spaghettified sound, perhaps not dissimilar to what granular synthesis can produce - although that sound effect came decades later and generally uses only one sound source.

With special permission from the Cage Trust, UCSD professor/inventor Tom Erbe gained permission to access a version of the 192 page score, via the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, and will be the first ever to recreate a full version of the piece in accordance to Cage's explicit editing directions. Over the course of several months, Erbe patiently recreated all the sound-altering plans into a digital format, and his performance will be possible via the visual programming language Pure Data.

Erbe admitted his attraction to impossible projects such as this one while I accompanied him on an outing to record some city sounds. In addition to the sounds he gathered himself, he asked several artists to submit sound samples, which will be incorporated in his performance of the piece.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANZavLNrisI

Also performing that night will be Dieter Moebius, well known in the experimental, Krautrock world. Moebius was a founding member of Kluster (in 1969) and has collaborated with folks such as Brian Eno.

Electronic experimentalist J Lesser of Matmos is on the bill, as is Negativwobblyland. The latter involves Peter Conheim of Negativeland, a group often sued for mischievously using samples in their sound collages – the Yesmen of sound art. Negativwobblyland will be using feedback machines constructed out of radios.

Curated by Bonnie Wright, the Fresh Sound series moved from Sushi Performance and Visual Art downtown to The Loft on UCSD’s campus and back downtown last year at Space 4 Art. The theme for this season of Fresh Sound is Crossovers - this being the opener.

Fresh Sound @ Space 4 Art 325 15th Street

8PM - Wednesday, September 5th

$15.00 and $10.00 students

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The Fresh Sound series returns to Space 4 Art, Wednesday September 5th. As the series often highlights experimental approaches to music making it is quite fitting that this installment will take place on John Cage’s 100th birthday.

To help commemorate the date, a new version of the late experimental sound-artist’s piece Williams Mix will be revealed. The original was a groundbreaking exploration of what could be done with short audio samples manipulated by 8 reel-to-reel tape recorders. It was perhaps the very first tape piece created in the US. Cage devised an entire system to categorize the samples - such as city sounds, manually created sounds, electronic sounds, and whether they were constant or varied in pitch and timbre. In addition, he included a score showing how to splice and twist the tape across the machine’s play-back head. The resulting effect was a spaghettified sound, perhaps not dissimilar to what granular synthesis can produce - although that sound effect came decades later and generally uses only one sound source.

With special permission from the Cage Trust, UCSD professor/inventor Tom Erbe gained permission to access a version of the 192 page score, via the New York Public Library for the Performing Arts, and will be the first ever to recreate a full version of the piece in accordance to Cage's explicit editing directions. Over the course of several months, Erbe patiently recreated all the sound-altering plans into a digital format, and his performance will be possible via the visual programming language Pure Data.

Erbe admitted his attraction to impossible projects such as this one while I accompanied him on an outing to record some city sounds. In addition to the sounds he gathered himself, he asked several artists to submit sound samples, which will be incorporated in his performance of the piece.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ANZavLNrisI

Also performing that night will be Dieter Moebius, well known in the experimental, Krautrock world. Moebius was a founding member of Kluster (in 1969) and has collaborated with folks such as Brian Eno.

Electronic experimentalist J Lesser of Matmos is on the bill, as is Negativwobblyland. The latter involves Peter Conheim of Negativeland, a group often sued for mischievously using samples in their sound collages – the Yesmen of sound art. Negativwobblyland will be using feedback machines constructed out of radios.

Curated by Bonnie Wright, the Fresh Sound series moved from Sushi Performance and Visual Art downtown to The Loft on UCSD’s campus and back downtown last year at Space 4 Art. The theme for this season of Fresh Sound is Crossovers - this being the opener.

Fresh Sound @ Space 4 Art 325 15th Street

8PM - Wednesday, September 5th

$15.00 and $10.00 students

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