This is a recording of a concert of live electronic music presented at the University of California in San Diego on April 18, 1968, featuring works by Martin Bartlett, Toshi Ichiyanagi, and Anthony Gnazzo. The original concert program notes, written by Pauline Oliveros, states:
For the past twenty years electronic music has been associated with magnetic tape and a stage devoid of performers. The equipment found in most classical electronic music studios was never intended for music-making but was adapted by composers and technicians interested in electronic sounds and in the electronic manipulation of sound.
Now that technological media are no longer considered alien, and now that electronic pop has created a whole new era of live music, J. Petrillo’s fear in the 1940’s that canned music would replace the human performer seems unfounded.
Pop musicians such as the Beatles and the Rolling Stones, having conquered the stage and having sent millions of people to the dance hall, are moving into recording studios for sound modification techniques which confine them to records. Classical musicians, on the other hand, are moving out of the studio, string studio equipment out onto the stage with them.
Performers formerly concerned with Steinways and Baldwins are now concerned with the relative merits of McIntosh or Marantz. methods of turning knobs and using patch cords have the same implications as striking or pressing keys. Some composers are more interested in sidebands than triads or tone rows; these same composers are designing and publishing exclusive electronic circuitry for their compositions. In keeping with this trend, many young composers are finding more guidance in the physics lab than in music theory classes.
Anthony Gnazzo, director of the Mills College Tap Music Center in Oakland, California, represents a new kind of composer. He is equally capable of reading a music score or schematic; of composing an instrumental ensemble or designing and building a twenty-channel sound distribution system.
David Tudor is a fantastic pianist and a pioneer among twentieth century performers, introducing new methods of sound presentation, acoustic and electronic. many compositions which give the performer responsibilities equaling or exceeding the composer’s in determining the compositions have been written exclusively for David Tudor. He is currently giving a seminar in Live Electronic Music at the Mills College Tape Center.
Both Mr. Tudor and Mr. Gnazzo have produced “combines:” works which incorporate audio and visual circuits activated instrumentally. These works use no composing means but compose themselves out of their own composite instrumental nature.
Martin Bartlett from Vancouver, Canada, is finishing his Master thesis in composition at Mills College. “Cité Libre” gives instructions for musical responses but leaves the choice of “sound producing means” up to the performers.
Toshi Ichiyanagi, recently recently returned to Tokyo after working in U. S. electronic music studios and computer centers on a grant from the Rockefeller third fund. He say of “Appearance,” “It leaves things open - at the same time, outside elements appear. It’s like an old Japanese garden design: outside elements like the moon, clouds, trees change all year round. You look at the movement of the stars. Those things are included in the garden, however they are not controlled by the creator.”
Gnazzo’s “Theater Piece IV” is a combine which includes theatrics and poetics with other artistic natural elements.
Note: A fourth piece, David Behrman’s “Players with Circuits” was also performed at this concert but is unfortunately not included in this recording.
For more detailed program information and to browse other material in the Other Minds Archive visit: radiOM.org