Re: French Touch

Subject: Re: French Touch
From: Louis Dufort (
Date: Thu Oct 27 2005 - 11:53:45 EDT

> Thanks for the thoughts.
> I can't speak for others in this matter, just from my experiences.
> I find Schaeffer to be flawed and limited in a general way, and in
> many specifics, notably in his apparent lack of knowledge regarding
> perception. It seems we just hear things differently. For me,
> Schaeffer works in 'codified' or language-specific fashion. In my
> view as an academic and curricular designer, it is only one of a
> number of paths.

Ok that's one huge difference here! At the Conservatoire de musique de
Montréal and University of Montréal, 1 full course are given around
Shcaeffer sound perception to undergraduate student. For me, the notion of
the sound object develop by Schaeffer is the very basic of electroacoustic
music writing.
> My thinking was strongly influenced by (read assisted in being
> codified) Appleton and Perera's "The Development and Practice of
> Electronic Music" (1975), which while now out of date, presents a
> much more universal view of electroacoustics (including two different
> histories).

Ok, another big difference where in my case, I don't consider electronic
music to be electroacoustic music. Electronic music is for me something
much more attach to instrumental scheme and is very limited due to the fact
that it is most of the time pitch oriented and not "sound" oriented (concept
de l'objet sonore et de l'écoute réduite). Electroacoustic appeared when
electronic music got mixed with music concrète.

> Schaeffer doesn't deal with electroacoustics, and Concordia has an
> Electroacoustic Studies undergraduate program.
> To site R Murray Schafer as an advocate of electroacoustics is to
> misunderstand him. I would propose that you read his thoughts on
> technology and how it has destroyed the humanist spirit. He recently
> refered to himself as a Luddite. (He is currently Artist-in-Residence
> in the Faculty of Fine Arts at Concordia.)

Well he can say a lot but his writing on sound ecology and sound perception
did influenced a lot of electroacoustic composers.

Au plaisir


> Best
> Kevin
> At 00:24 -0400 2005/10/27, Louis Dufort wrote:
>> Taking about "reduced listening" and seeing that a lot of you out there are
>> aware of Pierre Schaeffer's writing made me wonder if english
>> electroacoustic teachers at Concordia, Mcgill, SFU, across Canada and US
>> give a complete course on sound perception using the Traité des objects
>> Musicaux as the principal source?
>> My guess is no and I would argue this is why our music is so different
>> between Québec, and the rest of Canada & US. In fact in England where I
>> believe do use a lot of Schaeffer principal notion seems to be closer to
>> Québec électro than the music made on the west side of St-laurent Street.
>> Diversity is certainly a sign of richness but one should wonder why is there
>> a huge gap on both side, although English speaking community do have their
>> Schafer, Murray it is, very strong on the west coast.
>> I must admit that the last EMS05 in MTL did make some very nice effort to
>> mix it up. Any comments on this would be appreciated.
>> louis

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