FW: French Touch

Subject: FW: French Touch
From: Louis Dufort (siuol@sympatico.ca)
Date: Fri Oct 28 2005 - 21:29:22 EDT

le 10/27/05 11:33 PM, Kevin Austin à kevin.austin@videotron.ca a écrit :

> You are correct, as ea at Concordia is not electroacoustic music
> composition, it is electroacoustic studies.

Ah ok, the nuance is in fact very important!

> If "reduced listening" is a process of the removal of semantic layers
> from sound, this is part of the first assignment done by first year
> students, the (infamous) "sss" assignment. In one sense, it bring
> into the question of the "sound object" existing as and 'entity',
> rather than being something whose identity is created through
> limiting parametric variables.

True, but I think there is always a sound object to start of, even before we
do any sorts of intervention on the sound. That's why reduced listening is
so important right for the beginning of the composition process. Reduced
listening helps the composer to understand the morphological potential of a
sound that will guide him thru his many transformations and eventually give
him back NEW semantics layers, abstract or narrative. A citation or an
anecdotal sound would obviously not go thru this process.

> When the students have done the IPA transcription and removed all of
> the /s/'s, the collection of sounds demonstrates that there is no
> single "object" called /s/, but rather a set of parameters. There is
> inherent in this assignment the concept of "families of sounds", and
> that of (the processes) of 'transformation'. The model proposed is
> that the "sound object" (as such) doesn't exist outside of the
> process(es) of perception and identification. This is another way
> that I have found Schaeffer's ideas to differ from my experience.

When I listen to music , I don't look out for sound object neither apply
reduced listening. Reduced listening (a sound object is a direct result of
reduced listening) is a very useful tool for the composer and when you are
composing with sound material that is mostly complex (no pitch), very
dynamic, unpredictable etc, you have no choice to process by way of
perception and identification. How can you have any ideas of construction
if you don't know your material?

I believe that making electroacoustic music without any return back and
forth on the sound, and "the what does it mean" may result in a more
conceptual/intellectual approach where sound itself does not really matters
OR in the case where the music is based on more traditional parameter such
as tonal relation and or repeated rhythm patterns, sound as a sound object
may be very less important.

i.e. I bought a Steve Reich album, there's a piece call Six Pianos. Believe
it or not, the Piano were not real, they were all cheap sound piano samples.
The piece does work, why, because in this case the sound don't have any
importance compare to the rhythm/phasing fun. The piece could be played by
any other percussion instruments and still work.
>> Electroacoustic appeared when electronic music got mixed with music concrète.
> I hear by anecdote that 'electroacoustic' was used in England in the
> early 1950s, notably in the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.

In french although it is not use by everyone, we use Electro-Acoustique to
specify amplifier, sound and electricity (la chaîne électro-acoustique).
Electroacoustique in one word is use to determine the music electroacoustic.

Stockhausen's '66-67 Hymnen was here the reference of the first
electroacoustic piece (mix of electronic music and concrete)
> Best
> Kevin

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