Re: "sh"ould/"c"ould - wood

Subject: Re: "sh"ould/"c"ould - wood
From: Neil Wiernik (
Date: Fri Jun 25 1999 - 09:28:59 EDT

I have to say thank you Rosemary you have clarified everything I havebeen
tring to say all along!!


At 10:20 AM 6/25/99 +0100, you wrote:
>Stephen Rieck wrote:
>> ....
>> no matter what the details addressed in an EA/techno argument, nobody is
>> likely to experience revelationary or revolutionary insight and change
>> their work with sound as a result.
>?? Actually, they might. I may be reading this wrong, but you seem to
>be implying that working with sound is (should be?) carried out on an
>exclusively sensory and intuitive level. If you talk to/ read about a
>variety of composers (e.g.Xenakis) you will find that some composers are
>in fact motivated/guided/inspired by a strong dosage of intellectual
>reflection -- to the point of finding new sounds / forms because of
>having an abstract thought. I don't think it's a necessary approach for
>everyone, but it clearly helps some of us. (to be high quality, I think
>there has to be a mix of intuition/conscious thought whose percentage
>mix will depend on the personality involved, and maybe the target
> Talking about categories, for example, helps some of us think/explore
>ideas, and we like to think (actively) while composing -- even treating
>composition as another means of expressing thought. The fact that it is
>impossible to completely objectify music does not mean that it is not
>helpful to "play" with the categorizing. Ligeti and Stockhausen, among
>others, developed their (respective) alternatives to serial music partly
>through this device -- identifying textural properties such as "sticky",
>"brittle" etc and then using these metaphors as ways to refine the
>musical properties -- thereby developing a clearer relationship between
>the implied characteristics and familiar environmental properties.
> I think the constant searching for definitions (esp on this list) is
>undertaken not so much because we are all confused and bewildered, but
>because the paths that our brains have to follow when trying to discover
>a definition are pretty interesting, and can help each of us know where
>we stand in relationship to it (and in some cases, for example, suddenly
>realize that we're in unnecessarily confined corners of a much bigger
> From recent discussions, I conclude that the importance of knowing what
>techno is will be most critical when identifying one's work for a
>competition -- and there, it might be advantageous in some instances to
>be misleading ...
> For the rest of the time, we will continue to like what we like --
>those who think they are one type of composer/listener or another will
>miss out on some good music.

Neil Wiernik  <>
User Support, Web Networks
401 Richmond St. W. #384
Phone 416-596-0212 x.50 
Fax 416-596-1374
Outside Toronto 1-800-932-7003 x.2

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b27 : Wed Jun 11 2003 - 13:09:01 EDT