LEONARDO MUSIC JOURNAL VOLUME 13
Groove, Pit and Wave
Recording, Transmission and Music
with CD curated by Philip Sherburne
Despite Thomas Edison’s assumption that the gramophone was nothing more than a sonic autograph album, suitable only for playing back the speeches of famous people, over the last 100 years recording has radically transformed the composition, dissemination and consumption of music. Similarly, the businesslike dots & dashes of Morse and Marconi have evolved into a music-laden web of radio masts, dishes, satellites, cables and servers. Sound is encoded in grooves on vinyl, particles on tape and pits in plastic; it travels as acoustic pressure, electromagnetic waves and pulses of light.
The rise of the DJ in the last two decades has signaled the arrival of the medium as the instrument – the crowning achievement of a generation for whom tapping the remote control is as instinctive as tapping two sticks together. Turntables, CD players, radios, tape recorders (and their digital emulations) are played, not merely heard; scratching, groove noise, CD glitches, tape hiss and radio interference are the sound of music, not sound effects. John Cage’s 1960 "Cartridge Music" has yet to enter the charts, but its sounds are growing more familiar.
In this issue of Leonardo Music Journal, the following authors contribute their thoughts on the role of recording and/or transmission in the creation, performance and distribution of music: Peter Manning, Yasunao Tone, Douglas Kahn with Christian Marclay, Nick Collins, David First, Matthew Burtner, Guy-Marc Hinant, Caleb Stuart, Ã
Comments are closed