Author(s): Christoph Cox (Hampshire College, USA)
The groundbreaking Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music (Continuum; September 2004; paperback original) maps the aural and discursive terrain of vanguard music today. Rather than offering a history of contemporary music, Audio Culture traces the genealogy of current musical practices and theoretical concerns, drawing lines of connection between recent musical production and earlier moments of sonic experimentation. It aims to foreground the various rewirings of musical composition and performance that have taken place in the past few decades and to provide a critical and theoretical language for this new audio culture. This new and expanded edition of the Audio Culture contains twenty-five additional essays, including four newly-commissioned pieces. Taken as a whole, the book explores the interconnections among such forms as minimalism, indeterminacy, musique concrete, free improvisation, experimental music, avant-rock, dub reggae, ambient music, hip hop, and techno via writings by philosophers, cultural theorists, and composers. Instead of focusing on some "crossover" between "high art" and "popular culture," Audio Culture takes all these musics as experimental practices on par with, and linked to, one another. While cultural studies has tended to look at music (primarily popular music) from a sociological perspective, the concern here is philosophical, musical, and historical. Audio Culture includes writing by some of the most important musical thinkers of the past half-century, among them John Cage, Brian Eno, Ornette Coleman, Pauline Oliveros, Maryanne Amacher, Glenn Gould, Umberto Eco, Jacques Attali, Simon Reynolds, Eliane Radigue, David Toop, John Zorn, Karlheinz Stockhausen, and many others. Each essay has its own short introduction, helping the reader to place the essay within musical, historical, and conceptual contexts, and the volume concludes with a glossary, a timeline, and an extensive discography.
A new and expanded edition of the original groundbreaking text that maps the aural and discursive terrain of vanguard music via writings by philosophers, cultural theorists, and composers.
Christoph Cox is Professor of Philosophy at Hampshire College, USA. He is the author of Sonic Flux: Sound, Art, and Metaphysics and Nietzsche: Naturalism and Interpretation, and co-editor of Realism Materialism Art. Daniel Warner is Professor of Music at Hampshire College, USA. He is a composer, electronic artist, and author of Live Wires: A History of Electronic Music.
Acknowledgments Introduction Part One: Theories I. Music and Its Others: Noise, Sound, Silence Introduction 1. Jacques Attali, "Noise and Politics" 2. Luigi Russolo, "The Art of Noises: Futurist Manifesto" 3. Edgard Varese, "The Liberation of Sound" 4. Henry Cowell, "The Joys of Noise" 5. John Cage, "The Future of Music: Credo" 6. R. Murray Schafer, "The Music of the Environment" 7. Anne Carson, "The Gender of Sound" 8. Drew Daniel, "Queer Sound" 9. Kevin Quashie, "The Quiet of Blackness: Miles Davis and John Coltrane" II. Modes of Listening Introduction 10. Marshall McLuhan, "Visual and Acoustic Space" 11. Pierre Schaeffer, "Acousmatics" 12. Francisco Lopez, "Profound Listening and Environmental Sound Matter" 13. Brian Eno, "Ambient Music" 14. Pauline Oliveros, "Auralizing the Sonosphere" 15. Maryanne Amacher, "Perceptual Geography: Third Ear Music and Structure Borne Sound" 16. Evelyn Glennie, "Hearing Essay" 17. Iain Chambers, "The Aural Walk" 18. Annahid Kassabian, "Ubiquitous Listening" 19. Lawrence Abu Hamdan, "Forensic Listening" 20. Ultra-red, "Organizing the Silence" III. Music in the Age of Electronic Reproduction Introduction 21. Glenn Gould, "The Prospects of Recording" 22. Brian Eno, "The Studio as Compositional Tool" 23. John Oswald, "Bettered by the Borrower: The Ethics of Musical Debt" 24. Chris Cutler, "Plunderphonia" 25. Kodwo Eshun, "Operating System for the Redesign of Sonic Reality" 26. Kenneth Goldsmith, "Six File-Sharing Epiphanies" 27. Tara Rodgers, "Cultivating Activist Lives in Sound" Part Two: Practices IV. The Open Work Introduction 28. Umberto Eco, "Poetics of the Open Work" 29. John Cage, "Composition as Process: Indeterminacy" 30. Christoph Cox, "Every Sound You Can Imagine: On Graphic Scores" 31. Earle Brown, "Transformations and Developments of a Radical Aesthetic" 32. John Zorn, "The Game Pieces" 33. Anthony Braxton, "Introduction to Catalog of Works" 34. Lawrence "Butch" Morris, "Notes on Conduction" V. Experimental Musics Introduction 35. Michael Nyman, "Towards (a Definition of) Experimental Music" 36. John Cage, "Introduction to Themes & Variations" 37. Brian Eno, "Generating and Organizing Variety in the Arts" 38. Cornelius Cardew, Scratch Music Draft Constitution 39. David Toop, "The Generation Game: Experimental Music and Digital Culture" 40. Jennifer Walshe on "The New Discipline" 41. Yan Jun, "Re-Invent: Experimental Music in China" VI. Improvised Musics Introduction 42. Ornette Coleman, "Change of the Century" 43. Wadada Leo Smith, "Notes (8 Pieces): Creative Music" 44. Derek Bailey, "Free Improvisation" 45. Frederic Rzewski, "Little Bangs: A Nihilist Theory of Improvisation" 46. George E. Lewis, "Improvised Music After 1950: Afrological and Eurological Perspectives" 47. Vijay Iyer, "Improvisation: Terms and Conditions" 48. Mattin, "Going Fragile" 49. Trio Sowari et al., "27 Questions For a Start ... And Some Answers to Begin With" VII. Minimalisms Introduction 50. Kyle Gann, "Thankless Attempts at a Definition of Minimalism" 51. Wim Mertens, "Basic Concepts of Minimal Music" 52. Steve Reich, "Music as a Gradual Process" 53. La Monte Young and Marian Zazeela, "Conversation with Richard Kostelanetz" 54. Tony Conrad, "LYssophobia: On Four Violins" 55. Susan McClary, "Rap, Minimalism and Structures of Time in Late Twentieth-Century Culture" 56. Philip Sherburne, "Draw a Straight Line and Follow It: Minimalism in Contemporary Electronic Dance Music" VIII. DJ Culture Introduction 57. Laszlo Moholy-Nagy, "Production-Reproduction: Potentialities of the Phonograph" 58. Situationist International, "Detournement as Negation and Prelude" 59. William S. Burroughs, "The Invisible Generation" 60. Paul D. Miller, "Algorithms: Erasures and the Art of Memory" 61. David Toop, "Replicant: On Dub" 62. Simon Reynolds, "Post-Rock" 63. Marina Rosenfeld, "A Few Notes on Production and Playback" IX. Electronic Music and Electronica Introduction 64. Jacques Barzun, "Introductory Remarks to a Program of Works Produced at the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center" 65. Karlheinz Stockhausen, "Electronic and Instrumental Music" 66. Karlheinz Stockhausen et al., "Stockhausen vs. the Technocrats" 67. Eliane Radigue, "The Mysterious Power of the Infinitesimal" 68. Kim Cascone, "The Aesthetics of Failure: `Post-Digital' Tendencies in Contemporary Computer Music" 69. Holly Herndon, "Laptop Intimacy and Platform Politics" Bibliography Chronology Discography Glossary Index of Quotations Index