Cage/Feldman Radio Chats

James Pritchett has made an entry point for his recent series of blogs about Radio Happenings, a show of of over four hours of conversations between John Cage and Morton Feldman, on WBAI Radio, New York City, in 1966 and 1967: On the Cage/Feldman Radio Happenings. You can find them on Pritchett’s blog, The Piano in My Life, 7–29 December 2015.

And if you’re interested in other articles about experimental music, drop in on the Journal of Experimental Music Studies, the EMC’s own house journal, containing original work, reprints of classic writings from Contact magazine and elsewhere, and  links to related writings on the web.

Anderson on the Scratch Orchestra and the ‘Leicester School’

Thanks to the nice people at the University of Michigan Press, we are able to make available an uncorrected draft of the chapter by Virginia Anderson, ‘Experimental Music after Nyman’.* This chapter was published in the book Tomorrow is the Question: New Directions in Experimental Music Studies, edited by Benjamin Piekut (Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press, 2014), and has been uploaded onto Virginia Anderson’s page. This might make a nice taster for the book as a whole, which is available here. For now, here is the draft chapter:…/British_Experimental_Music_After… .

Here’s Virginia’s abstract:

Tomorrow is the Question presents an approach to experimental music designed to be different from that of the ‘first wave’ authors (David Nicholls, David Patterson, Christopher Shultis), by exploring a global, multi-ethnic, and postgenre scene beyond strictly Cagean music. The chapter itself begins by noting a radical difference in subject matter between Gavin Bryars’ foreword to the Ashgate Research Companion to Experimental Music (2009) and the book itself. This begs the question of what ‘experimental’ music actually is: the process and the resulting sound? Or is it cultural: the shared ethics and activity that tie musicians together as a group, regardless of the music they make? I compare the ethos and activity of the Scratch Orchestra, who appear in Michael Nyman’s Experimental Music: Cage and Beyond (1974) with the Leicester School of composers (which Bryars founded). The Leicester School music can sound classical, almost opposite to the ‘textbook’ definition of experimental music, yet its subject matter and presentation exemplify traits that are fully as experimental as Cage.

And Virginia also says, ‘Hope you enjoy it!’

* ‘After Nyman’ means after the 1974 publication of the book Experimental Music: Cage and Beyond by Michael Nyman. Michael Nyman is, of course, very active as a composer today, so there’s no question of ‘after’ Nyman the composer!

South Leicestershire’s finest

There will be another meeting of Slie, the South Leicestershire Improvisors Orchestra) onn Thursday night, 4 February, at Quad Studios, Downtown Leicester, 78  Friday Street, from 8.30 pm.

This is what Slie says:

We’re having January off (well, we did run right up into December!) but return in February for the first blast of 2016: our regular core of players featuring Virginia Anderson (reeds), Lee Allatson (drums), Bruce Coates (saxes), Christopher Hobbs (piano and percussion) and Trevor Lines (bass), but this year we plan to augment the line up with different guest players each month… Spicy! Hope to see you there.

The guest player this month is Rick Nance.

The s.l.i.e are delighted to announce that our guest player for February’s event is Rick Nance (guitar). Rick Nance is a performer and musical researcher who plays trumpet and classical/electric guitar and is a composer of electro-acoustic music, primarily acousmatic. He has a PhD from DeMontfort University in Leicester, UK and is presently featured as a guest composer in the studios of Birmingham-Southern College. He has participated in free improvisation ensembles with surrealists TransMuseq, free music trio PhantomLimb, and the noise/improv collective Liquid Brick. His compositions have been performed in Paris, Pisa, New York, Liverpool, Mexico City, New Orleans, San Francisco, Birmingham, Alabama and other locales. His compositions and research focus on sound as plastic, and music as plastic art, akin to sculpture, painting or film. As listening is his main focus, over the years, deeper listening led from his interest in improvisation to acousmatic composition.

So, a whole lot of improv goodness. Hope to see you there. For more info, see their Facebook page.