Peter Shapiro (ed.): Modulations: A History of Electronic Music: Throbbing Words on Sound (2000)

29 July 2017, dusan

Modulations contains several large essays written by music critics and musicians that provide historical and critical survey of electronic music by genre, discussing labels, sub-genres, stylistic developments, musicians, and records.

Chapters by Rob Young (Pioneers), Simon Reynolds (Krautrock), Peter Shapiro (Disco, Post Punk), Kodwo Eshun (House), David Toop (Hip-Hop), Mike Rubin (Techno), Chris Sharp (Jungle), Tony Marcus (Ambient), Kurt Reighley (Downtempo), and Michael Berk (Technology).

Project director: Iara Lee
Publisher Caipirinha Productions, New York, 2000
ISBN 189102406X, 9781891024061
255 pages

Film reviews: Stephen Holden (NYT, 1998), Tony Ramos (Hyperreal, n.d.).

Wikipedia
Publisher
WorldCat

PDF (39 MB, no OCR)
See also film documentary, dir. Iara Lee, 1998, 75 min.

Charles W. Turner: Xenakis in America (2014)

18 October 2014, dusan

Iannis Xenakis had a long-standing interest in the U.S., but given the five years he spent there, little has been written about his experiences. This study attempts, through archival research and interviews, to document Xenakis’ time in the United States. Its subject is his relationship to American cultural institutions, and the attraction of America for his musical composition and research.

Xenakis in America treats the period from Copland’s invitation to Tanglewood in 1963, through Xenakis’ 1972 investment by France as a state-supported artist. While he visited the U.S. many times thereafter, he no longer sought long-term engagement with U.S. institutions, but presented work completed elsewhere. After his summer at Tanglewood, performances of Xenakis compositions by Schuller, Foss and Bernstein (among others) are tracked throughout the 1960s and 1970s. Xenakis’ association with George Balanchine is examined, along with the reception of Xenakis’ theoretical writings, culminating in the publication of Formalized Music. in 1971. Xenakis’ collaboration with Alexis Solomos on Aeschylus’ Oresteia, produced in 1966 by the Ypsilanti Greek Theatre, is explored, as well as the founding of Xenakis’ research center CMAM at Indiana University in 1967, which he would build over the next five years.

Concerning Xenakis’ reasons for coming to America, there are two major motivations. First, there were reasons to look beyond France: its state institutions, up to the late 1960s, provided little support for avant-garde composition. Later, there were reasons to return: with the Polytope de Cluny of 1972, the Ministry of Culture signaled a policy change that favored Xenakis, and established his CeMAMu as a state-supported research center. Second, Xenakis’ opportunities in the U.S. satisfied his interest in working outside the boundaries of autonomous composition. The collaboration on the Ypsilanti Oresteia offered Xenakis involvement with both ancient and modern Greek theater, and Bloomington’s sponsorship of CMAM, which included the equipment necessary for computer synthesis of sound, gave Xenakis access to technology unavailable in France at the time.

Publisher One Block Avenue, Tappan/NY, October 2014
Open Access
ISBN 9780692267165
146 pages

Publisher

PDF

The printed book is available from Lulu.com. Proceeds go to The Friends of Xenakis Association.

Scott Wilson, David Cottle, Nick Collins (eds.): The SuperCollider Book (2011)

27 January 2014, dusan

“SuperCollider is one of the most important domain-specific audio programming languages, with potential applications that include real-time interaction, installations, electroacoustic pieces, generative music, and audiovisuals. The SuperCollider Book is the essential reference to this powerful and flexible language, offering students and professionals a collection of tutorials, essays, and projects. With contributions from top academics, artists, and technologists that cover topics at levels from the introductory to the specialized, it will be a valuable sourcebook both for beginners and for advanced users.

SuperCollider, first developed by James McCartney, is an accessible blend of Smalltalk, C, and further ideas from a number of programming languages. Free, open-source, cross-platform, and with a diverse and supportive developer community, it is often the first programming language sound artists and computer musicians learn. The SuperCollider Book is the long-awaited guide to the design, syntax, and use of the SuperCollider language. The first chapters offer an introduction to the basics, including a friendly tutorial for absolute beginners, providing the reader with skills that can serve as a foundation for further learning. Later chapters cover more advanced topics and particular topics in computer music, including programming, sonification, spatialization, microsound, GUIs, machine listening, alternative tunings, and non-real-time synthesis; practical applications and philosophical insigh”s from the composer’s and artist’s perspectives; and “under the hood,” developer’s-eye views of SuperCollider’s inner workings. A Web site accompanying the book offers code, links to the application itself and its source code, and a variety of third-party extras, extensions, libraries, and examples.”

Foreword by James McCartney
Publisher MIT Press, 2011
ISBN 0262232693, 9780262232692
756 pages

Review: Dave Phillips (Linux Journal).

Publisher

PDF (removed on 2014-2-4 upon request of the publisher)
Code (ZIP)
Book resources (code, video examples)
Book errata