A lesson for the humanities from new music

This month’s issue of The Wire has a nice article on the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center (including a wonderful description of the dilapidated condition of the original equipment). It was the first thing I’d read about Milton Babbitt in a long time, which led me to go find his infamous 1958 essay “Who Cares if …

Incomplete Theses on Audio Aesthete-ism: Beginnings of a Rant

1. One or two generations ago refined taste in music meant familiarity with a fairly limited (and stable, learnable) Western concert music repertoire. Today that refinement is reflected through a carefully cultivated, willfully eclectic cosmopolitanism. The déclassé listener likes or understands only one genre of music or a limited genre of music. Even apprentice aesthetes …

1111: we live in an era where dates have interesting numeric sequences

For the first time probably since childhood, I didn’t stay up to see the years turn over. There’s nothing spectacular about that decision — just a mix of jet lag, just getting back from Minnesota and that our main social event around the new year happens to be today instead of last night. Though I …

At last! A lo-boy record!

I’m used to books taking many years to finish, but lo-boy three has taken much longer than we expected when we laid down most of the tracks in the summer of 2004. “Six years in the making” is overselling and pretentious — especially since it spent most of those six years languishing on hard drives …