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Bebop Spoken There

Jackie Paris: "A singer's got to be able to tell a story. Frank Sinatra and Nat Cole are best at that; Mel Tormé too. I like to take a lyric that means something and sing it right to the person it was meant for." - (DownBeat October 11, 1962).

Archive

Daily: July 6 - October 27

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden - Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3BA. Tel: 0191 478 1810. Screenings at intervals during the day. Part of Akomfrah's exhibition Ballasts of Memory. Exhibition (daily) July 6 - October 27. 10:00am-6:00pm. Free.

Today Monday September 16

Afternoon

Jazz

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden (see above).

Jazz in the Afternoon - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free admission.

Evening

?????

To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Listening Through the Noise: The Aesthetics of Experimental Electronic Music

Even people who admit to being tone-deaf could once tell the difference between radio static and music. Not anymore. “We live in an era where all types of sound in art have become equally legitimate,” explains Joanna Demers, associate professor of musicology at the USC Thornton School of Music. “I don’t make this claim lightly: Electronic music has precipitated an end of music.” In a timely new book, Listening Through the Noise: The Aesthetics of Experimental Electronic Music (Oxford University Press: October 2010), Demers offers the first comprehensive assessment of electronic music and how our approach to listening has radically departed from the last 500 years. Beginning with philosopher and composer Pierre Schaeffer, who lugged a turntable engraver around Paris in the mid-20th century to record the sound of trains, Demers shows how recent experimental electronic music destroyed the conventions — such as tonality, tempo, timbre and harmony — that once helped identify music and demarcate it from the sounds of everyday life. “Even though people will no doubt continue to use the word “music,” the experience of listening will be markedly different from what it meant a century ago,” Demers says. As Demers explains, electronic music introduced the possibility that the sounds of the outside world could be treated with aesthetic consideration. Building on a “rhetoric of difference” and the work of avant-garde composers such as John Cage, experimental electronic music embraced previously undesirable sounds such as feedback, field recordings and silence. “When the framing devices of Western art music began to disappear or undergo critique, so, too, vanished many reasons for regarding music as separate from the outside world,” says Demers, author of Steal This Music: How Intellectual Property Law Affects Musical Creativity (University of Georgia Press: 2002). But in the absence of any musical parameters, how do we listen to previously nonmusical sounds, say, a recording of waves lapping on a beach? Theorists have postulated that the end of music might enable listeners to hear all sounds as if they were music. Or, conversely, we might begin to listen to sounds without context or meaning. Others offer the idea that music is no longer music at all, but a form of art incorporating sound and space. “Just as photography instigated a philosophical crisis in visual arts, so did the introduction of electricity into music making at the turn of the twentieth century change musical aesthetics forever,” says Demers, who teaches classes at the USC Thornton School of Music on intellectual property and music, hip-hop, music videos, and popular music history. In Listening Through the Noise, Demers distinguishes among types of listening: hearing, listening for meaning and comprehension, and aesthetic listening, that is, appreciating the characteristics of sound as aesthetic objects. Whereas once listening to music might have required full attention, Demers notes that aesthetic listening allows for listening in intermittent moments without beginning or end, reflecting the way many of us actually listen to popular music now, while doing other things. “While insiders still might still insist on the distinctions among various genres, outsiders might well perceive in electronic music a whole not only new musical experience but a new medium in which sound is aesthetic but not especially musical,” Demers says. “These sounds are strange in the real world, but they also succeed in making the real world strange.”
From a press release sent to me by OUP (USA) - What do you think?
Lance.

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Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance