Amplified Silence . . . Postponed

Cartridge Music (John Cage, 1060) . . . in process . . .
24 September 2017


Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment


In January and February, at the Virginia Center for the Creative Arts,

field recording in the Blue Mountains
. . . coyotes overnight through the window . . .

discovering just audible links between John Cage’s Sonatas 14 & 15 and
Richard Lippold’s Gemini . . .
Gemini II
and, Spring just arriving,
wonderful artists, musicians, poets, writers . . .

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Beautiful Sounds . . .

porchfest2016_fromtheporch_img_0646_croppedat the Ithaca PorchFest

John Cage, Sonatas and Interludes, for prepared piano, composed in 1948

The piano preparations (nuts and bolts between the strings) create unexpectedly inviting, gentle buzzes, bells, resonant gongs, extended piano sonorities.

September 18
209 East Jay St.

In-between the piano’s strings are pieces of rubber and plastic,small, medium, large boltsporchfest2016_pianopreparations-1_img_0629_cropped, furniture bolts, screws, hardware nuts,  an eraser . . .

. . . and out of the piano come . . . delicate bells . . . expansive gongs . . . hi-hat cymbals . . . drums

suspended in  t i m e  &
s   p   a    c    e  .  .  .

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

The Spaces of Animal Voices

standrewspresentation2016_fullsizerender_6_croppedThis year I’ve been working at the Contemporary Music Research Centre, at the University of York, in the UK, investigating ways to listen to spatial interactions among animal sounds, and to how sound changes as it travels through air and water.

How might music composition facilitate an exploration of our perception of animal voices and our connections to them?

Listen to Dawn’s Chorus (from where I started) . . .
and Imagined Environments

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

“My God! What has sound got to do with music?”

FireplaceGesture and relationship as compositional materials in two pieces by Christian Wolff

Discussion of Wolff’s Dark as a Dungeon and Edges
Merle Haggard: Dark as a Dungeon

Christian Wolff Study Day
28 September 2015
Orpheus Institute, Ghent, Belgium

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Humpback Whales: Composers of the Sea

19 May 2014

Presentation, with Katy Payne, who, through listening, discovered the evolving patterns of humpback song…

Monday Night Seminar, Cornell Lab of Ornithology

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Erasing the Glitch

5 March 2014

Invited Speaker

Colloquia, cDACT (Consortium for Digital Arts, Culture and Technology), Simons Center for Geometry and Physics Auditorium, Stony Brook University

f(Glitch) – The Function of Glitch

Our perception of what is a “glitch” may depend on the history and on the purposes of our listening. Through accumulating deeper, focused listening experiences, and through examining and exploring our motivations for listening to specific musics and sounds, we may find that glitches come and go, their existence being dependent upon our interests as listeners. This presentation investigates several contrasting approaches to listening and illustrates ways in which specific glitches may appear and disappear within them.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Listeners Are Observers and Musicians

13 July 2013

Invited Presentation Deep Listening to African Forest elephants, presented in collaboration with Katy Payne

And contributions as an invited panelist to Round Table: Hearing vs. Listening, Artistic and Scientific Perspectives, with Pauline Oliveros, Seth Horowitz, China Blue, Chris Chafe, and moderator Lance Brunner

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Animal Transcriptions: Listening to the Lab of Ornithology


In March 2013′s Sounding Out!, ecopoet Jonathan Skinner converses with a number of us at the Lab of Ornithology who have worked with animal sounds.

“Poetry might help us to use, study, and deploy animal morphologies in ways that hope to better, rather than merely exploit, the human relation with such life forms, if not to improve the welfare of the species themselves. As Katy Payne, Mike Webster and others suggest, when we speak of animal “song,” we bring metaphors from the arts of poetry and music to complement our limited scientific understanding of the intricacies of animal communication.”



Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Dawn’s Chorus

for Cheryl Gobbetti Hoffmann

Leonardo Music Journal 22: Acoustics

December 2012



Made from animal sound recordings…

               a utility aMong


                     is theiR


                            thEy produce it mid-air

            to avoid coLliding.

—John Cage, 32 Mesostics re and not re Marcel Duchamp


* the issue’s editor is composer Daniel J. Wolf of Material Press, who is also an entertaining and enlightening Facebook friend…

* * * * * * * * * *

Ellen Fullman and Theresa Wong come to visit Ithaca in February. Ellen’s article is in Leonardo’s Acoustics issue also. I made some sonic images from her Long String Instrument…

Also, Angelin Chang performed Messiaen’s piano piece l’Alouette Lulu from Catalogue d’Oiseaux with some Raven spectrograms I made to visually illustrate connections between the structures of this bird’s vocalizations and structures of the piano composition.

Posted in Uncategorized | Leave a comment