Wiring the ear: Instrumentality and aural primacy in and after David Tudor’s Unstable Circuits
AbstractThe early 20th century saw a spate of innovative electronic musical instruments. For instance, the theremin (1919) and Ondes Martenot (1928) not only offered new sound generation techniques, but married them to similarly innovative means of interaction. However, by the late 1920s, the development of novel performance interfaces had stalled, and the familiar organ-type keyboard re-appeared on many electronic instruments of the 1930s (Manning 2004, pp. 4-6). Moreover, as the era of the tape-based studio began postwar, the link between electronic music and live performance seemed to recede (Ibid., pp. 19-74). Compared to the limited timbres of most earlier electronic instruments, the sound creation and manipulation possibilities of tape were more sophisticated. However, splicing together even a short piece could take months of toil. Thus, by the mid-1960s, a number of real-time alternatives had emerged, from Stockhausen’s electronic processing of acoustic instruments, to the modular synthesizer, and the live electronics of David Tudor.
CitationDalgleish, M. (2016) 'Wiring the Ear: Instrumentality and Aural Primacy in and After David Tudor’s Unstable Circuits', Leonardo Music Journal, 26 (73)
JournalLeonardo Music Journal
DescriptionThis is an accepted manuscript of an article published by MIT Press in Leonardo Music Journal on 21/09/2016, available online: https://doi.org/10.1162/LMJ_a_00966 The accepted version of the publication may differ from the final published version.
The following licence applies to the copyright and re-use of this item:
- Creative Commons
Except where otherwise noted, this item's license is described as https://creativecommons.org/CC BY-NC-ND 4.0