Saturday, June 14, 2014

Artist as Composer

Listening involves innumerable frames of reference.

Beginning with personal experience, the listener interprets sound according to cultural and sub-cultural attitudes, biases, and individual preferences.  Musicians and performers are naturally particular in their tastes, especially in creative songwriting, arranging, and things of like nature that appeal to them and their audiences. These are scenarios related to the concepts and values associated with music of all types, yet there are other ways and means of working creatively with sounds that also yield aesthetic meaning and purpose for composer and listener.

My experience leads me to acting outside the organizational patterns associated with most music, and working from a perspective similar to that of a painter or sculptor in designing and executing recorded works.

Friday, June 13, 2014

Rain, Heard at a Distance

Imagination and perception shape point of view.

The reality of sound is such that it heightens alertness and evokes emotional responses, suggests imagery and stimulates memory, yet retains its objective existence.

The art of sound, like the language of poetry, emerges in consciousness with the suggestion of infinite possibilities.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Form and Mind in Sound

The effects of sound encompass atmospheres and states of mind.

Atmosphere and setting establish external appearances while engaging the emotions and intellect, thus the elements and tones of specific pieces of music, or of the sound environment in general, contribute to both mood and perceptual awareness.

The composer chooses to create accordingly, and the listener to experience.  From my peculiar perspective, I am interested in developing compositions that convey equanimity, elevation, and balance.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Landscape, Still Life, Atmosphere

In accord with the principle ideas of the visual arts, the artist as composer works to attain the ends of artistic expression through sound productions and recordings.

The first principle is that of work.

Such productions are not the result of innate gifts of inspiration bestowed, as "celebrity culture" might lead some to believe, at birth. The artistic outcomes under examination here are those that come into being through prolonged labor, study, and effort, and they are manifold.

As the traditional painter is often engaged in the imitation of nature, as the impressionist is focused upon sensory perceptions such as fluctuations of light and color in changing conditions, and as the abstract expressionist is concerned with gesture and energy, so is the composer of sound art and aural atmospheres intent upon animating sonic forms through applications of these-- among many other-- essential aesthetic concepts.

These concepts are learned, practiced, developed through action, experimentation, and risk-taking, and only then may they appear, indeed, effortless.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Form and the Formless

Generic musical styles are neither wholly individual nor idealized representations of type.

These are not works emerging into form, being structures in the manner of existing compositions and productions. Enjoined by common expectations to specific stylistic configurations, they are nonetheless depleted of the marked and determined character that made their various inceptions startling.

Expectation leads merely to its fulfillment; for artist as composer, the unknown becomes what it will in the crucible of aesthetic vision and principle.  Risk and failure are nothing when the reward is beauty and elevation, and neither gold nor spurious immortality match them in value.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Wave to Mind II

Social and cultural narratives feed expectations for living.

When these narratives are in opposition to the evidence of the senses and the virtues of reason, there is only one choice for the artist, that of integrity or capitulation.

Sunday, June 08, 2014


There is a totalitarian perspective regarding art that consigns it to representations of approved beliefs, extending even to methodologies that can and cannot be implemented in the creative process.

When such an oppressive view is pervasive within social and cultural contexts, the artist is no less bound to think and act according to principle, and to create in spite of any of the manifestations of ignorance, apathy and enmity that would obstruct clarity and fullness of expression.