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inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #51 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Wed 5 Jun 02 17:29
    

There are certain pierces where the recognizability of the sample is part of
the piece, because there is meant to be some ironic commentary. This is true
in pieces like 'Shibucho', 'Hop Ken' (from my cd FOUR PIECES, and my several
compositions based on the disco-trash hit 'Barbie Girl'. In other  pieces, I
hope that the listener will detect the style of music if not the actual
title. And in some piece I don't care period.

I've never been hassled for using a particular sample. In some cases  - well
only one actually - I have taken preventative measures by getting the sample
cleared. I have held off releasing anything too obvious with major
commercial artists like  Michael Jackson or Miles. But that might still be
overly cautious, as I  think I'm still too far below the radar to be
detected.

Why have a stayed with samples? Many reasons. In part, I see my work as a
furtherance of the traditions in Bach, Handel, Bartok, Britten Dvorak,
Stravinsky and others, who quoted both from the public domain and from other
composers liberally. Now in the digital age, as Roger Johnson has posited,

   Sampling actually destroys any practical distinction
   between an original and a copy, because any sample,
   however many generations removed from the original,
   is equal in value and quality. Its value lies not just
   in its reproducibility but also in its malleability
   and intangibility, like memory itself.

So, the notion of appropriation as a compositional technique has deeper
implications than in an analog world. Besides........I gotta start
somewhere, and sometimes the easiest way is to abstract some material from
my CD library and begin to work.

Jon, that's a great question. As I run through films in my mind, as of now
I've only come up with ones with soundtracks I love and wouldn't change. My
all-time favorite is Takemitsu's score to Kwaidan . But give me a bit of
time, I'll answer your question upon further contemplation.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #52 of 114: Berliner (captward) Thu 6 Jun 02 06:42
    
Kwaidan!! Damn! My fave film in college, although the version that
showed there came around with one episode missing and I've never seen
the whole thing. I think it was Takemitsu whose "Music of the Stone"
(no relation) I heard in junior high school days at the New York
Avant-Garde Festival, and that's why I went to see Kwaidan in the first
place. Is that soundtrack out on a CD? 
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #53 of 114: excessively heterosexual (saiyuk) Thu 6 Jun 02 11:01
    

According to the IMDB, the part that was omitted from Kwaidan in the 
American release is the Woman of the Snow -- which is the part that (from 
later TV/video viewings) has always struck me as the most memorable. 
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #54 of 114: Berliner (captward) Thu 6 Jun 02 11:48
    
Yup. Doesn't sound familiar.   

While Carl's contemplating, I'd like to bring up another part of his
personality that some people may be totally unaware of: that of an
appreciator of fine food. Of course, "fine" and "food" seem to need
definition at times. Carl has managed to hook his friends, in my
presence, into eating nutria (a gigantic rat that lives in the swamps
of Louisiana and tastes like a gigantic rat that lives in the swamps of
Louisiana) and duck tongues (like french-kissing Donald or Daisy, I
guess...never been to Disneyland myself). He's also, just this past
March, realized a lifetime ambition to visit Lockhart, Texas, and
several other major stops on the Texas barbeque trail. His Japanese
tour last fall, as I documented in my travel journal, was one fantastic
(and usually inexpensive) meal after another; he uses as road-manager
a guy with an extraordinary knowledge of Japanese regional cuisine, and
I bet that's not a coincidence. 

What's this got to do with his music? Perhaps nothing, perhaps not. Is
it a mere coincidence that a lot of the titles of his pieces (not the
ones on pict.soul, however) are named after restaurants, favorite
places to eat? That there's a large (and largely out-of-date) list of
great places to eat in L.A. on his website? 

Food and music, two of my favorite things. Carl, are you the
latter-day Rossini?
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #55 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Thu 6 Jun 02 17:15
    

Perhaps in terms of girth, but hopefully that's all, Rossini being one of my
least favorite composers.



The recent Texas trip that Ed mentioned is documented in quicktime and clips
can be viewed from http://sukothai.com/texasqt.html .
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #56 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Thu 6 Jun 02 17:29
    

And, back to our original topic, pict.soul. Incursion.org, the self-
described webzine of extraordinary sound, has written a nice 
review.  http://incursion.org/features/c74.html
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #57 of 114: Gail Williams (gail) Thu 6 Jun 02 17:36
    
Pardon me if i missed it before, but it there a link to listen to cuts from
pict.soul?  I loved the My Girl monster thing.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #58 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Thu 6 Jun 02 17:43
    

There are some samples on the C74 website, along with cuts from other titles
in their catalig.

http://www.cycling74.com/c74/music/index.html
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #59 of 114: Berliner (captward) Fri 7 Jun 02 01:56
    
Your music is often described as "electro-acoustic," and I'm wondering
what the definition of that is. Of course it's electric, because you
use electronic devices to make it, unlike, say, a string quartet, which
uses acoustic instruments. I'm just a bit uncertain where the acoustic
comes into the picture here: it's sound, and, thus, acoustic, but
what's "electro-acoustic?"
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #60 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Sun 9 Jun 02 19:23
    

Sorry to have taken a bit of time to get back to this forum. Rough few days,
made worse by catching a cold and suffering a flaky ADSL connection. Hey, is
MacPoet the most brain-dead piece of crap software on the planet or what?
Any advise about an alternative PPPtoE client for my powerbook would be
greatly appreciated.

AFAIK,  the term electro-acoustic was coined by Iannis Xenakis, as meaning
both music that combines electronic and acoustic (i.e. either raw or
microphone-collected) sounds. In the early days of electronic music, there
were two warring camps. Practitioners of 'pure' electronic music, where all
the sounds had to be generated sui generis electronically, and practitioners
of 'musique concrete', where all the sounds originated in the microphone so
to speak. Amazing to think that few people could imagine a middle ground.
This is one of the areas that Xenakis pioneered, and in coining the term
electro-acoustic he also sought to distinguish himself from the musique
concrete school, which was as much an aesthetic as a form.

So, I find this term applied to my work because most of it originates in
recordings of either natural sounds or appropriated music, and also because
I actively adopted as the name of my publishing company Electro-Acoustic
Music years ago.

I wanted to say a couple more words in answer to Ed's question "why
sampling?".  I don't think I adequately emphasized the influence that visual
and conceptual artists have had on me, including Duchamp, Rauschenberg,
Warhol, Beuys and others. I like the idea of elevating the mundane, and of
recontextualizing iconic signifiers in music. This is one of the reasons
that I return again and again to certain musicians like Hendrix and Miles as
fodder for my own work.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #61 of 114: David Gans (tnf) Mon 10 Jun 02 07:11
    


From Katherine Knoff:


> Artist's reflect their environment, from the symetry and order of Mozart,
> to Beethoven's progressive unravelment, during the chaotic years of the
> French revolution, and Napoleon, on to Andy Warhol immortalizing the mass
> marketing of soup.  You've talked about the influences of your youth, and
> the urban landscape is prevalent in your music. What other environmental
> factors have influenced your music.  How has Japanese culture played an
> important role?
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #62 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Tue 11 Jun 02 16:50
    

You make a good point about the confluence of cultural influences,
Katherine. Mozart's music has always struck me as Newtonian, Beethoven's
Darwinian, Cage's music existential (Sartrean?) . While I was influenced by
the minimalist painters, I guess my music fits squarely inside the Western
post-modern aesthetic.  Maybe my interest about time makes me a Hawkingian
composer?

 I live in Japan and have since long ago been fascinated by (and have used)
the urban soundscapes of Tokyo as musical fodder. I have also collaborated
with a varietuy of Japanese musicians, both traditional and western. But I
can't put my finger on anything  precise in Japanese culture that I can cite
as manifest influence - it's all rather intangible. Strangely though,
numerous times people in the States have proposed that soame of my music
sounds Asian. Perhaps this is becauase I sometimes use extended time scales
as well as space or 'ma' between sounds. Still,  in Japan I am told I have
an American sound.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #63 of 114: Berliner (captward) Wed 12 Jun 02 01:08
    
Carl, how would you suggest people listen to your music? Or approach
music like yours? I'm thinking that there may be criteria that differ
from regular instrumental or orchestral music that people need to keep
in mind when hearing this stuff. For instance, maybe forgetting the
concept of melody might be a good idea.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #64 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Wed 12 Jun 02 04:18
    

Yes, it's better not to listen with the traditional expectations of melody
or harmony, although that's not to say that some kind of melody or harmony
can never be found inside. It's sometimes there, if perhaps a bit under the
skin.

At the moment, I am working with a group of young Japanese students at the
university where I teach who have had little or no exposure to contemporary
music or any contemporary art at all, and I am trying to teach how to listen
in new ways. We've done some listening exercises which I call 'ear
cleaning', trying to open them up to new approaches not only to sound, but
also to TIME. The first thing is to try to break the expectation for
traditional musical grammars and drama. After that things fall into place.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #65 of 114: Linda Castellani (castle) Wed 12 Jun 02 22:27
    
E-mail from Katherine Knoff:

Excellent answer, Carl, although I often see Beethoven as tortured,
rather than scientific, but, I love the Cage/Sartre connection. 
Actually, Camus, another great existentialist, would fit with Cage. One
of the great quotes from "The Stranger", was "the benign indifference of
the universe". I could see Cage agreeing with that.
     One possible Japanese connection, with your music, could be process.
Take for example, a Japanese garden, as opposed to our American version
of the English Garden, which seems pretty prevalent. Americans tend to be
fairly improvisatory, with color and arrangement, whereas the Japanese
often have bonsai, and topiary, which is a formal process. How much of a
role does improv and chance play in your music, and how much a formal
process, even if you conceive it.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #66 of 114: Linda Castellani (castle) Wed 12 Jun 02 22:28
    

Also, captward, did you listen to that link? Were you able to identify the 
Motown song?  If not, I'm hoping that Carl will tell us...
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #67 of 114: Berliner (captward) Thu 13 Jun 02 01:04
    
Nope, haven't gotten there yet; I'm on the road.

Carl, a friend of mine, a sound designer who thinks of Max quite
differently than you but loves it, is working on ring tone technology,
and that made me wonder if there was a kind of commission you've never
had but would like to explore. Film soundtrack? Computer game? Big-ass
symphony with choir? Work you'd definitely turn down?
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #68 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Fri 14 Jun 02 02:07
    

I agree with Katherine about Cage and the Camus quote. Very zen actually.
I'm not so ready to buy the English/Japanese improvised/formal garden theory
however. My music has always had improvisation as an aspect, usually within
a pre-defined form. As time goes on, improvisation is playing a greater
role. Now in JApan, I'm performing more often with other musicans, rather
than my standard solo work. This typically involves a LOT of
improvisation. In fact, last wekk a played in a jazz club with two
musicians (Gene Coleman and Ko Ishikawa) and the whole show was 100%
improvised, I had even met Ko until a short time before the gig. That would
have been unthinkable for me a few years ago.

Chance has always been a factor too, as I usually build some sort of
randomness into my computer music programs, to keep me on my toes when I
perform. There,s a whole range of randomness of course, from a very scaled
and controlled use on one side and chaos on the other. I have used the whole
range, but tned towrds things more towards the scaled back end of the
spectrum.

Ed, if Sony came to me with a propsal to compose Carl Stone ring tones I
think I,d jump at the chance, I figure if they're asking me, they're ready
for something out of the ordinary. I've done music for TV and radio
commercials in Japan, but that's because they came to me and basically told
me I could do whatever I wanted. One radio commercial job was almost too
good to be true. 2 minutes of my music - nothing else, whatever I wanted to
compose - followed by a tag line "Music by Carl Stone, Beer by Heineken".
They never let me do that in L.A.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #69 of 114: Berliner (captward) Fri 14 Jun 02 13:44
    
Wow, even Phil Glass' whiskey ads you didn't get to *hear* his stuff! 

Dunno how much more time we have left here, but I'm stil lhoping some
of my friends come along with some with some questions. Meanwhile, what
are you listening to now? Do you have any truck with pop music these
days? What up-and-coming composers would you recommend to our readers
here? 
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #70 of 114: (fom) Fri 14 Jun 02 14:39
    
If I'm not mistaken, you have as much time as you want. After the 
"official" two weeks is over, the interview can continue for years if the 
interviewer and interviewee are willing.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #71 of 114: Linda Castellani (castle) Fri 14 Jun 02 16:14
    

That's my cue!

Thanks to Carl and to Ed for a great discussion.  As fom said, you are 
welcome to continue for as long as you like.

As for me, I hope that's at least until Ed weighs in the subject of the 
Motown song!

Thanks again, you guys, and to everyone who participated.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #72 of 114: Sanni Abacha (cstone) Fri 14 Jun 02 20:30
    

Thank you too Linda! I'm more than happy to continue on here for as long as
others want to talk.

And to answer Ed, recently I've been listening to a variety of things that
Henry Kaiser turned me on to when he was recently in Tokyo  - he passed what
was on his iPod to mine and I have been enjoying many of his selections
every since. Lots of guitar, as one might imagine, including Zappa,
Beefheart, d'Gary (great musician from Madagascar) and some Korean court
music that, by coincidence, I had on MY iPod.

I am currently enthusiastic about a very young composer here in Japan named
Takamasa Aoki, who sometimes goes under the name Silicom. He hasn't quite
broken through yet, but it won't be long. He has a very nice sensibiity.
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #73 of 114: Berliner (captward) Sat 15 Jun 02 07:29
    
Okay, my best guess at the moment for Dong Il Jang's Motown sample is
Martha and the Vandellas' "Nowhere to Run," based on a tiny vocal trick
I heard. I'm almost positive the group being sampled is right -- it's
not the Supremes, and I don't *think* it's the Marvelettes -- but I'm
not as confident about the song. I'm downloading it, although I've
never yet successfully downloaded and played back an MP3. I can always
ask one of the neighbor kids if I can't make it work, though. 

Great piece, although you've come a long ways since then. But then,
this is listed as a) being live and b) being from the '80s. The
technology for live performance has really come a long ways since then,
and so has your technique in terms of using it. Still, I recommend
those two pieces to anyone. 

While we're waiting to see if there are any further questions, the
trick I always play at the end of an interview:

Carl, are there any questions I didn't ask you that you think are
important? Do you have any issues you want to address that I've missed?
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #74 of 114: excessively heterosexual (saiyuk) Sat 15 Jun 02 09:12
    

Is there only *one* Motown song in the final three minutes of Dong Il 
Jang? 

I'm next to certain I heard bits of Tears of a Clown in there, but I 
thought I heard other stuff too. 
  
inkwell.vue.151 : Carl Stone: pict.soul
permalink #75 of 114: David Gans (tnf) Sat 15 Jun 02 09:18
    

> One radio commercial job was almost too good to be true. 2 minutes of my
> music - nothing else, whatever I wanted to compose - followed by a tag line
> "Music by Carl Stone, Beer by Heineken".  They never let me do that in L.A.

Man, that is great.
  

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