Jump to ContentJump to Main Navigation
Earth Sound Earth SignalEnergies and Earth Magnitude in the Arts$
Users without a subscription are not able to see the full content.

Douglas Kahn

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780520257801

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520257801.001.0001

Show Summary Details
Page of

PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2019. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 23 October 2019

From Brainwaves to Outer Space

From Brainwaves to Outer Space

John Cage and Karl Jansky

Chapter:
(p.115) 9 From Brainwaves to Outer Space
Source:
Earth Sound Earth Signal
Author(s):

Douglas Kahn

Publisher:
University of California Press
DOI:10.1525/california/9780520257801.003.0010

The natural electromagnetic sound compositions Music for Solo Performer and Whistlers gained Alvin Lucier a reputation in experimental music for working “from brainwaves to outer space,” including in John Cage’s composition Variations VII for 9 Evenings, the event associated with Experiments in Art and Technology. Variations VII is discussed in terms of transmission, reception, and ubiquity of radio waves. For “outer space” sounds, Cage unsuccessfully sought a live feed from a Bell Labs radio astronomy antenna. This attempt is related to the 1933 national radio broadcast of a live feed from the first Bell Labs radio astronomy antenna during an interview with its engineer, Karl Jansky. Cage’s fallback use of a Geiger counter for outer space sounds is described.

Keywords:   John Cage, Karl Jansky, Variations VII, radio astronomy, radio astronomy sounds, experimental music, outer space sounds, Alvin Lucier, Bell Labs, 9 Evenings, Experiments in Art and Technology

California Scholarship Online requires a subscription or purchase to access the full text of books within the service. Public users can however freely search the site and view the abstracts and keywords for each book and chapter.

Please, subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you think you should have access to this title, please contact your librarian.

To troubleshoot, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.