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Earth Sound Earth SignalEnergies and Earth Magnitude in the Arts$
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Douglas Kahn

Print publication date: 2013

Print ISBN-13: 9780520257801

Published to California Scholarship Online: May 2014

DOI: 10.1525/california/9780520257801.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM CALIFORNIA SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (www.california.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright University of California Press, 2022. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in CALSO for personal use.date: 18 May 2022

For More New Signals

For More New Signals

(p.122) 10 For More New Signals
Earth Sound Earth Signal

Douglas Kahn

University of California Press

Concurrent with the developing plenitude of sounds from the early avant-garde through the experimental arts in the 1960s, exemplified in John Cage’s “For More New Sounds” (1941), was an expansion of signals. This is demonstrated in ideas about earth-scale radio by avant-garde composers and writers and in the history of electronic music. Per the latter, the relationship of musicians to engineers, especially at Bell Labs, is discussed, including Alfred Norton Goldsmith, who stated that electronic music belonged to nature, and Max Mathews. Post-Cagean composers Gordon Mumma and James Tenney are noted as having identified characteristics of a signal plenitude in the astro-bio-geo-physical application in live electronic music and a generalized signal and total transducer, respectively.

Keywords:   John Cage, Bell Labs, James Tenney, Gordon Mumma, Max Mathews, Alfred Norton Goldsmith, electronic music, computer music, experimental music, music and nature, music and science, avant-garde history

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