[PD] tabread4~~

Mathieu Bouchard matju at artengine.ca
Fri Nov 23 09:04:10 CET 2007

On Tue, 20 Nov 2007, Chris McCormick wrote:

> So you're saying that if someone makes good art and they are ignorant,
> then we should take their lead and try to be more ignorant?

Exactly. The more you use your mind, the more you single yourself out. 
Because everybody always needs more friends and more approval, they should 
all make the most ordinary and uncontroversial music possible. (yes, this 
is sarcasm)

> For me it doesn't follow that if most musicians don't understand 
> mathematics and their music is still good, then we should all aspire to 
> not understand mathematics.

I think that people first believe that we should all aspire to not 
understand mathematics, and then they structure the rest of their lives 
accordingly... if you ever see "if X then we should all aspire to not 
understand mathematics" then this most likely is an after-the-fact 
justification, a decision in search of reasons.

>> You can get lost in the mathematics and never be able to communicate
>> with an audience of anyone but geeks (self included).
> Yes, I think that's true.

The big problem with conceptual music, is that it gets lost in how the 
concepts connect back to the actual music. The first principle of making 
music is that it should sound good in some way according to some people. 
This is the ultimate measure of all music. If you make music that is not 
validated by listening, it's not music. There has to be the feedback of 
"does it sound good?" at all time.

For interactive music and other forms of music that use some source of 
data, it's even harder, as it has to both sound good and seem related to 
the source of data. If it doesn't seem related, it means that your patch 
is garbling the data beyond repair and so you may as well pretend that you 
are not using that source of data.

> Sometimes in understanding something more fully and on multiple levels, 
> we can deliver an artistic experience that is understood by our 
> audiences, or makes them dance, or moves them, even more easily and 
> fully than if we had less understanding.

Yes, but it also requires the will to have a certain audience taking you 
in a certain way and the consciousness required to connect that will with 
the understanding.

> I'm guilty of sometimes writing esoteric algorithmic maths music, but I
> like to think that on those often horrible sounding explorations I gain a
> greater understanding into what it takes to really make a booty shake. :)

But in the end, you don't need to make a booty shake: it could be 
satisfying to make something just sound good in any other way; it could 
also be your goal to make music where the process of making it is the end 
product, instead of the actual sound: in that case you can bypass a lot of 
the "sounding good" part. People are more forgiving about the actual 
sound, if there is something else to your performance-or-artwork that they 
can give some attention to.

  _ _ __ ___ _____ ________ _____________ _____________________ ...
| Mathieu Bouchard - tél:+1.514.383.3801, Montréal QC Canada

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