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re: bjork's new CD)

Title: re: bjork's new CD)
At 12:51 PM -0700 9/6/04, loop.pool wrote:

and to Richard Zvonar:

 viz a vis your post about former all vocal pop and avante garde CDs:

I didn't mean at all to imply that I was being groundbreaking in a cultural
sense with my CD and want to disabuse anyone
of that notion immediately.    I really meant that I was being
groundbreaking for MYSELF by attempting to do something
so audacious

I didn't think you were making such claims.  I was merely providing some pointers to earlier recordings of music made out of vocal sounds, no judgement of anyone's work implied.

Your comment about breaking ground for your self is apt. Pauline Oliveros used to say something similar to her students, when some of them would use the excuse "It's been done." Pauline would invariable respond, "Yes, but you haven't done it."

I was actually glad to hear her say that, because my very first new music performance piece Chanson des Muets (1975) - which debuted at Cabrillo College - owed a major debt to Pauline's Sound Patterns (1964). I was never really concerned about it being perceived as a rip-off (though Ken Gaburo did once comment on its derivation from Pauline's work), because I took her piece as a point of departure and explored certain sonic and gestural elements from her work while adopting other influences from other sources and even throwing in some possibly "original" ideas of my own. That's how we learn and that's how the repertoire evolves. As a teacher Pauline understood that implicitly and openly gave "permission" to other composers to take what they found useful from her work.

I actually enjoy the process of appropriation and recontextualization in music and other arts (this should be obvious in my processing of commercial CDs and from my lifting book illustrations for my visual theater work). I also like to drop little hints into my pieces, pointing to the sources of various ideas. It's all a big web of influences and associations anyway - a glass bead game to use Hesse's metaphor.

Richard Zvonar, PhD      
(818) 788-2202