This is a collection of some of my publications relating to music. They often draw upon the work of Bernard Lonergan but also other great thinkers.
Emerging Probabilities and the Operators of Musical Evolution.
First presented in Toronto, 2006. Lonergan Workshop, Volume 20 (2008): 185-196.
Many of the most significant developments in music involved the introduction of such things as new technology or new playing methods. This paper explores the relationship between the evolution of music and Bernard Lonergan’s category of emergent probability.
Lamenting at the Abattoir: Meditations through Rhythm.
First presented in Milwaukee, 2009. This is an interactive PDF. Adobe Reader is required to play media files.
Also see Lonergan Workshop, Volume 25 (2013): 127-138 here.
This paper explores the development of the Spring Pan Kit as well as a discussion about Urban Sound Exploration inside an abandoned slaughterhouse. Drawing upon Bernard Lonergan’s notion of elemental meaning and Eugene Gendlin’s meditative process called “Focusing” I attempt to create sounds to convey the moments of suffering and death of the animals in a slaughterhouse. This will provide a segue for discussion on the nature of suffering in a predacious world with respect to all life.
Bowsticks and Elemental Meaning.
First presented in Milwaukee, 2010. This is an interactive PDF. Adobe Reader is required to play media files.
The methods for emotional expression in percussion are different than stringed instruments. This paper explores ways to combine these two methods with a hybrid violin bow/drumstick or bowstick. Neuroscientist Manfred Clynes discovered a way to graph emotional responses through the measurement of touch. This is referred to as Sentics. There are correlations between Clynes exploration into Sentics and Bernard Lonergan’s category of elemental meaning or precognitive meaning. I will attempt to provide a concrete musical example of this correlation using the bowstick with a spring monochord.
A Talking Rosetta Stone
First presented in Los Angeles, 2014. This is an interactive PDF. Adobe Reader is required to play media files.
The age of digital technology has enabled modern culture to evolve in ways previously unimaginable. The caveat within this progress is the question of preserving information. There is currently no strategy for long term storage of digital information particularly with respect to sound recordings. The digital languages of today are subject to changes that may make them indecipherable in the distant future.
The Rosetta Stone contained three scripts; Hieroglyphs, Demotic and Ancient Greek. These all shared the same meaning. The Hieroglyphs and Demotic scripts were deciphered through Ancient Greek, which was understood, and Coptic, a language still spoken that was related to Demotic. The expression, “Etched in Stone” is often used when referring to the written language. However, this principle can also be applied to sound. The visual image of a sound waveform “etched in stone” can theoretically be educed to recreate the sound in any number of ways. This paper explores how analog impressions of sound can be used to preserve endangered languages.