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Electronic music in the age of entitlement Keyboard Synthesizers
Old 12th April 2018
  #301
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
i think context can give silence a musical meaning. And if it's meaningfull in a musical context then it's music.
What is a "musical context"?
Old 12th April 2018
  #302
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
On the topic of irony your quote is, well, somewhat ironic.

The notion that music can be anything and that the definition is purely subjective means that Nietzcshe really made a pointless statement. He didn't have to say that because we've now established that "music" can be not just anything (washing machine etc) but also nothing ("silence"). Thus there is zero risk of experiencing life without what someone could call "music".
I'd guess Nietzsche would have very strict criteria as to what is music and no doubt would have poo-poo'd 4'33" (the general notion of what we're discussing here is a post WWI construct, a very modern philosophical/artistic sensibility), but nontheless I was addressing, responding to how philosophers view artists in general, and on that matter I would have thought he would have viewed of them as virtuous denizens of the highest order, not as aloof flakes without clarity of thought.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
It's as if a group of saxophonists discuss the properties of different setups: How does the reed affect the sound? What about the neck? To what magnitudes?..... And then one of them says; "You can play the same melody on a vintage Mark VI as you can on a new Yamaha, so what difference does it make?" It's just saying the discussion is irrelevant, which is ok, but it doesn't actually prove anything about what is being discussed.
Well, that's obviously a nonsensical statement. I don't think it's the same here necessarily. Regarding the specifics of sax setups and how it affects the sound/tone, it's clearly describable on technical terms, whereas trying to come up with what defines 'music' is not settled objectively by all parties - as you suggested some of your relatives are jazz aficionados who don't acknowledge Eric Dolphy being jazz, let alone music.

Eric Dolphy and Olivier Messiaen both heard music in birds, I would guess most others don't. Does that make them wrong?



Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
But this is just 'punting' the discussion. What you appear to be saying is in essence just that "Words have different meanings to different people so what's important is their personal experience, not the objective truth to the extent it exists".
That's a part of it - yes, 'words have different meanings to different people', and 'what's important is their personal experience', and 'the objective truth to the extent it exists' - are all important, and can coexist.

I'm not punting anything. To different individuals or schools of thought on this matter, there seems to be different objective truths as how they see it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
You have the right to think someone else is absolutely wrong because you're right. You have that right. I don't know why you'd postulate that you don't.

More importantly however you have to make a logical choice here: Either there is a truth or there isn't. If there is, why would you not have the right to think someone else is wrong if you think you are right?

Thinking you're right about something doesn't mean you have to give up reasoning and listening. You can still listen to arguments that go against your own opinion and evaluate them.
Yes, 'You have the right to think someone else is absolutely wrong', that goes without saying...all I'm saying is that doesn't make the other person wrong, if it's something in their mind is right, especially regarding things where people have differing ideas on what is right...
Old 12th April 2018
  #303
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
I'm tempted to ask you what your definition of "anger" is. To me it appears that "I disagree with this" referencing a well reasoned view = view is 'so much anger'.

But I'm guessing since everything is relative "so much anger" could just as well be a "triathlon bike".
Precisely! I'm glad to see you're finally getting it.
Old 12th April 2018
  #304
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeorgeHayduke View Post
No, he isn't, but he is excluding things that are clearly not music.

I think you and realtrance must have been traumatized by some very harsh, formulaic, conservative teachers. Noone here is saying that music must follow some fixed scheme, include certain instruments, last for a specific period of time or whatever. You must be projecting from past experiences or something.

Speaking for myself, my own music frequently gets labelled 'psychedelic' in one form or another, and the last thing I do when I write or play is to consider conventions. I might argue that if you mold sounds in a musical way, you are making music, though I prefer not to have to define it.

Complete silence however, is not music. That's all.
No, actually it was after a reading of Husserl's "Ideas" to understand the early context of phenomenology and then moving back to Jean Hyppolite, after which a rereading of Derrida's opus, all the works of Gaston Bachelard, consideration of Tsvetan Todorov's structuralism and Ricoeur's post-Hegelian spiritualism, then a plunge through deBord's short "Society of the Spectacle," (far too short to be as influential as it has become, yet another instance of pop music but in philosophy) and on to Deleuze & Guattari's (sounds like it should be a craftsman team of guitar string manufacturers, eh?) magnificent "Milles Plateaus" -- finally a work whose length matches its merit, that I decided eh, it's all good.

And I have been at peace ever since.

I wish you the same!

Mind you all of the above is because despite my readiing of Hegel, I didn't really trust my own innate insights into his Phenomenology of Mind enough to promulgate them without doing a little further context research. Hegel's philosophy, particularly his later work, argues against excessive reliance upon innate insight, though he's still not quite as much of a materialist as Immanuel Kant (reaction to whom was, upon my first encounter, "oh! but _I_ can!").

In hindsight, I might have been able to save myself a little time; but no-one listens to me anyways, so it doesn't really matter. The important thing is that I thoroughly enjoyed myself! Which is all that ultimately matters.

Complete silence _is_ silence, by the way; as the famous philosopher Arlo Guthrie once said on an album with Pete Seeger at one moment during a live performance -- thus summing up the history of dialectical materialism as well as philosophy in a very few pithy words, as well as making reference to inherent facts about heterosexual instinct: "You can't have a light unless you have a dark to stick it in."

All phallic culture after that insight has proven to be a parody of itself. Thank you, Arlo!
Old 12th April 2018
  #305
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
What is a "musical context"?
The context of the human notion of music.
Old 12th April 2018
  #306
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
In hindsight, I might have been able to save myself a little time; but no-one listens to me anyways, so it doesn't really matter. The important thing is that I thoroughly enjoyed myself! Which is all that ultimately matters.


Quote:
Complete silence _is_ silence, by the way;
Unfortunately for the philosophers there is no such thing as complete silence in the universe. Nothing is truely silent, motionless. At every place in the universe there is something to hear, if your ears are sensitive enough.

In the end, what silence is is personal (but not simply personal preference).
For instance, a normal hearing person will never ever hear complete silence. Even when all external stimuli are removed you still hear the sounds of your body. So this is a kindof relative silence.
Nevertheless, such a person can claim that they experience silence.
And they can communicate about this with a pretty good chance of being understood. Despite the fact that both parties never ever in their entire life experienced true silence.

And on the other hand, a deaf person may have experienced only true silence throughout their life. It's difficult to say for sure, but i guess this is very much like the absolute silence you define above.

So silence can be something else depending on where you reason from.
Again i feel a need to introduce a human-like qualification to explain what sort of silence we are talking about. In the end, it is about what we experience. You can't define these things in purely objective terms and be right about every case.


Quote:
"You can't have a light unless you have a dark to stick it in."
That whole conundrum was shamelessly put to rest by the creation of the Fleshlight...
Old 12th April 2018
  #307
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post



Unfortunately for the philosophers there is no such thing as complete silence in the universe. Nothing is truely silent, motionless. At every place in the universe there is something to hear, if your ears are sensitive enough.

In the end, what silence is is personal (but not simply personal preference).
For instance, a normal hearing person will never ever hear complete silence. Even when all external stimuli are removed you still hear the sounds of your body. So this is a kindof relative silence.
Nevertheless, such a person can claim that they experience silence.
And they can communicate about this with a pretty good chance of being understood. Despite the fact that both parties never ever in their entire life experienced true silence.

And on the other hand, a deaf person may have experienced only true silence throughout their life. It's difficult to say for sure, but i guess this is very much like the absolute silence you define above.

So silence can be something else depending on where you reason from.
Again i feel a need to introduce a human-like qualification to explain what sort of silence we are talking about. In the end, it is about what we experience. You can't define these things in purely objective terms and be right about every case.




That whole conundrum was shamelessly put to rest by the creation of the Fleshlight...
All quite true, as numerous backpacking trips into the mountains and away from people have proven to me.

As to that last item, I fear we may be moving from the Moan Zoan to the Erogenous Zone, which I don't see a place for here, so........
Old 12th April 2018
  #308
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
As to that last item, I fear we may be moving from the Moan Zoan to the Erogenous Zone, which I don't see a place for here, so........
Well, the erogenous zone often leads to the moan zone, so they are somewhat interconnected.
Old 13th April 2018
  #309
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
At every place in the universe there is something to hear, if your ears are sensitive enough.
Nope, in space, no one can hear you scream. There is no oxygen by which the sound can travel and no brains to pick the vibes. Though there are mediums such as gasses that in principle can carry wavelengths that an alien with infrasound hearing could pick up. However. these waves are too low for humans to hear and does not translate into actually hearing sounds. You still need a dedicated brain for that purpose as part of the equation.Though I know what you mean in a figurative sense, of course, just nit picking
Old 13th April 2018
  #310
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IncarnateX View Post
There is no oxygen by which the sound can travel and no brains to pick the vibes.
Oxigen is hardly a requirement for sound.

Quote:
Though there are mediums such as gasses that in principle can carry wavelengths that an alien with infrasound hearing could pick up.
However. these waves are too low for humans to hear and does not translate into actually hearing sounds.
How about hearing individual atoms of gas hitting your ear drum?
How about the quantum mechanics of space putting noise into your stereocilia?

If our ears were sensitive enough we would perceive these phenomena as sound.
Old 13th April 2018
  #311
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Quote:
Originally Posted by IncarnateX View Post
However. these waves are too low for humans to hear and does not translate into actually hearing sounds. You still need a dedicated brain for that purpose as part of the equation.Though I know what you mean in a figurative sense, of course, just nit picking
That's why Horton heard a who.
Old 13th April 2018
  #312
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Now we're getting somewhere. Is sound a quantum phenomenon, by any measure?

If so, that opens up a new line in the conversation.
Old 13th April 2018
  #313
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
Now we're getting somewhere. Is sound a quantum phenomenon, by any measure?
If you're asking wether there are sound waves at the quantum level then yes. Sound is considered often in quantum mechanics.

But if you mean 'does sound originate from quantum phenomena' then the link is less direct as things like gasses and solids form a different medium for the waves to travel along. Sound on our scale doesn't really interact quantum mechanically.

Quote:
If so, that opens up a new line in the conversation.
While its an interesting topic i'm not sure how it would help the discussion.
Old 13th April 2018
  #314
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
While its an interesting topic i'm not sure how it would help the discussion.
And saying there's no absolute silence anywhere in the universe does?

Aren't we here on earth? Isn't our environment and experienced based on us living in a gas called "air"?

Isn't our usage of the words "sound" and "silence" related to the above?

I mean, like I said, we can go on endlessly arguing any topic - and I do mean any topic - and end up talking about quantum field theory and how it supports or invalidates whatever the proposition is.... But is that "helping the discussion"?

It's the exact same problem as calling 433 "music". There's no limit to how far we can take things, but that doesn't make the discussion fruitful.
Old 13th April 2018
  #315
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
It's the exact same problem as calling 433 "music". There's no limit to how far we can take things, but that doesn't make the discussion fruitful.
As I see it, the value of 4'33" is not necessarily 4'33" itself - I mean it's blatantly provocative at many levels. In its questioning of what is 'music', it's the most absurd extreme, just like in the art world questioning what is 'art', what Duchamp's upside urinal ("Fountain") was, which incidentally was voted the most influential artwork of the 20th century in 2004.

The value of 4'33" is the initiation of discussing what is music beyond the status quo representations (of that time), and allowing other alternate means of expression to come to the public light; whether it be dodecaphonic serialism, dissonance, electronic sounds/music, noise, tape, shortwave, free jazz/improvisation, graphic scores, aleatoric music, computer music, Concrete, etc...(which in turn begat our current acceptance of certain elements of hip-hop, punk, Grindcore, death/speed metal, ambient, electronica, movie soundtracks, etc)

I think what's fruitful is having people, as we are here, discussing issues that moves music and expression forward, moving and expanding the goalposts, if you will.
Old 13th April 2018
  #316
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
I think what's fruitful is having people, as we are here, discussing issues that moves music and expression forward, moving and expanding the goalposts, if you will.
Ok, but how do these propositions;

- silence can be music
- the absence of sound can be music
- there is no such thing as absolute silence
- any sound can be music
- it's up to the listener to decide is something is music
- it's all subjective because 'we're all in a sense listeners'

move music forward? It doesn't. All it does is start a fairly meaningless conversation about what "music' is.

Look, people can't have it both ways; either all that matters is what our experience is or that's not all that matters. If it is, then why bother with asking the question of what music really is? I mean after all, if it's all about the experience then we don't have to push the boundaries of the definition of music, we can just call it "performance" or whatever.

...but if the definition does matter, then as I said earlier we're just back to having to decide whether or not it's infinitely fluid a definition in which case by definition it's not really a definition (as it includes everything and excludes nothing) or if we want to actually stick to a definition that is arguably more objective.....
Old 13th April 2018
  #317
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
Ok, but how do these propositions;

- silence can be music
yes, then the environment provides the music

Quote:
- the absence of sound can be music
possibly - then it would have to come from within. Such as: one's own heartbeat can be music. Or even in silence, one can still 'hear' through their imagination.

Quote:
- there is no such thing as absolute silence
not sure on that...

Quote:
- any sound can be music
possibly

Quote:
- it's up to the listener to decide is something is music
Ultimately, yes. But I'd gather most aren't either aware of this fact or aren't confidant enough to say so.

Quote:
- it's all subjective because 'we're all in a sense listeners'
In a sense, yes. While we're trained culturally/societally to listen in certain ways, the way/how one listens or interprets in both visceral and cerebral ways as to what they listen to, can and does vary from individual to individual.
Old 13th April 2018
  #318
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
And saying there's no absolute silence anywhere in the universe does?
Seriously? That's how you want to discuss this?
Look, i started about that because you had the non-physical idea that 'Complete silense _is_ silence'.
I just noted that there is no such perfectly silent place in the known universe.
You idealize the concept beyond its existance of the universe, so how does THAT help define a concept only understood by humans?
As i've explained, the concept of silence as pertaining to humans is not the same thing as the ideal concept of silence. Both have different meanings and have different consequences.

Quote:
Aren't we here on earth? Isn't our environment and experienced based on us living in a gas called "air"?
I want to remind you that you can hear just fine under water. Sound is not confined to air.
But yes, hearing sound is about humans, one way or another. I've argued this all along so i'm not sure why you're asking about it.

Quote:
Isn't our usage of the words "sound" and "silence" related to the above?
Depends on the context.
Also, you were the one who placed the word silence on a special self-referential pedestal by stating that 'complete silence _is_ silence'.
This is like the third time you try to blame me for the consequences of your stance.

Quote:
I mean, like I said, we can go on endlessly arguing any topic - and I do mean any topic - and end up talking about quantum field theory and how it supports or invalidates whatever the proposition is.... But is that "helping the discussion"?
What are you talking about....
I'm pretty sure i already made the argument that diving into quantum mechanics won't help this discussion.
Why are you arguing this with me?

Quote:
It's the exact same problem as calling 433 "music". There's no limit to how far we can take things, but that doesn't make the discussion fruitful.
I think you're just confusing things now.
Old 13th April 2018
  #319
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
Seriously? That's how you want to discuss this?
Look, i started about that because you had the non-physical idea that 'Complete silense _is_ silence'.
I just noted that there is no such perfectly silent place in the known universe.
No I didn't. Someone else said that complete silence is silence. It was as a juxtaposition or comment on yet another poster who said complete silence isn't music.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
But yes, hearing sound is about humans, one way or another. I've argued this all along so i'm not sure why you're asking about it.
I'm saying that because it seems clear to me that when people say things like "complete silence isn't music" they're probably not referring to the place you ended up going. The comments are with a human perspective in mind.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
Depends on the context.
Also, you were the one who placed the word silence on a special self-referential pedestal by stating that 'complete silence _is_ silence'.
This is like the third time you try to blame me for the consequences of your stance.
Again, you're quoting someone else now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
What are you talking about....
I'm pretty sure i already made the argument that diving into quantum mechanics won't help this discussion.
Why are you arguing this with me?


I think you're just confusing things now.
See above.
Old 13th April 2018
  #320
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
yes, then the environment provides the music


possibly - then it would have to come from within. Such as: one's own heartbeat can be music. Or even in silence, one can still 'hear' through their imagination.


not sure on that...


possibly


Ultimately, yes. But I'd gather most aren't either aware of this fact or aren't confidant enough to say so.


In a sense, yes. While we're trained culturally/societally to listen in certain ways, the way/how one listens or interprets in both visceral and cerebral ways as to what they listen to, can and does vary from individual to individual.
....and then I continued with "move music forward?"...
Old 13th April 2018
  #321
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mattiasnyc View Post
No I didn't. Someone else said that complete silence is silence. It was as a juxtaposition or comment on yet another poster who said complete silence isn't music.
Quote:
Again, you're quoting someone else now.
Darn. I'm truely sorry for attacking you on that. That's stupidity based on a stupid mistake.,

Quote:
I'm saying that because it seems clear to me that when people say things like "complete silence isn't music" they're probably not referring to the place you ended up going. The comments are with a human perspective in mind.
I'm wasn't at all sure about that. I can understand the meaning of such statement from a number of perspectives. This is maybe close to the problem (of defining music), that there are different overlapping perspectives to have.
Words like 'complete silence' have levels of meaning that are context sensitive.
And half the time in this discussion i'm guessing the position from which these words are written.
Old 13th April 2018
  #322
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To be serious for a moment, I think we all agree that the silences -- rests -- are part of music, that's unquestionable. The quality of a sound is in part determined by its longevity, be it legato, staccato, pizzicato (make mine cheese with olives!), etc.

So, _relatively speaking_ (and I ain't no Einstein), the gaps between notes define the time intervals of notes; the length of and number of bars determine the time interval of phrases or phases of a piece of music, and so on.

Saying all those things takes as precondition the understanding of those terms -- which are not universal by any means -- as words with specific definitions that define pieces of time. A quarter note. A sixteenth note. A 32nd note.

So the question is, does it help anything at all to get away from those definitions? For some, absolutely not. For others, well how else would you speak of them? What other terms would you use? I'm not saying this in any kind of contestatory way, I'm just asking. Other musical traditions would also have time slices, with terms to describe them (what is the time frame for performance of the original Aeolian Harp, played by the wind? When does the performance start, and end? Is the musical sound of a wind chime music, if it is merely the tinkling of notes energized by passing breezes? etc.). In any case, there would be a definition of terms that defines silences and not-silences in the activity that occurs in the process of shaping sounds.

Electronic synthesis tries to break this down to the finest units it can clearly define, using its own terms, which I won't rehearse here; you all know them. Curtis Roads even goes the length, in trying to discuss granular synthesis, of using pseudo atomic theory as a metaphor (more informed by Xenakis, though) for what he labels "microsound," in the work of that name. Interesting read but didn't lead me anywhere near as far in my thinking as I hoped. I think the "particle" analogy, despite the appeal of granular synthesis as a concept (and it's implemented most interestingly, in my opinion, not in the V-Synth but in MakeNoise Music Systems' Phonogene and Morphagene Eurorack modules), achieves little. Just my opinion.

But anyways, I think we are also saying here that "4:33" was a provocative act in a particular time period in history where it was more actively meant to question the definitions of music of its time, at a time where an Everything Goes attitude towards convention was pushing against the increasingly paranoid, confining, stifling, restrictive norms of '50's western (and, for that matter, Soviet and Communist Chinese) culture. Freedom to ignore convention was literally seen as communist (or western, in soviet/chinese countries -- ever heard the joke? "Under capitalism, it is man against man; under communism, it's the other way around"?) subversion; adhering to and upholding convention was seen as patriotic cultural protectionism against the onslaught of the faceless, mindless Other. Too bad the human species is still stuck in such dualisms, postmodernism was in part trying to say, ease up fellas, it ain't that bad and women should rule the world anyways, at least until they prove they're no better than men.

ANYWAYS -- where was I? Oh. I think at this point we might be able to agree that the nature of the provocation of "4:33" is no longer relevant to our current context, where the problems are quite different, where "everything goes" has turned into "no-one thinks you have to learn anything to do anything," and upholding the rules has turned into, "well it's just Get Off of My Lawn perpetrated by old folks who can't accept change," -- neither of which positions holds any water (or even any air, or quantum energy, even).

We have different provocations, different rules, and we haven't learned how to live together yet in peace and harmony anyways, so now what?
Old 13th April 2018
  #323
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 12tone View Post
As I see it, the value of 4'33" is not necessarily 4'33" itself - I mean it's blatantly provocative at many levels. In its questioning of what is 'music', it's the most absurd extreme, just like in the art world questioning what is 'art', what Duchamp's upside urinal ("Fountain") was, which incidentally was voted the most influential artwork of the 20th century in 2004.
It was certainly taken that way, but it's also pretty clear that Cage's intention was more along the lines of encouraging people to listen in a more open way to whatever sounds were already around them, without a negative or critical connotation about expectations about music. It has rarely been appreciated with the right amount of lightness and sense of discovery.

There is nothing absurd or extreme about it.
Old 13th April 2018
  #324
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teleharmonium View Post
There is nothing absurd or extreme about it.
Well, it didn't cause a riot like the Paris premiere of Stravinsky's Rite of Spring did in 1913...

friggin' French snowflakes.
Old 14th April 2018
  #325
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Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
Oxigen is hardly a requirement for sound.

How about hearing individual atoms of gas hitting your ear drum?
How about the quantum mechanics of space putting noise into your stereocilia?

If our ears were sensitive enough we would perceive these phenomena as sound.
Sound requires a medium. On planet Earth it is oxygen. In space there are some gasses that can serve as medium for very low tones you would not be able to hear (as said). The quantum mechanics of sound is rather unexplored apart from the behavior of phonons, so that is speculation. Every wave in the universe could in principle be translated into sound, but it still requires a travelling medium and a dedicated perceptual system such as a brain to pick them up and translate.
Old 16th April 2018
  #326
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Originally Posted by monomer View Post
I don't think this is such a clear case.
This year we had a problem in the netherlands. A small ecological disaster, if you will. You see, we had the fantastic idea of having such a natural park..
The Netherlands are known for having fought nature through generations, so I understand the desire to see more 'wild' nature there, though there are obvious limits there.
Otoh. for instance Denali Natl. Park in Alaska has an area that is almost 1/3 of the entire Netherlands. The park is so vast that the animals (that were there already naturally there before the park was formed) can literally move somewhere else in the park or beyond. However, within the park boudaries the animals are not under pressure from traffic or other technological noise or development, from hunters and agriculture etc. Human visitation is quite limited, you need to apply for a permit. Several of the Natl. parks in the US are really huge and they allow one to feel completely immersed and alone in a world only shaped by time, water, wind and evolution.
There, after a couple of days of hiking, the human world falls into the back of one's mind, you are in a world shaped by nature and your whole perspective might change. But there is also starvation and die-offs there during hard winters, like anywhere else, nature is not Disneyland.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post
Who said that it must be seen as a 'regular' piece of music? I don't think anyone argued that it was a 'regular' piece of music.
Edit: And what is 'regular' music anyway?
I distinguish between art that has music as it's subject matter and music itself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by monomer View Post

I think you're taking this too far by bunching it into solipsism.
I just don't think any of the arguments were really about solipsism.
But it's a nice quote nevertheless.
You're right, I was stretching the point, I just love that quote so much Otoh., there is clearly some truth to it when people deny lexical distinctions. The word music at least implies a human agent shaping sound with musical intent, albeit whales and other animals may indeed be doing the same thing. We can stick with the human agent to be on safe ground.

Last edited by GeorgeHayduke; 26th April 2018 at 09:04 AM..
Old 16th April 2018
  #327
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Quote:
Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
..as the famous philosopher Arlo Guthrie once said on an album with Pete Seeger at one moment during a live performance -- thus summing up the history of dialectical materialism as well as philosophy in a very few pithy words, as well as making reference to inherent facts about heterosexual instinct: "You can't have a light unless you have a dark to stick it in."

All phallic culture after that insight has proven to be a parody of itself. Thank you, Arlo!
So, that's the undisclosed referent you've been dancing around, fear of heterosexual dualism? Or perhaps more personal irritation that nature made heterosexality the statistical norm? Regardless, is it reasonable to let that spill into everything and see all dualisms as an attack on you, in case you do? I don't think it is. Life is full of duality, by nature's hand, day/night, life/death, winter/summer etc.

Btw., Edward Abbey once wrote that you could see less with a flashlight on than off. Granted, when it's on you see a little bit very clearly but your focus is only on that, so you lose sight of the greater whole.

Last edited by GeorgeHayduke; 16th April 2018 at 08:37 AM..
Old 16th April 2018
  #328
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Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
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I think at this point we might be able to agree that the nature of the provocation of "4:33" is no longer relevant to our current context, where the problems are quite different, where "everything goes" has turned into "no-one thinks you have to learn anything to do anything," and upholding the rules has turned into, "well it's just Get Off of My Lawn perpetrated by old folks who can't accept change," -- neither of which positions holds any water (or even any air, or quantum energy, even).
Right, there's really nothing all that provocative about it now, and indeed the careless attitude where everything is equally good has permeated us to a degree where it just makes the world feel dumber and more shallow - and decidedly dangerous.

I think we're perhaps living a darker version of the 60ies because everything has been cast aside but there's no central idea driving it somewhere else, no big collaborative movement against the liberalized global market forces that are driving ecological destruction, inequality and the loss of local democracy and decision making.

The modern artist that I know that has the most shock value to me is the author Michel Houellebecq (who has been attacked again and again by French baby-boomer intellectuals and fanatic absolutists). I won't say I love him, but the guy is a very, very acute observer, a gifted writer and he is most of all outrageously provocative, in part because he isn't afraid of showing the dark side of the 'anything goes' thing.

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Originally Posted by realtrance View Post
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We have different provocations, different rules, and we haven't learned how to live together yet in peace and harmony anyways, so now what?
The human being is an animal. For better and worse. Houellebecq repeatedly toys with the idea of going post-human (very untrue to Nietszche's ideas about being true to human nature) to avoid the strife and tension between peoples, generations, the sexes etc but what he describes paradoxically sounds even scarier.
Old 16th April 2018
  #329
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Originally Posted by GeorgeHayduke View Post
The Netherlands are known for having fought nature through generations, so I understand the desire to see more 'wild' nature there, though there are obvious limits there.
Otoh. for instance Denali Natl. Park in Alaska has an area that is almost 1/3 of the entire Netherlands. The park is so vast that the animals (that were there already naturally there before the park was formed) can literally move somewhere else in the park or beyond. However, within the park boudaries the animals are not under pressure from traffic or other technological noise or development, from hunters and agriculture etc. Human visitation is quite limited, you need to apply for a permit. Several of the Natl. parks in the US are really huge and they allow one to feel completely immersed and alone in a world only shaped by time, water, wind and evolution.
There, after a couple of days of hiking, the human world falls into the back of one's mind, you are in a world shaped by nature and your whole perspective of what holds value in life might change. But there is also starvation and die-offs there during hard winters, like anywhere else, nature is not Disneyland.
Yeah, there are various 'levels' of this, i agree.
The thing is maybe that we humans regularly think we know it all, and act on that.
And that can have bad consequences, especially from the viewpoint of the ones undergoing this act.

Quote:
I distinguish between art that has music as it's subject matter and music itself.
But again, are these things seperatable?

Quote:
You're right, I was stretching the point, I just love that quote so much Otoh., there is clearly some truth to it when people deny lexical distinctions. The word music at least implies a human agent shaping sound with musical intent, albeit whales and other animals may indeed be doing the same thing. We can stick with the human agent to be on safe ground.
I was seeking a similarly vague definition.
And there is in my view another side, that of the listener.
What you describe here is the view of the composer.
I think these are separate entities so you can have someone making what they feel is music but which listeners don't agree on (or maybe they never have actually heared the piece) and you can have listeners that hear music in, say, natural phenomena and no composer is involved. But yeah, i think a human agents is always involved somehow.
Old 16th April 2018
  #330
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Originally Posted by IncarnateX View Post
Sound requires a medium. On planet Earth it is oxygen.
Not really. You need oxygen to breath, but in our daily experience sound goes through a changing mixture of gasses we call air. Oxygen only makes up 20% of the air around you. Nitrogen makes up about 78%. So the bulk of the medium is actually nitrogen.

But then again, you hear just fine underwater. In that case the water is the medium.

Quote:
The quantum mechanics of sound is rather unexplored apart from the behavior of phonons, so that is speculation.
I beg to differ.
Phonons are how sound manifests at the quantum level and it is explored extensively. Not a lot of speculation about its existance or its guise.

Quote:
Every wave in the universe could in principle be translated into sound, but it still requires a travelling medium and a dedicated perceptual system such as a brain to pick them up and translate.
Sure, that's why i noted that you need sensitive enough ears.

What i was trying to say is that there is a distinction between 'sound' as perceived by humans and 'sound' as a general physical phenomena.
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