Andrew Ford interviews WB about Chris Mann, the American Experimental Music Traditions, and Catherine Schieve for ABC-Radio "The Music Show," Dec 2, 2018

For ABC Radio National's "The Music Show" on December 2, at 11:30 am (Australian Eastern Time), Andrew Ford will be interviewing me about Chris Mann and our work together, the American Experimental Music Traditions, what I think a "composer" is, and Catherine Schieve and our work together.  You'll hear brief excerpts from my Almond Bread Harmonies (1985), "of course" by Chris Mann and me, (1988), a bit of a solo reading by Chris, a fragment of HPSCHD by John Cage and Lejaren Hiller, and part of the 2017 performance of Catherine Schieve's "Repentistas" (2003) for electronics, viola and toy piano, performed by Catherine on electronics, me on viola, and Ian Parsons on toy piano.  More info on the Repentistas performance can be found here:

For those who won't be near an Australian AM Radio on Sunday morning, you can listen to the interview anytime on the ABC website.  Here's the link:

Thanks to Andrew Ford for coming to Daylesford and interviewing me, and to Penny Lomax for producing the show.  Enjoy!


VCV Rack now hosts external VST plugins!

The latest development in Andrew Belt's VCV-Rack project is VCV Host, which enables VST plugins to work within the VCV-Rack environment.  It was released this morning, and I immediately bought it ($30 US, such a deal!), and tried it out.  The result is shown above.  In this patch, the UVI Falcon workstation is hosting the UVI Orchestral Bells (tuned to a microtonal scale, of course!), which are then processed by the GRM Tools Reson Filter.  Both of these are controlled by multiple copies of the metaAARDVARK module designed by Antonio Tuzzi based on my designs from the 70s. Thanks to Andrew Belt for his ongoing work on the VCV-Rack Project, and to Antonio Tuzzi for his work on his NYSTHI modules, which are becoming essential to my musical work.  Click here to either download or listen to what 2 minutes of this patch sounds like.  Enjoy!




November 2018's New Articles in

Three new reviews in this issue.

First a review of Audio Damage's Quanta - a superb granulator for both PCs (and Macs) and iOS tablets:

Then, we have a review of William K's wonderfully upgraded Wusik Station, now up to Version 9:

And finally, from the good folks at AmpleSound in Beijing, a review of their marvelous China Pipa sample set:

Hope you enjoy the reading, and even, perhaps, trying out the software!


"Memories of Albion" by Warren Burt and Chris Mann 1978

A number of friends have remembered this short Super8 film that I made with Chris Mann in 1978, and since Chris's passing in September, have asked if I could make it available.  Here it is - Chris is in full flight - I asked him to scream abuse at the camera for a short period, which he did, beautifully.  I then took the soundtrack and, using one of the first digital rate-changers, stretched the sound out of comprehensibility (and believe me, since this is a family show, you'd want comprehensibility removed) and then made a cut-up of the slow-down.  I did the same with the visuals and then juxatoposed the two.  At the end, there is a brief clip of Chris doing Sufi whirling with a bush slasher, and then playing bush cricket with the slasher for a bat and an onion for the ball.  The onion was hurled from off camera by Eva Karczag.  This is an excerpt from a 1978-1980 film called "If Structure is an Empty Glass."  I really like how the warm, glowing colours of the Super8 film stock are preserved through generations of digitization.


"Crane" by Max Posthoorn, with music by Warren Burt

Max Posthoorn is a one of our wonderful postgraduate students at Box Hill Institute.  Recently, there was a rather horrible industrial accident near our campus - a crane lost its load at a construction site, killing two workers and seriously injuring another.  Max, who is very interested in construction sites, and who lives only a few blocks from the site of the accident, was very affected by this.  He wrote a poem, "Crane," which combines thoughts on the accident with ancient Greek myths of the crane (the bird).  He wanted to read it in Catherine Schieve's "Contemporary Ideas and Practices" seminar, and asked me to play some electronic sounds I was working on to accompany the poem.  The sounds were made with some recent modules Antonio Tuzzi has developed for the VCV-Rack environment.  I made a patch with them that emulated the patch I mostly wrote "Aardvarks IV" with, back in 72-75.  So on October 2, in the tiny seminar room at Box Hill, as part of the class, we performed the poem and music.  The sound recording is by Miriam Forte, another of the postgraduates, the photo is by Catherine Schieve.  Max is reading, I'm playing the computer patch, and Rebecca Hart is being the lighting designer, holding the flashlight in her cellphone to provide Max a reading lamp.


 Click on this sentence to download the sound file of the performance.