Hiller, Baker, Melby: Computer Music
Liner Notes   Cat. No. NWCRL310     Release Date: 2010-02-15
Helen Hamm, soprano; University of Illinois Contemporary Chamber Players; Jack McKenzie, Conductor; Contemporary Brass Quintet: Elin Frazier, trumpet; Daniel Orlock, trumpet; Edward Curenton, horn; Robert Moore, trombone; Jonathan Dornblum, tuba; Roman Pawlowski, Conductor

Lejaren Hiller writes:

“Much nonsense has been written about computers ‘thinking’ and ‘creating.’ After all, a computer is really nothing more than a complex array of hardware. It can be tremendously useful hardware, however, but only if you know the limitations of programming logic and how to ask sensible and precisely formulated questions.

“Should a person listen to this piece as he might ‘ordinary music’? Yes, I think, but with this important qualification: It is much more didactic than expressive compared to most music. This piece is truly experimental because it is concerned with revealing process as well as being final product. It is an embodiment of objective research results. It is a laboratory notebook. Sometimes the results surprise us because a compositional routine seemed less effective than expected, sometimes more so. If I had deleted everything that disturbed me esthetically, I would have falsified the research record. So, at that time, my objective in composing music by means of computer programming was not the immediate realization of an esthetic unity, but the providing and evaluation of techniques whereby this goal could eventually be realized.”

John Melby writes about his music:

91 Plus 5 (the title refers to nothing more than the fact that the piece is scored for an electronic tape realized on an IBM 360/91 digital computer and five brass instruments) is a composition in nine sections which combine to form one continuous movement. The first through eighth sections form a large arch-form, with the first related to the eighth, the second to the seventh, etc. The ninth section serves as a ‘coda.’ Each pair of related sections emphasizes a different aspect of the basic rhythmic/pitch materials. In addition, the related sections correspond in terms of tempo relationships, ‘timbral’ considerations, etc.

This title from the CRI LP back catalog has been carefully transferred from the original master tape, and is now available from New World Records as an on-demand CD (CD-R). It can also be downloaded in MP3/320, FLAC and/or WAV format(s).

We have preserved the original CRI LP catalog number for this title, preceded by the prefix NWCRL, to distinguish previously unavailable back catalog titles from those later reissued by CRI on compact disc.

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Various Artists

Hiller, Baker, Melby: Computer Music

MP3/320 $9.99
FLAC $9.99
WAV $9.99
CD $12.99

Track Listing

Computer Cantata: Prolog to Strophe I - Strophe I
Lejaren Hiller, Robert Baker
Computer Cantata: Prolog to Strophe II - Strophe II
Lejaren Hiller, Robert Baker
Computer Cantata: Prolog to Strophe III - Strophe III
Lejaren Hiller, Robert Baker
Computer Cantata: Strophe IV - Epilog to Strophe IV
Lejaren Hiller, Robert Baker
Computer Cantata: Strophe V - Epilog to Strophe V
Lejaren Hiller, Robert Baker
91 Plus 5
John Melby