Utopian Turtletop. Monsieur Croche's BĂȘte Noire. Contact: turtletop [at] hotmail [dot] com

Wednesday, April 28, 2004


From the current issue of the BBC Classical Music Magazine:

"A Miami driver accused of violating the city's noise ordinance by playing loud rap music, was sentenced by a judge to listen to opera as his punishment. He chose LA TRAVIATA -- and enjoyed it. 'I think it's pretty relaxing,' he said."

Football stadiums and lawn mowers routinely break the noise limits, but the people writing the laws make exceptions for such practices. How about that.


The other day I realized: When someone in a car is listening to (usually rap) music so loud that the bass frequencies audibly rattle the car's doors and windows, the car itself becomes a de facto musical effect, like an electric guitarist's fuzz box. Pretty cool.


Music happens differently in different spaces. One of the problems with recorded music is that any single specimen re-creates at least one (often more) acoustical space which is then projected into a second space. And with amplification, much recorded music of the last 75 years creates a fictional space, where a singer murmurs intimately in your ear as a band wails mightily in some psycho-acoustical background "place." Mick Jones of the Clash -- to take an example that struck me on the radio the other day -- conversating about "Somebody Got Murdered" as Topper Headon pounds the drums. The pounding drums create the illusion of loudness; Jones's singing creates the illusion of quiet; the listener can choose quiet or loud as the setting. A very different *work of art* than a live performance of the song, which can only be LOUD in that particular arrangement.

Comments: Post a Comment

This page is powered by Blogger. Isn't yours?