Music 1101, a class alternative

To all students looking to join a music course this semester but who were unable to get into Music 1421–particularly Frenshman and Sophmores who might be thinking of a major or minor in music–I have a recommendation: 1101 Elements of Music, taught by Prof. Andrew Hicks.

As a past a future guest of the course, I can highly recommend it for its nicely-intermingled historical and hands-on/practical approach. A syllabus for the semester is attached for your perusal. Feel free to ask me or contact Prof. Hicks if you think the course might be right for you.

Music 1101 Syllabus

Final class concert

Final semester concert, May 15th at 2pm in Lincoln Hall B20

Concert Order (with rehearsal time in parenthesis):

Joseph Simmons (10:30)
TJ Hurd and Wesley Jung (10:50)
Shining (Christina) Sun (11:10)
Amy Lin (11:30)
Albert Kung/Ryan Lin

Thomas Torng (11:40 … please show up earlier to setup) — Intermission

Adit Arya (12 noon)
Paul DeVito (12:20)
Pehuen Moure  (12:40)
Emre Findik
Miguel Palines (1pm)
Jenae Lowe (1:20)

Anyone looking for a project partner?

Hi everyone,

I’ve been thinking about ideas for the final project and was wondering if anyone out there wanted to team up with a saxophone player (me)?


-Jenae (mjl347)

Tuesday and Thursday project #2 presentation

Below are the (randomly selected) group presentation dates and order. Again, if you have not already, please let me know what equipment you need for your performance/presentation. We are planning to present and discuss these in B20 but you are free to use another space as the project seems appropriate (another motivation for us to view the concert and installation pieces together yesterday). Let me know if I can help secure an appropriate space for your idea.

Let me know if there are any errors in the group listing below…one or two of you never wrote and so I am going on a verbal discussion.


Group 1:
– TJ Hurd
– Wesley Jung

Group 2:
– Amy Lin
– Ryan Lin
– Albert Kung

Group 3:
– Paul Devito
– Adit Arya


Group 4:
– Thomas Torng
– Christina Sun
– Emre Findik

Group 5:
– Pehuen Moure
– M. Jenae Lowe

Group 6:
– Joseph Simmons
– Miguel Palines

Ableton refresher for future reference

If you haven’t installed PD yet scroll down one post.


I missed the live performance last week but since I spent a lot of time on it, I figured I might as well not let my effort go to waste. Since Macs have a record screen function, I realized I could also showcase a few of the cool things Ableton has that you may or may not have seen.

My project focuses on using MIDI instruments, rather than taking samples from online. This means I can play any song I want (or rather, the audience wants), and probably make a mashup too. In hindsight though, I recommend making your drum tracks before a live performance… Unfortunately there are some limitations to using MIDI instruments in Ableton, which are very evident at the transitions.

Anyway, have fun! You may or may not recognize the song.

Thomas Torng

Hi Everyone

My name is Miguel and I’m a junior in the ILR School. I used to sing and play piano consistently when I was younger but now I enjoy focusing my efforts into producing music. I only recently started to explore music production as I have always been a fan of hip-hop. As I grew older however, my music taste diversified immensely and I now enjoy listening to house, electronic, indie rock, r&b, jazz, soul, and every subcategory in between. Being exposed to hip-hop all these years, I have always been more appreciative of the lyrical side of music, but as I grew to love all types of music, I have come to embrace every aspect of a musical art piece, from the drums and bass, to the effects, and to the instruments I never even used to notice. And I have always considered music to be my favorite art form, because it always resonated with me the most.

Having such a strong connection to music, it was only a natural step for me to start experimenting with making my own. Since my skills in computer music production and performance are only average at best, I hope that through this course, I can master the music software and performance tools necessary to make me a more creative musician. I want to familiarize myself with the music software as much as possible and learn to perform as such. I want to be able to produce a piece of music from any genre I feel like doing. In short, I want to translate all my creative musical ideas into reality. And the best way I can see myself doing that is through this course. Thank you for reading and I hope to learn as much from you guys as I will from this course!



Project 1 performances, March 8th and 10th

Here is the randomly generated order for this coming week’s in-class performances:

Tuesday March 8th: Thursday March 10th:
Adit Arya Amy Lin
Wesley Jung Albert Kung
Joseph Simmons Emre Findik
Shining Sun Pehun Moure
Ryan Lin Jeffrey Hurd
Thomas Torng M. Jenae Lowe
Paul DeVito Miguel Palines


Office Hours for Music 2421

Hey all,

This is your TA Charlie. I’m just writing to let you know that I’m available every Thursday from 2-3pm in room 125 (Lincoln Hall) if you need assistance with class work. Don’t hesitate to stop by if you want some extra help.

Best, Charlie

Thursday visitor, Erin Gee

Students of Music 2421: Our Thursday visitor will be composer Erin Gee. In preparation for her discussion of “New Uses of the Voice (the vocal cavity as human ‘space’)”, she suggests considering the following questions:

As you prepare for class, here are some questions to ponder, a few excerpts to listen to, and an exercise to practice:

George Aperghis
Recitations 1-14 for solo voice (1977-78) – excerpts, #12 and #13:

Brian Ferneyhough
Time and Motion Study III (1974) for 16 voices with percussion, electronic amplification (and optional loop-tape delay) –

Dieter Schnebel
Für Stimmen…missa est (1956/67-68) for three choir groups and tape ad lib.



1. How is listening to vocal music without text (non-semantic vocal music) similar to or different from listening to vocal music with a text in a language we understand? How does the non-semantic use of the voice change our perception of the vocal performer?

a. What are the vocal sound-materials that are used? Where do they come from? What are the compositional techniques that are used?

2. How does a text help guide a composer’s compositional choices? When a text is no longer present or used by the composer for the vocal line, what compositional choices does a composer have to make then?

3. There are three parts of sound production in the vocal tract: the active articulator (tongue or lips), the place of articulation within the mouth, and the type of airflow (where the air comes from and how it moves through the system). Following is an exercise to practice awareness of some possibilities of articulation:

a. Pronounce the syllable “tɑ” (with “ɑ” as in “father”)

b. Notice where the tongue is placed on the roof of the mouth. This point is called the place of articulation.

c. Now move the tongue to different places of articulation in different parts while still trying to pronounce the syllable “tɑ”. At what points does the sound change and why? At what points are you no longer able to produce a recognizable “tɑ” syllable?

d. Write a list of observations about the vocal tract that you discovered from this exercise and a list of the sounds that you found most interesting as part of a journal entry on the voice. Notice in particular what the breath does to create the “t” syllable. What is necessary in the mouth for this to take place?

4. As possibly the only living expert on your own voice, what would you consider to be some of the limitations to the voice or vocal tract that you have come across? These could be specific to your own voice or more general to the vocal tract. And more importantly:

What would be some possible solutions to these limitations?

You could approach this question either from the standpoint of a theoretical “re-designing” of the vocal tract or designing additional systems/technology that could be used in tandem with the vocal tract.

Hello Friends

My name is Ryan and I’m a sophomore studying biology in Arts & Sciences. I’ve been playing piano for 8 years and have recently been focusing on jazz. I mostly am interested in hip-hop/dance music like Odesza, Atmosphere, and Madeon. I have very limited experience in production and live performance, but hope to learn a lot this semester.

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