Sunday, October 12, 2008
the beauty of the path (and harry partch)
ah - if words could only express sometimes the immenseness of musical inspiration and experience. I feel overwhelmed most of the time with how many wonderful musical experiences there are out there yet to be discovered - through new composers, new instruments, new musicians, etc. but that is part of the beauty of this journey we take, that it is a never-ending yet always widening path into the universally infinite.
Not sure why I'm feeling so poetic, but Im sure some of it has to do with the fact that I just watched a great BBC documentary (available on youtube) about Harry Partch. I had been vaguely familiar with his name and the fact he was a musical experimenter - but, as with life, a series of events led me to this moment of understanding and wonder:
I was watching a rather lame documentary about Tom Waits (lame bc it was a bunch of british journalists and critics analyzing his music... a whole other diatribe in and of itself) but of course Partch was a big influence on Waits from the middle of his career onwards. So, of course, I set out to find out more about this man.
All of this is of course alongside my reading of "The Experience of Harmony" which discusses natural tuning systems, which Partch connected with deeply- well, exclusively in fact.
And then I remembered, probably 2 or 3 years ago at least, happening upon a great site where you could actually play these crazy, naturally tuned, 20th century instruments. of course, they were inventions of Partch. Luckily I found the website again tonight (practically by accident - - - or was it, haha) anyway, please check it out - have fun playing his various toys - and allow your experiences thus to lead you in whatever direction it may take you. and may your path always be blessed by moments of bliss!
heres the link: http://musicmavericks.publicradio.org/features/feature_partch.html