Arts 2020 - Computer Music Studio

Curtis Bahn Ph.D. (, Mon. 12:00-4:50 WH 110

Syllabus (Spring '09)

iEAR Studios Main Information page

Computer Music Lab, class information

iEAR website for formal manuals and LAB information

HASS support request system (equipment trouble reports)

Concert reports - 3 needed for the semester

Assignments: assignments are due in class on the days listed. Links become active when assigned. Subject to change, always check the website for current schedule.

1/12 Introductions...
Introduction to critical listening, analysis, and discussion of music, musical form,
Studio orientation. Equipment room orientation
ASSIGNMENT: Field recording
LAB: Field Recording, DAT amd solid state recorders, Microphones.

read: Vocabulary for cross cultural musical analysis

skim: "How Digital Audio Works" from the MAX/MSP manual - pp 8-21 [MSP2.pdf]

skim: "How Microphones Work" by Peter Elsea

skim: "getting started with mbox," pp. 37-59

1/19 Labor Day - MLK day no classes
Make sure you have Lab and ER access – proceed with your sound recordings.

1/26 Music with Natural Sounds continued
DUE: Initial field recordings on DAT tape, hard drive or external memory card.
LAB: Digital Transfer and Editing, Composing with ProTools.

read: "How Digital Audio Works" from the MAX/MSP manual - pp 8-21 [MSP2.pdf]

read: "getting started with mbox," pp. 37-59

2/2 Music with Natural Sounds continued.
DUE: composition 1a mix sketch, present in class.
LAB: musical form, mixing and signal processing.

2/9 COMPOSITION 1 DUE (Field Recording/Composition). PRESENT IN CLASS
Introduction to MIDI, theory and concepts.
LAB: Reason, making a drum sequence

try the Reason Demo

what is MIDI
MIDI note messages
MIDI control messages

2/16 no class – tuesday is a monday schedule
2/17 Music with Synthetic Sound
More on MIDI, digital audio, musical acoustics and psycho-acoustics.
Historical trends, listening and discussion.
LAB: MIDI sequencing, recording and editing, etc.

2/23 Music with Synthetic Sound continued..
LAB: MIDI sequencing, recording and editing, making a drum beat etc.

3/2 COMPOSITION 2 DUE (Music With Synthetic Sound). PRESENT IN CLASS

3/9 Spring Break

3/16 Real-time processing and interactive performance
DUE: Download and install MAX/MSP demo

3/23 Real-time processing and interactive performance
DUE: rhythm machine


4/6 Putting it all together – final project proposal discussions, more on form and composition, review for quiz.

DUE: proposal for final composition

4/13 Quiz


Vocabulary for cross cultural musical analysis

"How Digital Audio Works" from the MAX/MSP manual - pp 8-21 [MSP2.pdf]

classifications of musical textures from the REASON assignment.

general Concepts of MIDI and digital audio from class discussions


4/20 DUE: sketches for final composition - more discussion of composition and individual help.

4/27 DUE: present final composition in class



Suggested Listening: Listenings will be presented in class each week. Additional online resources:

Concert Reviews:

You are required to attend at least three musical concerts our sound-based events during the semester. You may attend concerts from the “iEAR Presents” musical events, or “Impulse Response” events, or any other events you would like to attend on or off campus. They MUST be events in which live performed music our sound is the focus. A soundtrack to a film, for example, does NOT count. You will then need to submit via email a 1-2 page review of each performance which addresses both technical and aesthetic issues. Reviews should include both a description of the program, instrumentation (when appropriate), and a reasoned critique of the sonic materials and the performance.

Concert Calendars/Information: