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Music in the Age of Communication and Control

  • Author(s): Hernandez, David Roberto
  • Advisor(s): Polansky, Larry
  • et al.


Music in the Age of Communication and Control

David Roberto Hernandez

This dissertation is a study of DIY electronic music from the mid-20th century to the present, with a particular focus on analog system design. It weaves together prominent figures such as Louis and Bebe Barron, David Tudor, and Gordon Mumma as well as lesser-known figures in the recent analog system rebirth. This study is conducted from the perspective that musicians must grapple with the conditions of industrialization, and therefore gain mastery over the infrastructure of communication in the so-called “information age.” Chapter 1 investigates the transmission of knowledge and creativity within the world of DIY electronic music. Chapter 2 is a meditation on the cultural climate within which this transmission has occurred. We have developed techniques of treating organisms, electronics, and acoustical spaces as analogs for each other, rather than as elements of a strict hierarchy.

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