Professor of Music
He is a composer and electronic artist whose sound and installation work has been presented recently at The Festival Synthese in Bourges, France; The Butler Institute of American Art in Youngstown; The Victoria Independent Film and Video Festival in Vancouver, Canada; The AV Festival in Newcastle, England; and the Smith College Museum of Art.
Warner's recent music is available on the Virtuelle label. His book Audio Culture: Readings in Modern Music (co-edited with Christoph Cox) is published by Continuum Press.
Contemporary Musical Practices: This course will engage the important compositional practices of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. Students will compose music using post-tonal pitch systems, new scalar and chordal constructions, and expanded formal and textural possibilities. We will focus on the creation of new, non-traditional hierarchies within musical systems with regard to intervals, notions of consonance and dissonance, asymmetrical meters, non-metrical rhythm, and tuning. Students will also be encouraged to develop new compositional strategies through the examination of existing practices such as polytonality, serialism, pitch-class composition, minimalism, and indeterminacy.
This course will focus on a wide range of topics in sound synthesis and music composition using the MAX/MSP/JITTER program. Students will undertake projects in interactive MIDI composition, algorithmic composition, additive and subtractive synthesis, waveshaping, AM/FM synthesis, and sampling. Other topics to be covered include SYSEX programming, sound analysis, theories of timbre, and concepts of musical time.
Beginning with Christopher Small's book of the same name, "Musicking," this course will consider music as a an action that relates us to the world. In addition to the "musical relations" within music as object or performance, we know, feel, and transform ourselves and the world as "musickers." Moving through and beyond categories of identity, we will consider performers such as Kathleen Hanna, Laurie Anderson, Freddie Mercury (Queen), Parliament-Funkadelic, Sun Ra, and Gang of Four, as well as readings in Feminist, Queer, and Afrological musicology, contemporary philosophical writings on music and emotion, political economies of music, and social change.
This course will explore a range of experimental musical practices and various approaches to thinking theoretically and critically about them. We will traverse musical areas such as minimalism, indeterminacy, musique concrte, free improvisation, turntablism, and electronica, and examine these via philosophy, critical theory, film/video, and statements by composers and producers. Investigating different modes of listening to and talking about contemporary music, we will ask such questions as: What is the nature of music in relationship to silence and noise? What are the effects of recording and sampling on contemporary musical life? Can music have a political or critical function? Are the distinctions between "classical" and "popular," "high art" and "mass art" still relevant today? There will be an evening listening session schedule for this course.
This is a composition course that will also survey the history, theory, and practice of electro-acoustic music. The course will introduce the musical, technical, and theoretical issues of electro-acoustic music, broadly construed to include the Classical avant-garde, Electronica, DJ culture, Re-mixes, Ambient, etc. Digital recording, editing, and mixing will be covered using the Audacity and ProTools programs. Students will also work with sampling techniques using Ableton Live and mixing skills with ProTools. Other topics to be covered include basic acoustics and synthesis techniques. Students will be expected to complete three composition projects during the course of the semester. Formal knowledge of music is helpful, but not required. Prerequisite: Course is open to Division II and III students only.