Wednesday, September 5, 2007

7 p.m. at the Georgia Tech Music Department (Couch Building)

Directions are here.

Matt Simpson: The Laptop Studio:  Performance at home, and the Studio on stage

Update: Matt wanted to make these articles available that he mentioned in his talk: Eric Kuehnl's "A Brief History of Computer Music" and Monolake's "Live Performance in the Age of Supercomputing."

With the advent of affordable multi-gigahertz laptop computers, the electronic music studio has shrunk from racks of costly synth hardware not just 5 years ago to a laptop and various input devices.  As a result, the current and upcoming generation of electronic musicians are turning to the laptop as a full blown, self contained, multi in and out production rig without thinking twice. Coupled with the extremely rapid and robust development of music (and otherwise) software, new as well as long-desired sonic techniques have developed.  One primary example can be found in the synergy of the studio and the stage.  Software such as Ableton Live allows a laptop musician to instantly create multi-layered improvisations in his or her own studio just as easily 
as taking what was meticulously crafted in the studio into a live setting for any and all sonic manipulation. This can most clearly be seen in the Laptop Battles, a tournament-style community-driven competition held in cities across the world. Rules are simple - one laptop, one input device, and 2-3 minutes.  What results is often unique and innovative, helping to break
the barriers between musican and music consumer, and ultimately introducing people interested in music making to comprehensible and powerful tools of sonic creation.

Matt Simpson is a native of Atlanta, with occasional stops in South Florida and the farms of South Georgia. Graduated 2004 from Georgia Tech with a B.S. in Computer Engineering, Co-Chair of Nophi Recordings, local organizer of the 2007 Laptop Battles, 2006 Atlanta Laptop Battle champion, former member of The Secret Life, current member of Harmaline and PASSWARDSZ.  Raised on a healthy diet of 8-bit sounds and FM synthesis, Matt has been a rabid consumer of all things audio since his earliest sound experiments at an early age (from jumping on the hardwood floor of his home to rhythmically skip Michael Jackson's "Thriller", to tossing a plush parrot with a record/playback device embedded, timing the 'oof's and 'ahh's with every hit of the stairs).  Trained on the keyboard and viola, Matt has made computer music since 1996.  Matt initially learned on DOS-based trackers, and has steadily built a project studio that today encompasses nearly 30 synthesizers, drum machines, circuit bent devices, toys, and self-built miscellanea.  

David Lieberman: Game Enhanced Music Manuscript: The Anigraphical Etudes 

A unique set of developmental issues present themselves when applying game theory concepts to the creation of interactive music manuscript in video game format for concert performance (game-scores). Paying special attention to structural, mathematical, and sociopsychological similarities, those issues become apparent when observing the correlation between the two distinct human activities of performing music manuscript and playing games. Precepts from ludology (the study of video games) and structural issues applicable to traditional video game development require consideration too. Game- scores may then be evaluated within the context of the benefits and ramifications that result from the convergence of video games and music manuscript. The Anigraphical Etudes are a set of animated, interactive music manuscript for live concert performance in video game format. The pieces incorporate into traditional western notation the added dimensions of  decision-making, size, color, motion, and computational algorithm to enhance the live performance experience.

David Lieberman: Early training at the San Francisco Conservatory and with Canadian composer Harry Freedman. BM, MA, Doctor of Music from Northwestern University where his principal teachers were Ben Johnston, Alan Stout, and William Karlins. Additional graduate study at U.C. Berkeley with Gerard Grisey. Advanced Master Classes with Jacob Druckman and Bernard Rands (Aspen Music Festival) and with British composer Judith Weir (Oregon Bach Festival). Additional instruction with Samuel Adler and Milton Babbit. Taught Computer Music as Visiting Assistant Professor in Music Theory and Technology at the prestigious Oberlin College at the age of 25. Resident Composer Brooklyn College Computer Music Center. Adjunct faculty Union County College, N.J. Visiting/Guest Lecturer/Artist/Speaker: NYU, U. Mass. Amherst, Kobe Tokiawa College, Atlanta College of Art, Univ. Miami FL, College Music Society Southern Regional Conference (Univ. of Florida, Tampa), International Conference for the Web Delivery of Music (Wedelmusic/Interactive Music Network: Univ. of Leeds, England), Project Bar B Que (Interactive Audio Think Tank), Graphite 2006 (4th International Conference on Computer Graphics and Interactive Techniques-Univ. Teknologi Malaysia UT. Commissions: San Francisco Chamber Symphony, Stoney Brook Contemporary Players. Awards: BMI Student Composers, Highest Honors Northwestern U., American Music Center, National Saxophone Society, Kensington Symphony, others. Grants: Meet the Composer, Ekstein Trust. Publications: Game Enhanced Music Manuscript, AMC Press. Currently not affiliated with a university and resides in Atlanta, GA. 

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