The Wire

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Music From The Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Centre

March 2011

Listen to a collection of compositions by Milton Babbitt, Vladimir Ussachevsky and more

Andy Battaglia's article Once Upon A Time in... Harlem, in The Wire 326, charts the history of the Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Centre. Opening in 1959, it was one of America's first electronic music studios and helped composers such as Vladimir Ussachevsky, Otto Luening and Milton Babbitt usher in a new age of sound manipulation.

The tracks above are: Milton Babbitt's "Philomel" from Philomel, Bulent Arel's "Postlude From 'Music For A Sacred Service'", Alice Shields's "Study for Voice and Tape" from the compilation Columbia-Princeton Electronic Music Center, Otto Luening's "Low Speed", Vladimir Ussachevsky's "A Piece For Tape Recorder" and Mario Davidovsky "Synchronisms No. 5" are from the compilation Pioneers Of Electronic Music. Out on New World Records.


My 21 year old son has a passion for the groupKraftwerk. I have decided to listen to them but am starting at what I think is the beginning of electronic music-Babbitt et al. The Davidovsky piece is magical and dreamlike and incredibly interesting. This is much more entertaining than listening to a Beatles song for the thousandth time. There are many new musical worlds to explore and I hope I live long enough to discover more hidden trrasures

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