30
Sep 02

Towards an essay on John Cage

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Reading a book on American Avant Garde music, i finally saw a picture of the inside of a prepared piano. There were the nuts and bolts I expected, but also near the bass end of the instrument-some where between the B and F Keys were two Dairy Queen parfait spoons standing like sentries.

I have a friend who studies music at the University, and he always tells me that Cage was a better theorist then he was a musician. He Introduced me to Cage- so I thought he was right.

I have seen a few scores, and their squiggles, lines, patterns and maps disagree with the standard staff notation- but they are more beautiful, like the aesthics of scores are important.

Listening to Sonatas for Prepared Piano and the Summer Works again, I am mystified. They are not noise- they are too careful and elegant to be noise.

Randomness appeals to me-in that a butterfly waving its wings in thailand causes typhoons in Florida way-its a nice way to think that you are making change.

I hate Metal Machine Music but admire it, because it makes me think. I love Cage, as a writer, as a musician and as a person. More Importantly the music is lovely, it seduces me..

Another friend once taught me the word aleatory, and told me it meant chance and some of Cages work is like that, I mean playing along to a fish , or four radios or the infamous 4:33

I used to go through life being annoyed by sounds. But now I find myself saying- oh i like that, oh thats a nice sound.

When I was a kid I loved the sound of Scratching Records or Cassette Tapes Starting.

Most of Cages work seems instinctual, going back to the place where any sound is comforting.

For a long time I thought of getting Noise is Music; Music Noise tattooed on my arm, i am still thinking about it.

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