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<nettime> platos cave illuminated by sound
Alan Sondheim on Mon, 5 Apr 2010 16:53:13 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> platos cave illuminated by sound

platos cave illuminated by sound

recording 8 minute oud solo with eyes closed. i suppose this is easy for
bowed-string players in general; most plucked-string players i know watch
- at least on occasion - what they're doing. certainly it helps intona-
tion, especially when leaps are involved. of course there are many blind
musicians who move effortlessly on their instruments. (without glasses, my
eyesight is miserable; i can't read the big E on the chart; sometimes i
don't even see the chart.) but i watch what i do. then i noticed, playing
oud, i had to develop some sort of muscle memory - watching doesn't quite
work when the fingerboard is featureless. i can judge the neighborhood,
but not the house. so i find i can play with my eyes closed, which brings
up, plato's cave: for the cave itself is an acoustic instrument, one that
responds to aural registers, one whose depth is revealed by echo and
resonance, by the playing-out of harmonics, by what goes on in the
interior of someone's mind, someone listening, or someone playing, for
examples, in a closed space, perhaps the space of an infinite ocarina,
perhaps a universal sonic map. and here is the space of visual darkness,
the space of sound projecting, messing up ideal forms with taylor series
stretched to the limit, with a hollowness that neither knows its name nor
note. so one, i muse, might in such a space play a world, one might world
a world. so i made sure to inhabit the forms, the pulse and flow of music,
if such be music, i made through being there, present, playing, within
such an infinitude illuminated by sound.


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