Saturday, November 30, 2019

Polysemy, Aporia, Irony and Indeterminacy

Polysemy, Aporia, Irony and Indeterminacy

Polysemy connotes a multiplicity of meanings in a given compositional notation referring at once to multiple contexts for interpretation. Perhaps the most inclusive category of its kind, polysemy indicates the coincidence of multiple and sometimes contradictory meanings under the same notation, as opposed to irony, a discrepancy between two meanings or interpretations; aporia, a logical impasse; or indeterminacy, an indecision with regard to meaning.

There are two fundamental paradigms by which one can think about the occurrence of polysemy in musical composition; referential and differential.

The referential paradigm assumes that notation has the basic function of referentiality, i.e., it points to things that exist outside it; accordingly, polysemy would be understood as a trait of certain notational passages in which signs do not function ordinarily (having one or two referents at most) but bear multiple relational associations, so that such a notational passage becomes a reverberating echo chamber of meanings.

Nevertheless, these intricate webs of meanings and associations do not occur spontaneously but are aligned along the same axis of symbolical associations. A sign in a given polysemous composition will bear multiple relational meanings, while certain unassociated meanings will remain excluded from consideration.

Even though each signifier will have more than two signifieds, polysemy under the referential paradigm will always remain a polysemy of controlled meanings— confined, as it were, to the rule of association.

Excerpts from a New Work for Violin & Viola. Exo-Tetra Tablature System

Thursday, November 28, 2019

"Freight Riding Seduces Me Into Denying Whenever I Can". For Solo Tuba. World Premiere: Bill Pritchard

"Freight Riding Seduces Me Into Denying Whenever I Can"

For Solo Tuba 

World Premiere: Bill Pritchard

Bil Smith Composer

Published by LNM Editions

Partial notes to Bil Pritchard on performance of this work:

As far as the interpretation of the performance notes... I obviously have a vision...and yes, it is intended to be a bit provocative and well...interpret it as you choose. The inclusion of actual notation in the performance notes is meant to "set the table" for the composition. It's more of an directive device as to what's about to come. Not necessarily does it need a literal interpretation.

The actual piece begins on page 4. If you notice there is a certain typographical treatment used in this work which is fairly consistent. The tablature (notational system) is intended to steer your initial decisions to treat certain symbology with a specific musical treatment (rendering). The key is that once you commit to interpreting a specific symbology, you commit to interpreting a specific symbology, you attempt to maintain that treatment when it appears later in the work. Of course, there are variants throughout the work, but the original interpretation should reflect the spirit of your previous interpretation. 

Bill Pritchard

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Recording: "Plaster Replicas of his Wife; All Annotated Editions (Money Penny)"

"Plaster Replicas of his Wife; All Annotated Editions (Money Penny)" 
Bil Smith Composer
For Chamber Orchestra (Including Contraforte, Soprillo Bb Piccolo Saxophone and Inderbinen Inox Bb Trumpet) and Electronic Manipulation 
Performed and Recorded June 10, 2013
Listen On Soundcloud:

"The Bare Lathes Intertwined with Creeper and Wire-Moss" Recording

"The Bare Lathes Intertwined with Creeper and Wire-Moss" 

Bil Smith Composer


Commission from Pemex (Petróleos Mexicanos)for Chamber Orchestra, a work predicated on 'Compositional Bounding Theory', a theory about the locality of movement. The main principle of Bounding Theory is the Subjacency condition, which forbids movement across more than one bounding node (i.e. tablature).
for Chamber Orchestra; Coloratura Soprano (Obstruent Phonology); Soubrette (Siblancy: Fricative speech sounds with high frequency); Spinto Soprano (Strict Cyclicity); IGT Wild Cherry Spinning Wheel Slot; IGT 2x3x4x5x Red Hot 7s™ Spinning Reel Slot; IGT Hot Roll® Ca$h Ca$h Ca$h™ Video Slots; IGT Megabucks® Crystal Sevens® Slot; WMS Dashing Dolphins Slot; Wicks Century 5 Pipe Organ; Paiste 24' Venus Gong; Waldorf Blofeld Synthesizer; Hellfire Modulator, an analog, tube-based distortion rack-module; Formanta Polivoks Synthesizer; ESP jeune fille X Gips -Cross Ray- Moi dix Mois MANA Signature Model Electric Guitar.