or Musical Intercourses



The idea about 'musica coniuncta' originated more than thirty years ago, suggested by a serendipitous happening. I had recorded two pieces from the radio at different times. In order to save tape, the pieces were recorded in mono on the adjacent tracks of a two-track tape. Only at some later time I realized two things. First, the pieces had the same duration. Second, and more important, they sounded incredibly well fused when played together, which would naturally happen listening to the tape in stereo mode. The latter discovery was so startling that I refrained from doing anything about it, as if I had been given a mysterious gift or sign that was not to be investigated. Many years later I timidly began to try intentional operations of the kind, saw that they could work, that no evident punishment was hitting me from above, so I decided to make a project of it. The accidental combination that started it all involved two orchestral pieces: the well-known “Lontano” by Ligeti and the lesser-known “Stop” by Stockhausen. It is presented as the last track in the programme. The other pieces are of a varied nature, but it will be noted that the gamelan is present in many of them.


All pieces use existing recorded music, except Track 2, 'Hamza in Java', where live overdubbing of the original oud-and-voice music is performed by musicians of ISI Surakarta on gamelan instruments.

(John Noise Manis)