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Article

C. Truesdell

revised by Clive Greated

(Florenz Friedrich)

(b Wittenberg, Nov 30, 1756; d Breslau [now Wrocław], April 3, 1827). German acoustician. He studied law at Leipzig University before turning to scientific studies. He invented two instruments, the ‘euphon’ and the ‘klavizylinder’, both of which were variants of the glass harmonica. However, he owes his fame to his celebrated experiments on the nodal patterns and corresponding frequencies of vibration plates. He showed that the vibration patterns, often called Chladni figures, could be made visible by sprinkling sand on the plate. The sand is thrown up on vibrating areas and collects around nodal lines. Chladni travelled through Europe playing on his instruments and demonstrating his experiments before many persons and institutions; he encountered Goethe, Lichtenberg, Olbers, Laplace, Napoleon and other notable men of the period. Chladni's experiments stimulated much early work on the vibration of plates and bars and indeed so impressed the Académie des Sciences, Paris, that it offered a prize for a successful explanation of his sand figures and the motion of elastic surfaces in general. His work helped to form the foundation of modern theories, capable of predicting precise vibration patterns for violin and guitar top plates and the soundboards of keyboard instruments....

Article

Ana R. Alonso-Minutti

(b San Antonio, TX, Dec 19, 1951). American composer and multimedia artist. He holds degrees from the University of Houston (BA 1977) and Ohio State University (MM 1987), and received a National Endowments for the Arts Fellowship in 1981. In his early years he was influenced by the music of Harry Partch and John Cage. In 1974 he co-founded the experimental performance ensemble Urban 15, which evolved into a non-profit organization and cultural center based in San Antonio. From 1978 to 1999 he organized the Third Coast New Music Project, a festival of new music. Cisneros has collaborated closely with his wife Catherine in the realization of projects involving sculpture, photography, music, dance, and media. Together they established the Carnaval de San Anto in 1988, a drum and dance company that has performed throughout the country and abroad. Cisneros’s commitment to his community is reflected in the creation of Nos Unimos, a virtual museum created for families who have lived or are living in San Antonio. Some of his large interactive works include ...

Article

Clive Greated

(b Cleveland, July 19, 1915). American physicist and acoustician. After studying physics at the Case School of Applied Science (BS 1937) he obtained the PhD from the University of Illinois. From 1941 to 1980 he held various research and management positions at the Westinghouse Corp. His research into the acoustics of the flute, carried out in a small laboratory at his home, has contributed significantly to what is known today about the behaviour of flutes and organ pipes. Several of his papers are recognised as standard reference material. His theory of feedback and how this relates to the means by which the flautist produces the desired frequencies and loudness is particularly relevant to performance. He also studied the significance of mouth resonance and the effect of mode stretching on harmonic generation. His work on the intonation of both antique and modern flutes and his critical assessment of Theobald Boehm's methods have helped in shaping current views on the historical development of the instrument....

Article

Murray Campbell

(b Cleveland, OH, July 19, 1915; d Pittsburgh, PA, Feb 10, 2010). American scientist and acoustician. After studying physics at Case Institute of Technology (BS 1937), he carried out research in nuclear physics at the University of Illinois (PhD 1941). He then joined the Westinghouse Electric Corporation, remaining with the firm for the rest of his professional life; he retired in 1980 after a distinguished career culminating in six years as Director of Research and Development. In his youth he had become an accomplished flute player, and during his undergraduate studies at Case he encountered the notable acoustician Dayton C. Miller. This meeting led to a lifelong interest in the acoustics of the flute, and Coltman developed a laboratory at his home in which he conducted many important and illuminating experiments on flutes and flute playing. Particularly significant was his contribution to the understanding of the subtle interaction between the air jet blown across the flute embouchure hole by the player and the resonances of the air column within the flute pipe. Over four decades, starting in the mid-1960s, he published more than 40 papers on the acoustics of flutes and organ pipes. He was a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a Fellow of the American Physical Society and the Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers....

Article

Gary W. Kennedy

(Clark, Jr. )

(b Buffalo, Dec 18, 1920; d Alexandria, VA, May 17, 1996). American disc jockey. He began his broadcasting career as a freshman in college, then won an amateur announcing contest in Washington, DC (1939), and worked in that area until 1942, when he was drafted. While stationed in the Washington area he worked part-time at WWDC until his discharge in February 1946 and full-time thereafter. He broadcast his first show, “Music USA,” for Voice of America (VOA) in January 1955, a program he continued until his death. Conover worked as an independent contractor, not as a government employee, and his contract stipulated that the music on his program be of his own choosing. “Music USA” presented mainly jazz and reached into the Eastern-bloc nations, where it had a profound and at times revolutionary musical impact; VOA estimates that at the height of the Cold War his audiences comprised over 100 million listeners. An irony behind his position as a VOA announcer, and unquestionably the world’s most famous jazz disc jockey, is that VOA broadcasts are not allowed to be heard in the USA; one wonders what impact he would have had on American audiences. He first visited Warsaw in ...

Article

Murray Campbell

(Winfried)

(b Munich, Aug 16, 1905; d Miesbach, Oct 16, 1990). German acoustician. He studied mechanical and electrical engineering at the Technical University of Berlin, gaining his doctorate in 1932 for a thesis on sound absorption by porous surfaces. Cremer subsequently engaged in acoustical research at the Technical University and the Heinrich Hertz Institute in Berlin. In 1945 he obtained a teaching post at the University of Munich, and in 1946 established an acoustical consultancy firm in Munich. He was appointed director of the Institut für Technische Akustik at the Technical University in 1954 and of the acoustics division of the Heinrich Hertz Institute in 1955. Retiring in 1973, he remained active in teaching and research until his death. Cremer made many important contributions to the solution of practical problems in noise control and building acoustics. He was acoustics consultant for a number of major halls including the Berlin Philharmonie, the Sydney Opera House and the Madrid Concert Hall. A skilled amateur pianist and violinist, in the 1930s he was an enthusiastic exponent of the trautonium, an early electronic instrument. Cremer later became interested in violin acoustics and was one of the leading figures in the Catgut Acoustical Society. His book ...

Article

Eliot Gattegno

(b Morristown, NJ, Sept 10, 1975). American composer and computer musician. He has participated widely in the American electronic and experimental music scene as a performer, conceptual and new media artist, programmer, record producer, and teacher. He began his career as an electronic musician by restoring and performing on analog synthesizers, later switching to computers. As a student at Columbia University (BA 1997, MA 1999, DMA 2003), he studied with fred Lerdahl and jonathan d. Kramer . While serving on staff at Columbia’s Computer Music Center, he started experimenting with the use of algorithmic methodologies such as L-systems, contributed to Real-Time Cmix, and worked for Cycling ’74 on Max/MSP, especially the video component Jitter.

His composed works often reinterpret and comment on a select corpus of information, sometimes drawing on elements of American popular culture. For example, Academy, Billboard, and Play were inspired by the Academy Awards, the ...

Article

William Brooks and George L. Frow

(Alva)

(b Milan, OH, Feb 11, 1847; d West Orange, NJ, Oct 18, 1931). American inventor. He had only a few months of formal schooling before becoming successively a newsboy, a food hawker on trains and a telegraph operator. In 1870, with money received from the sale of telegraphic inventions, he founded a research laboratory. There he constructed the carbon telephone transmitter (1876), the cylinder phonograph (1877) and the first practical electric light (1879). These devices brought him instant fame, and he spent much of the rest of his life in their improvement; he also aided the creation of the myth that surrounds his achievements. The phonograph was a badly flawed novelty when it was first introduced, and Edison abandoned it until the late 1880s when, challenged by Charles Tainter’s graphophone, he organized his own recording company. Although he portrayed himself as financially naive, Edison displayed ruthlessness and skill in the subsequent battles between companies. He clung stubbornly to his original ideas, accepting such innovations as disc records and spring-driven machines only under the pressure of competition. He also held strong opinions about music, despite his congenital deafness, and these sometimes adversely affected his choice of artists. Although his vision of the phonograph as a viable recording device for music was largely realized by others, Edison continues to be regarded, in the public mind, as the creator of the recording industry....

Article

Eliot Gattegno

(b Milwaukee, WI, June 27, 1960). American computer musician, sound engineer, and educator. Erbe has played an important role in American experimental and electronic music since the late 1980s. He wrote the pioneering and widely used program SoundHack, has taught computer music at key institutions, and has become one of the most highly respected sound engineers for contemporary music. Erbe studied computer science and music at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign and got his start as an audio engineer by volunteering at WEFT, WPGU, and Faithful Sound Studios.

He was the technical director of the Center for Contemporary Music (CCM) at Mills College (1987–93). There he worked as a computer musician and recording engineer with composers Robert Ashley (Improvement, 1992), Larry Polansky (The Theory of Impossible Melody, 1993), James Tenney (Selected Works, 1993), and Alvin Curran (Schtyx, 1994). During this period he also developed a four-channel spatial audio processor for the NASA Ames Research Center. His research at CCM included the development of SoundHack (...

Article

Sue Carole DeVale

(b Newton, MA, Nov 14, 1850; d Forest Glen, MD, May 31, 1930). American ethnologist. He studied biology at Harvard (AB 1875, PhD 1877), and later studied at Leipzig and the University of Arizona. He was field director of the Hemenway Southwestern Archaeological Expedition (1889–94), and, commissioned by Mary Hemenway, tested the value of the phonograph for fieldwork in March 1890 by recording songs of the Passamaquoddy Indians in Maine. These were soon followed by his Zuni (1890) and Hopi Pueblo (1891) recordings which were then analysed by Benjamin Ives Gilman. He was responsible for the Hemenway Exhibition at the Madrid exhibition of 1892 commemorating Columbus's discovery of America, and consequently received many honours. As a result of his work in Madrid, Hemenway later commissioned recordings by Gilman. From 1895 to 1918 Fewkes worked as an ethnologist at the Bureau of American Ethnology in Washington, DC, becoming chief in ...

Article

Sue Carole DeVale

(b Cuba, March 15, 1838; d Washington DC, April 6, 1923). American ethnologist. She devoted herself to the study of the Great Plains Indians, so completely winning their confidence that she was privileged to gather data and record ceremonials and rituals not usually witnessed by non-Indians. While living on the Omaha reservation in 1881, she became interested in the education of the 24-year-old son, Francis, of Chief Joseph La Flesche. She took him to Washington where he lived with her, as her ‘son by adoption’, until 1910; with him, Fletcher wrote an important monograph on the Omaha tribe (1911).

Fletcher, who was an assistant at the Peabody Museum of American Archaeology and Ethnology from 1882, began collecting ethnological and musical data in 1883 among the Omaha and Dakota Indians. She also wrote about other tribes and kinship groups and transcribed hundreds of songs including the first complete record of the Pawnees’ Hako ceremony. Initially she notated melodies by ear, having her informants repeat each song until she was satisfied that she had an accurate transcription. Soon after the pioneer field use of the Edison phonograph by Jesse Walter Fewkes in ...

Article

Murray Campbell

(b Provo, UT, Sept 11, 1884; d Provo, July 23, 1981). American acoustician. He studied at Brigham Young University in Provo (BS 1907), then at the University of Chicago, where he gained his doctorate in 1911 for research into the charge of the electron. In 1916 he joined the staff of Bell Telephone Laboratories in New York; he remained there for 33 years, becoming director of acoustical research in 1928 and of physical research in 1935. In 1949 Fletcher was appointed professor of electrical engineering at Columbia University, and in 1952 he returned to Brigham Young University as director of research. He became professor emeritus in 1974, and continued his research activity until his death. Fletcher was one of the great pioneers of the science of psychoacoustics, and his work on the human perception of sound was of fundamental importance. Responsible for the first public demonstration of stereophonic sound reproduction in ...

Article

Murray Campbell and Clive Greated

(Horner)

(b Armidale, NSW, July 14, 1930). Australian physicist and acoustician. He studied at Sydney University (BSc 1951) and Harvard (PhD 1956); after a period working in industry and with the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (CSIRO) Radiophysics Laboratory, he was appointed in 1963 to a chair in physics at the University of New England, NSW. In 1983 he became director of the CSIRO Institute of Physical Sciences and in 1988 visiting fellow at the Australian National University. He studied the flute with Victor McMahon in Sydney and James Pappoutsakis in Boston. Most notable in Fletcher’s extensively published research is his work with Suzanne Thwaites on sound generation in flutes and organ pipes, on flute performance techniques and on reed and lip-valve generators in woodwind and brass instruments. He also studied the vibration characteristics of gongs and cymbals, and with the composer Moya Henderson invented the alemba, a keyboard percussion instrument of tuned triangles. He is best known as co-author of the influential ...

Article

Rudolf A. Rasch

(b Buitenzorg [now Bogor], Java, Aug 17, 1887; d Beekbergen, Sept 24, 1972). Dutch physicist and acoustician. He took the doctorate in physics in 1913 at the University of Leiden, and studied with Einstein in Zürich, Rutherford in Manchester and Bragg in Leeds. He taught physics at Delft Gymnasium (1921–3) and Technical College (1923–7), and was Lorentz's assistant (1927) and director of the physics section (1928–55) at Teyler’s Stichting, Haarlem, concurrently occupying the chair founded by this institute at Leiden (1928–55). During these years Fokker became one of the foremost physicists in the Netherlands, and with the suspension of academic activity under the German occupation he turned to problems of musical aesthetics, his chief interests being the theories of Euler and Christiaan Huygens. He constructed two pipe organs, one (1943) with just intonation scales according to the principles of Euler’s ...

Article

Angela Tosheva

(b Sofia, 1956). Bulgarian composer, pianist, conductor, and audio engineer. Goleminov was born in a family of professional musicians in Sofia, Bulgaria. He started learning the violin from early childhood, but later switched to piano, which has remained his primary instrument. During high school he began experimenting with electronics and became one of the pioneers of electroacoustic music in Bulgaria, by creating electronic music with no access to studios, doing everything with self-made analog devices, as well as telephones, old tape machines, and cassette recorders. Goleminov studied composition, orchestra conducting, and piano in Sofia, Vienna, and Amsterdam, and electroacoustic music in Vienna. In his capacity as composer, pianist, audio engineer, and conductor he collaborated in a series of musical and theatrical productions in various countries and took part in projects involving contemporary arts, mixed media, and intuitive and computer music. His works span a wide spectrum of styles and genres, from chamber and orchestral pieces to computer music, video-compositions, and music graphs, and have been commissioned by leading organizations and ensembles....

Article

(b Detroit, MI, June 20, 1917; d New York, NY, Jan 4, 2011). American acoustician. At UCLA he studied mathematics and physics (BA 1938, MA 1940), then went to the Massachusetts Institute of Technology to study acoustics under Philip McCord Morse (PhD 1945). In posts at Bell Telephone Laboratories (1945–51) and Columbia University (from 1952), where he taught in the engineering school as well as the graduate school of architecture and planning, he researched the acoustical properties of building materials, airborne sound, and musical instruments. He was acoustical consultant for more than 100 halls, including the Metropolitan Opera House (1966); Powell Symphony Hall, St. Louis (renovation 1968); Great Hall, Krannert Center for the Performing Arts, University of Illinois (1969); the concert hall and opera house at the John F. Kennedy Center (1971); Orchestra Hall, Minneapolis (...

Article

Clive Greated

(Maley)

(b Springfield, MA, May 24, 1911; d Wolfeboro, NH, Aug 7, 2009). American violin maker and acoustician. After studying biology at Cornell University (AB 1933) and taking an MA in education, she went on to study violin making with Karl A. Berger (1954–9) and Simone Sacconi (1960–63), and violin acoustics with Frederick A. Saunders of Harvard University (1949–63). Her work on violin design and construction techniques was funded mostly from the sale of her own instruments. She was co-founder of the Catgut Acoustical Society, an organization that co-ordinates and disseminates information on violin acoustics. Hutchins was known internationally for her revolutionary work on the design and construction of the New violin family (or violin octet), a musically successful acoustically-matched consort of eight new instruments of the violin family. She developed two electronic testing methods for violin makers, namely ‘free plate tuning’ for violins before assembling and ‘mode tuning’ for finished instruments, which provide measurable parameters to augment and quantify traditional violin-making techniques. As well as receiving a number of honorary doctorates, in ...

Article

D. Quincy Whitney

(b Springfield, MA, May 24, 1911; d Wolfeboro, NH, Aug 7, 2009). American violinmaker, acoustician, and writer. A trumpeter and biology graduate of Cornell University (AB 1933) and New York University (MA 1942), she left both disciplines to embrace string instruments and acoustical physics. While teaching science and woodworking at the Brearley School, chamber music colleagues convinced her to take up viola. A woodcarver since childhood, Hutchins, at age 35, decided to make a viola. Hutchins then studied luthiery with Karl A. Berger (1949–59) and Stradivari expert Fernando Sacconi. While she and Harvard physicist Frederick A. Saunders performed more than 100 acoustical experiments (1949–63), Hutchins taught herself acoustical physics by making string instruments. In 1963 Hutchins and colleagues Robert Fryxell and John Schelleng founded the Catgut Acoustical Society. She published the CAS journal for more than 30 years, helping bridge the gap between violin makers and acoustical physicists. Hutchins made more than 500 instruments, authored more than 100 technical papers on violin acoustics, and edited ...

Article

James F. Bell

revised by Clive Greated

(b Königsberg, Nov 26, 1832; d Paris, Oct 2, 1901). German physicist. Although Helmholtz was his principal professor at the University of Königsberg, Koenig's research was not in acoustics. After receiving the PhD in physics, Koenig apprenticed himself to the Parisian violin maker Vuillaume. Koenig completed his apprenticeship in 1858 and set up shop at the Quai d'Anjou, where he remained for the rest of his life, making tuning-forks of great precision for his tonometer which covered the entire audible range of frequencies. He constructed remarkably precise clock tuning-forks, sirens, ingenious compound sirens, improved Helmholtz resonators and a wide variety of other apparatuses. The quality of his instruments became legendary, and they became the physics tools for university laboratories in Europe and the USA. He was commissioned by the French government to make the apparatus for establishing ‘Diapason normal’, a′ = 435; and he improved Léon Scott's ‘phonautograph’ of ...

Article

Ronnie Graham

(b Waa, nr Mombasa, 1924). Kenyan popular musician. Konde has travelled widely in eastern Africa for over 50 years. Born in colonial Kenya, he absorbed the local nomba dance rhythms from an early age. He attended St George's Catholic School where he learned clarinet, flute and trumpet, and Western notation. In 1940 he joined the colonial Department of Health but continued to play acoustic guitar, occasionally entertaining at weddings and parties. Konde's early groups featured guitars, accordions and drums, and played original compositions in Swahili that combined traditional Sengenya rhythms with African American blues and Cuban Son, styles that were accessible at the time and were now influential in the bustling port of Mombasa.

At 19 years old he enrolled in the King's African Rifles (Entertainment Unit), and began entertaining in Burma with musicians from Tanganyika and Uganda; he made his first recordings at that time in a Calcutta studio. After World War II, Konde's unit returned to Kenya under the guidance of the film producer and director of East African Records, Peter Coleman. He was encouraged to play an electric Gibson (the first in East Africa) and from then on became the featured guitarist in Peter Coleman's African Band. From there his career flourished, as he became one of the three most sought after entertainers in the region....