Our Magazine

NewMusicBox

All NewMusicBox Content

  • Filter

Articles
Aaron Gervais

Why Pastiche Has Taken Over Music

Just look at the names: new complexity, neo-romanticism, post-minimalism—three of the broadest trends in contemporary music, all with echoes of pastiche baked right into their labels. Clearly artists have always taken ideas and materials from other sources—how could we not?—but never before have we so celebrated the attribution of those sources.

J. Ralph and David Lang (photo by Peter Serling)
Articles
Molly Sheridan

Songs by David Lang and J. Ralph Denied Oscar Performance

During a year in which the Oscars have received strong criticism for their lack of diversity, this seems an especially odd move–not only in terms of the music itself, but also when considering that it means the absence of Korean soprano Sumi Jo and transgender performer ANOHNI.

Inside the Tecumseh Theater, Shawnee, Ohio. Photo by Jonathan Johnson.
Articles
Brian Harnetty

Listening to Social Life in the “Little Cities of Black Diamonds”

New and archival recordings offer a glimpse of social life in the Little Cities–sonic insights that open up an archive of ideas for a careful listener willing to jump on a carnival ride or blow the dust off a forgotten piano keyboard.

Articles
Christopher Rouse

Remembering Steven Stucky (1949-2016)

Steven Stucky had an astounding intellect, but perhaps more important were his warmth, graciousness, and generosity of spirit. He gave unstintingly of his time to many organizations; perhaps even more important, he did the same for his friends and his students.

Jasmine Khorsandi

A Letter to Leslie Bassett (1923-2016)

My dearest mentor, my teacher, my role model, my Leslie: I miss you like crazy. It’s been a few years since we last talked, a total insanity considering how often in my daily life, I still hear your words of counsel from our music lessons of old. I can see the way your hands used… Read more »

Gabriela Lena Frank

A Letter to Leslie Bassett (1923-2016)

The love that a student has for her teacher is a special one. I miss you like crazy. I still hear your words of counsel from our music lessons of old. I remember your distinctive walk, frail and steely both, across worn carpet to the treble-bright piano in your studio, thick music score in hand. When I was over early at the house, you and beautiful Anita would fry up corn pancakes while discussing a marvelous new clarinetist who bled “for his composer and played like it was his last breath!”

The Chicago Jazz Philharmonic and eighth blackbird among those awarded MacArthur Awards for Creative and Effective Institutions
Articles
NewMusicBox Staff

MacArthur's Creative and Effective Institutions and Bielecki Foundation Awards Announced

No application necessary (or accepted): MacArthur Award for Creative and Effective Institutions and Robert D. Bielecki Foundation awards announced

Articles
Madison Goodwin

An Ode to Community

The Seattle new music community is exploring new ways they can support one another. What’s working in your community?

Articles
Molly Sheridan

Daniel Wohl: The Seamless Ideal

Wohl’s talent for seamless integration of acoustic and electronic timbres generated significant buzz after the 2013 release of his album Corps Exquis, and it is praise that will likely only cling more tightly in the wake of his full-length follow-up Holographic.

Articles
NewMusicBox Staff

Congrats to the 2016 Grammy Award Winners

Whether or not you caught the glitz, the glam, and the shade-throwing acceptance speeches during the 2016 Grammy Awards ceremony broadcast last night, you still may have missed out on the jazz and classical awards presented earlier in the day. And the winners are…

Miners from Congo, Ohio. Photo courtesy of the Little Cities of Black Diamonds Archive.
Articles
Brian Harnetty

Listening to Labor in the “Little Cities of Black Diamonds”

For miners, sound often answers questions about work and safety. For composers, recording and carefully listening to the sounds of a region can suggest ways of bridging between place and creative sound works.

Steven Stucky
Articles
New Music USA

Steven Stucky (1949-2016)

It is with great sadness that we report American composer Steven Stucky died of brain cancer in Ithaca, New York on February 14, 2016.

One of the more entertaining booths I visited was the one for the Northshore Concert Band in Evanston, Illinois. I wound up buying several of their discs.
Articles
Frank J. Oteri

Composer Advocacy Notebook: A Tale of Three Cities

Over the course of the last eight weeks I attended three significant national music events which were extremely different from each other in terms of scope and scale—the 2016 Minnesota Orchestra Composer Institute, the annual Chamber Music America conference, and the Midwest Clinic, the world’s largest music gathering.

forklift handling the container box at dockyard
Articles
Madison Goodwin

Overthinking Genre

It can feel impossible to label and organize the diversity of music that falls under the “new music” heading. Does that hurt our advocacy for the music we care about?

Articles
Jeff Arnal

Tracing Influence

We have always had cultural gatekeepers: artists, publishers, concert promoters, radio producers, teachers, etc. At the top of this filtering process is the mind and ears of the artist. What can help provide context for the music and enrich and inform the listening experience? Will that change the end result, deepen the experience, or help uncover influence?

Articles
Brian Harnetty

Place, Sound, History, Now: Listening to the “Little Cities of Black Diamonds”

Archival and contemporary sounds of a place connect the listener to the people and history of an area. This sonic ethnography may then become material for creative projects in unique ways and push creative practice into direct social engagement.

Articles
Madison Goodwin

What I Didn’t Learn in Music School

In the trenches of balancing one too many ensembles, practice time, class, papers, group projects, and more practicing, it can be hard to stomach the thought of adding something else. But there are a few other things may want to make sure you learn while you’re still in school.

Articles
Sam Reising

New Music USA Awards $276,770 to 53 Projects

New Music USA has announced its fifth round of project grants awards, totaling $276,770 in funding to support artistic work involving a wide range of new American music.

Interviews
Frank J. Oteri

Rudresh Mahanthappa: Getting To Know Who I Am

Rudresh Mahanthappa explores his composite cultural identity through an extremely wide range of fascinating musical activities. Some of these projects have been direct attempts to synthesize contemporary jazz and much older Indian traditions. Perhaps even more intriguing, however, has been music in which jazz and Carnatic elements co-exist alongside many other components.

Young man playing guitar to his girlfriend in nature - dating couple
Articles
Mari Esabel Valverde

Courting the “Lay” Listener

What musicians create serves many purposes, but it is all in vain if we are not genuinely connecting with the listeners. We owe it to ourselves to deepen their listening and to maximize our communication.

A Columbia Records promotional photo of Miles Davis with Teo Macero
Articles
George Grella Jr

The Forgotten Man: Teo Macero and Bitches Brew

Miles didn’t make Bitches Brew by himself; it was the product of a unique compositional collaboration between the trumpeter and his longtime, essential producer at Columbia Records, Teo Macero (1925-2008), an in-house composer, arranger, and producer for Columbia Records who also shaped and directed essential albums by Thelonious Monk, Charles Mingus, Dave Brubeck, Johnny Mathis, and Tony Bennett as well as a recording of music by Alan Hovhaness plus the soundtrack to The Graduate.

Articles
Susan Kander

A Few Things I Failed to Mention

Just as these kids are not afraid of clicking this or that button on today’s technology (which both my husband and I very much are), they are not afraid of poking into any musical corner. There doesn’t seem to be any outside to the box marked Music. Everything is inside.

Articles
Mari Esabel Valverde

Where Is Do?

When presented with new music, there is a question my voice students ask in quiet panic: “Where is do?” According to the established choral curriculum, we just cannot agree.

Articles
Molly Sheridan

Kate Soper: Real Communication

Extended techniques and integrated theatrical elements are a hallmark of Kate Soper’s compositional style, and presenting her work herself is a good way to push the performer into new territory with confidence. “I will do anything as a performer that I as a composer ask me to do.”

Funders

ASCAP Foundation Logo

NewMusicBox receives major support from the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts and The ASCAP Foundation.

Click here for more

NewMusicBox is funded in part by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and with support from The Aaron Copland Fund for Music and The Amphion Foundation, Inc. Support for New Music USA and its many programs and activities is provided by foundations, corporations, government agencies, and hundreds of individual contributors.

NewMusicBox receives major support from the Francis Goelet Charitable Lead Trusts and The ASCAP Foundation. NewMusicBox is funded in part by public funds from the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Kathy Hochul and the New York State Legislature, the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council, the National Endowment for the Arts, and with support from The Aaron Copland Fund for Music and The Amphion Foundation, Inc. Support for New Music USA and its many programs and activities is provided by foundations, corporations, government agencies, and hundreds of individual contributors.