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 Forum index » Reviews, Editorials and Commentary » Commentary and Editorials
what is space music
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7/4



Joined: Jan 19, 2004
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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2004 6:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

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7/4



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PostPosted: Sat May 15, 2004 6:58 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

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Amos



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2005 2:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

This is an old topic, but I am surprised that no one has mentioned that grand old radio show out of San Francisco, "Music from the Hearts of Space" -- It was carried by NPR for years (might still be in some areas) and I basically grew up listening to it on a regular basis... Hearts of Space DJ Stephen Hill probably has a lot to do with my musical outlook now (although my later discovery of industrial and psy-trance genres has sped things up a little Wink). I always thought his radio voiceovers sounded tranquilised to the point of near-coma.

http://www.hos.com/

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2005 4:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Amos wrote:
I always thought his radio voiceovers sounded tranquilised to the point of near-coma.


Well put... Laughing

Well, if you fall asleep during a space music concert, it's a compliment. Wink

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2005 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

mosc wrote:

Well, if you fall asleep during a space music concert, it's a compliment. Wink

well.. I would not bother going to a music concert only to fall asleep Twisted Evil

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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2005 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I wasn't really fair about that that sleep comment. Philadelphia's Gatherings are one of the best space music venues. I feel fortunate to be able to go to them, and I try to attend every concert. I'm very rarely disappointed even when the tempo is just a tad north of coma. Sometimes you even get a toe tapper. Wink
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Mohoyoho



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PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2005 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I always thought the host of Hearts of Space, Steven Hill, reminded me of Rod Serling.

I love space music. I'm not too keen on the Berlin sequencer driven stuff. I like some of John Serrie's quite a bit (not the romantic stuff) like A Stargazer's Journey. And ofcourse, Steve Roach. Ie. Magnificent Void.

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Norm Vogel



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PostPosted: Fri Jan 21, 2005 12:56 pm    Post subject: Old groups Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Remember WaveStar? GREAT space music!!!!!!!!!!

Norm

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mosc
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 12:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

I just talked to Chuck Van Zyl tonight. He's going to prepare a talk for electro-music 2005 about this topic, and how the Gatherings in Philadelphia are related. Should be facinating.
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elektro80
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 4:03 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Who is Chuck Van Zyl? Rings a bell.. not a big one though..
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 9:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Chuck has a space music radio program in Philladelphia called Stars End on WXPN. He also is responsible for a very long running (20 years I think) concert series called The Gatherings. This is one of if not the preminent venues for space music in North America. He also is a musician who performs, you guessed it, space music with his cohort, Art Cohen. They call themselves The Ministry of Inside Things. That's how Theremin refered to the KGB in a film about his life.
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egw



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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 9:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

It's Chuck van Zyl, by the way.

http://www.thegatherings.org/

http://www.starsend.org/
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PostPosted: Sat Jan 22, 2005 9:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

egw wrote:
It's Chuck van Zyl, by the way.


I stand corrected. Thanks...

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morbius



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PostPosted: Tue Feb 14, 2006 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

mmmm.... space-music (picture Homer Simpson). I've never been to a 'space-music concert', I rarely listen to space-music on sat-rad, but I can tell you how I see it from working in a planetarium for a number of years... being part of the script-writing process... actually being the control-console operator (all manual, not computerized) for the star shows and laser light-shows, and specifically composing and recording the music used in those shows.

Surprisingly, the space-music genre is much like every other genre in that it has so many sub-genre. First, while going over the script(s) for the shows, there are a few things to be considered, such as mood; timeframe in relation to the script and effects; and the overall feel when the narration vocal(s) are in place.

But- music for scripts can be really any genre that is appropriate for particular project, show, section of the show, jingle, commercial, or whatever. Good ol' space-music is what I would compose, then sit down in the planetarium, shut-off all the lights, turn on the main starfield, planets, and bright stars... and I would set the main star projector to slowly rotate so that the starfield was in continuous motion. With special effects projectors, I would run the 'warp-drive' effect, so that you feel like the stars are rushing past you as you travel through the galaxy.

What I discovered was that analog sequences seem to do the best job of implying 'space' and 'stars' and motion at high speeds. With that, some delayed slap-back adds a whole bunch of depth. Then, adding some slow, uninvolved, simple melody seems to work quite well. You don't want to complicate things for the listener. This is a time when you want the listener to fall into the mood that you are setting... to let the mind wander. Here's an excerpt for an example... and just imagine you are aboard a ship at high-warp when you listen. http://www.unisynth.com/user/Dreamstate%20[excerpt].mp3 .... and here is another example... again, it's to let the mind wander http://www.unisynth.com/user/One%20Takes%20-%20Fun%20with%20Sequencers%20-%20Dangling%20Participles.mp3

But of course, space-music can have a more normal song structure. But- it is my opinion that 'space-music' should nearly always be performed on synthesizers (with few exceptions), and have an electronic sound (vs. samples of existing instruments), and imply a science-fiction flavor... even if it's science-fact. And that IS just my opinion... but it's been tested in probably the very best way possible... in a planetarium theater. That is how I (and the staff) selected which tracks worked with what, and where... listening to them under the stars projected on the dome.

Now... getting back to just the music (vs. planetarium show music).... it's still about setting the mood to let your mind explore and wander. The sounds and the music structure still does that, or can... and should. But, I think that the golden rule of recording engineering applies here, as well... and that is "less is more". There is a reason the term "over-kill" applies to compositions and mixes... too much and you kill it. There is almost always the temptation to add just one more little thing... something I am guilty of, too.

As to genre of space-music... probably most genre could be used and played on synths... but somehow, I doubt that Rap or Country will ever get to be subgenre of space-music.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 7:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Nice post, Morbius. Excellent music too. Definitely space music.

Quote:
I doubt that Rap or Country will ever get to be subgenre of space-music.


Yes, that's probably true, but it might be an interesting project. Laughing

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opg



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

This thread is great! I love those album covers. Reminds me of my favorite B movie "LaserBlast."

I always assumed space music was pure, synthetic, science-themed psychedelia (is that a word?) and drugs are a necessity. I would think that any complex rhythms that would be used in other drug-oriented music would be replaced by lots of panning and (at shows) lighting. It sounds great. I always wanted to do a song that tried to capture the feeling in a planetarium. I always liked the synths they used, even as a kid.

Remember that scene in the original Superman movie when the evil Kryptonians are sent away in that flipping mirror? And the spinning rings around people? That STILL creeps me out, and no remake could ever do a better job.
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morbius



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 9:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Yeah... the stuff I did while working in the planetarium was done on a MiniMoog, an ARP-2500, or a Moog 3-C, or ARP-2600... here's pix:


Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 10:08 am    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

7/4 wrote:
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Posted Image, might have been reduced in size. Click Image to view fullscreen.

http://www.bizarremag.com ???

OK?

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softfreak



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:24 am    Post subject:
Subject description: perception
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"space music" doesn`t define any music.
it defines the perception of the listener.
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morbius



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 11:39 am    Post subject:
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softfreak wrote:
"space music" doesn`t define any music.
it defines the perception of the listener.


just asking...

so... Country could be 'space-music'? or Rap? or Opera? or Bluegrass?

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softfreak



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 12:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

if it makes you feel "spaced". Wink
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 12:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

Morbius, you still have all that gear?
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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 12:20 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

softfreak wrote:
if it makes you feel "spaced". Wink




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softfreak



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 12:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

elektro80 wrote:
softfreak wrote:
if it makes you feel "spaced". Wink




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exactly.
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morbius



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PostPosted: Wed Feb 15, 2006 1:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote  Mark this post and the followings unread

mosc wrote:
Morbius, you still have all that gear?


Nope. What I really wish I still had is the 2500. I found that little gem around 1979 or 80 at Ardent Studios in Memphis for $3,000, and it was in pretty good shape as I recall. (seems to me that Led Zepplin III was mastered there... I think)(I could be wrong about that).

Roger A. now has my old MiniMoog. The pic of the 3-C and that particular 2600 belonged to Memphis State... and, at that time WAS the Electronic Music lab. George Harrison's Moog was owned by Sounds of Memphis studios, and there was a 2-P that was owned by the William B. Tanner studios, where I did a lot of work, and actually did the sound f/x and melody-line for the very first 'Weed Eater' commercial.

Back then, very few people knew anything about synthesizers... some couldn't spell it (my mother couldn't pronounce it)... and the Moog 2-P had all of it's patch-points numbered with a label-maker. The VP who had been the only one to use it, didn't know any theory... it was a trial & error thing, so he numbered all of the jacks... an effort to notate his patches.

Seems like it was more 'funner' back then... when there was alot of mystery concerning modulars. There really wasn't anthing like them back them, at least, as far as the general public was concerned.

Sorry for all of the blabbing in response to your simple question... a fault of mine. I really should be spanked... severely. However, I've run out of pretty young women to do the deed. Sad

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