Alarm Will Vinyl

John Orfe, Alarm Will Sound pianist, compiled links for the numerous albums and publications mentioned in the video “Alarm Will Vinyl.”

Alarm Will Vinyl with Tyshawn Sorey

Vintage Vinyl Records, 6610 Delmar Avenue, St. Louis, MO 63130

Video Chronology:

Part I:  “This takes me back…” 

(00:39) Electronic Music Fontana Mix / Visage / Agony by John Cage, Luciano Berio, and Ilhan Mimaroğlu, respectively.  Turnabout label – Catalogue number TV 34046S (1967.) Tyshawn bought two copies of this album.  Here is William Paterson University’s Department of Music home page, where Sorey met Anton J. Vishio, a formative pedagogical influence.  Vishio introduced Sorey to the work of John Cage, Christian Wolff, Morton Feldman, and Earle Brown.

(02:18) “Experimental?…” On organization, rigor, improvisation, and “spontaneous composition”…

Foss, Lukas:  “Improvisation Versus Composition” The Musical Times, Vol. 103, No. 1436 (Oct 1962.) Sorey expresses reservations with Foss’ characterization of terms and arguments.

Part II:  “…the Black aesthetic has always been one that is about inclusion…”

(05:10) The piece Tyshawn recognized instantly was Akwan, Olly Wilson’s concerto for piano, electronic piano, amplified strings, and ensemble.  Akwan appears on Vol. 8 of Sony Classical’s re-release of CBS Masterworks’ 10-CD set, Black Composers Series 1974-1978 (CBS is now Sony Classical.)  Description and complete list of content can be found on the blog AfriClassical here.  Allan Kozinn chronicles the crucial role the College Music Society played in reissuing the set here.  This $40 collection belongs in every higher ed institution with a Music program.

(06:10) George Walker, the first African-American composer to win the Pulitzer Prize in Music, is the next composer Tyshawn mentions.  Walker’s Cello Concerto (1981) makes for an excellent introduction to his work.  What follows is a quicklist of the African-American composers Sorey names followed by representative compositions selected by Orfe:  Ulysses KayChariots:  An Orchestral Rhapsody (1978); Talib Rasul HakimSound-gone (1967); Adolphus HailstorkSymphony No. 2 (1995); Hale Smith (here in this link in Bruce Duffie’s joint interview with T. J. AndersonContours (1960).

(09:06) “…the work of the AACM…” This is the Association for the Advancement of Creative Musicians, a post-WWII American institution with an international reputation born on the South Side of Chicago.  Tyshawn’s graduate school mentor, Columbia University Professor George Lewis, definitively chronicled its history in his landmark A Power Stronger than Itself:  The AACM and American Experimental Music.  (This is the book Orfe is holding that Sorey gestures to in 12:26.)

Part III:  “…if it weren’t for George and Fred, I don’t think I’d be doing what I’m doing today…”

(11:47) Fred Lerdahl, Tyshawn’s other graduate school mentor, is famous  music theory circles for his book A Generative Theory of Tonal Music (1985).  Eros is Lerdahl’s piece on the Naumberg Award album (CRI 378, now under the auspices of New World Records); the other is Edwin Dugger’s Intermezzi.


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