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Old 03-22-2014, 10:26 PM
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JimFiore JimFiore is offline
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Default Re: When does sound become music

Originally Posted by larryace View Post
OK then is there any such thing as an unorganized sound? If nature is organizing sounds and man is organizing sounds and producing them as a byproduct of living life, then everything is organized so therefore meets the criteria for music. Is that a valid statement?
I would argue that nature is not organizing sounds, at least not using any typical definition of the word, something like: to arrange in a coherent form or purposeful structure. Certainly, that implies agency and intent. And I think that intent is at the root of art. I don't think it's possible to have art without intent. We can experience beauty without intent (a sunset, for example) but let's not forget that art doesn't have to be beautiful. We can also experience organization (a crystal lattice, for example), but there is no agency behind it and therefore no intent. Seagulls might "intend" to make a noise, but where is the organizational intent? Are they orchestrating their calls together for something other than a utilitarian purpose? If not, then I don't see organization.

I believe Zappa had the best take on this, mainly that art is all about the frame. The act of putting a figurative frame around something is what makes that something art. My point being that the "act of framing" is intent and there is no intent without agency.

Thus, if someone organizes noise and calls it music, then it's music. You and I might hate it, but it's music in its most basic definition. This includes a person who "hears something" regarding a washing machine. In this instance, the listener is the composer/artist. Consider it to be part of the Dada School.
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