Charlemagne Palestine (b. 1945)

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Voice Studies (1960-71)
Charlemagne Palestine, Terry Jennings, Tony Conrad, Robert Feldman, Rhys Chatham

  1. Surrealistic Studies I 3:03
  2. Surrealistic Studies II 1:31
  3. Surrealistic Studies III 0:46
  4. Voice + Piano Study I 5:48
  5. Voice + Piano Study II 5:08
  6. Voice Study 11:09
  7. Beauty Chord + Voice 6:20

    Charlemagne Palestine's introduction to music or sound was first with his own voice. he began at four years old to sing versions of popular songs and operas in his own way. later on, a director of a Jewish sacred music choir auditioned him to sing with them, Charlemagne was seven years old at the time and for the next seven years he sang all over the east coast of the US as a member of a choir that sang with many of the greatest European Chazans (Jewish Sacred Singers) who had fled Europe during the rise of the anti-semitism and resettled in America. from them he learned to sing in a long chanting style with his own natural voice. at the same time he met Pandit Pran Nath the master of Kirana style, singing and studied a short time with him as well as Javanese singing with Ki Wasito di Puro at Cal Arts. over the years Charlemagne Palestine have performed and recorded vocal works as an important part of his outputs as sonic artist.

    This LP record includes the very early "Surrealistic Studies", recorded in Brooklyn in the beginning of the 1960s. using a Webcor reel to reel tape recorder and discovering a technique of shouting into the microphone of the recorder and immediately pulling the microphone out creating an interior echo chamber where the sound would turn around on itself, changing and distorting. no other electronic sound manipulation techniques were used. "Voice + Piano Study I & II" are short and beautiful piano improvisation with tape superimposition of accelerated voice pieces. recorded at Cal Arts, on September 29th, 1971.

    "Voice Study" was recorded in Manhattan in the mid-1960s. In this Study Charlemagne sing in a falsetto duet with himself on two separate tracks. sung in a resonant space reminiscent of a Synagogue in the falsetto voice that he began to develop from Jewish male sacred chant falsettos. he searches for intervals that resonate together and respond like electronic sound wave oscilators played against eachother.

    Finally the fantastic 6 minutes "Beauty Chord + Voice" with Charlemagne playing piano and singing. -- Sound Ohm

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