OHM- THE EARLY GURUS OF ELECTRONIC MUSIC
From left: Allan Bryant, Ivan Vandor, Richard Teitelbaum, Frederic Rzewski, Alvin Curran
The line-up in the above photo should give you some idea about the importance of this electronic ensemble, which spawned so many important artists. Allan Bryant has started releasing some of the group's live recordings recently. Here below, he tells the story of MEV (Musica Elettronica Viva), in his unique style of communication in "fnetc speling."
ALLAN BRYANT - MEV
In 1966 Jon Phetteplace, Rzewski and I formed MEV, to do strange amplified and electronic pieces. Alvin Curran would have joined us but he didnt have a nutty piece like this t do. After a few months of concerts in France and Rome, Alvin and Vittorio Gilmetti and Ivan Vandor did pieces with us. I had a lot of pieces I wanted t do, but apparently they didnt and we started t do an improvisation for the 2d haf. First it was just Jon, Fred, Alvin and I. (which recordings I'm putting out on my own "IRML" label ) ("I risk my life" - for the things I say in the booklets that go with each CD). Then the whole concert became just an improvisation - with people like Ivan Vandor, Carol Plantamura and Richard Titelbaum joining in.
Jon and I both left the then expanding group at the end of 68, We had done concerts all
over Europe for 3 years. I have to admit that these were due to Fred's contacts with composers all over Europe who wanted him to play their piano music. They all had jobs with radio stations etc. where they could arrange concerts for us.
"Pitch-Out" for amplified guitars,. from 1 of the early MEV concerts was put out in color-score and recording in the Uni of Cal book "Source". CRI put out "Space Guitars" on Lp in 77 - a series of guitar pieces I did after leaving MEV. It also came out with some more pieces added on CD in 95. In 96 I put out on my own IRML label "Spaceball" for guitars. In 97 "The Original MEV" (The rest of the London concert in 68 that Fred hadnt chosen for the Time Records LP). In 98 "Space-tecno" for solo sinth and in 99 "The original MEV, Rome Concert." I will have 2 at least a year coming out now in my series of music illustrating science CDz (finding that my guitar and sinth pieces seem very descriptive of physical and biological events - and its nice to have a program for this sort of abstract stuff.
For the MEV improvisations I had put together a sinth from old organ parts - and transistors that became no longer available - that I'm sure bcame the model for Serge Tcherpnines "Serge-boxes".
NOTE: IRML releases are available from Forced Exposure
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