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LeafResources: Music, MIDI & Text
= Files for You to Download =

Magazines, PDF Files
Music & MIDI
Words & Texts, Articles
Tuning Tables
Funny Bones
Interesting Miscellany
 

bit of reading...
Magazine Interviews, Plus (PDF Files)

leaf New: At Last! For several years I've been trying to find a simpler, convenient way to create and post online several magazine articles and interviews that belong here as additional resources. I was granted the permission by several interviewers and editors to create web versions of some of my own "classic" interviews. But the chore of scanning each page and then using OSR conversion software to come up with text files, and finally interposing higher res images for the photos, graphs, scores and diagrams similar to the original pages, made the task look punishing indeed. Or at any rate, it would have taken far more time and effort than I could afford to spend on the venture. Also, while interposing original images with new html text does give an idea of the original layout, there's nothing quite like seeing the actual pages of the magazine themselves, is there, especially when the images are all cleaned and tweaked to look "better than new?"
 
So here's what we've got for you, to read in your browser directly, or download for printing and saving. The most requested files have been for the classic Keyboard and other magazine interviews. Okay, to start with, how about the pair of Keyboard Magazine interviews Bob Moog did with me, right after completing my score to TRON? Then there's a fine interview with Jim Aikin for a new short-lived magazine on computers for music making, the topic being those very timely issues. And one for FilmScore Monthly, about (surprise) most of my filmscore work.
 
For something completely different, we include three fascinating bonuses. The first is the original 1970 brochure for the popular often-copied Mini Moog. The second is an article from the early 50s about a do-it-yourself project which inspired the Circon some 25 years later...! I couldn't resist including on page 6 of it a pleasantly sentimental painting, which reminds me of my grandfathers, the way they would nod off while reading. (You'll also note that our page on the Circon now includes scans and a description of Bob Moog's original schematic and letter.) The third bonus is a very rare early 1964 interview with George Wright, the pipe organ legend who also inspired me early on. This issue of Bombarde magazine (copyright 1964 ATOE/ATOS) is in great demand at high prices. I lucked into a decent copy quite reasonably recently, then tried to make it look like new in the pdf scans. (More information about the issue and ATOS HERE.)
 
And don't forget we have several other in-depth interviews (with Connor Freff Cochran, Carol Wright, and others) available here, in the text section of this resource page. Finally, please note that these PDF files, while highly efficient, contain a lot of information, so are between 1 to 2.5 megs in size each. If you have a slower connection, give them a while to load, thanx!)
 
(Note: for downloading or direct viewing options, check the instructions for your particular browser. Some browsers default to the former, others to the latter, but most generally permit either on-screen reading, for speed, or downloading, to read and/or print offline later.)

 Vintage Wendy Carlos Interviews  

"New Directions for a Synthesizer Pioneer"
by Robert Moog

Keyboard Magazine Cover Story A,
November 1982

kbdcover   synpneer
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

"Secrets Behind the Soundtrack of TRON"
by Robert Moog

Keyboard Magazine Cover Story B,
November 1982

tronsecret
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

"Visionary Composer and Computers"
by Jim Aikin

Music and Computers Magazine,
Nov/Dec 1997

viscompsr
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

You may also enjoy reading the full
transcript of this interview HERE

"A Clockwork Composer"
by Jeff Bond

FilmScore Monthly Magazine,
March 1999

clockcompsr
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

"Wendy's World"
A new text/video interview with Frank Oteri

New Music Box cover story,
April 2007

wendysworld
More about the interview HERE.

Watch the Video or read the full
text at New Music Box -- HERE.

Read our concise online edition of
the interview in html -- HERE
.

"Defying Conventions, Discovering New Worlds"
by Dominic Milano

Keyboard Magazine Feature Story
Part 1, November 1986

newworlds
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

(Read the new, brief Looking Back
comments about the four '86 articles.)

"Soundpage Exhibits from the Butterfly Collection"
by Dominic Milano

Keyboard Magazine Feature Story
Part 2, November 1986

soundpage
Download and/or read this article.
If you have problems download this zip file.

Listen to Track 1 mpg3
Listen to Track 2 mpg3
Listen to Track 3 mpg3
Listen to Track 4 mpg3
Listen to Track 5 mpg3

"A Guided Tour of Beauty in the Beast"
and
"A Many-Colored Jungle of Exotic Tunings"
both by Dominic Milano

Keyboard Magazine Feature Story
Parts 3 & 4, November 1986

guidedtour   exotictune
Download and/or read Guided Tour.
If you have problems download this zip file.

Download and/or read Exotic Tunings.
If you have problems download this zip file.

"Wendy Carlos: In the Moog"

by Chuck Miller

Goldmine Magazine Feature Story
January 2004

goldmine-miller
Download and/or read this article.
If you have problems download this zip file.

Other PDFs from the archives

"Introducing the Mini Moog"

R. A Moog Company brochure
Copyright 1970

minimoog
Download and/or read this brochure.

If you have problems download this zip file.

"Tomorrow's Electronic Barbershop Quartet"
by L. A. Meacham

Popular Mechanics Magazine,
January 1952

(Copyright 1952 Pop Mech)

PMcov   how2
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

"Very Rare George Wright 1964 Interview"
by Stu Green

Bombarde Magazine,
February 1964

(Copyright 1964 ATOE)

GWBmbd
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

"The ISI Eltro
Information Rate Changer"

Original 1967 Gotham Audio
brochure by Stephen Temmer

Eltro
Download and/or read this article.

If you have problems download this zip file.

###

Note: All extant copyright restrictions apply for the original articles, in addition to those for our newly created pdf versions.
Also, don't forget there are other vintage interviews and texts available in standard non-pdf format below.

Text and pdf files © 1998-2012 Serendip LLC. No images, text, graphics
or design may be reproduced without permission. All Rights Reserved.

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Music and MIDI files

leaf Secrets revealed: Discover the inside skinny of using and editing the Theremin-like "Circon" (or other novel similar devices) under MIDI control! Download images of the tracks overview and Circon Solo track close-ups , plus the full MIDI files from Wendy's "HeavenScent", as heard on "Tales of Heaven and Hell". We've got more than the usual information for you, all on its own
 

HeavenScent Page
(Info & Downloads). 

Take a look!


leaf New: Just found score page: While trying to locate something quite different, I came upon my original Finale score page created during the initial composition of "City of Temptation", a featured track on "Tales of Heaven and Hell". It's one of the rare examples of music written in 11/8 meter, which gives it that notable "push" into each new bar. Actually, it turned out to be more helpful to lay it out in the equivalent 4/4 + 3/8 meter pairs for each two adjoining bars, but the sound is eleven beats. It resembles the action music in my score to TRON, which breaks the seven beats into 4 + 3 each 7/8 bar, with a similar asymmetrical effect. The structure is very formal, how the melodic and harmonic lines progress, and the ostinato of the bass lines. Thought you'd enjoy a look-see...!
cityoftempt
City of Temptation
(click for full size scan). 


leaf DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the music tracks used on S-OB 2000 's Air on a G-String.
leaf
DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the music tracks used on S-OB 2000 's Two Part Invention in d minor.

These are Wendy's actual final performances from the Telarc CD for you to study or to try your own realization using your own sequencer and MIDI gear. Have fun! (Note: the standard MIDI format omits track assignments, some names, and helpful comments data, unfortunately. But they do contain all the notes and expression data.)
MIDI arrangements ©1988 Wendy Carlos


leaf DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or, if necessary, Older Performer 2.41 Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the MIDI music tracks for The Hummingbird from Carnival of the Animals, Part II.
leaf
DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or, if necessary, Older Performer 2.41 Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the MIDI music tracks for The Vulture from Carnival of the Animals, Part II.

These are Wendy's final performances of her original compositions from the CBS/Sony CD, for you to study or to try your own realization using your own sequencer and MIDI gear. Have fun! (Note: the standard MIDI format omits track assignments, some names, and helpful comments data, unfortunately. But you get all the notes, including those oddball tricks with alternating notes and tracks that many early MIDI devices required.)
(Weird) Al Yankovic provided the witty poems and narration of the original recording, but MIDI format doesn't currently support spoken humor, alas! Consult the CD for more details.
Music and MIDI arrangements ©1988 Wendy Carlos


leaf DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or, if necessary, Older Performer 2.41 Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the MIDI music tracks for the opening orchestral section from her parody on Peter and the Wolf, by Prokofiev, pp. 3-5 of the full score, rehearsal #s: 0 &1.
leaf
DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or, if necessary, Older Performer 2.41 Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the MIDI music tracks for an early orchestral section from her parody on Peter and the Wolf, by Prokofiev, pp. 15-19, rehearsal #s: 11-14.
leaf
DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or, if necessary, Older Performer 2.41 Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of the MIDI music tracks for a large orchestral tutti near the end of her parody on Peter and the Wolf, by Prokofiev, pp. 70-78, rehearsal #s: 48-52.

These are Wendy's final performances from the CBS/Sony CD, for you to study or to try your own realization using your own sequencer and MIDI gear. Have fun! (Note: the standard MIDI format omits track assignments, some names, and helpful comments data, unfortunately.) (Weird) Al Yankovic provided the witty narration of the original recording, but MIDI format doesn't currently support spoken humor, alas! Consult the CD for more details.
MIDI arrangements ©1988 Wendy Carlos


leaf DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format file of something rather unusual: all the notes played during the tuning of Wendy's Steinway by her lifelong master piano technician, Norman Yeend. "Norman is simply the best piano tuner I've encountered. He's exact, flexible, and really tries to please. And no one else's tuning method lasts so long, is so durable as his. I'm lucky to have found him! Lovely man." (If you ever need one of the sharpest piano technicians in NYC, you might wish to leave a message on Yeend's new biz number: (212) 304-1377. Recommended.)
 
Now you can also see the way a master tuner "lays the bearings" and proceeds to tune all 88 keys. By the way, this file was done without Yeend's being aware of it, using the simply wonderful Gulbransen Orchestra II Pro piano MIDI pickup system. It sits under the keys and has no palpable effect on the instrument, except that it now becomes an excellent, flexible MIDI keyboard controller. With no exaggeration: "it may very likely be the best MIDI controller in the world, given that your piano's action is reasonably good to start with...!"
Usage Note: You may examine or work with the above files for your own private use only, as all material is copyright protected, and not in the public domain. You also may use them for music classroom purposes, teaching examples, as long these are for non-profit, provided due credit is given to Wendy Carlos, and you limit yourself to excerpts only. Our only request in the case of instructional usage is that you notify us of your intention via the Write Wendy mail drop for our site. Thanks.
 
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Words & Texts

leaf "Music and Audio Tool Recommendations"
We regularly receive questions from the many musicians among you about what particular tools Wendy uses, and what she would recommend for others creating music, scores and audio with digital and computer tools. If you haven't already seen it, for several years our site has had some words of praise for Mark of the Unicorn's respected and powerful MIDI and Audio editing package, Digital Performer -- read it HERE. And now we've added a new page about the powerful mono and stereo audio editing software, BIAS's Peak, read about it HERE, and the definitive library of plug-in and stand alone acoustic instrumental resources from Garritan Corp., read about them HERE.


leaf "Only Human: Touching the Significance"
Here's the most recent soul-searching interview with Wendy, by the same good Carol Wright mentioned below. Originally a portion of this unusually candid, questioning piece was used in the article "A Simple Thought: Music and Meaning", which ran in the July 2001 issue of New Age Retailer. Carol thought it would be intriguing to place Wendy's pithy observations in the middle of the article, which otherwise represented a more new age, spiritual discussion on inspiration and meaning in art and music. What, Carol wondered, would be the source of Wendy's inspiration, if she didn't believe in a God? With a leadoff like that, you know you're going to discuss a lot of core values -- of music, creativity, humanity -- and they did.
leaf
"The Digital Phases of Wendy Carlos"
And here's a very recent, expansive and Kaleidoscopic Interview by Carol Wright, written originally for the Synthmuseum magazine for Spring 2001. This wide ranging article covers a lot of questions that many of you have kindly sent to us over several years now, on the music and tools Carlos has used over the years. It also discusses the effects of digital technology on music, and the differences with the earlier analog instruments. We think you won't want to miss this one.
leaf
"Something Old, Something New: The Definitive Switched-On"
Here's the first interview with Wendy by Carol Wright, which took place in the Fall of 1999, for New Age Voice magazine. Like the title says, this spontaneous chat delves into topics many of you still write and ask us about, the Moog years, the first albums, and now their definitive remastering and collection into the Switched-On Boxed Set. It's here and more.
leaf
"Tuning In To Wendy Carlos"
This witty Cover-Story article and interview with Wendy by Connor Freff Cochran, first appeared in Electronic Musician magazine in November of 1986. In some ways he got to the real essence of the musician and person with these candid impressions, as they discussed the background that went into her "Beauty in the Beast" album. For those of you who have been requesting that we post some of the more interesting past interviews with Wendy on our site, you ought take a browse at this one before moving on.
leaf
"Vocoder Questions and Answers"
For those of you fascinated with the sound of the Vocoder, read these questions and answers by Wendy about her pioneering "singing" use of this speech-encoding invention, originally developed in the late '30's and early '40's by Homer Dudley at Bell Laboratories (speech encoding? -- where else BUT the original Bell Labs?!) You may also want to look again at our view with new caption in this 1979 photo of the original modular vocoder at the top of the final Moog Synthesizer. This is the same vocoder that was used on the soundtrack of Kubrick's A Clockwork Orange, and Carlos's TimeSteps. (Note: Beauty in the Beast and Tales of Heaven & Hell both use a much newer Synton SPX 216.)
leaf
"The Original Notes to S-OB 2000"

MacWrite Pro Format (original, complete) or Word 5 Format (complete) or Plain Text Format (missing footnotes and formatting) file of the booklet's liner notes for Switched-On Bach 2000, released by Telarc in May of 1992. These are detailed notes and narratives, with historical, musical, technical, and behind-the-scenes information about the way the 1968 S-OB came to be, right through this special 25th Anniversary Version, with Bach's own tunings. A "must read" if you've not seen them before! For even more information on the Moog albums of Bach and Baroque music, particularly about the Moog Synthesizer itself, check out the Switched-On Boxed Set, released in the Fall of 1999 on ESD.


leaf A review of Beauty in the Beast, the album Wendy considers the single most important of all her work thus far. It was written by Rob Berry, for the Ambient FAQ. (Now you can get a beautifully remastered CD edition on ESD.)
leaf
Here's another review of Beauty in the Beast, this imaginative, enthusiastic short one is by Jim Aikin. It first appeared in Keyboard magazine, and was among the initial raves that the album received, right after it was released on Audion for all too brief a time, in 1987. (Now you can get a beautifully remastered CD edition on ESD.)
leaf
We just found this full original transcript of a featured Jim Aikin Interview with Wendy that appeared in the Nov-Dec 1997 issue of Music & Computers magazine, now long gone, alas. (A much shorter edited and printed version is also available in our collection of pdf files, created from page scans of the original publications.) For a short time Miller-Freeman made available web versions of material related to their current issues, including full transcripts of articles which were reduced in length due to print space restrictions. We had saved the full transcript from their site shortly after the interview appeared in print, and set it aside. In searching for something completely different, that file turned up, and has been copied and reworked into a compatible page for our website. It contains quite a bit of conversation on topics not available anywhere else, and we hope you enjoy reading it.
leaf
Alan Baker interviewed me not too long ago for the excellent American Mavericks radio and internet series about musical individuals and iconoclasts. I was honored to be included with so many good people. Alan was unusually well prepared and knowledgeable about all of the topics that have most interested me over the years: synths and alternative tunings, orchestration, physics and acoustics, musique concrete, and so on... so our easy back and forth headed off into areas I've seldom spoken about before.
 
The interview took place in early 2003, with us on opposite coasts (I was asked to come to the lovely, excellent mini studio located in the rear of Carnegie Hall). Although the American Public Media has had most of their interviews available in both streaming audio (try HERE, if it's still working) and text versions, we're providing this BU online copy of the text version HERE, which you can read online or save to print later, as it is unusually long and involved. (You may want to increase the font size if you read it off a monitor, but it tends to print readably well, and saves paper at this size.) Thank you to everyone involved, Alan especially, for such a respectful, intelligent job!
--Wendy
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= (Notes on all files from here to the end are by Wendy) =

leaf K2000 SysEx Tuning Table
leaf
K2000 SysEx buttons

The above two files are the ones I use for my K2000 synths. It was impossible to learn the messages needed over SysEx to change which tuning table was being used. Kurzweil didn't even know. After discovering the secret via a long and devious route, I made the first chart to remind me. Turns out to be fairly straightforward. If you use this excellent series of machines, and want to try some of the other good tunings available, this will make life easier. The second chart shows how to "press keys" on the front panel via MIDI. Both charts are in GIF format, and you can yank copies of either one via your browsing software and save. On my Macs I just drag the screen image directly to the desktop for a quick copy -- your machine may also support that convenient feature.


leaf MacWrite II Format or MacWrite 5 Format or MS Word Format or Plain TEXT (no formatting) versions: K2000-to-AIFF Tip Sheet. You can also read it here from your browser. This is a description file for K2000/2500 users who wish to edit their audio files/sample on a Mac audio program.

I do this a lot, but kept forgetting all the steps to use when I'd not done it in a while. I've been a purist and kept the SCSI connections for the Mac and K2000s unconnected from each other. So I use floppies to move the aiff format files back and forth. I printed a couple of copies of this file onto thin cardstock, and keep them handy when doing this task. Much quicker than trying to find the information in the manual. Give it a try.


leaf MacWrite II Format or MacWrite 5 Format or MS Word Format versions: Alternate Tuning Guide for the K1000, K2000, K2500, and FS 150 Synthesizers.
leaf
MacWrite II Format or MacWrite 5 Format or MS Word Format versions: Tuning Table for this guide.
leafAnd here is the
Examples Page (in GIF format) for this guide. It ought be printed or viewed at 144 dpi "medium" resolution. Or you can view it directly from your browser right here, but stand back, as you'll see it at double-size on your 72 dpi monitor! (If you print it from your browser, please change the Page Setup to a size of 50% before printing, and after change it back to normal. It should fit one 8.5" x 11" sheet in portrait mode.)

This small guide book was written as a present for many of my friends at Kurzweil several years ago, and so is directed mainly to the K1000 series. But it's all very easy to use with the newer units, as you'll see when you read it. And it's easy enough to adapt to other brands of synth as well.
 
Basically this guide is also a mini-history of how some of these fresh sounding alternatives to the standard 12-tone Equal Temperament came about, and how to use them. The guide itself is available above in several formats. Since the TEXT version can't suppont all the formatting, nor the imbedded images, I've not included it here.
Text and illustrations ©1990-96 Wendy Carlos


leaf MacWrite Pro Format or MacWrite 5 Format or MS Word Format or Plain TEXT (no formatting) versions: Three Asymmetric Divisions of the Octave. You can also read it here from your browser. This is an article that appeared in an issue of PITCH, published by the American Festival of Microtonal Music.

Here's a short article I was commissioned to write for this excellent journal of microtonal resources. It's a non-general text explaining Asymmetrical tunings, which I discovered in 1984-85. The three most important versions are described, and suggested ways to use them is given. Never before reprinted, this file is thanks to Johnny Reinhard, who was able to locate copies of the original files, thought lost.
Text ©1989-96 Wendy Carlos


leaf Here's a letter to the editor of the New York Times which I recently sent them. It was in response to several articles in the Arts and Leisure section of the Sunday Times which brought up painful old memories studying composition during the 60's. The articles were:
   In Contemporary Music, a House Still Divided by K. Robert Schwartz
   Letter (about the above article), by Charles Greenberg
   Surviving the Seige, But Barely by Paul Griffiths

For copyright reasons I can't place the original articles up on this site, of course. It will probably be sufficient to describe them to you in brief. The first article described the world of contemporary serious classical music as having been torn in two for much of the 20th century. One side embraced the Schoenberg methods of Serialism, and had major influence on most of the music produced since at least WW II: a consciously structured music that deliberately avoided suggestions of tonal basis, in any harmonic or melodic sense. Some serialists also dissolved expectations of rhythm and meter and structure.
 
If you ever attended a concert of so-called "Modern Music", you will know what it sounds like: astringent, restrained and difficult to follow, even when you know the system. It's mostly quite ugly acoustically, and difficult to recall in any detail as you leave the hall.
 
The other side refused these notions, and so consisted essentially of all other forms of serious music, from the most conservative, to the most experimental, as long as some tonality was maintained, and the methods of the Serialists were not. I was and still am a member of this latter group.
 
The Serialists often had a sneering or at least arrogant attitude towards anyone who did not practice their methodology. An outspoken example is the infamous comment by Pierre Boulez:

Every musician who has not felt -- we do not say understood, but indeed felt -- the necessity of the Serial language is USELESS."

It was rough to hear such attitudes expressed, and subtler similar ones of dismissal, and it grossly affected most of us negatively, those of us who were on the other side, like it or no.
 
The short letter makes a point that some serial music was not so deadening to hear, being based more on the ideas of Bartok and Berg. While the second article discusses ways that Serialism may be experiencing pressures today not unlike the tearing down of the Berlin Wall -- a newer generation that refuses to go along with its well-worn methods, and is striking out into more tonal and original directions.
 
I try to cover these ideas in my letter, including observations of the personal difficulties of survival, being a composition student in most music colleges and universities during the heydays of rigid serialism. Perhaps these pressures drove me and many others since into the worlds of the synthesizer and computer.
 
Text ©1997-2012 Wendy Carlos

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By Popular Request
Downloadable Tuning Tables

leaf DigiPerformer 1.6+/ Performer 5.1+ Format or Standard MIDI Format or .ZIP version of MIDI format and a PICT image (of the contents and placement of the System Exclusive Data on the tracks) for changing the tuning of several synths! These are files that have been requested by several of you who share my interest in alternative tunings. Since it really is quite time consuming to make custom tables for many synths, here's a good starting place.
 
The sequencer file (open one of the two versions for a look), whose track layout is depicted in the PICT image above, contains the tuning data I currently use on the Yamaha TX802, the Yamaha SY77, and the Kurzweil K2000/2500 synths. Track one is just a place-holding "conductor" track. Track two contains the long System Exclusive message that you can send to burn a Cartridge in the TX802 cartridge slot.
 
The cartridge will then conveniently contain all tuning tables in this PICT image. You can just go into the Performance Edit Menu, choose "mtt#", and from there, in "PERF.EDIT6", select the Micro Tuning Cartridge, with the number chosen to match the desired tuning. Makes this one of the easiest synths for using a lot of alternative tunings, except that there is minimal alpha support, so you have to refer to the tunings by their number, not name.
 
The Yamaha SY77 is not so easy. I got a Korg BL-1 (Boss Librarian for Sys Ex.), and with a small MIDI merger box, it sits on the SY77's MIDI input. When I need to change the tuning, I just power up the BL-1, and then send its first file, which is the Unlock Command. That's the message stored in the above MIDI files on the 4th track. (I copied it over to the BL-1's first SysEx slot.)
 
The tracks below this are the tuning tables for 12 note Equal, followed by the 12 keys of the Harmonic Scale, the 12 of SuperJust, ditto for 1/4th comma Meantone, and a few other interesting tunings listed in the file and the PICT of the tracks. You have to be sure your soundfiles access one of the two RAM tuning tables (I use the 2nd one), and the SysEx messages alter this RAM table. A bit indirect, but that's how it has to be done. You can also send the messages right from your sequencer, even change them "on the fly" from within compositions-- (Neat!)
 
The bottom track contains the messages to send to change the Kurzweil K2000 and K2500 synth tunings. These units have all octaves internally set to 1200 cents. So the tuning tables only affect the generic pitches, making all C's the same (except for the octave), all E flats, F sharps, and so on. This is truly convenient for many standard tunings. But it is not flexible enough to use with tunings that require more than one octave (12 notes), or have different tunings in each octave. You just need to send the proper table to get the tuning you desire, and then send one of the 12 lowest MIDI notes for the key you wish to play that tuning in (or select this from the Master Page of the unit.)
 
I hate to think of how many hours it took to make these tables, or even to locate the files, make these edited and cleaned-up copies and images, double check their contents, and then try to explain them a little here for those of you who are interested. I'm sorry that I can't instruct you completely what to do to use the above files. I assume you already have an idea -- a working knowledge of SysEx and the use of sequencers and synth editing.
 
The first is in Mark of the Unicorn's Performer (or Digital Performer) usual format. The second is saved as a standard type one MIDI file. You may have to refer to the manuals for your given synth to work out the other steps. Since many of you already know how to do it, these files could be of genuine help to you. Good luck with them, and enjoy hearing what we've been missing for far too many years!

--Wendy

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Funny Bones

leaf A sign over a fireplace mantle in New Hampshire has this puzzle on it. I saw it in a charming old Inn while having dinner with friends in the late '70's, and it caught my eye. The last line seemed clear enough, but how about the rest?
 

If the BMT put more :
If the B . putting :
Never put more : over a - der
You'd be an * it

So I scribbled it down, and when I got home tried to figure it out. Turned out that the terminology was kind of archaic, but then it was a puzzle from some word-playing "Yankee" made up over a hundred years ago. At first it's harder than it looks. Eventually it dawns on you what it's all about. Simple stuff, and kind of corny, too. Think of where the sign is located, near the grate of a roaring fireplace, where strangers might have helped out fueling the flames-- IF they knew their English!
 
I suppose this is a ridiculous thing to put up here, especially since I'm not giving the answer ("Ooo -- she's mean, that one!"). Quite a few of our friends have doped it out, though, and once you do, you can spring it on the boastful "puzzle solvers" in your group. Hang it on the wall, smile, and then be prepared to duck...!

Postus Scriptuswise: It seems that the Gold Leaf awards (for the sole Moog note in S-OB 2K) located at the top of the currently most recent Open Letter have inspired a loyal fan to solve this word-play puzzle, and to send me his solution. His sole "fluff" was so inconsequential, one word, and his spirited solution was so much fun to read, I thought I'd add his name here, with a special Neo-Gold Leaf.
 
 So CONGRATULATIONS to Todd M. Curro, who gives as his addresses, Massachusetts and South Korea. You're the first person to have done this, too -- plenty of reason to add your name right here, hey!
 
 And another CONGRATULATIONS to Ian Kemmish, who lives in England. I never planned on this small section of the Resource Page to contain another contest (like the one Moog note one, which always appears at the top of the newest Open Letter).
 
But upon seeing the first listing above, which I posted more out of a jocular sense, Ian responded in like manner. I guess we'll post his name, too, as he nailed it easily and completely accurately. I suspect that those with a British background might be more familiar with some mildly out-of-date language terms once commonly used in "The Colonies", too. However, American English, while related, has become a "hole-nuther matter" (and every bit as slangy as those two citrus fruits and Bells of St. Clemens...)
 
And now let's end this amusing aside with three final Neo-Gold Leafs, acknowledgments for solving this venerable old New England challenge. Since it's not mine, and I never intended this web-bagatelle to be treated so seriously, like the musical challenge of the one Moog synth note on SOB 2000, I won't promise to continue to add names of those who enjoy the kick of solving a venerable word puzzle. But, hey, you never know...
 
 Anyway, sans further ado, here are three additional Neo-Gold Leaf CONGRATULATIONS which we extend to the following bright people:
   TMike Stubbs & Zack Turpin of "wavingpalms", Peter Holliday (who has been an interesting music correspondent, too), and David Harris, another savvy solver from the UK. All of you got the exact (or for Stubbs and Turpin, a very nearly exact) translation, good work!


leaf Recently a good friend was enthusiastically about to commence his first professional set of recording sessions (you know who you are...!) In my usual helpful, supportive, but ever malicious way, I decided to jot down a series of "Helpful Tips for the Novice Recording Engineer", and send it to him. With tongue firmly in cheek, here is the nasty parody that resulted.
 
-- Recording Tips -- For the Beginner --

(Caution: all of the advice in the above "tips" is as untrue as this warning statement about it. Read at your own risk! --the management )

 

Note: For some reason, this satire has been picked up by many others in the recording arts and sciences who have sent it out to friends on the Net. So you may have encountered a version of it before. The text here is the official authenticated version, after all final polishings, revisions and additions were made. (Big deal...)
 
Text for Recording Tips ©1997 Wendy Carlos
Rest of this page updated and
©2012 Serendip LLC -- All Rights Reserved

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Interesting Miscellany

leaf While searching through an old file cabinet for some Moog information sheets to post on our site, I also discovered a tiny newspaper clipping from my days at Columbia University, as a graduate student in the Music Department. That's where I met Vladimir Ussachevsky, the electroacoustic music pioneer, as well as other notable professors, like composers Jack Beeson and Otto Luening. For years the music department organized free concerts of music written by student composers in the department, and they called them: "The Columbia Composers." This series had faded away by the time I arrived in the early 60s. In it's place were several other concert series of new music. Alas, the only place for the graduate student composer was within the new program by "The Group For Contemporary Music at Columbia University." They seemed to offer ONLY dodecaphonic, or serial, atonal fare, and other quite severe, generally ugly styles.
 
That was not for me, and contrariwise, those of us who tried to find other less restrictive musical styles and genres were not what the new group wanted to play, either. A standoff. So several other composer friends and I decided to restart the earlier Columbia Composers program. For the three years I attended, we presented new music in a broad selection of styles and media, and carried on the earlier tradition the best we could. We rented McMillin Theater (now Miller), designed and printed our own programs (we'd cart our master sheets down to ERS offset printers downtown), much as amateur performers have always managed. I still have nostalgic thoughts about some of those concerts experiences...! Fortunately, despite all the moves since then, I had managed to save one of the small ads we placed in the New York Times a week before one of our concerts (this one was in March of 1964). We had nearly no budget, so it had to be tiny and to the point. Here's a decent scan of the clipping:

ColumbCompsrs
(click for full size image)


leaf Mixed in with the clipping above, I also found this single sheet with my scrawled figures of what it would cost to build a small new studio. It dates from somewhat over a year after that clipping, when I had finally graduated. I considered trying to set up a few new devices on my own, much like Ussachevsky's small McMillin Room #106, where I had done most of my electroacoustic composing while studying for my MA. Perhaps I could collect and hand-wire some equipment slowly for my new studio apartment, while I continued to work as an audio engineer for Gotham Recording Corp. on West 46th Street.
 
I knew of no Moog Synthesizers (I was just about to meet Bob), or any other kind, either (save the huge racks of the RCA Synthesizer up on 125th Street, which was mostly used by Milton Babbitt). There WERE some kit versions of electronic organs (by Schober and Artisan, for example), which might be modified to create interesting non-organ sounds. There were also the usual test oscillators and tape recording studio devices which would prove essential. Fairchild had been developing an interesting new multitrack tape recorder (their "Master System") which had very good specs, and used narrower tape than usual for Ampex and Scully, which would save money. But that line never worked well. It took a few years before the quite pro home studio you see in the photos section came to be. But this small sheet (goodness, look at the modest prices back then! But then salaries were equally diminutive... and this was far from "small change") suggests that the path to that setup I created S-OB on was in no way "immediately obvious"!:
64studiosheet
(click for full size image)


leaf Only 3-4 years later, my small first home studio was taking shape. You can see what it looked like here, just after completing S-OB. The bulky tape machine (with a tall table lamp up on top) is the Ampex 8-track tape recorder I cobbled together from many parts. Its story is told in many other places, I won't repeat it here (the Switched-On Boxed Set contains the most extensive descriptions, with plenty of photos, of my various studios and equipment, within the included two CD "booklets" (hard to call something a half-inch thick a booklet...!)
 
Down below the first three Ampex preamplifiers you can make out two smaller rack panels. The lowest one is a very simple passive mixer, which allows one to hear any blend of the tracks while overdubbing, with no need of a console. Just above that is a homemade Sel-Sync panel. That's Ampex's term for a box included on most of their multitrack tape machines which lets the engineer use the record head, instead of the normal playback head, to hear existing tracks, while the new overdub recordings are made. Being all in the same place along the tape, this allows the performer to record the new parts in exact synchronization with the already recorded tracks, thus the name.
 
But Ampex had very few 8-track Sel Sync boxes in the mid-late 60s, and they were hard to get and very expensive. I knew I could build something that would work about as well, and did so. A professionally engraved front panel makes it look surprisingly pro. The parts were bought in town, as was the custom ordered stacked 8-track head assembly from IEM. For transforming the record head's outputs into something more resembling a PB head's signal (also filtering off any tape-bias leakage), I was going to use a tiny transistor preamp for each track. Here's the first draft idea, before getting some advice from Bob Moog. Sadly, the final prototype created more problems with noise than it solved, so I ended up with a passive circuit, which had no gain but added no hiss or hum, either. With that you had to readjust the playback level control for each Sel-Synced track, turn them back for normal PB, that was the tradeoff. This small hand-drawn schematic on yellow paper from a legal pad is all that's left of a reasonable idea that didn't work out.
selsync
(click for full size image)


leaf Dvorak Keyboard Layout (KCHR resource for Macs)

I've been using the Dvorak Keyboard layout since 1986. It was a surprise when Apple, who originally had made the simplified keyboard a mere button press on the Apple IIe, IIc and IIc+ abandoned it on the Mac. But with ResEdit and Fedit, I discovered where the "asdf..." table was located in the system, and carefully changed it to the Dvorak configuration.
 
It was a mere two weeks to learn the new positions, many months less than it was to learn qwerty years ago. And over the next three weeks I got back to my original speed, and quickly surpassed it. My typos went down, and the fatigue of long typing sessions vanished. When I must, I can still use the clumsy old standard, no problem. All those silly rumours of how hard it is to change are pure fabrications. You'll see. Have people never heard of carpal fatigue syndrome? Do yourself a favor...
 
If you'd like to see what this ANSI Standard layout of keys is like, take a look at this image of your typing keys, including what you'll get when the "modifier" keys are also pressed. (You might print this chart for a reference, too.)
 
One neat trick is to use press-on letters on the keytops, then put a couple of coats of clear nail enamel over them, buffed with fine steel wool (most keyboards have different angles for the tops of keys on each row, so you can't just move them around to a new layout, or it looks messy). I've also seen adhesive key tops in thin plastic with the appropriate letterings.
 
Originally each new Mac System update had to be edited to change the keyboard layout. But with the Mac's System 7, it became a lot easier to install Dvorak. You need only an appropriate KCHR resource. (It's similar for Windows machines.) So I hacked the US-qwerty KCHR resource so all the shift and option combinations matched consistently, and this is the one I now use. (Double-click open the System itself, drag this KCHR inside, and close. Then select Dvorak from the Keyboard Control Panel.) You may want to give it a try. Very recommended!

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