season three
LMM 3.12

LMM 3.12 - Choreos Incorporated

April 2011

“the final album; a tribute to LMM and to the future”- jw
lmm 3.12


LMM 3.12 - Choreos Incorporated


This record is intended as the final Learning Music album. Unlike the majority of preceding LMM, it was preconceived with no specific theme or guidelines. Thus it's main instructive restriction was purely the one-month-long schedule upon which the entire series was based. The resulting work, I believe, is an eclectic collection, relevantly representative of the series as a whole. With a few exceptions, the individual pieces defy easy genrefication; and those that are easily classified stand diversely from their accompanying components.

In listening now, I realize that this album serves two messages. On one side it is a tribute to LMM; to the thirty five preceding albums, and to the past years for which they have served as something of a diary. On the other side, and in a very personal respect, it is a tribute to the future; to summer, family, birth, rebirth, and love.

Thank you so much to everyone for allowing me to so indulgently exercise in front of you. I'm happy to say that I was still learning up to the very end.

Sincerely,
jw



• written, recorded, and performed by John Wood, March 2011, with Oscar Schedin (1st guitar on 6, additional guitars and solos on 8 and 10), Jeff Eliassen (brass on 2, bass solo on 7), Jason Golday (2nd guitar on 6), Nowcloud (cornet on 6), Jonathan Silberman (tenor sax on 6), Devin McNulty (bass clarinet on 6), Michael Beltran (trombone on 6).

• Artwork by John Wood and Lisa Tremain.
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.12.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.11

LMM 3.11 - Confessions Accounts Ruminations

March 2011

“Spoken stories, poetry, jokes, and guttural inflections with a specific interest in states of memory.”- jw
lmm 3.10


LMM 3.11 - Confessions Accounts Ruminations


Things to think about when discussing LMM 3.11:

-inherent links between speech and music
-inflections of the voice in a story remembered and told
-pitch, dynamics, timing, timbre
-quotation marks written on a page or on a screen resembling a page, or the name "quotation marks" as a representation of a symbol, or the spoken quotation of another person, or the recorded sound of a person speaking
-art as symbol, symbol as trick, trick as joke; logical/linguistic association
-memory in past, present, and future tenses
-the importance of memory in language: every time a word is used, it is selected as a memory
-the malleability of memory
-collective memory and the concurrences and contradictions within
-narrative and memory; how the two work with and against each other
-micro-reflexive form: small familiar shapes appearing within similar larger ones



• Featuring Eli Rarey and James Harold White III (7, 14, 20, 29, 36, 43, 49); Joseph Tepperman (17, 42); Barry Markowitz (27); Lisa Tremain and Nik Orlando (47); and participants of the Learning Music Workshop. Recorded at the Learning Music Workshop at Machine Project, Los Angeles, March 1, 2009; and at home, in the car, at Ernest E. Debs Park, and the local mall, February 2011.

• Cover photo by William Hundley
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.11.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.10

LMM 3.10 - Base and the Superstructure presents: The $pectacle

February 2011

“...our (not so) humble effort to re-imagine Guy Debord’s cultural-critique-masterpiece Society of the Spectacle”- Base Ten
lmm 3.10


LMM 3.10 - Base and the Superstructure presents: The $pectacle


Helmet yourself in pith and hire a reliable guide, lest you find yourself lost in the rhythmic jungle that is the latest installment of LMM.

John Wood graciously stepped aside and handed over the controls to Base and The Superstructure for our (not so) humble effort to re-imagine Guy Debord’s cultural-critique-masterpiece Society of the Spectacle. Guest appearances by Los Angeles based pop diva, Lisa Tee, make this a Learning Music Monthly for which to shake those asses and other assets. So step up, install your head screws, and prepare to have a “Spectacular Time!”

-Base Ten


• All music written and recorded by Base and the Superstructure
• with special appearances and vocal support by Lisa Tee (courtesy of Bo-down Records, The Cisco Institute for Creative Living, and AbbyGirl Management Ltd.)
• Cover photo by Leon Alesi
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.10.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.9

LMM 3.9 - Congratulations

January 2011

"Birthday songs for LMM subscribers" - jw
lmm 3.9


LMM 3.9 - Congratulations


This is a collection of songs written and recorded for the birthdays of LMM subscribers. (this is a feature we included with subscriptions during season 2).

The first and last tracks are the exception. They were commissioned earlier this year as intro and outro music for a podcast, but seem appropriate attachments to this family of weird, silly, celebratory vignettes.

I hope you find some joy here. Happy birthday!

-JW


• All music written and recorded by John Wood in honor of the birthdays of LMM subscribers. close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.9.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.8

LMM 3.8 - LARGER

December 2010

"It's LARGER!!!!!" - jw
lmm 3.8


LMM 3.8 - LARGER


This album is being released on cassette. What? You don't want to listen to a cassette? You don't even have a cassette player? Well YOUR LOSS!

You're missing out on this one. LARGER sounds awesome on 1/8" tape! I mean it! I listened to it!-- on cassette!!!

Not only does it sound rad, but it looks kick-ass! It's all clear red plastic- red like the blood we let in making it- red like the burn I just got off of listening to it on my '96 Honda civic stereo- red like the hunger you never knew you had for the sounds on this tape!

Who's on it? Who ISN'T on it! Gabe Noel PRODUCED that thing! There's Nowcloud, Julia Holter, Douggpound, NGHTPRWL, and others that'll turn you red when you hear! You'll be red all over your face!

Don't even bother with those digital download bulls! Get the tape! It's LARGER!!!!!

-JW


• Recorded and produced by Gabe Noel and John Wood
• Featuring Douggpound on track 6, NGHTPRWL on track 7, Nowcloud on track 8, and Julia Holter on track 11. close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.8.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.7

LMM 3.7 - Untitled

November 2010

"instrumental urban field recordings" - jw
lmm 3.7


LMM 3.7 - Untitled


Recommended instructions for listening to LMM 3.7:

Find a quiet place where the full spectrum of sounds on this album can be heard unhindered. Noisy places such as a moving vehicle are not ideal. However, some mild extraneous, atmospheric noise is acceptable; if you are indoors, you may choose to open windows to allow some local sounds from outside to blend with those on the record.

Take this opportunity to cease other activities. Intense active analysis is not required, but listening should not be distracted. Prepare for casual engagement.

It is important to make sure that your hi-fi stereo speakers and your ears are relatively situated so that you may accurately observe the stereo image. For this purpose, you may also choose to listen through high-quality head phones.

Comfortably sit or lie down. Some of the pieces included on this album are long and potentially (even hopefully) boring, and thus require your participatory patience. If time is limited, you may choose to experience only one track in a sitting.

These instructions are intended only as loose guidelines. Exploration of other settings for listening is encouraged, and a task I plan to undertake. Also, the last three tracks on this album are meant to be enjoyed separately from the rest, under whatever conditions the listener prefers.

-JW


• Recorded and produced by John Wood. Tracks 1-9 written and performed by Wood (vibraphone, piano, vocals on 9), Oscar Schedin (guitar), Sam Robles (alto & baritone saxaphones), Max Markowitz (cornet), and the cities of Los Angeles, New York, London, and Glendale, CA.
• Tracks 10-12 vocals performed by Jason Golday; taken from the songs Hands (10) by Max Markowitz, and White Out (11) by Jason Golday.


• artwork by Alyson Fox
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.7.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.6

LMM 3.6 - Face Fingers

October 2010

"Nowcloud meets Learning Music" - jw
lmm 3.6


LMM 3.6 - Face Fingers


I feel like i have always heard sounds in color. big bright beautiful color. when I'm writing i try to find those colors and materialize them into sound. john has a specific voice and gift for color.

"Face Fingers" is an album about scary, weird, funny, sweaty, smelling, angry, loud sounds that are traveling from outer space and are trying to break through our atmosphere and take over the earth. "Face Fingers" is also about dancing and love.

John is a magnificent, organic, force of beautiful energy and i am proud to have known and made music with him for the past 10 years. i love him.

- Nowcloud


• All lyrics and music written and produced by Nowcloud.
• Performed by John Wood (vocals, synthesizers, drums on 9), Alex Noice (guitars), Joe Tepperman (bass), Alice Linn (drums on 3, 4, 5, 6, 8), and Damon Zick (saxophones and clarinet)
• Electronic drum programming by Nowcloud and John Wood.

• artwork by Sara Sifuentes and Nowcloud
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.6.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.5

LMM 3.5 - In The Lights

September 2010

"post-apocalyptic folk thesis" - jw
lmm 3.5


LMM 3.5 - In The Lights


This album began as a desire to address several questions pertaining to the functions and definitions of American folk musics. (By "folk," I mean specifically: the genres we now commonly refer to as "folk, country, blues;" generally: traditional musical styles of the United States from the early half of the 20th century.)

These questions included:
• What is the definition of American "folk" music? What are it's origins?
• What is the value of this music?
• Who is the intended audience?
• What are the effects of genre on American folk music?
• What are it's social and political values?
• Who is the beneficiary of this music?
• How have the answers to these questions potentially changed over time?

Obviously, that's a lot to think about. Having my own presuppositions and suspicions about the answers to these questions, I didn't want to try and answer them out right. I did, however, conduct a small amount of recreationally meandering research over several months, which led me to several interesting hypotheses.

Scholars have debated for decades that "country" (or "hillbilly") music is rooted in the commercialism of early radio and audio recordings. They suggest that the notion of a rural countryside origin is more romanticism than truth. Historians conversely argue that country music existed in a pre-commercialized form, though they more-often refer to this traditional music as pure "folk." In the 60s, "folk" itself came to define not the traditional music of pre-industrialized country people, but specifically the nostalgic recycled stylings of young northern city-dwellers, with all sorts of new political and social connotations. For me, two major ideas now stand out:

1.) The genrefication of American traditional music serves as a commercial form of segregation. Historians who define these genres admit that, though their origins are roughly the same and inherently linked to cross-pollination, country music is that of White people and blues is that of Black. As American music was commercialized through radio and recordings, this split became essential to its marketing. This fracturing of styles continues to this day (with at least hundreds of sub-genres), and has functioned as a partner in various political, social, as well as racial differentiations of the American people. Ironically, though early American folk music may have been a result of the melting pot, later forms seem to have developed uniquely within their own genre-defined isolation.

2.) American Folk music as it exists today, and perhaps as it has always been, is essentially nostalgic. By its own naming and definition, it suggests a separation. It's value lies in this separation, in the modern longing to return to a now-mythological, pre-industrial lifestyle. This was the true stepping off point for this album.

I like to think of "In The Lights" as a soundtrack to a yet unmade movie about the post-apocalypse. It is folk music made by people nostalgic for a modern past. Some time in the distant future, the network has fallen, flying cars are immobilized, sky-scrapers crumbled, the bio-photon brain-connected internet is down, and nearly all modern technology ceases to function. When forcibly returned to a pre-industrialized, rural lifestyle, what will modern society be nostalgic for?

For the modernism that now causes our own nostalgia? I tried to imagine these songs sung by a post-apocalyptic troubadour, with only the technology of an electric guitar and tape machine. The album was recorded to two-track cassette.

Hope you enjoy.

Thanks,
jw

• all songs written, performed, and recorded by John Wood, July/August 2010

• artwork by Autumn Beck
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.5.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.4

LMM 3.4 - Little Spookie

August 2010

"layered funky groove loop ponderings" - jw
lmm 3.4


LMM 3.4 - Little Spookie


We recently got an interesting letter from one of our subscribers. I thought we might publish it as liner notes for the new record:

A Letter To the Editors of Learning Music Monthly from a Paperweight

Dear editors,

Let me begin by saying that I have been a subscriber to your series since early last year, but have only recently been compelled to write this letter (though parts of it, I admit, were composed in my head much earlier). Though I can't say I've genuinely enjoyed every track I've heard (and honestly I haven't actively listened to all of every CD you've sent me), the majority of your efforts are relatively intriguing. (My own tastes prefer your slower, instrumental pieces.)

I can appreciate anyone's attempt to do something creative with their time. But I have on multiple occasions questioned the value of your making a new album every month. Until recent revelations (which I will get to in a minute), I in fact considered LMM to be rather self-indulgent on your part. Does the world really need another thirty to forty minutes of music, let alone every month? Isn't the market saturated enough? Do you actually expect everyone to dedicate that much time to regularly listen to whatever you whimsically choose to put on disc? In asking these questions, I assumed, perhaps accurately, that this project is for your own benefit more than anyone else's.

Being a paperweight, I have a lot of time for thinking about such things. I've only been a paperweight for sixty-four years, but before that I was a rock in the ground for several millennia. Although erosion and polishing have slightly altered my appearance in that time, my life, relative to yours or any other human's, is practically permanent. I've always been very attached to the routine nature of my days. I am very proud of my success as a rock and more recently as a paperweight; so proud, in fact, that I have dedicated little of my time to thinking about the passions or personal concerns of others. It would seem, however, that these sixty-four years of human contact have perhaps gradually ingrained in me some now-considerable though still small amount of empathy. This is my excuse for the following forgiving of your self-indulgence.

The other day, as I was weighing on some papers, I tried to imagine why someone would want to express themselves through your chosen method. I thought: Don't you care about the songs you're making? You produce and cast them off like casual belches. When I'm given a paper to weigh, I weigh on it as long as I can, forever if possible, with all my force upon it, each paper an extension of my being, a tribute to the solidity of my existence. But it was this other day that I realized how absurd that all really sounds. I can't possibly sit on a paper forever; eventually it and I too will turn to dust.

I think now that, although it may be selfish, your little music project is more than anything a tribute to impermanence, a celebration of the sudden, the transitory, the subconscious flow, and in turn, I suspect, an exercise in the purging of your own ego, which must to some extent disconnect itself from every creation you cast off.

I thought of this idyllic impermanence as I listened to your latest record [this issue, LMM 3.4], and heard things I before had not. Within each song there exists a sturdy, repetitive cycle; a cyclical routine that could continue for eternity if not for other elements that give it a seemingly stream-of-consciousness form. I see in these pieces a melding of the undisturbed cycle and the unpredictable impermanence of life. Forgive me if I infer too much from it. Of course I prefer the four instrumental pieces, which are rather other-worldly in a familiar sort of way. But I must admit, had I limbs enough, some of the more-upbeat numbers might cause me to dance a bit.

Please keep up the good work.

Sincerely,
Paperweight
[via e-mail]


Dear Paperweight,

Thanks for your insightful feedback. I'm glad you're able to find some value in the project. I know there's a lot of music out there already; and I don't really expect everyone to enjoy or even listen to every single track in our catalog.

It certainly is an exercise to detach from a creation and just let it exist on its own. Much of the personal value for me as a creator is what I learn from the creative experience. So yeah, it is pretty selfish.

I'm very glad you like the new record. The credit for its existence goes to a handful of people, but especially to Oscar Schedin, who co-wrote and played on most of the songs (and played my favorite LMM guitar solo to date!).

Thanks for listening,

John Wood
editor in chief



• written and performed by John Wood (vocals on 1, 2, 6, 7, 9; keys on 2, 7, 9; percussion on 6, 7, 9; claps and bass guitar on 7; guitars and beatbox on 9), Oscar Schedin (vocals on 4; guitars on 1, 2, 4, 6, 7; bass guitar on 1, 2, 4, 6; percussion on 1, 6; claps on 7; keys on 4; moog lead on 9), Mike G (drum set on 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 9), Lewis Keller (percussion on 2, 7; claps on 7), Jake Blanton (guitar on 3, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10), Larry Goldings (keys on 3, 5, 6, 8, 9, 10), Alex Heitlinger (trombones on 6, 9), and Max Markowitz (cornet on 1). Tracks 1, 2, 4, 6, 7, 9 produced by Schedin and Wood; 3, 5, 8, 10 produced by Wood.

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.4.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.3

LMM 3.3 - Learning Music with the Students at KIPP LA College Prep

July 2010

"these kids are geniuses!" - jw
lmm 3.3


LMM 3.3 - Learning Music with the Students at KIPP LA College Prep


This edition of LMM is a collaboration between myself and a group of middle school music students, many of whom started playing music only recently, under the direction of their instructor Jason Golday (author of LMM 1.8 - Burning Music). The process was a fairly simple one: Over the last academic year, the students have been writing pieces of music together, using what pitches they know (between five and seven different ones) on the available instruments (drums, glockenspiels, and recorders). Jason recorded these pieces and sent them to me. I manipulated them in various ways, adding voice and a few other sounds, paying close attention to the environmental elements of the recordings I had been given. In some cases, the sound of the space in which these pieces were initially performed is almost as important as the actual musical notes.

It was Jason's idea to attempt this. I have to give him a big thanks for suggesting it. He heard early on the mesmerizing compositions his students were writing, and knew they were worth doing something more with. Once I started working on it, I too realized how strong and unique their musical concepts were. Really, the album was done before I ever got to it. I'm really happy with how it all turned out.

-jw



• Manipulated, mixed, arranged, re-composed, etc by John Wood, May/June 2010, featuring the following classes with their instructor Jason Golday:

1 - 6th Grade
2 - CalArts; J. Golday (guitar solo, vocal harmonies)
3 - CSULA
4 - USD
5 - CSUF
6 - Princeton
7 - Berkeley
8 - USC
9 - Berkeley; J. Golday (guitar, drums, percussion)
10 - CSULB
11 - USD

• artwork by Andy Hahn :: KIPP LA

close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.3.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.2

LMM 3.2 - Neapolitan Shake

June 2010

"3 Learning Music EPs!" - jw
lmm 3.2

• The Big Sell EP
•• The Way of A.O.K.
••• Ghost Transference

:: watch "A Brief Aside" ::


LMM 3.2 - Neapolitan Shake


Here are three EP-length suites. The Big Sell EP is music written to accompany imaginary television commercials. The lyrical themes are derived from the three song topics supposedly most requested by advertisers looking for songs to place in commercials: "Thinking Ahead," "Brand New Day," and "Things Are Getting Better." These are happy songs, optimisticly celebrating the great corporate takeover of American hearts and minds. Like the mythical corporations they accompany, these pieces avoid risky innovation, rather glorifying popularly (a.k.a. commercially) successful ideas of the past.

The three pieces that make up The Way of A. O. K. each conceptually combine a sound found in modern life (an ATM, a turn signal, a baseball stadium) with a short quote from Lao Tzu's Toa Te Ching. The keyboard sounds are meditations recorded at half speed, giving upon (faster) playback a broader perspective of their combined revelations. This music is unashamedly inspired by the sounds of Terry Riley's Rainbow in Curved Air. Though I'm not sure of the technique he employed to make that piece, it must have been similar to this. When Rainbow was made, it may have been theoretically impossible to recreate in a live-music setting, as the performances were (I believe) temporally altered. Modern music technology, however, may now be able to alter such instrumental performances as they are happening. Such an approach to music performance could be the next step in the blurring of conceptual lines between "live" and recorded musics.

The Ghost Transferences are stream of consciousness pop rants sung in part by channelled spirits, addressing topics of identity crisis and the random hauntings of modern memory.

Thanks for listening.
Love,
jw



• all songs written and recorded by John Wood, April 2010

• artwork by Sharon Gong :: flickr
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.2.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 3.1

LMM 3.1 - Left Right

May 2010

"a deconstructionist frolic with the Learning Music quartet" - jw
lmm 3.1

:: watch "Chord" ::
:: watch "Melody" ::
:: watch "Local Projectal" ::


LMM 3.1 - Left Right


This album is centered around the "live" band. All the songs were written over the last year to be played by this band at small concerts in Los Angeles. For a while now, I've been very interested in the difference between recorded and live musics, seeking to realize their separate potentials. Learning Music began as an exercise in recording music in a studio setting, with little concern for how the sounds might be translated into a live performance. Likewise, when we formed the first Learning Music band, I wanted it to play music that was practically unrecordable, utilizing mostly large-group improvisation. This album appears to be somewhat of a compromise between those two approaches.

In writing these songs, I wanted to in some way align the band -- the closest the LM lineup has come to resembling a traditional rock band -- with socially/politically radical punk music of the late 1970s. Lyrically, this album is most concerned with deconstructing the assumed roles of music in society, addressing the stereotypes it promotes and lives within, and questioning whether music can even address its social simulacra without reinforcing them.



• featuring Corey Fogel (drums), Davin Givhan (guitar; bass on 2), Lewis Keller (bass on 1, 4, 9, 10), and Lisa Tremain (backing vox on 1).
• all songs written and recorded by John Wood except track 2, written by John Wood and Davin Givhan.

• artwork by Leon Alesi :: 500poundleon.com
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 3.1.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.12

LMM 2.12 - The Biologic Imperative

February 2010

"This album is about sex." - jw
lmm 2.12

:: watch "Wolf Smell" by Jean Robison ::


LMM 2.12 - The Biologic Imperative


LMM 2.12 is an album about sex. As a musical subject, the topic is not uncommon. But it's one that I've for the most part neglected until now. This work attempts to take the common pop-music perspective on sex and expand it to include (and in fact tell a story of) the entire reproductive process. If you want, you might think of it as a tribute to humanity's oldest and perhaps greatest creative (artistic) act.

An extra huge thanks to Jean Robison. Jean not only made this month's cover artwork, but also made a fantastc film to accompany it, AND last week gave birth to a baby! WOW!

Thanks to Mike and Gabe for playing!

This is the last issue of Season 2. Thanks for your support. We're going to take a couple months off and hit the ground running for Season 3. See you then!

Sincerely,
jw



• all songs written and recorded by John Wood, Jan 2010; except track 5, written by John Wood and Gabe Noel
• featuring Gabe Noel (bass on 4, 5; guitar on 5; modular synth on 9) and Mike G (drums on 4, 5, 6, 7, 9)
• track 2 and track 8 produced by TendaLoin

• artwork by Jean Robison :: jeanrobison.com
close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.12.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.11

LMM 2.11 - Fifteen Two Part Inventions for 2010

January 2010

"A merging of artistic techniques dating from several relatively distinct eras of human history– as old as the 17th century B.C. and as recent as 1982." - jw
lmm 2.11



LMM 2.11 - Fifteen Two Part Inventions for 2010


LMM 2.11 is a merging of artistic techniques dating from several relatively distinct eras of human history– as old as the 17th century B.C. (and even earlier) and as recent as 1982.

Mostly, this is a tribute to J. S. Bach’s fifteen two-part inventions. Written between 1717 and 1723, these thematic, contrapuntal pieces, following a simplified fugal form, were intended as etudes for keyboard and composition students. Likewise, writing fifteen brand new inventions was for me an intense study of Bach’s technique. Even with just two voices, this album is vertically dense and very German (in the sense that it is harmonically complex, even though #14 is intended as a melodious shout out to Rossini [Italian, 1792 -1868]).

Though these Learning Music inventions are written in the same keys as Bach’s, they follow a different order. Bach’s inventions are numbered by harmonic ascension (C, D, Eb, E, etc.). I chose to arrange mine following the order chosen by Glenn Gould for his recordings of the Bach inventions and sinfonias in the 1960s, moving through keys as they relate harmonically, much as the theme in each piece itself is modulated from key to key. Another unifying technique borrowed from Gould is the mathematical modulation of tempos from track to track.

Also concerned with math, Bach is known for building symmetrical shapes within his music, including the inventions. Symmetry is found in countless examples of art through the ages. It appears in Chinese bronze castings from as early as the 17th century B.C. It is aslo a recurring theme in religious and philosophical concepts from all over the world. This album as a whole uses a symmetrical structure. The inventions at the beginning and end are very traditional, following most closely the style of Bach. Moving toward the middle of the album, each piece becomes more abstract harmonically, moving more freely between keys, and stepping away from the rules of traditional counterpoint. Similarly, the first and last composition are both in a duple meter; the ones next to those are in triple; and as we progress toward the middle piece, which is in no set meter at all, we use meters of increasing odd numbers (5, 7, 9, 11). Time signatures of 5, 7, and higher prime numbers were uncommon in written music until the late 19th century (and are non-existent in Bach’s works), even though they were employed even before Bach’s time in pieces by Giovanni Valentini (1582-1649).

The recording of this album employed (obviously) much younger techniques than those studied to write it. Each invention was performed on a digital keyboard with rudimentary MIDI (Musical Instrument Digital Interface) capabilities, from which both the audio and MIDI information were recorded. The original MIDI protocol was developed in 1982 as a way for different digital instruments to work together. I used this technology to play back each performance through different keyboards (also dating from the early 80s) plugged into guitar amplifiers, using my now-free hands to twist the keyboard control knobs, and re-recording their sounds in sync with the original audio signal. I also used this MIDI information to trigger two samples of my voice in unison with the keyboards. All these sounds were combined together to create these odd resultant tones. The electronicization of contrapuntal baroque music began (famously) in 1968 with Walter Carlos’ (now Wendy Carlos) Switched-On Bach, which featured a handful of Bach compositions (including three inventions) performed on an early Moog modular synthesizer.

This month’s artwork is by “graphic artist, daydreamer, pseudo-scientist, wanna-be astronaut and untrained intellectual” Christopher David Ryan. Many thanks to Christopher, and to Autumn for getting him on board! To me, this image successfully represents all the things I find important about the album.

I hope you also find something in this collection. Please consider it as a candidate for semi-official theme music of 2010.

Thanks.

Sincerely,
John



• all music written, recorded, and performed by John Wood, Dec 2009

• artwork by Christopher David Ryan :: cdryan.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.11.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.10

LMM 2.10 - The Greatest Event In Sports History

December 2009

"The story of the Jeopardy three-way tie, set in ancient Greece, with an all-star cast." - jw
lmm 2.10



LMM 2.10 - The Greatest Event In Sports History


On March 16, 2007, a great thing happened in Culver City, California. For the first time ever, all three contestants of the game show Jeopardy, without ending in a score of zero, tied. At the time, at least two incorrect interpretations of this event were made; one being that it was a chance occurrence, the other that it was caused by mistake.

In fact, this tie was purposefully created by the episode’s returning champion Scott Weiss, a puzzle-lover who must have been thrilled when he saw the opportunity arise (in the form of his tailing opponents being tied) in the Final Jeopardy round. Instead of wagering the customary one dollar extra needed to win, Weiss bet the exact amount required to tie, should all three contestants question the answer correctly, which they did.

When I saw this happen– coincidentally I was watching the show that evening, something I did rarely before and have barely since– it struck me as a profound gesture of good sportsmanship. All three got to keep their winnings and play again on the next episode.

Drawing on an amount of gathered research as well as formulated opinion on the event, we organized this twelve-song interpretation of the story, which takes place in ancient Greece. The album is entitled (a telling of) The Greatest Event in Sports History. As you might be able to guess by now, there is a fair amount of humor in this album. But also, I hope, a good and resounding lesson to be learned.

The Cast:
John Wood as Alex Trebek
Lisa Tremain as the goddess Athena
Jeff Eliassen as Anders Martinson
Gabe Noel as Jamey Kirby
Douglas Pipes as the hero Scott Weiss

Thanks so much to these guys for helping create the songs to tell this story. Also thanks to Jason Golday, who plays guitar on this month’s single, The Ancients (this was the title of a category about ancient Greece in the Double Jeopardy round of this episode).

This album is the result of a lot of collaboration, which makes this month’s artwork very appropriate. It was made at the Learning Music workshop we held back in March of this year, as an exercise in communal creation. Thanks to all the participants who added a little piece to this work.

I hope you enjoy this album as much as I enjoyed making it.

Efharistó!



• tracks 1, 2, 4, 8, and 12 written and recorded by John Wood in November 09
• track 3 by John Wood and Lisa Tremain
• 5 written by John Wood and Jeff Eliassen, performed and recorded by Jeff Eliassen
• 6 by John Wood and Jason Golday
• 7 by John Wood and Gabe Noel
• 9 by John Wood and Douglas Pipes
• 10 by John Wood and Gabe Noel
• 11 by John Wood, Lisa Tremain, Jeff Eliassen, Gabe Noel, and Douglas Pipes

• artwork by participants of the Learning Music Workshop at Machine Project, Los Angeles, March 2009 close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.10.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.9

LMM 2.9 - Horizontal Household Ballads

November 2009

"Stories from various homes in the form of keyboard-laden, minimalist, hypnotic pieces that change slowly over time (horizontally, without the common verse/chorus, male/female dramatic structure)." - jw
lmm 2.9





LMM 2.9 - Horizontal Household Ballads


What is a horizontal household ballad?

Horizontal – As opposed to the linearly immediate and obvious vertical, these pieces are long, stretched out, changing gradually over time. (this is the longest LM album yet, seventy-some minutes). They took a lot of commitment and patience to make, employing great efforts to avoid dualistic (masculine-feminine/verse-chorus/loud-soft) dramatic techniques. They may also take some patience to listen to, (though perhaps they are better NOT listened to, but rather absorbed subconsciously).

Household – Subjects tackled in these songs include mostly elements of various modern families; stories of relationships that are ingrained over long periods of time.

Ballads – This is a very old term, at one time describing a form of epic storytelling, later referring to folk songs that traveled around europe (with wandering minstrels) and eventually to the Americas. It is a word also associated with modern love songs. Many of the electronic keyboard tones on this album sound like they could have come from a pop ballad of maybe fifteen to twenty-five years ago; sounds that could be considered dated and even cheesy (correct me if you don’t think so). However, I have, to some degree, here attempted to rescue these sounds from obsolescence, with hope that the cultural associations of sounds are but transient, that all instruments may someday be accepted into the melting pot, and judged not by their geographical or historical or social heritage, but by the pure tones which they produce.

In this sense, I believe there is a bit of time-travel genre-bending in some of these songs, which is why Malisa Humphrey’s cover art seems appropriate. Thanks to Malisa for the art, and also to Max Markowitz, who helped create several of the songs on this album.



• all songs written and recorded by John Wood, Oct 09, except 1, 4, 6, & 9 by John Wood and Max Markowitz (a.k.a. ing)

• artwork by Malisa Humphrey :: artslant.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.9.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.8

LMM 2.8 - Famous: the Jonny Pride Story

October 2009

"Songs by and about one of the 60's greatest forgotten rockers." - jw
lmm 2.8



LMM 2.8 - Famous: the Jonny Pride Story


Jonny Pride (born James Albert Purdue on June 14, 1949 in San Pedro, CA) was a singer/songwriter who gained relative fame in the 1960s for his pop and psychedelic rock recordings. Signed to a major record deal while still a teenager, he was considered by many a promising rock prodigy. Despite the critical success of his few albums, and significant local popularity in Southern California, his songs failed to break the national top 50. This ultimately led to the termination of his recording contract, which, by several accounts, left Pride (who had become accustomed to heavy drug use and extravagant rock lifestyle) and his by-now bloated ego in a downward spiral. Assumed dead by many, his whereabouts have been unknown since the early 1970s.

LMM 2.8 attempts to tell his story, using some of his original songs (rerecorded) along with several new narrative pieces. This album was envisioned, co-written/performed, and produced by Alex Silverman. Also heard are Keith Karman, Brian McLaughlin, Barbara Gruska, Samantha Sidley, Charles DeCastro, and Emily Howell. Thanks to all of you.

This month’s artwork is a collaboration between French artist Suisse Marocain and Brooklyn artist Kit Brown, who work together in Paris. They are part of a group of artists who started squatting in a long-abandoned building in Paris (59 Rivoli) in 1999. Six years later, the government bought and refurbished the building, which is now officially dedicated to housing artists and showing their work. Big thanks to Chloë Flores (our visual artist curator) for getting these two onboard for LMM.



• written and recorded by Alex Silverman and John Wood
• produced by Alex Silverman
• featuring Keith Karman (bass & drums: 1, 3, 6), Brian McLaughlin (drums, 2), Barbara Gruska (drums 4, 10; background vocals 9, 10), Samantha Sidley (background vocals 9, 10), Charles DeCastro (trumpet 1, 3, 9), Emily Howell (vocals: 7)

• artwork by Suisse Marocain and Kit Brown close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.8.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.7

LMM 2.7 - Friends Who Are

September 2009

"Rethinkings of winkings that were already really good." - jw
lmm 2.07

[song :: original artist]


LMM 2.7 - Friends Who Are


For this issue, Lisa Tremain and I remixed eleven songs originally written and recorded by friends of ours. We tried to re-imagine each song in a new physical space, which in most cases led us stripping down to only the original vocal track, and building a new song around that.

The perfectly appropriate cover art for Friends Who Are is by Jeffrey James Mohr, another great “friend who is”.

The other artists whose songs we remixed are: Charlie Wadhams, The Sweet Hurt, Video, ForgetMeNauts, The Years, Willoughby, Electrocute, The Hair PUddle, The Peter Pinguid Society, and Joseph Davancens. All of these tracks were really good before we got our hands on them. (Thanks so much to you guys for letting us play with them.) If you haven’t heard the originals, you should do that now.

Thanks for listening. See you next month.

Sincerely,

jw



• all songs remixed by John Wood and Lisa Tremain
• written and origianlly recorded by the artists listed

• artwork by Jeffrey James Mohr :: jeffreyjamesmohr.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.7.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.6

LMM 2.6 - Frequency Histograms For Predictor Variables
Ninety Nine 20-Second Songs for Human Body & Sampled Kitchen Items

August 2009

"Ninety nine 20-second tracks, meant to be played in random order, composed only of sounds made by the human body and manipulated samples of objects I found in the kitchen." - jw
lmm 2.6



LMM 2.6 - Frequency Histograms For Predictor Variables


LMM issue 2.6 is a collection of 99 audio tracks, each twenty seconds long, made of only sounds from my body (singing, clapping, etc.) and manipulated samples of objects I found in our kitchen (metal pots, knifes, cups, spray bottles, cumin seed, a small plastic cooler, tupperware, crystal wine glass, etc). These tracks are meant to be played together in random order (on shuffle). Many thanks to Matt Lipps for the fabulous cover art!

When I started thinking about this project, I was trying to consider what untapped benefits may be available from presenting songs in a digital format (and more specifically on a computer). I hear and read a lot of people talking about the degradation of sound quality caused by mp3 compression. I myself would much rather hear something on vinyl than from a computer. But surely, there are formatting possibilities offered by the computer– just like vinyl provided two separate yet conjoined canvases (an obvious example is Joe Jackson’s Night and Day)– that are only starting to be tapped. Many artists (like Brian Eno, 77 Million Paintings) are utilizing computerized randomness to create pieces that will sound different nearly every time they are played. Most of us already have the tools to do this with our own music library (using the iTunes “shuffle” function). To play songs from a single album in random order used to be relatively difficult, having to move the arm of the record player or fast forward or rewind the tape to the right spot. Even the shuffle option offered on most CD players is less than ideal, as it takes at least a moment for the laser mechanism to adjust it’s position for the next track.

In making Frequency Histograms for Predictor Variables, I’ve learned that iTunes also puts a small moment of space in between shuffled tracks, a fault which hopefully will be remedied in future versions of the program. With the right technology, this album should be shuffled with NO gap between tracks.

Where is all this going? As more artists realize their freedom from the restraints of linearity and duration (thanks to new technology), I think there will be many albums or even single songs (broken into smaller parts) intended for shuffle playback or for user reordering. Frequency has 99 tracks simply because that’s how many we can fit on an audio CD (and I did pick a specific track order for the CD edition). There are more Learning Music “shuffle” albums in the planning stages, including one comprised of 5400 tracks, something which will probably (by necessity) be released in only mp3 format.


• all songs written and performed by John Wood

• artwork by Matt Lipps :: mattlipps.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.6.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.5

LMM 2.5 - You Can Take It In

July 2009

"A self-reflexive commentary on synth pop, gloriously orchestrated by Mike Richardson." - jw
lmm 2.5



LMM 2.5 - You Can Take It In


Produced by Mike Richardson, with artwork by Christine Finley, the newest issue of LMM is here for you.

Many many thanks to Mike, who has released a handful of his own stunning albums through myspace, for creating the majority of sounds on this record. It was all a lot of fun to make.

“You Can Take It In.” I hope you do.

Sincerely,
John


• all songs written and recorded by Mike Richardson & John Wood; except 1 & 10, written by Tremain/Richardson/Wood; and 6, written by Superhumanoids

• featuring Lisa Tremain (voice: 1, 10)

• artwork by Christine Finley :: cfinley.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.5.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.4

LMM 2.4 - Geochemistry

June 2009

"Ten of the best filmmakers I know made music videos without sound. I spent the month of May writing and recording these songs to fit them." - jw

LMMlogo_web
1. Hunt
(Rollin Hunt)
LMMlogo_web
2. Suite 303
(Eli Rarey)
LMMlogo_web
3. All In A Summer's Day
(Tony Moore)
LMMlogo_web
4. Jablonski
(Alex Jablonski)
LMMlogo_web
5. Navel to the Eternal
(David Fenster)
LMMlogo_web
6. Poppies and Horses
(Lee Anne Schmitt)
LMMlogo_web
7. Wyderka
(PJ Wyderka)
LMMlogo_web
8. Stuff Growing On Grandma's Lawn
(Kate Dollenmayer)
LMMlogo_web
9. Ice Cave Baby
(Emily Lacy)
LMMlogo_web
10. Remember the End
(Clay Dean and Tuni Chatterji)
lmm 2.4


LMM 2.4 - Geochemistry


LMM, The Movie

I am very proud to announce this month’s release, which is more than a music album. It’s a collection of ten music videos by some very talented film-makers. Unlike the process for most music videos, these songs were written after the films were completed, creating sounds to fit the images, rather than the other way around. Though all the films were made separately, without a unifying theme in mind, I think the title “Geochemistry” manages to encompass them all. The word also shows up in this month’s cover art, crafted by Scott Godfrey.

I can’t say THANK YOU enough to all the filmmakers who contributed pieces to this project. So I’ll do it again:

Rollin Hunt, THANK YOU!

Eli Rarey, THANK YOU!

Tony Moore, THANK YOU!

Alex Jablonski, THANK YOU!

David Fenster, THANK YOU!

Lee Anne Schmitt, THANK YOU!

PJ Wyderka, THANK YOU!

Kate Dollenmayer, THANK YOU!

Emily Lacy, THANK YOU!

Clay Dean and Tuni Chatterji, THANK YOU!

I couldn’t be happier with the results. Look out: I think there may be another LMM video collection in the near future. See you next month. Sincerely,

JW


• all songs written and recorded by John Wood. Silent videos by ( filmmakers ) as listed.

• featuring Lisa Tremain, vocals on 10; Mike Richardson, trombone on 3; Damon Zick, clarinets on 4; Sam Robles, saxaphone on 4; Max Markowitz, trumpet on 4

• artwork by Scott Godfrey :: The Hair PUddle close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.4.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.3

LMM 2.3 - An End Like This

May 2009

"Co-producers Jeff Eliassen and Dave Devine took Learning Music to Denver, CO. They artfully reworked these nine songs from the first season of LMM." - jw
lmm 2.3



LMM 2.3 - An End Like This


I am very proud to announce the release of LMM 2.3. This album is something Jeff Eliassen and I have talked about for a long time. A while back, Jeff told me he wanted to re-record a collection of songs from the first season of Learning Music albums. He picked nine tracks from the first twelve records. Beginning a couple months ago, Jeff and his band(Delby L)-mate Dave Devine produced all nine songs from their studio in Denver, with me, under direction from Jeff, recording vocals in Los Angeles. I couldn’t be happier with the results.

many thanks the Dave and Jeff! see you next month,
John



• all songs written by John Wood
• produced and recorded by Jeff Eliassen and Dave Devine
• vocals recorded in LA by John Wood

• featuring John Wood (vocals: 1-9 + acoustic guitar: 1), Jeff Eliassen (electric guitar: 2,4,5,6,8,9 + bass: 2,3,8 + drums: 1,9 + background vocals: 2,4,5,8), and Dave Devine (electric guitar: 2,3,4,5,6,7 + drums: 2,3,5,6 + keyboards: 5)

• artwork by Jeff Eliassen :: je-ff.net close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.3.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.2

LMM 2.2 - Matchstick Monument

April 2009

"A small, humble, yet potentially firey monument to my wife. A very personal favorite." - jw
lmm 2.10



LMM 2.2 - Matchstick Monument


Alright. Our April edition, titled Matchstick Monument, is here.

Here are some personal notes about Matchstick Monument (perhaps more than you wanted to know):

From the start of planning for this season of LMM, the first two albums (last month’s and this one) were intended to strongly contrast each other. Though I believe this goal has been well achieved, I think both albums sound far different from how I originally imagined them. The lesson: sometimes you have to take a step back and watch your creation become it’s own. I feel like once I loosened the reigns on my vision, this album became not only it’s own thing, which I could appreciate as an outside observer (not just it’s creator), but also turned out to be much more personal and probably sound a lot more like me.

Thanks to all the musicians who came over and tutored my trouble-making child of an album. They are, in order of sonic appearance: Lewis Keller, Charles DeCastro, Alex Harlan Silverman, Oscar Schedin, Mike Richardson, Drew Jorgensen, and Lisa Tremain.

I think it may be important to also mention the theme of transparency in this record. In writing the music I used very clear, simple chord changes. In recording I used almost only room mics, picking up all the sounds of my garage-studio (including the creaks and dog barks)–(I also tried to not use any digital reverb, just the sound of the room). In the lyrics there are numerous references to my on-going romance with my wife, including multiple unashamed usages of the word “love,” a lyrical cliche which I have attempted to avoid previously, but here I felt appropriate. It is all intentional. So in the spirit of this transparency, I would like to say that this album is for Lisa.


• all songs written and recorded by John Wood; except 2, written by Wood/Keller; 10, written by Wood/Jorgensen; 8, adopted by Wood from the public domain hymn; and 11, the melody of which mostly comes from Woody Guthrie's "New York Town" (Ludlow Music Inc.)

• featuring Lisa Tremain (vocals: 5,8), Lewis Keller (laptop [aka skronk]: 1,2,3,5,8,11), Charles DeCastro (trumpet, accordion: 1,5,7,8,11), Alex Harlan Silverman (slide guitars: 1,5,7,8,11), Oscar Schedin (electric guitar: 3), Mike Richardson (trombone: 3), Drew Jorgensen (vibraphone, percussion: 5,7,10,11)

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.2.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 2.1

LMM 2.1 - Allegro

March 2009

"This 'allegro' movement of season two includes lots of keyboards, drums, and electronic trickery." - jw
lmm 2.1



LMM 2.1 - Allegro


Well, it’s here. The first album of the new Learning Music Monthly series. I think Ben White’s cover art says it all.

Myths about LMM 2.1:

* The name of the album is Allegro, in reference to the common first movement of a sonata. Some of the songs attempt to follow a sonata-allegro form, especially track one.
* I wrote much of the material while sitting on the couch watching TV, yamaha pss 460 on my lap. The first lyric of “Short Tempered” came from a sitcom. (Also shout-out to Huell Howser)
* Track two borrows story and some lyrics from an old traditional folk song.
* Musical contributors are Oscar Schedin (guitar) Sam Robles (saxophones), Max Markowitz (trumpet), Damon Zick (woodwinds), Mike Richardson (trombone), Devin McNulty (co-writer), Lisa Tremain (co-writer), and the Notorious OCD (rhymes on track five).
* This is the first Learning Music album to feature trombone.
* if you play track eight backwards it says “change we can believe in”



• all songs written by John Wood; except 10, written by Wood/McNulty/Tremain; and 2, which borrows lyrics and story from the public domain traditional "Gypsy Davey"

• featuring Sam Robles (alto/bari sax: 2,4,7,9), Max Markowitz (trumpet: 2,4,9), Damon Zick (flute, clarinet, bass clarinet: 3,11), Oscar Schedin (guitar: 9), Mike Richardson (trombone: 2)

• artwork by Ben White :: hellobenwhite close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 2.1.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.12

LMM 1.12 - Contagious

October 2007

"A few covers and some new originals I'm still proud of. At least four songs written for girls. You can tell I had drums in the studio this month." - jw
lmm 2.10



LMM 1.12 - Contagious


• all songs written by John Wood; except 2 & 6, written by Bob Dylan (Rams Horn Music / SESAC); and 4, written by Woody Guthrie (Ludlow Music Inc / BMI)

• re-mastered by John Wood in March 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.12.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.11

LMM 1.11 - September Still

September 2007

"Most of this album was written while I was starting to imagine the Learning Music band that would form within the coming months. The songs are essentially the same as we play them live, but here performed entirely by myself. Twelve Tone, with its' tone row melody and chromatic chord changes, is a funny juxtaposition to the other minimalist jams." - jw
lmm 2.10



LMM 1.11 - September Still


• recorded in Sept 07.
• all songs written by Learning Music except track 8.

• re-mastered by John Wood in October 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.11.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.10

LMM 1.10 - Readers, I Like To Read:

August 2007

"This is our second album, a collection of things we like to read." - Readers
lmm 2.10



LMM 1.10 - Readers, I Like To Read:


• all music written, recorded, and performed by Readers

• re-mastered by John Wood in December 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.10.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.9

LMM 1.9 - Songs For Singing

July 2007

"Recorded directly to cassette through the built in microphone on the RadioShack 14-109 Desktop Cassette Recorder." - jw
lmm 1.9



LMM 1.9 - Songs For Singing


• all songs recorded by John Wood

• re-mastered by John Wood in August 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.9.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.8

LMM 1.8 - Jason Golday's Burning Music

June 2007

"Thanks, John and Lisa." - Jason Golday
lmm 2.10



LMM 1.8 - Jason Golday's Burning Music


• written and Recorded by Jason Golday, June, 2007

• re-mastered by John Wood in January 2010

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.8.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.7

LMM 1.7 - In My Living Room Thursday Night

May 2007

"We got together and recorded these songs one Thursday night. It's a great example of what wonderful things can be created between friends in just a little time. We recorded it live, straight to CD, with two microphones in the room." - jw
lmm 2.10



LMM 1.7 - In My Living Room Thursday Night


• written and performed by Max Markowitz, Lewis Keller, Jason Golday, Devin McNulty, Andrew Epstein, & John Wood on May 31, 2007

• re-mastered by John Wood in June 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.7.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.6

LMM 1.6 - Memorial

April 2007

"Six video picture songs. These are single shot videos I made with a small digital camera and then scored, two thirds of which address events surrounding the death of my great aunt Caroline Moyer, to whom the collection is dedicated." - jw
LMMlogo_web
1. Imagine
LMMlogo_web
2. Car Ride
LMMlogo_web
3. Last Leaf
LMMlogo_web
4. Glassel
LMMlogo_web
5. Memorial
LMMlogo_web
6. Night Light
lmm 1.6


LMM 1.6 - Memorial


• all songs written and recorded by John Wood in April 2007. featuring Max Markowitz on video 1

• re-mastered by John Wood in May 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.6.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.5

LMM 1.5 - No Fingers, Hands

March 2007

"Take four songs written by John, produced by Devin. Mix with three written by Devin, produced by John. Add in some extras, including the original version of Tim's Day. Shake. Bake. Serve with favorite side." - jw
lmm 1.5



LMM 1.5 - No Fingers, Hands


• sincerely, Devin McNulty & John Wood

• 2, 4, 7, & 10 written by JW, produced by DM
• 3, 5, & 8 written by DM, produced by JW
• 6 & 9 written/produced by JW
• Lewis Keller plays drums on 2, 4, 7, & 10
• track 1 by Austin Tremain

• re-mastered by John Wood in September 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.5.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.4

LMM 1.4 - The Songs of Clem Ten

February 2007

"Songs sounded here by Learning Music taken all are from the theater musical based on stories of e-life mine. Describe they do emotional struggle to dealing with robotism. It will stage in future." - Clem10, the songwriting robot
lmm 1.4



LMM 1.4 - The Songs of Clem Ten


• all songs written by Clem 10, the song-writing robot
• performed by Learning Music in February 2007
• featuring Oscar Schedin (guitar: 11,12)

• re-mastered by John Wood in May 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.4.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
103

LMM 1.3 - Readers, Travel

January 2007

"This was our first full-length album and is still very precious to us. It's made up of three suites of intertwining songs, composed in part while traveling along the west coast. Really the whole thing is a story. Lots of pinball and dump truck sounds were used to make the beats. raps on track five." - Readers
lmm 1.3



LMM 1.3 - Readers, Travel


• all songs written and recorded by Readers
• featuring Jason Golday (guitar: 6, 8) and
Devin McNulty (bass clarinet: 8)

• re-mastered by John Wood in July 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.3.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
102

LMM 1.2 - De-December

December 2006

"This is mostly collaborations with Jason Golday. We were roommates at the time. You can hear us drinking tea in the living room. Check out Shopping Music, a.k.a. cyber monday, for economic inspiration." - jw
lmm 1.2



LMM 1.2 - De-December


• all songs written, performed, and recorded by John Wood and Jason Golday

• featuring Lisa Tremain (vocals: 5)

• re-mastered by John Wood in November 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.2.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close
LMM 1.1

LMM 1.1 - Whales This November

November 2006

"This is the first Learning Music album. Includes tracks like Eighty Seven Year Old Brain, music written for a short film, and lots of samples from sixty year old dance records." - jw
lmm 1.1



LMM 1.1 - Whales This November


• all songs written and recorded by John Wood
• featuring Jason Golday (lead guitar: 3)

• re-mastered by John Wood in April 2009

• artwork by Max Markowitz :: watercloudmoon.com close


download

Enter your email address for a free download of LMM 1.1.
:: download

contribute

Please consider supporting Learning Music with a small contribution.
:: contribute

close

Learning Music Monthly was an album-a-month project. Each season of LMM lasted twelve months and included twelve issues. Every album features artwork by a different visual artist, and is released under a Creative Commons license.

Every album from the series is available on this website for free stream or download. If you like what you hear, you can help us continue improving the project by making a small donation.

.: a letter from the editor-in-chief :.

Dear friends,

It is with bittersweet reflection that I announce the conclusion of Learning Music Monthly. I am immensely grateful for these three years of music. Nonetheless, the time has come for a graduation on to other creative projects.

Learning Music Monthly began as a self-prescribed treatment for my inability to call any personal work "complete." Thirty-six albums later, I feel confident in the benefits of this treatment. LMM also functioned as an exercise. The technical progression of the series seems evident; and I'm happy to say that I was definitely learning up to the very end (and will continue learning). But I sincerely hope this value is minimal in comparison to the series' sublime achievements. I believe, despite technical differences, that the first albums are just as precious as the last, in part due to the thread of creativity-- a diverse and twisted thread, I admit-- throughout.

I have heard others make the careless assumption of questioning the validity of making an album in a month's time, as if such temporal restraints have an inherent effect on artistic value. Surely, far greater albums were made in less time! I hope that anyone who listens to one of these albums might do so without a foremost consideration of its trivial technical origins, but rather with a pure regard for the ideas and sounds of which it is made.

Thanks to everyone involved: all my musical collaborators, all the visual and video artists, Autumn Beck and Chloe Flores for curating artwork, Max Markowitz for providing art for the whole first season and general inspiration, to Meghan Pochebit, Gabe Noel, Jesse Von Doom and CASH Music, Cameron Parkins and Creative Commons, endless thanks to Lisa Tremain, and most especially to John Gillilan and Vosotros-- couldn't have done it without you! Also a big thanks to everyone who has taken the time to listen to the music here, and allowed me to so indulgently exercise in front of you.

Sincerely,
John Wood

:: contact + links + more ::

Editor in Chief : John Wood
john AT LearningMusicMusic DOT com
Archivist : John Gillilan
john AT vosotros DOT com
powered by :

CASH Music | Discogs | Facebook | Flickr | Free Music Archive | MySpace | MUZU.TV | Soundcloud | Sparrow Songs | Twitter | YouTube

visual artists curated by Chloë Flores and Autumn Beck
this website was built using open-source tools from CASH Music
all text licensed under a Creative Commons BY License

NOTE: New physical subscriptions are no longer available. A la carte CDs are mostly out of print.

Each issue comes to your door on CD in beautiful handmade packaging with cover art by a different artist each month.
Pay through paypal with your credit card or paypal account. Available in 6 and 12 month bundles. Free shipping in the USA.



Please consider making a donation:
:: contribute
CC BY-NC-SA
©2011 Learning Music. Some Rights Reserved.
All downloads are offered under a Creative Commons BY-NC-SA license.
You are encouraged to share and remix as long as you give credit.