Barry L. Vercoe Interview no. 2, April 24, 2012
Oral history interview with Barry Vercoe, MIT Professor Emeritus of Media Arts and Sciences at MIT, founding member of the MIT Media Lab, and computer music pioneer and composer. Interviewed by Forrest Larson and Christopher Ariza, MIT Video Productions studio. Topics include: Early years of computer music; Pursuing control in electronic composition; Mario Davidovsky; Using of computers to mimic or accompany live performers; Computer-composed music; Real-time performance and real-time composition; New perspectives on sound offered by synthesis; Sound file manipulation in MUSIC 11, MUSIC 360, and Csound; First real-time Csound performance; Founding vision of the MIT Media Lab; Conflict between technology and art at the Media Lab; Music-engineering dichotomy at IRCAM; Computer music courses at MIT; Graduate degree in Media Arts and Sciences; Retirement of the summer composer workehops; Plans for a resident ensemble with the late Larry Beauregard; Performance of computer music that lacks visual elements; Compositions by Jim Dashow and Jean-Claude Risset; Development of Max/MSP; "Music minus one"; Evolution of research in the Experimental Music Studio; Bill Gardner's research on two speaker 3D sound; Joe Pompei's research on laser loudspeakers; Marvin Minsky's advice on effective graduate student advising; Collaborative selection in the Experimental Music Studio; Development of Csound; Early usage of UNIX at MIT; Technical details of MUSIC11 and Csound; Rejection of fancy software front ends; Public participation in Csound development from the LPGL; Retaining a private version of Csound; Csound on the One Laptop per Child computer; OLPC deployment in the Solomon Islands; Devotion to education for disadvantaged people in the South Pacific; Institutional support for the arts and music at MIT; Evolution from composition to engineering and software development; Interest in Renaissance choral music; Support of choral music in New Zealand.