Sunday, February 8, 2009

Preparing Pianos

I wandered across this great vid of David Greilsammer (1 2) preparing a tack piano. Screwing into a piano used to seem so savage to me, now its one of my favorite noises.

It defines the tinkering behind noise music. I started to think that the prepared piano was the first circuit board to look for noise. But, I suppose, no one ever did it better than Cage.

The Archive has a great stream of a 1973 KPFA interview with Charles Amirkhanian (1 2) explaining why / how you go about the prepared piano. He plays a few crazy tunes, too. You can check it out here.


  1. This is an interesting post. It does a good job explaining the prepared piano without being to wordy. My posts are wordy, but since this blog is about sounds, it makes sense that the posts would rely mostly on videos and the sounds. The first video is really interesting because it really shows that making these noises is an art, he is not just randomly putting screws in the piano, he seems to have a plan to make the sounds that he wants.

  2. I remember you talking about this in class, it is a fascinating video to watch and hear.