Jean Schwarz - Erda / Suite N LP 27123
[Recollections GRM]

Jean Schwarz - Erda / Suite N LP 27123
Erda (1972)
This piece illustrates my early research carried out in a professional composition studio. After studying every available tools and creating variably hybrid connections between them, I chose to compose several short sequences, each being the expression of a research based on a sonic manipulation and exploring a well defined sound hue. Besides, my background as a percussionist and a jazzman encouraged me to conduct a rhythmical study in each of these sequences.

Suite N (1982)
In a composition studio, musical research is never very far removed from madness. The first step is the initial work on the sound picked up by the microphone and the varieties of delirium that result from it : exaggerated amplification, inversion, transformation. Synthesizers and their crazy possibilities com next. The third step is the computer, one of the purest products of logic. All the same, the musician approaches the robot warily : he prefers his own models to formal and mathematical models, and he uses the computer like an instrument. Anyway that seems to be the choice of the computer group in charge of studio 123 at the G R M ; and we may congratulate ourselves that this is the case. Thanks to the MUSIC V program. GRM’s PDP 11 computer can synthesize sounds from any instrument. Mainly it can transform and treat absolutely any sound fed into its memory : sequence accumulation, contraction, drawing out of sequence, acceleration, slowing down, reversing, spatialization, filtering, speed variation, etc.… all this on a much broader scale than comparable traditional means. My intention in « SUITE N » was, on the one hand, to use solely sounds produced by the computer either by direct synthesis (MUSIC V) or by sound treatment, and, on the other hand, to work with a definite form. A, B and C correspond to the exposition of the themes. A’ B’ and C’, to their variations. Each of the nine families of sounds represents a different instrument. Once the musical lines are established, they are re-used, together with their variations, in the development of the piece.

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