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Richard Maxfield


Groundbreaking digital composer Richard Maxfield was created in Seattle in 1927. As a kid he researched piano and performed clarinet, even composing a symphony while still in senior high school. During the past due ’40s, he researched under composer Roger Periods and, after graduation, befriended famous brands Pierre Boulez and Karlheinz Stockhausen while exploring in European countries. After spending 1958 in NY learning under John Cage, he assumed Cage’s teaching responsibilities and tapped LaMonte Little as his helper; instructing his learners in the artwork of fabricating music from solely electronic sources, he’s widely thought to be the first accurate teacher of digital music in the us. Also in 1959, Maxfield finished his first main digital piece, “Sine Music (A Swarm of Butterflies Came across Over the Sea).” On the following five years he developed many new functions, primarily with a cut-and-paste technique put together from randomly-chosen bits of tape spliced as well as empty passages of assorted duration, frequently creating what he dubbed inter-masters — i.e., multiple tape reels performed simultaneously to create a new grasp saving. Maxfield was most likely the very first American to create electronic music through building his personal equipment, and could likewise have been the very first outside of Western circles to compose real electronic music taken off the concepts of musique concrète. Maxfield’s presence in the brand new York artwork underground grew up substantially by his standing up as an associate from the Fluxus motion, with performances in the popular concert series installed by LaMonte Small at Yoko Ono’s loft during 1960-61. Through the middle-’60s, Maxfield trained at SAN FRANCISCO BAY AREA State College for just two years. While there, he released his best-known function, a 1967 documenting titled simply Digital Music that presented both tape constructions and ensemble overall performance items. In 1968, Maxfield relocated to LA, though he tragically dedicated suicide the next year.

Quick Facts

Died June 27, 1969, Los Angeles, California, United States
Nationality American
Music Songs Night Music, Sine Music, Pastoral Symphony, Piano Concert for David Tudor, Bacchanale, Amazing Grace
Albums Electronic Music, The Oak of the Golden Dreams

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