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MP3 Music, 8 Songs, 2004 $7.99  
Audio CD, 1993 $15.59  

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Product Details

1. 1st Milarepa Gatha
2. Milarepa Quartet for Four Like Instruments
3. Thanks
4. Winds/Instruments
5. 38th and 39th Merzgedichte in Memoriam Kurt Schwitters
6. Phoneme Dance in Memoriam John Cage
7. Lucas 1 to 29 - For One or More
8. Free Gatha 1 and Free Gatha 2

Editorial Reviews

Jackson Mac Low, born in 1922, has been composing for music and poetry since he was 15. He resides in that world of American composers--alongside John Cage, Milton Babbitt, and Morton Feldman--who use intellectual constructs to guide performers through "realizations" of their musical puzzles. These constructs utilize indeterminate elements, allowing performers freedom in their musical choices, guaranteeing that each performance is different. Open Secrets contains lengthy liner notes explaining the methodology behind each piece and aids in providing context for these rigorous and somewhat austere sound excursions. On "Lucas 1-29: For One or More Instrumentalists," for instance, the performers choose tones based on the Lucas number sequence 1, 3, 4, 7, 11, 18, 29, and its retrograde, 29, 18, 11, 7, 4, 3, 1, and follow a score comprised of duration-segments measured in seconds. The 25-minute realization of this piece features extended periods of silence followed by short, atonal sound bursts. Other pieces, for layered voices, rather than musical instruments, require radically new approaches to listening, perhaps, in the long run, the ultimate value of this intellectual music. --Wally Shoup

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