Thanks to Alex for the spot – here’s a list of some of the birds that appear in Messiaen’s Réveil des oiseaux, with handy compare-and-contrast recordings of the composer’s transcriptions and the original birdsong.
Of Sound Mind linked to an interview with John Cage – youtube user casinodc00 has a few more clips like this, as well as some interesting Arvo Pärt footage. (He also pointed me towards Björk’s 1997 BBC documentary on modern minimalists, uploaded in two parts by k2head).
Phil Ford’s recent posts (here’s the most recent) on ‘radical parallelism’, especially as it applies to current modes of Cold War studies, makes provocative reading; I only wish I had more time today to think about them properly. A link and a bookmark will have to do for now. Be sure also to read Barnet Bound’s follow-up – I like to imagine that if I did have more time, I’d have come up with his succinct counter-argument for myself:
I don’t think there is something inherently wrong with a speculative approach to history, as sticking to just bare bones facts is exactly how certain historical narratives get reified. It’s that old archive/repertoire distinction in performance studies: if you just stick to the written record, you’re going to miss out on layer after layer of historical knowledge that is often dissenting from and resistant to normative historical narratives. Looking for connections between disparate events is one possible way to attack history from a different angle.
And finally – number 25 with a bullet!