13 Harmonies by John Cage-A Hard to Find Gem Good for The Road!

November 27, 2009 by  
Filed under Music

I just got out of The Road; goodness gravy, it was morose. When I got home I felt like hearing something experimental, so I pulled out Thirteen Harmonies by John Cage. This was part of a larger work, Apartment House 17. John Cage wrote this for the Bicentennial in 1976.john cage

Cage reworked compositions by artists who were at least 20 years old at the time of the American Revolution. The songs are barely recognizable anthems and congregational music from the Revolutionary period. Naturally, Cage has made chance arrangements, so you feel like you are at Fluxus performance where anything can happen and will happen. IE a HAPPENING!

These Apartment House 17 recordings are a little hard to get your hands on. The 13 Harmonies are even harder. I recorded *(not pirated matey, a number of years ago) a CD that I checked out from the UT Art Library. Piano and violin are the only instruments you can hear. I`m not even sure which recording this CD actually is? But there`s a dreariness, a bleakness to it that`s synching nicely with the somber motif of Cormac McCarthy`s The Road right now.