June 9, 2009
Source: Piedmont 2008

Everett, Steve

Project Summary

As a composer, performer, and teacher of traditional and electro-acoustic music for over three decades, my life has been constantly filled with musical sound – humanly organized patterns of auditory stimulus in time. Attempting to identify the function, meaning, symbolism, and value of these sounds has been the focus of much of my research. What originally compelled me to participate in the Piedmont Project was the desire to examine how all of the sounds that surround us, not only those that we label as music, effect our cognition, health, social structures, and relationship to the environment. The workshop activities of the Piedmont Project were ideal for helping me expand my thinking about not only sound, but the broad ranging impact of all human activity. The workshop successfully illuminated the primary issues surrounding sustainability and environmental impact, thus providing a much-needed foundation of general principles and methodologies in which to approach my proposed study of acoustic ecology. The course that I will revise for this study is MUS 347 Electronic Music. One of the principal goals of this course has been for students to develop an increased sensitivity to listening and to develop an understanding of the cultural and cognitive processes involved in music creation and perception. In the revised course, students will collect field recordings of environmental sounds throughout the Emory community and will create “soundscape” compositions reflecting their own interpretation of these sonic spaces. The Piedmont Project experience made me realize that there could also be a proactive social dimension added in which students not only archive, analyze, and create sonic environments but attempt to effect actual changes and improvements to our local soundscape environment. By presenting the students’ work in site-specific locations around campus, there is an opportunity to educate university administrators, faculty, staff, and students of the benefits of a balanced acoustic ecology at Emory, an important byproduct of the Piedmont Project and Office of Sustainability Initiatives at Emory.

Download: Everett_Steve.pdf (97.1 KB)

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