What is a revolution? A revolving, a rebellion, a twisting-turning re-reassessment of everything that came before -- baby-bath water, out-old/in-new, everything earlier revisited and often much replaced by the first anarchistic notions of that which necessarily follows. Vive l'Empereur! Viva la revolución! until clearly something of what they have removed returns -- 'Meet the new boss...' Towed along, while freed momentarily, is the inevitable humanity, without whom the leaders' revolutions are meaningless, pointless but also essentially impossible.
Outside of very clear-cut, violent political revolutions - the American, the French, the Spanish, the Soviet - there are other and varied... the Renaissance, the Reformation, the Age of Enlightenment, the Industrial Revolution, the Atomic Age, the Velvet Revolution. Standing at the ascendance of the Digital Revolution it appears that we are again struggling towards a new significance of humanity, a new definition given the phenomenal and as yet unknown potentials that we have forced from the ether around us. These are the after-moments of our revolution: the steady hum of the endless streaming procession of .wav, AIFF, MIDI, MPEG-2 layer 3, 24/96, RealAudio, QuickTime, AE-3, DTS, DVD-Audio and on and on... the struggling for the human interface among the new concepts, the new nothingnesses, the new newnesses.
What have we made, with what potentials? In what direction does this revolution move? How has the Digital Age come to effect our lives by way of art... for surely the Digital and the Arts present the potential for a mighty confluence. To map that joining, we must explore emerging technologies, not merely because they are new, but because they have some bearing on a facet of sound and music that is meaningful to us.
Copyright © 1 January 2000 by Jeff Talman, Saratoga Springs, NY, USA