Iain Cameron's Diary
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2006-01-27 - 10:08 a.m.
I have been keeping away from these pages. Perhaps the period of torpor is coming to an end.
The weekend before last, I discovered half an hour before the start of the concert that the Prazak 4tet were playing a couple of miles away. I jumped in the car and made it with time to spare. They played Haydn’s Rider, Zemlinsky No 4 and Dvorak no 11, none of which I had heard before. The Rider really suited their gritty sound and to be honest it is the one which has stayed with me to the greatest degree. They explained that the Zemlinsky was written in memoriam Alban Berg and reflected his appreciation of the structure of the Lyric Suite. Zem died virtually unknown in the USA a few years later and the 4tet was rediscovered some time after that. The Zem and Haydn sounded closer to each other than either sounded to the Dvorak - which to be honest sounded like it was from another planet. I spotted local composer, Howard Skempton, in the audience. The audience once again suggested the culture is dieing - few people under 50 - in fact few under 60
I looked at the DVD of Bertolucci’s Dreamers - I like the version where you get the director and the screenwriter talking over it. Its about late 60s adolescent wildness in Paris. There s no reason why that shouldn’t be a prime version of the film - a kind of sub-titling - it makes the film into a more reflective medium. Usual suspects on the soundtrack although there is a good version of Hey Joe which was recorded specially with the American lead doing the vocals. I have also looked the Basquiat DVD which is very sad and disillusioning - I wonder what the current proponents of hip-hop culture make of the tale?
Melvyn Barg and the philosphes took a hack at relativism last week on radio 4. The anthropologists came out as the wildmen of the 20th century while Gadamer came out as being genuinely original - better really than Habermas - or at least a step beyond. Feyerabend came out as dangerously misunderstood - his slogan ‘anything goes’ was a way of encouraging diversity of approach within scientific practice and theory construction - but is now taken as an encouragement to believe anything you like. Today they were having a go at the culture of literacy in the 17th century brightening the drive to work.
Sudden burst of activity on my production platform - more of which later.