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Program 617: Reflecting on 9/11

KALW Broadcast Date: September 11, 2020 | Host: Mark Abramson

In this episode of Music From Other Minds, we’ll remember the events of September 11, 2001. There’s some music written as a direct response, some whose history is bound together with those events, and even music which simply reflects the way one might feel remembering the events of that day. The centerpiece of this program is William Basinski’s Disintegration Loop 1.1, a one-hour minimalist tour-de-force created when the glue on some tape loops he was working on decomposed, creating drop-outs in the music. Silence overtook the melody as the tape wore out, but the essence of each melody was recognizable, even as the tape disintegrated, creating the poignant sound of a melody “passing away. Shortly after he completed the Loops, 9/11 happened and he recognized that the work was given added meaning by the terrible events. We’ll also hear composer Steve Reich’s harrowing take on the disaster, English composer Gavin Bryars’s musical depiction of another disaster, the sinking of the Titanic, as well as work from composers Tunde Jegede, Joan Tower and the late Leonard Cohen.

Program Audio

30-Second Spot

Track Info & Links

Title: WTC 9/11, 1st movement (2010)
Composer: Steve Reich
Performers: Kronos Quartet
Recording Title: WTC 9/11 (2011) 
Record Label: Nonesuch
Catalog Number: 528236


Title: Lamentation (1995)
Composer: Tunde Jegede
Performers: Tunde Jugede, members of the London Sinfonietta
Recording Title: Lamentation (1995) 
Record Label: Triciom Records
Catalog Number: TriCD 1001


Title: In Memory (2005)
Composer: Joan Tower
Performers: Tokyo String Quartet
Recording Title: Tower, Chamber and Solo Music
Record Label: Naxos
Catalog Number: 8.559215


Title: The Sinking of the Titanic (1969)
Composer: Gavin Bryars
Performers: Eva Hart, voice; John Nash, violin; Gavin Bryars, piano; Angela Bryars, music box; The Cockpit Ensemble, strings; The New Music Ensemble of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music; Sandra Hill, double bass; John Adams, ensemble director; Howard Rees, ensemble director; Hoard Davidson, ensemble director; Gavin Bryars, conductor
Recording Title: Jesus’ Blood Never Failed Me Yet (2015)
Record Label: GB Records Archive Series
Catalog Number: BCGBCD22


Title: dlp 1.1 (2002)
Composer: William Basinski
Performers: William Basinski
Recording Title: Disintegration Loops I (2002)
Record Label: Temporary Residence Ltd.
Catalog Number: TRR 194


Title: On That Day (2004)
Composer: Leonard Cohen
Performers: Leonard Cohen, vocals, guitar and jew’s harp; Sharon Robinson, vocals; Anjani Thomas, piano and vocals; Stan Sergeant, bass; Johnny Friday, drums
Recording Title: Dear Heather (2004)
Record Label: Columbia Records
Catalog Number: CK 92891

Aki Onda (left) and Akio Suzuki, by Brian Whar
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