Log in

Architecting the Future
Story of an American Master

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2011-12-07 22:24
Subject: Leaving Winter Behind
Security: Public
Moving to Boca ASAP and selling a bunch of stuff (TV, furniture, guitars, basses, speakers, cabs, comics, cards, appliances, books, etc) to make moving easier.

First couple items are up.

50" Samsung DLP: http://newjersey.craigslist.org/ele/2738926943.html

6000 BTU GE Window AC: http://newjersey.craigslist.org/app/2738973025.html

There will be more. Stay tuned.
2 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2009-04-27 01:03
Subject: I'm in Time Out New York
Security: Public
This picture was taken pretty late in the night...like 3 AM so my security, Eric 'Beefcake', and I look pretty haggard but, hey, I'll take it. The picture is small so you can't tell that my face is on the million dollar bills bursting out of our briefcases. Ohh, you also can't tell that I'm wearing silver shoes. We're the last picture on the slideshow!


Source photo is here:


The bills are here:


The street performers were pretty pissed when we put these in their donation hat :) lol
5 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2008-10-19 21:00
Subject: If at first you don't succeed, get a drill
Security: Public
A couple weeks ago, I went up to Boston to record the wonderful Julia Torgovitskaya aka juliatorgo at Tufts' exceptional new Distler Performance Hall in the Granoff Music Center. I use an incredibly simple, cheap and effective rig to record live to two which consists of 2 AKG C 414 B-XLS microphones, 1 Aphex 207D and an M Audio Microtrack. This allows for pretty transparent and noiseless stereo 24/96 recording for around $2000 which is ideally suited to classical or anything else where you want to capture the true sound that needs no tonal manipulation.

Well, after more than an hour of recording, we were onto Monica's Waltz from Menotti's The Medium (which I must confess I am not fond of) and I started getting intermittent pops on the left channel. I had no idea why as I had never had any problems with this rig and there didn't seem to be any pattern to the pops or correlation with anything we were doing. My only guesses were that the tube in the Aphex was going or the power in the room was problematic as the readout on my power conditioner was up around 122 volts. Thankfully, we managed to get the takes we needed.

A few days later at home I plugged my 207D in and just watched it for a few hours. Sure enough, it eventually started popping randomly on channel 1 despite the fact that nothing was connected to it. I think the problem was that this unit has no cooling and being over volt and racked next to other gear was a recipe for disaster. I opened the unit up to make sure though.

What a mistake that was.

As much as I love this unit, they definitely skimped on the chassis. I have no idea how two of the top plate screws were held in place previously as they do not fit the threads. I can only assume that the less than precisely placed holes on the plate clamped the screws into place by not lining up with the threaded sockets. Well, I think I am correct as one of the screw heads got separated from its body when I forced it in with my Dewalt. This caused the face of the unit to bow rendering the spring on the digital rate selector inoperable.

So now I have to get this screw body out that is not extending beyond the chassis. After about 30 seconds of attempting to rotate it with a false head made out of putty, I opted to instead destroy the plate around the threaded socket with my drill.
16 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2008-07-17 20:40
Subject: People Must Think Awful Highly of Me
Security: Public
Music:Berlioz - Symphony Fantastique - Sir Colin Davis - London Symphony Orchestra
"Is this you?"

"No, it's Berlioz."

...or not much of Berlioz. I think it's actually the latter.
6 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2008-06-24 12:22
Subject: Probably about 2 ppl will understand why this is funny/alarming
Security: Public
I come across a lot of retarded shit everyday in computing. Admittedly, computing is REALLY phuqqing hard and it's unreasonable to expect everyone to be 100% on 100% of the time so some dumb shit is inevitably going to make it into the system. Well, nagios has a broken check_mailq plugin which ALWAYS tells you that the mailq is OK when run with the default settings because it doesn't correctly parse the output from mailq when run as a non-privileged user which is there to tell you that mailq has to be run as a privileged user. So, I thought of three solutions:

1) Add the nagios user to the mail group and then change the permissions on /var/spool.

2) Setup the nagios user to be sudo NOPASSWD for the mailq command or the check_mailq.

3) Make mailq setuid root.

1 may not be the best idea because a process may "fix" the permissions on /var/spool.

2 is kindof a pain in the ass because you have to alter how nagios is calling the plugin.

3 is super easy. It's just a single command:

# chmod u+s `which mailq`

Check out what I found though. This is on CentOS 4.5:

$ ls -lA /usr/bin/mailq
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 27 Sep 18 2007 /usr/bin/mailq -> /etc/alternatives/mta-mailq
$ ls -lA /etc/alternatives/mta-mailq
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 23 Sep 18 2007 /etc/alternatives/mta-mailq -> /usr/bin/mailq.sendmail
$ ls -lA /usr/bin/mailq.sendmail
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 23 Sep 18 2007 /usr/bin/mailq.sendmail -> ../../usr/sbin/sendmail
$ ls -lA /usr/sbin/sendmail
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 21 Sep 18 2007 /usr/sbin/sendmail -> /etc/alternatives/mta
$ ls -lA /etc/alternatives/mta
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 27 Sep 18 2007 /etc/alternatives/mta -> /usr/sbin/sendmail.sendmail
$ ls -lA /usr/sbin/sendmail.sendmail
-rwsr-sr-x 1 root smmsp 746328 May 2 2007 /usr/sbin/sendmail.sendmail

Yeah, uhh, as if that symlinking isn't amusing enough, don't set mailq as setuid root :)

Also, for the developers reading this, I've always hated when a single command has its behavior multiplexed by looking at its call method. /etc/init.d/net.eth0 anyone? Isn't that practice discouraged by the GNU coding standards? Well, if you need a real world reason as to why you shouldn't be doing that in your programs, here you go. Obfuscating what program actually being called might lead to someone accidentally setting their MTA to setuid root because they think they're only chmodding some helper program.
10 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2007-01-21 18:14
Subject: I'm on the radio tomorrow (Monday). You can listen online!
Security: Public
I'm the featured guest for this coming Monday's Death by Metal from 10PM to midnight on WMBC 560 AM - UMBC's radio station.

I anticipate much music from and discussion about seminal forward thinking atonal and ametrical death metal acts such as Cynic, Atheist, Gorguts, Meshuggah, SUNN and Edge of Sanity as well as Wagner, Scriabin, Stravinsky, Penderecki, Xenakis, Schnittke and various electroacoustic music.

You can tune in online at http://broadcast.umbc.edu:8000/wmbc-hifi.
7 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2007-01-18 20:27
Subject: Another FREE Show: The Music of Erich Zann Friday, January 26th at Peabody
Security: Public
Witness my triumphant and loud return to the illustrious Peabody Conservatory's Griswold Hall.

Richard Edward Horner plays Richard Edward Horner
A solo electric guitar recital by the American Master

The Music of Erich Zann - Horror in Five Movements

Friday, January 26th 8PM

Griswold Hall
Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University
1 East Mount Vernon Place
Baltimore, MD, 21202
Go in the main entrance at the above address and take the elevator up to the second floor and make two rights.

I imagine people will be going out afterwards.

Please try to let me know if you are coming in from out of town and if you need a place to stay or anything else.

As always, attendees are strongly advised to bring hearing protection (ear plugs).

If you would like to help promote, you can use this PDF or the image below.

Thanks, Rich(ard)
Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-11-03 03:45
Subject: Third Practice
Security: Public
A big thanks goes out to everyone who made my last show at Peabody Conservatory. I will post some audio clips in the near future. I have yet to see either of the videos yet.

I will be attending the Third Practice Electroacoustic Music Festival in Richmond, Virginia on November 3rd and 4th.
3 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-10-18 05:24
Subject: Fliers!
Security: Public
Promote! You can either link/save the images or get the PDFs to print out.






35 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-10-14 03:35
Subject: Go see Michael Hersch play The Vanishing Pavilions in Philly (10/14)
Security: Public
My teacher, Michael Hersch, is premiering his massive new piano work tonight in Philly. I plan on being there.

The following was taken from http://www.networkfornewmusic.org/info.asp?pk=632&

Saturday, October 14, 2006 at 8:00 PM

Philadelphia, PA

The glimmering imagery and eloquence of British poet Christopher Middleton inspire a major piano solo by Michael Hersch, an exceptional young composer and pianist who has created "remarkable - and sometimes ecstatic - excitement in the world of classical music." — The Washington Post

St. Mark's Church
1625 Locust St.
Philadelphia, PA

Box Office: $20 general admission, $15 seniors, $10 students
Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-10-11 18:52
Subject: Come see me play Friday, October 20th at Peabody for FREE!
Security: Public
I am now wholly convinced that I am the greatest to ever play the electric guitar and on Friday, October 20th at 7:30PM in Griswold Hall at the Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University I will prove it to the world.

Richard Edward Horner plays Richard Edward Horner
A solo electric guitar recital by the American Master

Air Raid - Etude for self feeding system
Between Two Worlds - Fantasia on themes from my opera

Friday, October 20th from 7:30 PM to 9:00PM

Griswold Hall
Peabody Conservatory of the Johns Hopkins University
1 East Mount Vernon Place
Baltimore, MD, 21202
Go in the main entrance at the above address and take the elevator up to the second floor and make two rights.

I imagine people will be going out afterwards.

Please try to let me know if you are coming in from out of town and if you need a place to stay or anything else.

As always, attendees are strongly advised to bring hearing protection (ear plugs).

I'm going to post some banners you can post on your journals or MySpace or what have you and fliers if you want to promote offline so check back if you think you can help out.

Thanks, Rich(ard)
8 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-10-11 18:46
Subject: Go see Pam in NYC tomorrow.
Security: Public
Pam (unbound_spirit) is performing a new work by my friend Lauren Buchter tomorrow in NYC. Pam sent this out and I'm reposting it so that you ppl will see it. I, unfortunately, cannot make it.



Hey everyone,

Tomorrow night, October 12th, 2006:
You're all invited to "Remembrances": The second in a new music series at Gallerie Icosahedron in Tribeca, 27 North Moore Street between Varick and Hudson. I will be premiering a new composition by Lauren V. Buchter with fellow soprano and fellow Manhattan School of Music prep grad Rebecca Loeb, with Kimbal Gallagher accompanying. Come out and enjoy some great new music by some leading New York composers! Doors open at 7:00, show starts at 7:30
$8 suggested donation for students, $15 suggested donation for general admissions. We're expecting a huge turnout including some new music VIPs, so come early!

See you there!

3 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-10-07 04:51
Subject: Go see Pam perform tonight.
Security: Public
October 7th, 2006

Pamela Stein will be performing with the Left Bank Concert Society in Korean composer Isang Yun's work "Memory" for voices and percussion at the Guildenhorn Recital Hall, Clarice Smith Performing Arts Center at the University of Maryland, College Park. Also performing are soprano Bonnie Lander and mezzo soprano Mary Catherine Moroney. For more information see leftbankconcertsociety.org.

If I'm well enough to drive and not cough through the performance, I'll be there.
2 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-09-17 01:52
Subject: Kayo Dot Recording
Security: Public
I recorded one of Kayo Dot's new songs with them in my studio last night. It was awesome.

For those of you who are unaware, Kayo Dot are a large (as amplified ensembles go) avant-garde group that grew out of Maudlin of the Well and are now signed to John Zorn's label Tzadik. They are one of the very few bands currently making music that I think is worth listening to.

It was crazily cramped as the new production facility I'm putting together with Steve, while progressing nicely, is not yet finished.

In other news, I will finish mixing and mastering my ground breaking 50 minute hyper-dense spectral piece, Peabodrone, in both stereo and quad versions within the next two weeks. I've been asked to give a preview performance of it at Peabody so keep an eye out for that if you're interested.
8 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-06-06 17:01
Subject: NYC Show at The Lucky Cat - Sunday 6/11
Security: Public
I will be playing a solo electric guitar gig on Sunday June 11th at The Lucky Cat in NYC.

What: Club Show
When: Sunday June 11th (6/11) at 8PM
Where: The Lucky Cat 245 Grand Street, Williamsburg, Brooklyn 11211 - (718) 782-0437 - www.theluckycat.com

As usual, attendees are strongly advised to bring hearing protection (ear plugs).

This is my first NYC show. I really hope you all can make it out. I'd like to have a good showing so I can play some more NYC gigs soon.

I challenge you to find anything else this awesome for $5.
8 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2006-04-10 01:00
Subject: More fuel on the "scary genius" fire
Security: Public
I received official notice today that the Computer Music Department will be taking care of all of my tuition expenses for the remainder of my Master's programs at Peabody.

Additionally, I have managed to get Finale running on my machines while booted into Linux. I'm hoping to do a writeup. Don't hold your breath.
27 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2005-07-09 18:55
Subject: Fight AIDS @ Home
Security: Public

If you already know about distributed computing and just want the link, it's:


For those of you who don't know, I ask that you PLEASE read the following as you could actually contribute thousands of computational hours to IMPORTANT MEDICAL RESEARCH by merely spending 5 minutes of your time.

Distributed computing is the process by which large computations are split up and processed by many machines concurrently. Analogously, if you had a grocery list of 1000 items, you could acquire all of them much more quickly if you had 10 different people each get 100 of the items and, perhaps, even more quickly if you had 100 people each get 10 items. Distributed computing doesn't work exactly like this but you should have a good general idea of what's going on. The key to most desktop distributed computing clients is that they run in the background and have a low process priority thus only using "idle" cycles from your processor meaning that their use should not reduce your machine's performance at all. Furthermore, it does not matter how old/slow your machine is. Your contribution is wanted and will be helpful, no matter how small! The key to distributed computing is the sheer number of machines, not so much how fast those machines are.

"We know you're a huge nerd, but why are you telling us about this, Rich?"

Well, yes, distributed computing has been mainly a nerd thing for some time now. I've been active in distributed computing projects for years now, basically ever since I knew I could be involved. While there have been worthy causes for distributed computing, I figured those who might be interested in such things would discover them for themselves and distributed computing was probably neither an interest or a concern of most others. That recently changed when Google announced their distributed computing client called Google Compute. People seem to use things Google releases, and if that means distributed computing is now on its way to the mainstream of computer users, then I feel I should do what I can help people in their choice of a distributed computing client/project.

I ask that you not use Google Compute with their current policies.

The Google Compute site has the following text (I added the highlighting for emphasis) as of today (Saturday, July 9th, 2005).

"The first beneficiary of this effort is Folding@home, a non-profit research project at Stanford University that is trying to understand the structure of proteins so they can develop better treatments for a number of illnesses. In the future Google Compute may allow you to donate your computing time to other worthwhile endeavors, including projects to improve Google and its services."

I know that "do no evil" is part of the Google philosophy and I do not anticipate them doing anything that I find highly objectionable and at least they are being up front about potential uses of their system which is much more than some software vendors have done. While it would be despicable to release a distributed computing client under the auspices of scientific research only to later harvest user resources for their own benefit without users knowing, I doubt that is Google's intent. In regards to non-Google projects, they go on to say in their FAQ:

"The third party projects we choose to help out will be carefully selected non-profit projects, with the guiding principle being to help humanity and advance scientific knowledge. Users will be clearly notified of any such projects when they are introduced, and will maintain at all times the ability to disable or uninstall Google Compute for any reason."

...which is good to hear (read). My point is this: Would you rather use a client that may possibly contribute your machine hours to improving a business' Internet services or one that, you can assume with a high level of certainty, will be aiding in critical medical research for millions of people in life or death scenarios?

On that note, I would like to suggest use of the Scripps AIDS research client which can be found at:


If you would like to explore some other options for the use of your computer's currently unused cycles, I suggest you visit:

Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2005-04-05 14:05
Subject: Peabody Conservatory
Security: Public
Yesterday I was informed that I have been admitted to the Peabody Institute of the Johns Hopkins University to pursue two Master of Music degrees in composition and computer music composition starting in the fall and that I have been awarded, by the University, a large sum of money to facilitate this.
78 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2005-03-20 01:46
Subject: Travel Pack/Lucky Star Bus - never again
Security: Public
You must read the following for two reasons.

1) After my recent misadventures with Travel Pack, this only reaffirms my inkling to never do business with them ever again, and you should all be aware of it.

2) It's phuqqing hilarious.

11 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2005-01-06 01:51
Subject: To Remember Those Who've Died...
Security: Public
...we honor their memory.

Almost 6 months prior to the writing of this entry, I wrote this. This entry is the promised continuation of that.

Here is another installment of the most brilliant and important musical works that we are fortunate enough to know today. I don't really have the time or energy at the moment to give blurbs about that many of them this time around though.

Beethoven - Violin Concerto, Op. 61 (1806) - The story goes that Beethoven did not finish the piece until the day Franz Clement premiered it.

Felix Mendelssohn - Violin Concerto in E minor, Op. 64 (1844)

Giuseppe Verdi - Requiem (1873) - In honour of the poet Manzoni.

Richard Strauss - Also sprach Zarathustra, Op.30 (1896)

Gustav Holst - The Planets (1916)

Bartok - 4th String Quartet (1928) - This work, along with the Sonata for 2 Pianos and Percussion, exhibits the height of Bartok's formalized technique. The organizational structure and advancements in the new tonal framework are the subject of much discussion to this day. The counterpoint is unfathomably tight rivaling that of Scriabin in the 9th Piano Sonata.

Stravinsky - Symphony of Psalms (1930) - When the BSO commissioned this work, they asked Igor for something in a "popular" style. Igor took out his english dictionary and looked up "popular" where he found "of the people." To him, religion was of the people. This work could never be mistaken for pop music. It is an extremely heavy work whose strange orchestration indicative of Stravinsky and second movement double fugue make it unforgettable.

Bartok - Music for Strings, Percussion and Celesta (1936)

Toru Takemitsu - Requiem for String Orchestra (1957)

Tomiko Kojiba - Hiroshima Requiem (date of composition unknown to me) - It saddens me greatly to know that I was in Seattle when this was performed and I missed it. On May 19th, 2001, what was I doing? I was drinking 105 on at Matt and Terry's soon-to-be-mine-at-the-time apartment...ripping the hole in my stomach after blacking out.

György Ligeti - Lux Aeterna (1966) - Ligeti redefines the sonic paradigm for chorus.

Schnittke - Concerto Grosso No.3 for two violins, harpsichord, celesta, piano and 14 strings in five movements, Op. 188 (1985)

Wolfgang Rihm - String Quartet No.8 (Achtes Streichquartett) (1988)

Ligeti - Violin Concerto (1992) - This work changed the way I thought about microtonality.

Luciano Berio - Chemin IV (1975/2000)

Oliver Knussen - Violin Concerto, Op.30 (2002)

Rest assured that there is much more to come.
16 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-08-09 17:48
Subject: Yeah, I'm just now realizing this.
Security: Public
Music:Scriabin - Piano Sonata No9 'Messe Noire' Sviatoslav Richter
There is no harmonic goal in Scriabin's 9th piano sonata.

That's right. It's that whole impressionist referential structuralism thing but, unlike Debussy, nothing ever resolves. I started thinking about extended tension because that's how Wagner and Debussy wrote those soaring passages that are just SOOO intense. Debussy has this elided phrase structure thing going on. If Wagner feels he should wait an hour (literally) to resolve something, he will.

Scriabin, on the other hand, just had no harmonic goal by 1913. The simultaneities are governed by the referential structuralism but there is not a single point of discernably more consonance or definite release. The longest duration without motion is a half note occuring in the final section. The entire scheme of the piece is, merely, to be or persist.

The FIRST rule on my composition list is "All things worthwhile are goverened by Tension and Release" and while it is arguable that there are points of greater or lesser tension in this piece, there appears to be no point of definitive release. It's a sort of chaotic haze controlled by its formal plan and almost unfathomably tight counterpoint.
5 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-08-08 21:03
Subject: Music, Violence, Truth
Security: Public
Music:Scriabin - Piano Sonata #7 'White Mass' - Glemser
This is some commentary on the violent paradigm of music to which I consider myself, more than aligned with...I would say inextricably married to.

6 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-07-19 01:56
Subject: Where echoes of different times resound
Security: Public
There is no way I could, in a single effort, list the most brilliant or important musical works of all time so this is but one installment of suggested listening and/or supplemental music history.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - String Quartet No 19 in C, K465 'Dissonant Quartet' - A glimpse into the future from 1785

Mozart - Symphony No 40 in g minor K550 (1788)

Mozart - Symphony No 41 in C 'Jupiter' K551 (1788)

Ludwig van Beethoven - Piano Sonata No.14 in c# minor, Op. 27 no. 2 'Moonlight Sonata' (1801) - Everyone should know the first movement already but the third movement is the truly amazing one in my opinion.

Beethoven - Piano Sonata No.23 in f minor, op. 57 'Appasionata' (1805)

Richard Wagner - Tristan und Isolde (1859) - While it's probably an exaggeration to call Tristan the first work to defy tonality, it was the first work to do so for over 4 hours. Wagner refuses to resolve his dominant 7th chord and reappropriates the tension state into the release state laying the groundwork for both referential structuralism (neo-tonality) and dodecaphony. Furthermore, this piece was supposedly written from the heart, not the head as the inversionary set relations with a 50% invariance factor would appear to suggest.

Antonin Dvorak - Symphony no. 9 in e minor, 'From the New World' (1893) - Dvorak's American symphony, hence the name since he was a Czech, stands as one of the greatest romantic symphonies alongside those of Schubert and Tchaikovsky.

Claude Debussy - Prélude à l'après-midi d'un faune (Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun), L.86 (1894) - Perhaps the most well known and, arguably, greatest piece in the expressionist vein. Debussy displays his complete mastery of subtle orchestration.

Alexander Scriabin - Piano Sonata No.5 in F#, Op. 53 (1907) - Scriabin's first piano sonata in the single movement form.

Anton Webern - Fünf Sätze für Streichquartett, Op.5 orchestrated (1909)

Arnold Schoenberg - Fünf Orchesterstücke in der Originalfassung for orchestra (Five Orchestral Pieces), op. 16 (1909 rev. 1922) - Schoenberg's post-tonal pre-dodecaphonic expressionist masterpiece

Ralph Vaughan Williams - Fantasia on a Theme of Thomas Tallis (1910) - You've probably heard this or a cue derived from this composition in several films.

Igor Stravinsky - The Rite of Spring (1912) - Nearly a century later, it still stands as the greatest polytonal work ever written. This is, arguably, the most important piece of music from the 20th Century.

Scriabin - Piano Sonata No.9 'Messa Noire (Black Mass)', Op. 68 (1913) - If No.5 is not Scriabin's greatest work, then this is.

Maurice Ravel - Orchestration of Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition (1922)

Alban Berg - Wozzeck Op.7 (1922) - Berg's adaptation of George Buchner's Woyzeck is, to this day, the greatest atonal opera ever written.

Webern - Symphonie, Op. 21 (1928) - Webern takes formalized structuralism to a new level with his palindromic and total serial approach.

Dmitri Shostakovich - Lady Macbeth of Mtsensk, op. 29 (1932) - In what is perhaps the greatest opera of the 20th century, Shostakovich takes musical characterization to a whole new level.

Vaughan Williams - Symphony No.4 in f (1934) - Vaughan Williams BACH piece that raises the bar for cel expansion and motivic development. This is easily Vaughan Williams most dissonant and powerful work. He hated it.

Berg - Violin Concerto "Dem Andenken eines Engels (To the Memory of an Angel)" (1935) - Dedicated to a Boston native Louis Krasner, Berg's final finished work is generally accepted to be his greatest. Berg blurs the lines seperating tonality from dodecaphony to create a romantic masterpiece. Berg immortalizes himself...a giant who lived in a box.

Shostakovich - Violin Concerto No.1, Op. 77 (1948) - Not heard until over a decade after it's composition, Shostakovich's First Violin Concerto is truly a symphony by all indications and, in my opinion, his greatest.

Iannis Xenakis - Metastaseis (1954) - Xenakis' first orchestral work is the beginning of stochastic composition. It is tied, mathematically, to the Philips Pavillion of Le Corbusier designed for the 1958 World's Fair in Brussels. Varese's Poeme electronique was composed for performance in that building.

Krystof Penderecki - Threnody for the Victims of Hiroshima (1959) - Just like Xenakis' Metastaseis, Threnody further expands the sonic paradigm for string orchestra.

Shostakovich - String Quartet No.8, Op. 110 (1960) - Just read this.

Xenakis - Synaphaï (1969) - This is, essentially, Xenakis' piano concerto. The piano part is notated across 10 staves with performance directions instructing the pianist to play as many of the lines as possible.

Alfred Schnittke - Concerto Grosso No.1 for two violins, prepared piano, harpsichord and 21 strings in six movements, Op. 119 (1977) - Schnittke defines, for me, the late Russian realist paradigm with this piece.

Schnittke - Concerto for Piano and Strings (1979) - This work is a soul-shattering vengeful and mournful masterpiece of unparalleled expressionism and craftsmanship.

Ok, that should keep you all busy for awhile. I will attempt to fill in the (many) gaps in a month or two.
39 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-07-04 14:50
Subject: Kings of Metal
Security: Public
Jeffrey Emmett Hayes III called me yesterday to inform me that he and I are on the back of the Manowar - Hell on Earth III DVD.
12 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-04-20 16:35
Subject: April 24th UPDATE/Reminder
Security: Public
Due to a prior engagement of Ian's, the program order on Saturday has been changed. My piano sonata is being played FIRST. That means you need to arrive BEFORE 7:30 if you intend to hear it. Once again, the info is as follows:

Saturday April 24th 7:30PM @ St. Clement's Shrine - 1105 Boylston

This is a FREE event open to the public.

I also have flyers if anyone wants some.
Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-04-13 12:37
Subject: Mark Your Calendars
Security: Public
Music:Tad Morose - Modus Vivendi

New Music Concert

Saturday April 24th 7:30PM @ St. Clement's Shrine - 1105 Boylston

This is a FREE event open to the public.

I am headlining this concert. Ian Schugel will be playing my piano sonata. Those who have played the work have said that it sounds very Russian (surprise, right?) in the vein of Shostakovich and Stravinsky (shocking, eh?).

Also on the program will be contemporary works by Ariel Mann, Ai Isshiki, Sarah Bortner and a microtonal art song by William Thomas Trevaskis III (Bill Trevaskis).
16 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2004-03-25 19:30
Subject: I see myself in you.
Security: Public
Me: You remind me of myself at your age.

Her: You should tell me what you've learned since then and give me a head start.

1) Money won't make you happy.
2) Programming is dehumanizing.
3) Computational theory is addicting.
4) You need to sleep AT LEAST every other day.
5) Video games, while amusing, are mostly a time sink.
6) Don't worry about doing something someone else can be hired to do. Focus on doing things that won't be done unless you do them. They will be far more rewarding.
7) No one will love you unless you love yourself.
8) You don't need caffiene
9) or alcohol
10) but they can be fun.
11) When it comes down to it, being hot really helps.
12) The most important element to being successful is having people like/admire/want you (see 11).
13) Confidence is sexy.
14) There are other fish in the sea
15) but none can replace another.
16) Those you love will lie to you
17) but those who love you won't.
18) The hardest thing to fix is your health
19) and some ailments are incurable.
20) Supply and demand are EVERYTHING.
21) Everyone is, at some level, a talent whore.
22) It's best if you don't lie.
23) Few things are worth worrying about.
24) Different things affect different people differently.
25) You should always consider if the potential risk outweighs the potential gain.
26) There is no replacement for a large vocabulary.
27) Spend time studying things that can't be discovered through critical thinking (such as history)
28) and surmise everything else you don't have time to study.
29) There is a time to be critical of yourself
30) and a time to be absolutely certain.
31) It's better to burn out than fade away.
17 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2003-12-08 04:00
Subject: www.richhorner.com/shostakovich
Security: Public
Music:Nevermore - Dreaming Neon Black
On Tuesday, I went to NEC to see the Borromeo String Quartet perform Ligeti's 1st String Quartet. The way these early evening concerts are setup is that they say something about the piece, play it, talk about it at some length and then play it again. They said that once when they played it, a student in the audience had been writing a paper on it and, together, they came to a collective realization in regards to the construction of the quartet. The piece was, essentially, an omnibus. The initial intervallic basis was that of a second and the meter was duple. The intervals widen to thirds and the meter becomes triple. The intervals become predominantly fourths during the section in 4. This progression continues up through 7 before the piece ends.

They then said the time Ligeti was at a performance of the quartet, he said almost nothing about it. As was pointed out by an audience member, he did, however, talk for 40 minutes about 4 notes in the Schubert piece they were playing.

At some point, Nick said they were playing this Ligeti quartet again on Friday in Cape Cod along with Shostakovich's 8th and Brahm's 2nd. I was scheduled to give a talk on Shostakovich's 8th on Dec 8th (this has since been cancelled due to our inclimate weather). After the concert, I went down and talked to Yeesun because I thought it was ironic how I was doing a paper and a talk on the Shostakovich and it was another one of these 4-note quartets (of which there are many, mind you...even that Ligeti is) but I had no way to get to Cape Cod. She told me to call them on Friday and they'd take me down.

She said, "We'll be going down early because we have a rehearsal so you'd have to hang out in Cape Cod all day." ...as if that were a bad thing ???

Ok, this was interesting. A world renowned Curtis grad just offered me a ride to Cape Cod less than 5 minutes after meeting her. I must have been looking exceptionally good. Well, it gets better. Someone tells me there is a reception. After wandering around for 5 minutes I find a room with a bunch of food that is purely flavor. You know, the kind that cannot possibly constitute a meal...rich people food. Seeing as how my last meal had been Ramen, I was a gentleman and didn't refuse anything the receptionists wanted to feed me.

So, I get to talking to the violist, Mai, and she's cool. She said she was missing the Phish concert in a couple hours because she couldn't get a ticket. Nick, meanwhile, had a number of questions about the Shostakovich which I tried to answer. He stumped me when he asked who directed the East German film Fünf Tage - Fünf Nächte. The answer is Lev Arnshtam and Heinz Thiel, in case you were wondering. Anyway, it was a good time, but I was off to the BSO to see Shostakovich's First Symphony (again).

Friday was a better performance but I met a number of cool people. Amongst said people was a Berklee girl named Audrey who used to go to Columbia. She was cool and offered to let me borrow her first edition copy of Tchaikovsky's memoires. I will have to take her up on that.

So, on Thursday I have to go over to NEC to get scores for Lady Macbeth and the First Cello Concerto and then dig through the 42 volume set of Shostakovich's collected works in order to find the Seventh Symphony and the film score to The Young Guard. For those of you keeping score (pun intended), The Young Guard's score was never published so I was unable to find it. Well, I get over there WAY later than I had anticipated. In part because I had recovered the wallet of some extremely flaming theater kid. His mother told me he'd lost his wallet 3 times since coming to college, presumably this past fall. At least he gave me $20 when I handed it back to him and told him that he really shouldn't carry a copy of his birth certificate around. So, as I'm about to enter NEC, someone yells, "Richard!" It turns out it's Yeesun and Nick is with her.

Yeesun: Hey, are you still interested in coming tomorrow?

REH: Yeah, definately.

Nick: Hey, since you've done all this research and are giving this talk on Monday...

REH: I would love to talk about the piece.

I didn't even let him finish asking the question, and so it was set. Now I just needed to finish my research and organize it into a cohesive stream of thoughts...3 days ahead of the previously anticipated deadline.

On Friday, we head out to the Cape and it starts to snow rather heavily at 4:30...5 hours earlier than in Boston. I was expecting no one to show up. I figured I'd be giving the lecture to the quartet. Well, a number of people did show up but it was strange. The quartet are all a generation older than me and everyone in the audience had to be at least 60. Well, everyone seemed to enjoy the talk. It wasn't my best instance of public speaking but it was probably my most lengthy. I was going without notes and managed to actually not get ahead of myself which is what I'm notorious for. Several people approached me afterward to tell me how much they enjoyed the talk which was nice. Someone from the press wanted my info and then had a bunch of questions so there will be a press blurb. That will be nice. The quartet were genuinely glad to have me there which was great. Nick even mentioned taking a look at my string quartet.

Please re-read that last sentence.

"The Borromeo String Quartet is simply the best there is on this planet."
- The Boston Globe

Yeah, a recording of them playing my piece would be pretty damn helpful for that whole getting into NYU for my PhD thing. I guess I should finish composing that sometime.

So, that is my big excitement. In other news, I'm far too busy to have spent the time to type this up. I'm about a third of the way through my orchestration of Scriabin's Piano Sonata No. 5 and I am not very confident about my piano final next week. I suppose I should finish composing the piece I'm supposed to be playing. I also got an awesome deal on a 7 string which I will be converting to a fretless so that I can play microtonal music to further torture everyone who already hates my deranged equal temperament music.

I desperately need my wisdom teeth out.

Go here: http://www.richhorner.com/shostakovich
32 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

Dr. Richard Edward Horner
Date: 2003-11-11 03:12
Subject: Shostakovich's Vodka
Security: Public
Music:Schnittke - Concerto per Piano
So, as some of you may know, I study with Yakov Gubanov who was one of Shostakovich's last students. The more astute (or obsessed) of you will know that Shostakovich is one of my heros. Well, today Yakov told a story about how when he was at conservatory in Russia one of his professors, whose name is too long to be recounted and thus was shortened to something resembling Zemov...Zemov told of the time he was fortunate enough to be granted time at the composers' collective. As the story goes, he showed up the day after Shostakovich had left. The maid said Shostakovich had been there with sketches for 24 Preludes and Fugues. He had also brought 24 bottles of vodka.

It was the heart of winter and there was snow on the ground. Zemov was there through the beginning of the spring thaw. As the snow melted he found the bottles of vodka. Now, Yakov said that they weren't fifths of vodka. He did not know the conversion from the sensicle metric measurement to the invariably confusing American system but said that, "it was enough to make you happy but not enough to make you crazy." Anyway, of the 24 Zemov found, only 23 were empty. The remaining one bottle, which he kept, was full. When he told this to his students (amongst whom was Yakov), he said that if anyone were to discover the mystery of why one bottle was still full, he would give it to them.

Years passed until Yakov was granted the priveledge of studying the sketches Shostakovich gave to him. It was when he was looking over the sketches of Katarina Ismailova which is what became Shostakovich's opera Lady Macbeth of the Mstensk District that Yakov happened upon an interesting page. It was the a minor prelude and fugue. It was dated 1934 which dates over a decade prior to the time Shostakovich spent at the composers' collective. It was then that Yakov knew why the 24th bottle of vodka had not been consumed. Shostakovich did not deserve a reward on all 24 days as one composition had already been completed, that being the a minor prelude and fugue.

The next time Yakov saw Zemov he told him of his discovery. Zemov, being a man of his word, delivered the bottle of vodka unto Yakov who, in turn, presented it to Shostakovich the next time he saw him. As the story goes, if Shotakovich did not deserve it years ago, he felt he did upon being reunited with it, and so it was consumed.
17 Comments | Post A Comment | Share | Link

my journal
December 2011