Listening Session I & II: Fear of Death, Fear of Life.
Audio Monitors, Amplifiers, Blankets, Dual Channel Audio, Printed Artist Publications
Courtesy of Nova Kultura Foundation, Sofia, Bulgaria.


Listening Sessions

Part audio time-travel and part ritual, these artist performances explore how Songs themselves can operate as Monuments without a body.

Each Listening Session presents a thematic series of rare archival recordings of unique live performances by deceased musicians. The artist provides a commentary for each song within a historical context while a select group of participants listen via synchronized high-fidelity in-ear studio monitors. 

A printed artist's publication accompanies each performance and is provided to those participating in the sessions. The publication takes the form of a song booklet featuring transcribed lyrics, song authorship, discography details.

Recorded music has existed for about 150 years and high-fidelity recordings for less than 75 years. Before the advent of recording technology, the listening of a Song was perceived as a unique experience which was temporal and impermanent. The Song was then either written in musical notation or verbally passed from person to person as a memory expressed in individual performance.

The Listening Sessions approach the monument of Song by using recording technology to re-animate the presence of deceased musicians and collapse the perception of time to transport the listener back to the moment of the original live performance. In a deeply Countermonumental way, this work seeks to essentially reverse the decay of the aura of recorded performance by returning the listener to a ritualized experience of these Songs in high-fidelity and within a historical context.