I thought that I would spend two or three hours yesterday working my way through my links to update the calendar of events. In fact, after more than a few hours, I had only scratched the surface. I came to two conclusions. The first is that I’ll need to revisit the calendar section weekly, if it’s going to be useful and current. I plan to do that.

The second point is being enforced by many other recent experiences, and it is important. I am becoming convinced that the pool of people actively involved in experimental music is wider and deeper than any of us can imagine.

And now I’ll embark on a strange mission: to prove how much activity is going on, about which I know nothing. I have two pillars on which to build my case.

Until very recently, I didn’t know that…

  • there are no fewer than eight relevant events that I know about this Friday, on three different continents.
  • there are well-curated series going on this season in Ontario, Los Angeles, Charleston, and New York City.
  • the European festivals I already know are only the tip of the iceberg.
  • more events are scheduled for most upcoming Fridays and Saturdays than will fit in a single calendar view.
  • there would be nearly 100 composers on my still-incomplete list.

I wouldn’t have known about…

  • many young and engaged musicians who are stirred up about experimental music, if I had not attended festivals in Germany, Austria, and England last year.
  • the encouragement and practical help that people in this field offer to one another, if I had not thrown myself into it through research, writing, and travel.
  • the amazing thought and work going on among my colleagues, if I did not know them so well that we talk about it directly. (Now see it through, will you? You (pl.) know who you are…)
  • this entire field, if it had not been for some great teaching I had at Northwestern.

If all this is true, then there is a long, winding road ahead, as unpredictable as any experimental event ought to be. I’m using this blog to document my findings (and hopefully some of yours). Yesterday I got a little more altitude than usual, and so today’s post is a pan shot. Not everything is in sight, but I’m loving the landscape.

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