This electronic piece uses the otonal chords CGA and GBE, drawing 4 random 9-note phrases from their notes. Each phrase was played repeatedly (12 times) against a slightly faster version of itself, creating a rhythmic phasing effect. The basic tracks were created from Java code using the JMusic library, and then brought together in Audacity to make the final result.
3 Bohlen-Pierce Instruments
This ambient piece uses a toy lyre tuned D F# H# A# B C# F#, a kalimba, and an electric steel guitar with effect boxes.
Four stereo tracks were recorded on a Zoom R8 (two of the steel guitar), then mixed in Audacity.
Here’s another ambient steel guitar recording using the Bohlen-Pierce scale. This one is an overdub of 3 improvised tracks. Each take had different effects settings.
This ambient piece was performed using 4 Bohlen-Pierce instrument patches on the Roland HandSonic, with guitar effect boxes.
It was recorded as 4 stereo tracks on the Zoom R8, then finalized in Audacity on an iMac.
Tajamby, steel guitar improvisation
This ambient piece employs 3 steel guitar parts: a bass+drone, a two-note baritone figure, and a melody line. The accompaniment is a tabla drum loop and road noise. The video was created with Magic editor.
Inspired by the music of Steve Reich.
Here’s another ambient piece based on chording algorithm used in Tripolar Expedition.
This algorithmic piece picks random notes from the Bohlen-Pierce scale for a soothing ambient effect. There are 17 iterations, each dropping the highest note from the remaining list.
This short piece, titled “Providence”, contains overlapping Bohlen Pierce chords. Each note includes a harmony 439 cents (9/7) above and another 439 cents below. A pleasant effect with no real parallel in the 12-tone system.
Melodyne 5 Editor
These two pieces were retuned to Bohlen=Pierce with the Melodyne 5 Editor. The first is a jazz piece I wrote on guitar as a teenager, reimagined in Band-in-a-Box with a trombone as the lead instrument. I wonder if an actual trombonist could play these notes.
The second is a sound collage based on Dennis C. Lee’s “Psi-seX 1”. Running these somewhat random noises through a musical scale filter makes a rather pleasant effect, in my opinion.