Course Description (spring 2014)

Albert Description:
A general introduction to the fundamental concepts of music technology, including: sound propagation, the principles of microphone operation, the use of speakers & mixers, the MIDI standard & its implementation, the basics of digital systems, waveform editing & audio file formats & compression. The lectures will be complemented by practical assignments & demonstrations, through which students will gain a basic understanding of how to use technology to enhance & demonstrate their musical work.

Instructor Description:
This class is meant to help student develop a deeper understanding of music technology via three areas of focus:

1. Introduction the scientific concepts at the root of Music Production Technology

2. Development of formalized critical listening and analysis skills as they apply to music technology and music production

3. Rudimentary application of music production and research methodologies via video production

Weekly presentations and discussions will be supplemented by extensive reading as well as hands-on assignments.  Students will be expected to take on challenges that will required developing new skills and understandings as their projects come to fruition.   Students will conclude the semester with a video presentation of a research topic or original music production.   At that time they will have gained  at least rudimentary skills in all of the fundamental areas of music technology.  Successful students will overcome technical challenges and gain a new respect for their own abilities to engage new topics and technologies.

Prerequisites

I will assume in this class that you are reasonably comfortable with mobile computing devices and personal computers (knowledge of how to open change and save documents, such as word or finale, move documents around on the computer as well as email and internet applications).   I do not assume and prior experience with with any specific electronics or music technology.  That said, I expect those who do not have experience to engage each topic and assignment with intensity and vigor such that essential understanding is quickly acquired.

Reading and Sources

Spring 2014:
Required Reading:
Understanding and Crafting the Mix, by William Moylan
ISBN-10: 0240807553
The Producer as Composer, by Virgil Moorefield
ISBN-10: 0262514052

Online Reading:
https://nyuintroductiontomusictechnology.wordpress.com/
http://scienceofmusicnyu.wordpress.com/
https://ccrma.stanford.edu/~jos/
http://en.wikipedia.org/

Suggested Reading:
Sound and Recording, by Rumsey and McCormick
Computer Music Tutorial, by Curtis Roads

Grading Ruberic

Spring 2014:
Assignments & Labs                  28%   weekly experiments and/or reports posted on blog
Attendance & Engagement   28%   arrive on time, answer some questions, ask many
Mid-term Exam                            20%    approx. 10 questions, short essay answers
Final Report & Video                 24%   3-5 minute video

Tentative Schedule of Topics

Tentative schedule of topics

Week

In Class Topic

Lab/Assignment

Reading

01

Intro, Sound, Waves

Listen/Record/Listen

online, Moylan

02

Hearing

Amplitude vs Loudness

online, Moylan

03

Transduction

Directionality

online, Moorefield

04

Mixers, Mixing

Mixer Proof

online, Moorefield, Molyan

05

Digital Signals

Input/Output/Hz

online, Moylan

06

Acoustics

Reverb Experiments/report

online,  review

07

Mid-Term exam (20%)

Choose work to analyze

Moylan

08

Critical Listening

Critical listening exercises

Moylan

09

Analysis/Presentations

Analysis exercises

Moylan

10

Plotting, Notation, MIDI

Reproduction project 1

Moylan

11

Recording Tech

Project outline

TBD

12

Sampling and Looping

Arranging via loops

amen break, Moorefield, self assigned

13

Synthesis

Project draft

TB303, Moorefield, self assigned

14

Audio Effects, Remixing

Final draft/Script/shot-list

Moorefield, self assigned

15

Video Presentations

Edit and share final video