Fully Automated Luxury Composition

Paul Wolinski


This practice-based research attempts to answer the question of how utopian thinking might be applied to popular music composition. It begins by looking at automation, utopia and the utopian impulse and how they compliment as well as conflict with understandings of popular music. A methodology is established using automated, generative music techniques, based on Attali’s ideas of a future mode of composition where anyone can produce streams of non-ritualized, non-repetitive music. The resulting practice-based research tests the incorporation of these techniques into popular music composition. It also highlights conflicts between a generative mode of utopian composition that tends toward infinite, endless streams of music and the finite intentionality demanded by expectations of popular music shaped by capitalism. This opens up areas for further research investigating how far utopian thinking can help resist the pressures of capitalism in relation to popular music composition.


Utopia; Generative Music; Automation

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