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somewhere in space
Hearts of Space radio and online music service producer
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THE SINGULAR ENGLISH POP STAR DAVID BOWIE died in the early days of 2016. His 50-year career at the frontiers of popular music drew thousands of heartfelt tributes from around the world. Loved for his fearless creativity as much as his elegance and personal style, Bowie inspired generations of other musicians (and fans) to follow their muse, get outside the box, and dance on it. One of the lesser-known chapters of the Bowie story happened in 1977, when he moved to Berlin and began collaborating with another brilliant Englishman — music producer, godfather and name-giver of modern Ambient music, BRIAN ENO. The so-called "Berlin trilogy" of albums: LOW, HEROES, and LODGER were the result. Like everything else Bowie did, they bear his unique creative stamp: innovative, provocative and, for the time, appropriately dark, while still accessible to his fans. On this transmission of Hearts of Space from guest producer, HOS production manager and Bowie super fan JOSEPH JACOBS, we revisit this special chapter in the Bowie story, on a program called MOSS GARDEN: A DAVID BOWIE AMBIENT RETROSPECTIVE. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted yesterday at hearts of space | news
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IF THERE'S ONE QUALITY THAT APPLIES TO EVERY VARIETY OF JAZZ, it's great musicianship. These cats can really play, and sometimes they get so into it that virtuosity becomes the subject of the music. But there's another tradition in jazz, famously exemplified by MILES DAVIS' classic Kind of Blue. Lyrical. Quiet. Subtle. Spacious. It's not about how many notes you play: it's about how beautifully you play them. As one musician says, it's about "loving every note." On this transmission of Hearts of Space, we explore a quietly intense world of melody, space and feeling, on a Nordic spacejazz journey called RESTRAINT. Norwegian pianist TORD GUSTAVSEN is featured, plus PIERRE FAVRE, RUSSEL WALDER, MARK ISHAM & ART LANDE, MARJORIE DE MUYNCK, and the ALEX CLINE ENSEMBLE. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Jan 29, 2016 at hearts of space | news
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THERE'S NOTHING QUITE LIKE THE STILLNESS of a frigid winter night. Sensible humans retreat to their heated homes and warm beds, while the normal hyperactivity of the natural world is reduced to almost nothing by cold and dark. Even busy nocturnal creatures and insects take some time off, while flowing water turns to silent ice. It's an environment that finds expression in a rarified genre of electronic music, which runs the gamut from cool, to chilled, to frozen. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, Ambient electronic music for quiet winter nights, on a program called NORTHSCAPES. Music is by SOUNDS & SILENCE, SIMON LOMAX, CONNECT.OHM, MEG BOWLES, STEVE ROACH, MARK BANNING, JAJA, and BLISS. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Jan 22, 2016 at hearts of space | news
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THIS WEEK WE MARK OUR 1100TH PROGRAM and 33rd year of national broadcasting with another of our centennial specials. This time we're going to depart from our normal wordless all-instrumental format and bring you a special collection of epic and contemplative electro-Ambient songs from the ethereal world of "Dream Pop." I know, this violates one of the prime directives of Ambient music programming, because song lyrics in a language you understand engage your cognitive mind and force your brain to listen differently from the diffuse, spatially aware way you listen to Ambient music. It's a shame, because some of the world's most talented and successful artists, producers and engineers put their hearts and souls and Ambient sensibilities into these often awesome recordings. Even typical verse/chorus songs can deliver stirring sound images and passionate performances, while other artists create songs that march through vast virtual spaces, build monumental chorales inherited from the classical repertoire, or create the intimate contemplative spaces we love in non-vocal forms of Ambient music. Sure, sometimes the subject matter is mundane, but there's an emotional reason that popular songs rule the charts and move millions. If you ignore what pop song artists are doing with Ambient sounds, you're going to miss some transcendent music. So on this centennial show, why not see what some of our pop song creators have been up to? On this transmission of Hearts of Space, a journey in the halls of Dream Pop, on a program called SPACE SONGS. Music is by PORTER ROBINSON, BJORK, MS MR, BIRDY, BLISS, RADIOHEAD, KODA/STRAY THEORIES, CONJURE ONE, CREEP + LOU RHODES, BECK, BARCELONA, MELODY GARDOT, and TRACEY CHATTAWAY. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Jan 16, 2016 at hearts of space | news
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WINTER BRINGS CRYSTALLINE BELLS and metallic tones reverberating in chilled electronic soundscapes. In the far north, the long night sky fills with the hypnotic lights of the auroras, while infinite stars sparkle in the frigid air. Warm harmonies and fire in the hearth bring a sense of peace in an uncertain world. On this transmission of Hearts of Space we set a course on the north star, with a wintry journey to the electronic north, on a program called POLARIS. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Jan 8, 2016 at hearts of space | news
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THE STORY OF THE RESONANT PERCUSSION FAMILY is as unusual as it is old. The metallophones — bells, bowls, gongs and cymbals — have been used as ceremonial instruments by the world's religions for centuries, especially in the mountain Buddhist cultures of China and Tibet, and the Christian monasteries of Europe. They make sounds that exist at the borders of the physical and the spiritual: ethereal and psychoactive, calming and stimulating, all at once. Bells sound particularly right in the cold, clear winter air. The crystalline structures of ice and snow seem to echo the crystalline metals of the instruments. The pure overtones of bells and bowls are the essence of clarity, while the rich harmonic sound fields of gongs and cymbals are like gray winter clouds and fog. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, a winter journey for contemplative percussion, on a program called MYSTIC METALS. Music is by HIMALAYAN VOICES, PARADISO & RASAMAYI, KARMA MOFFETT, STEVE BRAND, HAROLD BUDD, RICHARD RUDIS, BRIAN ENO, and DEUTER. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Jan 1, 2016 at hearts of space | news
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HERE IN THE EARLY DAYS OF CHANGING CLIMATE, our concept of winter may need some adjustment. While we're enjoying t-shirt weather in California, south Texas and Florida, other parts of the U.S. are getting hammered by record rain, sleet, and snow. It's a disruptive challenge for the entire country, and we may be dealing with a lot more of it in years to come. OK, that's the hard news, but one of the good things about winter storms are the visual and sculptural effects of frozen water — ice crystals on windows, icicles on trees and buildings, and blankets of snow airbrushed on the landscape that transform our world into something magical. Among the most magical of winter's artistic delights are ice castles. Whether naturally occurring where moving water meets freezing cold, or artistically created — ice castles are a yearly attraction in many cold weather climates. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, we search for the sound of frozen water, on a program called ICE CASTLES. Music is by KIRSTY HAWKSHAW, ANDREW LAHIFF, BRIAN ENO, MAITREYA, BETWEEN INTERVAL, MICHAEL KASTRUP, and JUSTIN VANDENBERG. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Dec 27, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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DECEMBER 2015 IS THE 30th ANNIVERSARY of the first Hearts of Space program created by our guest producer for western classical and sacred spacemusic, ELLEN HOLMES — a labor of love, dedication and stamina that continues to bring us experiences of sublime beauty and depth. Thank you, Ellen. We are all in your debt. On this winter holiday transmission of Hearts of Space, Ellen brings together sacred choral and instrumental sounds of love, caring and compassion, on a program called CARITAS. The Latin word translates as charity and is considered the highest of Christian virtues: the divine love of God, as well as the love of one's neighbor and oneself. The program includes Anonymous early sacred chants; Baroque and Classical choral gems by MARC-ANTOINE CHARPENTIER, WOLFGANG AMADEUS MOZART, CHARLES GOUNOD, and FRANZ SCHUBERT, and sacred choral and classical instrumentals by contemporary composers JOHN TAVENER, IVER KLEIVE, GEOFFREY BURGON, JOHN RUTTER and PATRICK HAWES. Holiday sounds of love, caring and compassion: CARITAS...on this transmission...of Hearts of Space. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Dec 18, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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1983 WAS THE FIRST YEAR of the nationally syndicated Hearts of Space program. That same year an artist named BILL DESMOND released an ambitious cassette album (remember cassettes?) called TRAPEZOID STRINGWAY TO LIGHT. It featured the wire-strung sounds of the dulcimer, the hammered dulcimer and the psaltery, along with early electronic keyboards and supporting acoustic instruments. Unfortunately that was the last we heard from Bill Desmond, but a few years later we borrowed most of his title for a program of warm and sparkling winter music for wire-strung instruments called STRINGWAY TO LIGHT. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, we return to the beguiling sounds of the Celtic harp, hammered dulcimer and harp-guitar, on a program called STRINGWAY TO LIGHT 2. Music is by JOHN DOAN, DAVID MICHAEL, ARYEH FRANKFURTER & LISA LYNNE, PAUL BAKER, HAROLD BUDD, AINE MINOGUE, and DAVID LINDSAY. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Dec 12, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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The end of the euphemistically named "daylight saving time" each fall is generally greeted with a chorus of depression. Not only is it clearly the final nail in summer's coffin, it's an all too blatant reminder of the long winter ahead. Our Celtic ancestors gathered around bonfires at this time of year to chase away the gloom and recall the Pagan and pre-Christian festivals of the sun — then looked forward to the year-end solstice and religious holidays and the festive celebration of light itself. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, ambient chamber music for the transition to the season of light, on an early winter program called AFTERGLOOM DELIGHT. Music is by KEVIN KELLER, A WINGED VICTORY FOR THE SULLEN, HELEN JANE LONG, YUTA TAGASHIMA, and BRUNO SANFILIPPO. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Dec 4, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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EMERGING OUT OF THE DARK DAYS OF AUTUMN, we begin the transition to the year's end holidays. The music takes a brighter, more active turn as we immerse ourselves in sparkling electronic soundworlds, and subtle, yet seductive melodies. Ambient artists turn raw waveforms into virtual environments, a kind of sonic alchemy. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, an early winter journey in virtual electronic space, on a program called AMBIENT ALCHEMY. Music is by TRENTEMOLLER, CONNECT.OHM, MARCONI UNION, STEVEN HALPERN & MICHAEL DIAMOND, DARSHAN AMBIENT, and MOTIONFIELD. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Nov 27, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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WHAT'LL YA HAVE, dear spacefan? Acoustic or electronic? Wait, you don't have to choose — today there's a whole genre that brings us the best of both, and that's where we're going on this edition of Hearts of Space. Acoustic instruments have been evolving for centuries, becoming ever more refined and expressive. But they couldn't change the laws of physics, until electronics opened up new worlds of sound and new frontiers of music. Once the novelty of electronic sound settled in a bit, musicians set to work integrating the best of the old and the new. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, acoustic instruments and electronics play well together, on a program called ELECTRO-ACOUSTIC. Music is by NEURONIUM, MICHAEL STRIBLING, BOB HOLROYD, KATHRYN KAYE, TIM STORY & HANS JOACHIM ROEDELIUS, CHRIS HAUGEN, and DARSHAN AMBIENT. Continue reading
Posted Nov 20, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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DESCENDING INTO THE SHORT DAYS OF THE DARK SEASON, once again we seek music that portrays human emotions at their most vulnerable: music of pathos, loss and remembrance. These are some of our most powerful and deeply affecting feelings, and they require music that touches the depths of our souls. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, a special program of sacred choral, vocal and instrumental music for the dark season, from longtime guest producer ELLEN HOLMES called LAMENTO 2. A lament is a cathartic song or poem expressing grief or mourning: a recognition of the sadness of mortality. Many of the oldest and most enduring poems in human history have been laments; they're found in the Iliad and the Odyssey, the Hindu Vedas, and in ancient Near Eastern religious texts, including the Old Testament. We'll feature selections extending across 500 years of western classical music, by JOSQUIN DES PREZ, CLAUDIO MONTEVERDI, CARLO GESUALDO, DIETRICH BUXTEHUDE, ANTONIO VIVALDI, GEORGE FRIDERIC HANDEL, JOHANN SEBASTIAN BACH, LILY BOULANGER, RALPH LAURIDSEN, LISA GERRARD, STELLAMARA, LES NOUVELLES POLYPHONIES CORSES, and MAX RICHTER. Threnodies for the dark season : LAMENTO 2...on this transmission... of Hearts of Space. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Nov 14, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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THE 1970's was a decade of change. In the culture, the powerful forces opened up in the 1960s continued to disrupt society. Popular music enjoyed a kind of peak era, while electronic music had a quieter revolution, emerging from the laboratories of academia and into the hands of working musicians around the world. To say the arrival of practical electronic instruments and personal studios opened up new possibilities would be an understatement — they fueled an era of unprecedented creativity and whole new genres of experimental music. The analog synthesizer allowed musicians to design entirely new sounds, and naturally created a new kind of spatial imagery that evoked the vastness of the cosmic panorama. It could be cold and dark, warm and romantic, dramatic or contemplative, and it came to be called "spacemusic." On this transmission of Hearts of Space, a classic deep space journey, on a program called COSMIC ELECTRONIC. Music is by MICHAEL STEARNS, ASURA, VANGELIS, RUDY ADRIAN, SPHARE SECHS, and CLIFF MARTINEZ. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Nov 6, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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BORIS KARLOFF: SCORPIO...gateway to the underworld. Once again we return to the dark times, the world of witches and sorcerers, ghosts and goblins, spirits...and shades. It's an emotional terrain encoded in our genes: ancient and primal, ruled by fear and revulsion, death and decay...an atavistic legacy from the days when magic and mystery ruled the earth. Today, we have Dark Ambient Electronica to exorcise those lingering demons, an art form that conjures up strange, disturbing, melancholy worlds...with sound. Think of it as sonic therapy for your inner phantoms. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, a ghostly, necromantic journey for Halloween, on a program called APPARITIONS. Music is by CIRCULAR, VOICE OF EYE, SOUNDING THE DEEP, DAN POUND, HUMAN METRONOME & 33 TETRAGAMMON, ROBERT RICH & B.LUSTMORD, and TOR LUNDVALL. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Oct 30, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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ONE OF THE DEEPEST "innerviews" I've ever seen is with longtime Hearts of Space core artist ROBERT RICH and Innerviews.org founder ANIL PRASAD. It dives into Bob's history and evolves into some truly profound musical and philosophical observations. If you have a serious interest in Ambient/Space/Psychedelic/Shamanic music and sound, you will want to ingest this carefully more than once. LINK: http://www.innerviews.org/inner/rich.html Continue reading
Posted Oct 26, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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THE ANCIENT LAND OF ARMENIA has had a complex and often contentious history. Sitting astride the Silk Road trade route in the southern Caucasus, east of Turkey and north of Iran and Azerbaijan, Armenia served as one of the gateways between Christian Europe and the non-Western cultures of the Middle East and Central Asia. Armenia was the first country to adopt Christianity as the state religion in 301 A.D. Both location and history account for the rich set of cultural influences that became Armenian music, from roots in Zoroastrian and Pagan folk and sacred music, through the rise of Christianity, and continuing to evolve for over 1500 years. The great historical figure of Armenian music was KOMITAS — the late 19th/early 20th century scholar, priest, folk song collector and arranger, composer, choir-master and singer. Educated in an Armenian seminary, then in western classical music in Berlin, Komitas combined traditional sacred and secular Armenian modal music with western classical practice, to create the foundation for an authentic Armenian classical music. The German ECM label has been documenting new and traditional Armenian music for over 30 years, with a series of superb recordings many of which have been featured on these programs. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, we focus on two of their latest releases, on a program called THE SPIRIT OF ARMENIA. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Oct 24, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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EUROPEAN CHAMBER MUSIC has a long and well-earned reputation for intimacy and depth. From Medieval and "Early Music" ensembles, through the inventions of the Renaissance and the Baroque eras, the classical expressions of HAYDN and MOZART, the profound late quartets of BEETHOVEN, and many innovations in the modern era — chamber music only seems to grow stronger from its limitations. The modern film score has created new opportunities for composers of Ambient chamber music, which brings together both electronic and traditional instruments. Fall is the ideal environment for this music, scoring a season of cooling, darkening, quieting and recession. On this transmission of Hearts of Space from guest producer JOSEPH JACOBS, an hour of sublime Ambient chamber music for the season, on a program called AUTUMN SONATA. Music is by JEFF BEAL, MATT ALBER, BRUCE KAPHAN, PIETER NOOTEN & MICHAEL BROOK, STARS OF THE LID, and A WINGED VICTORY FOR THE SULLEN. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Oct 16, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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IN A WORLD of autumn transition and receding light, Ambient music echoes the season with dark drones, descending progressions and complex tone colors. It's music for a time of withering flora, and busy fauna preparing for winter's cold embrace — a realm of muted colors, bittersweet melodies, and a tinge of melancholy for the lost days of summer. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, electronic spacemusic for early autumn, on a program called DESCENDING DARK. Music is by PATRICK O'HEARN, CHAD KETTERING, MAX CORBACHO, STEVE ROACH, NUMINA, and STU JENKS. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Oct 9, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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Somewhere on the way from ethnic specialty music to the therapeutic edge of popular culture, the Native American flute took on a new mission. Originally used only by a few southwestern tribes like the Anasazi and the Lakota Sioux, the buttery tone and serene energy of these soft cedar instruments opened up a new audience for meditation and stress reduction. For a few years in the 1980s and 90s, the Native flute found itself within the then-burgeoning new age genre, but as new age faded became a specialty music once again. It's a story that helps separate musicians who are called to the instrument, from those who merely follow popular trends. In the hands of a master, the cedar flute creates a world of sound that evokes the vast spaces of the American West, opens the heart and summons the spirit. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, another journey in the gentle world of the Native American flute, on a program called TWILIGHT MESA. Music is by SCOTT AUGUST, DEBORAH MARTIN, GARETH, ANN LICATER, COYOTE OLDMAN, RANDY GRANGER, MICHAEL BRANDT DE MARIA, and PETER KATER & R.CARLOS NAKAI. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Oct 3, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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Four times a year, the seasons turn. The changes can be subtle or dramatic. These are the times of transition in the natural world — the original, the most pervasive, various, and far-reaching ambient soundscape of them all. Societies and cultures go through their own transitions. Sometimes they're welcomed; more often, they are resisted, even feared. In nature, the wise, the lucky, and the flexible evolve, and learn to adapt. On this transmission of HEARTS of SPACE, we ride the receding energy of summer as it descends into fall, on a program called TIME OF TRANSITION. Music is by JON HOPKINS, BARCELONA, PSICODREAMICS, DAVID HELPLING & JON JENKINS, HAROLD BUDD & CLIVE WRIGHT, BRUNO SANFILIPPO & MATHIAS GRASSOW, DAVID DARLING, and FALLING YOU. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Sep 25, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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A poetic moment in the music of FREDERIC CHOPIN, as interpreted by Icelandic musician OLAFUR ARNALDS and German-Japanese pianist ALICE SARA OTT. Chopin revolutionized Romantic piano music with unprecedented virtuosity and emotional expression. In passing he created delicate passages of sublime music where a thousand pound piano virtually disappears: one could say it becomes "transparent." Today, musicians work directly with sound and space in their recordings, and we have a whole sub-genre of Ambient and contemplative music for piano. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, we focus on those moments of heightened clarity, depth, and spirituality, on a program called TRANSPARENT PIANO. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Sep 19, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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The slow heartbeat rhythm and cooling electronic harmonies of England's MARCONI UNION. In 2011 they were commissioned to create a piece of relaxing music in collaboration with the British Academy of Sound Therapy. The resulting 8 minute single was called "Weightless." Against the odds, it became a worldwide hit. In fact the feeling of weightless floating was nothing new for electronic music, with examples going back to the 1920s. When combined with a goal-less, extended style of composition, you have the elements of this transmission of Hearts of Space — an hour of zero-gravity Ambient for inspiring patience, on a program called WEIGHTLESS WAITING. Music is by MARCONI UNION, BRYAN CARRIGAN, SIMON LOMAX, AMIR BAGHIRI, STEVE ROACH, and HAROLD BUDD. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Sep 13, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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Even in the early days, the pioneers of electronic music knew they were on to something special. Here was a way of sculpting sound that made it like clay — something you could shape to your own creative vision. Today every artist can have electronic tools of almost unlimited power at their fingertips. We've had several generations of musicians tending the electronic vineyards, and these days the sonic wine is available in many varietals. For example, "downtempo" is a name invented in the 1990s to describe slowed-down, less intense electronic dance music. It's still beat-y but the atmosphere is chilled; rather than pumping you up, it floats you along with a relaxed vibe that leads to pure Ambient realms. On this transmission of Hearts of Space...a journey from Downtempo rhythms to Ambient space, on a program called ELECTRON TRAVELER. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Sep 4, 2015 at hearts of space | news
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These days we're so immersed in electronic music, media and devices, it's almost strange to recall that until roughly a hundred years ago, all musical instruments were acoustic. Yet despite the sonic limitations of acoustic instruments, musicians in traditional cultures around the world were able to create ambient and contemplative music. ​Even today, longtime Hearts of Space favorite STEPHAN MICUS and others remain committed to the earthy, vital sounds of acoustic instruments played in new ways and fresh combinations. On this transmission of Hearts of Space, we take our theme and title from STEPHAN MICUS's 21st album for the German ECM label, NOMAD SONGS. ​A nomad lived a life of constant travel, and traveled with a purpose. Nomadic cultures have all but disappeared today, but for centuries they were a key part of the cultural landscape, extending their music and instruments wherever they traveled. [ view playlist ] [ view Flickr image gallery ] [ play 30 second MP3 promo ] Continue reading
Posted Aug 28, 2015 at hearts of space | news