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Playing with Something That RunsTechnology, Improvisation, and Composition in DJ and Laptop Performance$
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Mark J. Butler

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9780195393613

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2014

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780195393613.001.0001

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Performing Performance

Performing Performance

Interface Design, Liveness, and Listener Orientation

(p.65) 2 Performing Performance
Playing with Something That Runs

Mark J. Butler

Oxford University Press

Chapter 2 considers the ways in which the practices and technologies of sound recording mediate performances of electronic dance music. Discussion is structured along two main axes of mediation: between the performer and the sounds he or she creates, and between the performer and the audience. Various commonly used interfaces are described in terms of the kinds of interaction they allow, suggest, or invite, with their potentialities characterized in terms of “affordance.” The second section considers general qualities that performers value in interfaces, as well as the ways in which musicians communicate liveness and a sense of performance to their audiences. The final section addresses epistemologically oriented descriptions of sound by musicians, explaining how their conceptualizations of performance highlight the incursion of recording practices and technologies into this realm, and revealing an increasing overlap between the categories of performer and listener.

Keywords:   interface, interaction, affordance, liveness, mediation, epistemology, recording, performance, audience

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