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Decked Out: A History of the Turntable



This soundtrack was selected and compiled by David Weinstein by invitation from Art Basel Miami Beach for its Art Sound Lounge in 2007. Weinstein curated three years of Sound Lounge playlists for Miami Basel (see also Music By, For, and About Plants, Insects, and Birds from 2006) which were experienced through headphones as visitors wandered or lounged the wonderful Miami Beach Botanic Garden across from the convention center where the main exhibits appeared.
This program presents a glimpse at the turntable as musical instrument and its influential role sparking creative innovation in music from the streets of the Bronx to the ateliers of the avant garde. Since Thomas Edison's first effort in 1877 through to digital interfaces like Virtual Vinyl, the mechanical spinning disk and stylus - and the musical material they capture, preserve, and release - have endured to provide an ever expanding vocabulary for artists in sound.
Through scratching, beat matching, montage, looping, and other techniques the turntable matured to something far beyond the "sound writing machine" that Edison introduced, Alexander Graham Bell improved, Emile Berliner perfected, Pierre Schaefer re-invented, Kool Herc manipulated, Grandmaster Flash elevated... then Marclay found Bambaataa who listened to Kraftwerk who listened to Stockhausen who heard Cage who knew Schaeffer who studied Edison.
This collection is selective and subjective in its tilt towards those who challenged themselves and the common practice of the device. Artists not included but well worth investigating are numerous and easily found along the path of the curious.
 

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