BEAT RESEARCH

Music Art and Culture in the Age of Hip-Hop

MPSM207-01
Course Description and School Policies

Wednesdays 3:00-8:00

Massachusetts College of Art

Tower 642 (door code is 7162)

Instructor: Antony Flackett

aflackett@massart.edu
Office hours by appointment
Tower 313
(617) 879-7294

 
Syllabus:

 

Week 1 —  January 23rd

OLD SCHOOL

Introduction to Beat Research
Watch and discuss: Hip-Hop Evolution (Darby Wheeler, 2016)
Excerpts from: Wild Style (Charlie Ahern.1982) Rockers (Ted Bafaloukas, 1978)
Playground rhythms - Jump Rope Handclapping Chants

Introduction to basic step sequencer drum machine in Reason
Assignment 1 — Due the following class (Jan. 30th)

Present a clip of a favorite piece of electronic music to the class
and explain why you chose it.

Make a four-bar loop in Reason

 Note: Everybody should purchase headphones to work in the lab.

 

Week 2 — January 30th

ETHICS OF SAMPLING

Hip-hop's Golden Age & the sampling dilemma
Presentation of favorite track & four-bar loop
Watch and discuss:
Copyright Criminals (Benjamin Franzen, Kembrew McLeod 2010)
Introduction to Live

Assignment 2 — Due the following week (Feb. 6th)
Make a one-minute track with an assigned break beat
and sample music source.

 
Week 3 — February 6th

APPLIED TECHNIQUES

Presentation of one-minute track
Conitnue to review Live and show how to use Reason and Live together
Assignment 3 —Due in 3 weeks (Feb. 27th)
Create a piece of music using only sounds that you recorded yourself

 

Week 4 —  February 13th
WHEELS OF STEEL

All that scartching is making me itch

watch and discuss scenes from "Scratch" (Doug Pray, 2001)
All students learn how to Scratch on turntables

 

Week 5 — February 20th
TOOLS OF THE TRADE
Intro to the Sound Studio with Eric Freeman

Week 6 — February 27th
STYLES UPON STYLES

Present found-sound piece
Identifying modern styles of electronic music:
Drum and Bass/Ragga-Jungle, Bhangra, Juke,
Baltimore Breaks, Funk Carioca, Dubstep, Bounce Dilla Beats etc.
Watch and discuss clips from: Modulations (Iara Lee, 1998)
Assignement 4 — Due in 2 weeks (March13th)
Create a finished piece of electronic/sample-based music
(suggested length: 2-5 minutes)
Some resources for samples
Archive.org FreeSound Cornell Archives

NO CLASS MARCH 6th DURING SPRING BREAK

Week 7— March 13th

MUSIC AND IMAGE
Music Video vs.Video Music vs. Visual Music
Watch and discuss: Oskar Fischinger, Mary Ellen Bute, Fleischer Studios, Busby Berkely- Michel Gondry ,Soundies, Ernie Kovacs,Joshua Light Show, Ken Brown, Promo Videos, Sidney Laverents, EBN, Tracy+the Plastics, I am Kawehi, Projection Mapping, Eclectic Method, Lasse Gjertsen,Thru-You, Pogo, Tucker, Apartment Vid, BeardyMan, Simon Penrucker, Beat Box Battles, Autotune the News, Andrew Huang, Zebbler Mono Neon Swede Mason
Introduction to video editing
Present electronic/sample-based assignment
Assignment 5— Due in 2 weeks (March 27th)
Produce music video, prepare a live performance or create any other project that involves more than just audio


Week 8   — March 20th
INTERACTIVITY
VISITING ARTISTS TURNING JEWELS INTO WATER

Spinning music and ideas live and through the web
AraabMuzik, Reggie Watts, tUnE-yArDs, Dan Deacon,Hifana, Cabide DJ , SupaMan, Edan, Imogen Heap, Infinite Wheel, Absolute Machines, Superdraw, Rock-afire Explosion, Shred series, Drawdio, Web Synth, Bubblesoap Suzanne Ciani ,Kid Koala, Filastine and Nova
Live performance by TJIW after class


Week 9 – March 27th
WATCH OUT NOW
Presentation of videos & live performances
Assignment 6 — due in 1 week (April 3rd)

Bring in written proposal for final project


Week 10 April 3rd
ELECTRONICS AND SAMPLING IN THE ART WORLD

Innovators from outside the hip-hop world

Elsa Von Freytag-Loringhoven, Marcel Duchamp, Christian Marclay, John Cage, Stockhausen, CATcerto , Raym ond Scott, Nam June Paik, Martin Arnold,
Fenslerfilms, machinima, Bob Moog , Museum Mixtape ,Harvey Birdman, Laurie Anderson, Kelly Dobson, Gabriel Prokofiev, Wendy Carlos, Kaitlyn Aurelia Smith, Conlon Nancarrow, Pamela Z, DJ Spooky ,Maryanne Amacher, Banksy, Maya Hayuk, Delia Derbyshire and Pamelia Stickney

watch and discuss clips from:Theremin: An Electronic Odyssey (Steve M. Martin,1994)

Discuss and approve final project proposals


Week 11
April 10th
BEATS RHYMES AND LIFE

Beyond Beats and Rhymes
(Byron Hurt, 2006)

Big Freedia Queen of Bounce (Fuse TV 2013)


NO CLASS APRIL 17th for MONDAY SCHEDULE

Week 12 April 24th
SHOW AND PROVE
Art catch up and In-class work time

Week 13 May1st
WORK IT OUT
Presentations of finals in progress


Week 14  May 8th

AND YOU DON'T STOP
Presentation of final projects at MassArt

 

Off Campus Final Presentations  May 15th (evening)
IN FULL EFFECT
The class will present their music, videos performances etc. at a local club
THE GOOD LIFE
attendance is strongly encouraged but not mandatory