KPFA-FM Music Dept. ➔ Speaking of Music: Trimpin, 2 of 2

Analog Audio

Event Type
Interview and Music
Program Series
Speaking of Music
Program Length
83 min
2 of 2
1990-07-30 | broadcast
| 1990-05-17 | created
In a program recorded on May 17, 1990, as part of the San Francisco Exploratorium’s Speaking of Music series, Charles Amirkhanian interviews Trimpin, a sculptor and composer who builds his own electronically controlled acoustic instruments, often using materials recycled from junkyards. Trimpin is one of the most stimulating one-man forces in contemporary music. A specialist in interfacing computers with traditional acoustic instruments, he has developed a myriad of methods for playing trombones, cymbals, pianos, and other instruments from a computer. He has collaborated frequently with Conlon Nancarrow, realizing that composer's piano roll compositions through various media. Born in Germany, Trimpin now resides in Seattle where numerous instruments that defy description adorn his amazing studio. In describing his work, Trimpin sums it up as "extending the traditional boundaries of instruments and the sounds they're capable of producing by mechanically operating them. Although they're computer-driven, they're still real instruments making real sounds, but with another dimension added, that of spatial distribution. What I'm trying to do is go beyond human physical limitations to play instruments in such a way that no matter how complex the composition of the timing, it can be pushed over the limits." In this program Trimpin demonstrates his technique using materials found at the Exploratorium.
Electro-Acoustic / Electronic
Unconventional instruments
Musical Selections
[unidentified live percussion piece] (2:30) / Trimpin -- [unidentified live piano and percussion piece] (3:16) / Trimpin -- Messing Around [excerpt] (2:40) / Trimpin
Electronic music
Unconventional instruments
Sound sculpture
Spatial music
Mechanical musical instruments
Mechanical musical instrument music
Percussion music
Percussion and piano music
Related places
San Francisco (Calif.) (was recorded at)
Berkeley (Calif.) (was broadcast at)
Related Entities
Amirkhanian, Charles
Trimpin, 1951-