'Sisters With Transistors': Pioneers Of Electronic Music

Automatic TRANSCRIPT

Musical instruments that produce sound by using electronic circuitry bore the names of male inventors, and they were popularized by male artists. It is Allyson McCabe reports. Women were and still are at the forefront with a new documentary. They're finally getting their due in the 19 twenties, the Russian physicist Leon Thurman, debuted and electronic instrument that could be played without any physical contact. Musician stood in front of a box and wave their hands over antennas summoning otherworldly sounds seemingly from thin air. Experiment might have been a passing novelty, if not for the late Clara Rock quarry Ah, virtuoso who, well concert hall audiences and helped refine the instruments design music. It was not suspected, as she recalled in the 1992 interview with public radio station W Q. X are there was no way of breaking the sound. You couldn't make the cut that you couldn't make separation. All I had to do is inspire him that I needed. Frogmore is just one in a long line of women who change the shape and sound of modern music, says filmmaker Lisa Robin er. When most people think of electronic music in most cases, they'll picture men pushing the buttons knobs in the boundaries. So one of the things that really drew me to the story was that this was a story of women being enabled by new technology robbers. New documentary sisters with transistors celebrates their achievements spotlighting pioneers such as Daphne or, UM, who was hired as a studio engineer by the BBC in the 19 forties, while men were off fighting in the war after hours or, um, began recording and manipulating sounds on magnetic tape. Man. Her experiments led to the co founding of the BBC's Radio Franek Workshop, which also provided a platform for Delia Derbyshire. She crafted sounds for hundreds of BBC programs, including the iconic theme music for the TV side by Syria's doctor who which debuted in 1963. Five years later, Wendy Carlos took the first commercially available keyboard base of the Sizer to the general public. She introduced the instrument she helped Robert Mode design on her album switched on Bach, which sold more than a million copies. At the same time, female composers continued working on their own music. Juilliard trained Laurie Spiegel says Elektronik Instruments helped them bypass creative and professional obstacles and give voice to their compositions themselves. It was like looking the way a painter or a writer works. You were working on the actual work itself. You were being a piece of music out of sound that you could then play for somebody else. Instead of just having a piece of paper that you then needed someone else to go and perform. As a researcher at Bell Labs in the 19 seventies, Spiegel made music using experimental computer systems and complex algorithms to generate entirely new sounds. 1977 Spiegel's work was included on the Voyager golden record launched into space to represent all of humankind. That, she says the achievements of women have often gone on recognized early computer programmers very often where women because it was considered clerical. Then when they began to be called computer science, then it was suddenly totally men, and it was for gotten their women involved in your early days of computers. History of women has been a story of silence. Of breaking through the silence. We shall not be rubbed any longer. It's beautiful noise. Sisters with transistors is narrated by Laurie Anderson in 1977. Anderson debuted the tape Bow Violin, which allowed her to create her own performance art. In the 19 eighties, Anderson modified her Elektronik Trump set turning her body into an instrument. We gotta Lynn Drum machine and it was broken. And so I took it apart. And I thought, Well, what if you sold it into a suit? You know on your views to the various drum pads, specially For today's pioneers. Electronic music isn't just music. It's also a tool to break down barriers, says composer Yvette Janine Jackson. My creative journey with electronic music.

Coming up next