Interview with Pauline Oliveros

Pauline Oliveros has been composing music since most of you were in diapers. She is a large proponent of drone based music and has recently released a book on the subject. Do yourself a favor and experience some of her music.

What initially drew you to drone based music?

The sound of tones.

Why do you think the kind of music you make is important?

It is important to me however that is not necessarily important to others and the importance of my music is for others to decide.

How did you come to play accordion?

My mother brought an accordion home when I was 9 years old and I got fascinated.

What kind of experience do you think listeners should have when listening to your music?

Experience is personal and private so there is no “should” coming from me. I would like for their experience to be expansive but there is no guarantee.

Who do you feel most lucky to have worked with?

David Tudor

Could you see yourself doing something other than being a composer?

Sure, I’d be a scientist

How much over your music involves improvisation?

Almost all of it

How important do you think improvisation is to music as a whole?

Most of the world’s music is improvised.

What young composers and musicians deserve more attention?

All of them that want to create music.

What do you listen to for enjoyment?

Different music at different times. I like all music.

What is the greatest experience you’ve had performing music?

Usually the most recent.

If you could how would you change the way music is taught through the public school system?

I would introduce instrument making and improvisation and sound art.

What do you do for fun outside of music?

Visit with friends

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