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The 'legendary' mantric tape by Jackson MacLow based on the "Gathas" constituting an open-ended series of performance texts begun in 1961. The letters of their words are placed in the squares of qudrille ("graph") paper, and they are realized through spontaneous, but rule-guided, performers' choices, usually, but not always, made during performances.
The Sanskrit word gatha, "verse" or "hymn," was adopted for them, on analogy with its use to designate versified sections of Buddhist sutras and short poems by Zen masters and students, because I considered Gathas to be Buddhist performance texts. Chance operations were used in composing them in order to encourage performers and hearers to give "bare attention" to letter-sounds, words, etc. Also a Buddhist de-emphasis of the composer's ego underlies both using compositional chance operations and letting performers' choices determine many parameters of their realization. In addition, all Gathas made from 1961 to 1973—and many made later—are composed of chance-arranged transliterations of mantras, most of them Buddhist. However, beginning with The Black Tarantula Crossword Gathas in 1973, many Gathas have been composed of nonmantric English words. Both mantric and nonmantric Gathas appear in this book.
Cat. number: TONBAND No. 33
8 Voice Stereo Canon (The 4 overlaid performances begin on channel one about 20 two: a "4-against-4" canon.) by Jackson MacLow of his "The Black Tarantula Crossword Gathas", written (drawn) 8/25/73 & after. Realized at NYU Composers' Workshop N.Y. - 11/25/73.
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