Lest we forget, the mavericks that forged the history of recorded sound did not die out in the first half of the twentieth century…..one or two are still playing around. None more famously and successfully so than Brian Eno, to whom we raise a celebratory glass on his birthday today.
Eno has twiddled his fair share of knobs and has prodded sound recording into new areas. This is an interesting interview from circa 1980 where he is talking about a new-fangled video disc and what it might offer a world where (American) TV has gone mad. In it he looks back at the revolution sound recording made up music’s place in the world. It’s worth a watch. He could have been describing the work of Edison, Gaisberg and the audio pioneers:
“The important thing about tape is that it transformed something [i.e. music] that existed in time and therefore wasn’t durable into something that existed in space [i.e. a physical medium] and is durable and is not only durable but malleable in lots of different ways”
Eno would take video and the new malleability of recorded sound to create “My Life In The Bush Of Ghosts” with David Byrne which pioneered sampling techniques and nudged electronic music into a number of new directions.
He also invented the term “ambient music” and used recording technology and the physical medium of the LP record to spread it round the world.