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Riverside Whistles and Bells

by Philip Mantione



Title: Riverside Whistles and Bells
Composer: Philip Mantione
Year completed: 2015
Duration: 45:27



Philip Mantione - Composer, Conductor and Electronics
Linda Corbitt - Carillonneur
Donald Miller - Handbells
Beth Miller - Handbells
Christopher Marsh- Handbells
Erin Brinton- Handbells
Brad Delorenzo - Handbells
Jake Pflum - Handbells

Technical Staff:
Alex Cho (Lead Audio Engineer, Field Recording Engineer and Live Mix Performance)
Brad Delorenzo (Assistant Audio Engineer)
Jake Pflum (Assistant Audio Engineer)
June Romero (Field Recording Engineer)
Spencer McNeil (Field Recording Engineer)
Michael Crawley (Field Recording Engineer)
Donald Miller (Bell Technician)
Ian Vargo (Lead Studio Recording Engineer and Mastering Engineer)
Philip Mantione (Mix Engineer)
Remo (Cover Image Photography)
Alysse Stepanian (Cover Image Editing)

Special thanks to all the performers and technicians and the many people and organizations that made this project a reality:
First Congregational Church of Riverside (for access to the carillon and their support)
Riverside Art Museum (for providing the venue and supporting the project)
Drew Oberjuerge (for her boundless support throughout all phases of the project and my work in general)
Ai Kelley (for her enthusiasm and support)
Kathryn Poindexter (for unintentionally providing the impetus for the entire project)
Andy Gay (for the use of the microphones)
Art Institute of California - Inland Empire
Linda Corbitt, Donald Miller and Beth Miller (for their support and expertise)

This project was made possible in part by a generous grant from NewMusic USA.


Program Notes (for the Recording)

This recording is not a documentation of the live event (described below). Rather, it is a standalone musical work that is "based on" the live performance. It quickly became obvious to me that creating a documentation that could adequately reproduce the live experience would not be possible due to the complexity of the performance scenario. Once this was decided, I was free to edit, tweak and in some cases replace the sounds from the performance, while remaining true to the durations and temporal placement of events as they occurred. I also employed a sort of subtractive composition technique, in which several events deemed unnecessary were removed.

Original Program Notes (from the Program)

Linda Corbitt will perform live on the FCCR carillon across Mission Inn Avenue, reading from a temporal score that will be synchronized with a live computer performance by Philip Mantione and the FCCR Handbell Choir on the roof of RAM. The computer portion is based on samples of the FCCR carillon, field recordings of the carillon at UCR, the train whistles and sounds that regularly permeate the community, and natural sounds. A live recording of the event is due to be released on Petroglyph Music label next year.
Philip Mantione writes custom software to meld field recordings, sampling and computer generated sounds into unique sonic textures. He uses natural and man-made sounds as source material for computer music and as inspiration for acoustic compositions. Raised in a working class neighborhood in Buffalo, New York, the sounds of church bells and trains were an integral part of the composers’ early sonic consciousness. Mantione reflects, “Church bells are functional, typically used to mark the passing of time, call people to services, celebrate an occasion or solemnify a funeral ceremony. Likewise, train whistles are used to alert the community that a locomotive is approaching and its inertia must be respected. The rich harmonic content in these sounds is enhanced by the geographic landscape and man-made structures that reflect and diffract sound waves in serendipitous ways.  These types of sounds are some of my earliest sonic memories and are a comforting presence whenever I hear them. The trains that travel through Riverside’s Box Springs Mountain generate a natural reverberation and echo that is unique to the area. The power of these communal sounds to travel long distances allows for a limitless array of sonic experiences based on the physical location of any given listener. This work calls attention to the beauty of the ambient sounds in our environment that are often ignored or relegated as background noise. Beyond the appreciation of the sound-in-itself, the piece embraces the collaboration between culture, nature, and civilization and encourages multiple narratives unique to each individual. The work illuminates the divisions reflected by symbolic architectural structures and industrial mechanisms while bringing together a community through the appreciation of the sounds of daily life.”

Philip Mantione
December 2014


released August 21, 2015




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