About this work:
Painted Birds was included on my first CD, Trembling Flowers. Here are the liner notes for that CD:
My use of computer-controlled synthesizers began in the summer of 1984 when I purchased a pre-MIDI music system. These instruments were used exclusively until the summer of 1989 when I acquired my present MIDI system.
The first half-year of my involvement with this medium was spent transcribing music I had composed for acoustic instruments and/or voice. These works include two symphonies, three string quartets and four one-act music dramas. (Prior to focusing on composition, I was active as an improvising saxophonist.) Beginning in January 1985, I started composing directly for my pre-MIDI system, which consisted of a single computer and three sound modules: one for pitches and rhythms, one for dynamic control, and one for tempo control. In December 1985, I presented my first concert of this music at Saint Peter’s Church in Manhattan, and also appeared on WNYC FM. Since then I have given numerous concerts and live radio broadcasts in New York, Hawaii and California.
In 1989, I began composing for my new MIDI system, which consists of a single multi-timbral sound module and one computer. At the time of this writing, I have completed 108 pieces. Seven of the works on this recording are among this most recent body of compositions. I also began transcribing the 144 compositions I wrote for the pre-MIDI system into MIDI format. Three of these transcriptions are included here: Gift, Trembling Flowers and Pictures On the Wall. The former two works employ a pitched timbre which roughly approximates the mono-timbral sound of my pre-MIDI system.
Gift and Trembling Flowers were composed in New York. Delayed Response, Pink Candle, Pictures On the Wall and Haunted Trees were done in Maui. Pilgrim, Summer Streams and Painted Birds were worked on in Beverly Hills.
- Michael Robinson, July 1991, Beverly Hills
© 1991 Michael Robinson All rights reserved
Year composed: 1991
Ensemble type: Electronic Instruments and Sound Sources:Live Electronic Sound Sources
Instrumentation: ,1 Computer/Laptop soloist(s), ,1 Sampler (Keyboard/Other) soloist(s)
Instrumentation notes: A computer and sound module are programmed to perform the fully notated composition in real time. Painted Birds is voiced with samples of the following acoustical timbres using equal temperment tuning: harmonica, steel drums, clarinet, violin, tuba, water bells, recorder and percussion.