Pete remarks in Guardian

Brian Cady brianinatlanta2001 at
Wed Mar 28 21:00:54 CDT 2007

>From the Technology section of The Guardian:,,2044599,00.html 

Stars compose new ways to use music 
Hamish Mackintosh 
Thursday March 29, 2007 

As well as making an impassioned plea for more live music over the net at the recent SXSW music festival in Texas, The Who guitarist Pete Townshend announced his first foray into the world of software with the launch of Lifehouse Method. The music-creation software realises an idea from his long-running Lifehouse project. 

According to Townshend, it "takes data you input and turns that into music. I began thinking it might be possible to use software to do this about 20 years ago when I first got a Mac and software like M, Jam Factory and Music Mouse. These were programs that produced random music from limited data you put in." 

Townshend's excursion into software creation followed on from a conversation with the mathematician and composer Lawrence Ball and the software engineer Dave Snowdon, who made him aware that harmonic maths could facilitate the Lifehouse Method software he'd envisaged previously. Fine - but to what end? 

"There are a lot of possibilities," muses Townshend. "However, widely shared software tends to evolve through its use (or abuse) by the end user. Google transformed the entire web by creating a search engine that simply grades the listings to those most chosen by browsers. 

"Wikipedia was an experiment in which end users could add lie after lie to a topic until someone came along and battled with them to establish the truth - or at least a compromise. The public define the way the software evolves and works. I hope the Method system will evolve. I like the idea of gathering data in new ways, of merging compositions with one another, but all guided by the Method community."... 

...But as Pete Townshend replied when asked what music software he uses: "Everything that is available. I try everything. As an old-fashioned musician who also loves technology I feel I have the best of both worlds - the most important thing is to keep an open mind, to inspiration and new ideas." 

-Brian in Atlanta 
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