How Music Works: David Byrne
Where: New York Public Library—Stephen A. Schwarzman Building
476 Fifth Ave.
917-275-6975 Price: $25
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In How Music Works, Byrne explores how profoundly music is shaped by its time and place, and how the advent of recording technology in the twentieth century forever changed our relationship to playing, performing, and listening to music.
Writing as historian, anthropologist, raconteur and social scientist, Byrne searches for patterns and shows how they have affected his own work over the years with Talking Heads and his many collaborations with the likes of Brian Eno and Caetano Veloso. Byrne sees music as part of a larger, almost Darwinian pattern of adaptations and responses to its cultural and physical context. His range is panoptic, taking us from Wagnerian opera houses to African villages, from his earliest high school reel-to-reel recordings to his latest work in a home music studio, with all the big studios in between.