I am a Manhattan-born drummer, composer, and sound artist currently residing in New York City after finishing my Bachelor of Arts in Electronic and Experimental Music at Bard College in May, 2017.
I am mesmerized by psychoacoustics and constantly question whether concentration is enough to distinguish the origin of each sonic element. My sound art and electronic music explore the physical phenomena of sound and human auditory perception. To emphasize the necessity of focus drumming requires, my work strives to accentuate not only the ear as a musical instrument, but also the innate correlation between the machinery of the human body and rhythm.
My interest in electronic compositions and rhythmic patterns relies on the dichotomy between hearing as passive reception and listening as active concentration. I often use the acoustic impression of low frequency binaural beats and high-pitched, dynamic tones from the ear canal to evoke a particularization of rhythm. The sonic intervals of sweeping, intricately overlapping sound patterns are heard and felt in a rhythmic resonance throughout the body. Not only does this bring attention to the sounds and their polyrhythms, but it also evokes an internal bodily response that the listener is forced to confront.
By utilizing sound as both a form of art and as a medium, my immersive installations and performances benefit from sonic distraction to investigate the body as an instrument and listening device. One thing each of my works includes is the trope of attention and hearing, both lost and retrieved, as if the listener must reassemble a strayed train of thought.
In many ways, my interest in interactive and experimental spaces has been informed by my seeking to create a dialogue between sound and art. For my senior thesis, I first built a large-scale ear canal that emitted an aural architecture of ear-borne tones in a sound installation, later producing a live performance accompanied by instruments and sound spectra to create auditory and rhythmic illusions. While orchestrating events of this magnitude instilled in me an attention to detail and an ability to multitask, installing and performing required creative and innovative thinking, self-management, initiative, and a strong work ethic. Not only was I analytical in discerning my project’s achievability within a time frame, but also in valuing its perception.
In the past, I created analog electronics that transmit the waves of the brain and heart into rhythm used live in musical pieces, For my senior thesis at Bard College, I first built a large-scale ear canal that emitted an aural architecture of ear-borne tones in a sound installation. I executed the second part of my senior thesis as a live performance accompanied by instruments and sound spectra to create auditory and rhythmic illusions: all original compositions were played by myself on drums, self-made digital software, and analog electronics, to further investigate the internal perception of sound by surveying auditory and rhythmic illusions.
Managing my time as the office and operations manager of Tom Tom Magazine, a temporary office coordinator at Datadog, and the personal assistant to Greg Fox and Colin Stetson has taught me time management and strong organizational skill. In my past positions, I performed general administrative duties such as: organizing calendars, updating websites and establishing social media presences, and advancing performances. As an apprentice at One Thousand Birds, I observed the sound design, mixing, and interactive elements of film, TV, and commercial works. A previous internship at Northside Media Group allowed me to participate in the administration of a music festival: from event planning and social networking outreach to installation and artist assistance. Interning at FatCat Records and the Silent Barn prior to Northside provided me with experience in communication and online service management for the marketing and promotion of artists, and an awareness of non-profit administration through artist correspondence and program organization.
After a residency in electro-acoustic composition at the Atlantic Center for the Arts in February-March, 2018 with Robert Normandeau focusing on sound localization and spatialization, I am currently in Client Services as the Studio Assistant for Duotone Audio Group.
All photographs by Amanda Hakan.