Beginning Csound with Boulanger

Dr. Richard Boulanger, Professor of Music Synthesis at the Berklee College of Music, is the author of two beginner guides for Csound. The first is An Instrument Design TOOTorial, which gives a quick and thorough introduction to the Csound Language. The second is Introduction to Sound Design in Csound, which is practically a book in itself even though it is just the first chapter of The Csound Book.

A fact worth mentioning is that Dr. B composed the very first Csound composition, Trapped In Convert. The piece was originally written in 1979 using a music language called MUSIC 11, the precursor to Csound. In 1986, Trapped was ported to Csound. In a 2003 interview conducted by Michael Baxter, Dr. B describes what compiling music was like in those early days, “Back in 1979, it took hours to render each sound and gesture, days to render each phrase and section, and weeks to render the entire four and a half minute piece – at 24K! Today, at 44.1K, ‘Trapped in Convert’ renders in realtime on virtually any PC.”

Synthesis Fall 2010

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