Pauline Oliveros

The Wanderer

imprec141   CD

This is the first time The Wanderer has been made available on cd after over 20 years out of print. Included as a bonus track is a lengthy live recording of Oliveros with David Tudor that was discovered on the reels during the digital transfer! Remastered from the original analog tapes by Carl Saff.

Utterly essential document of early American minimalism from this pioneering composer. The Wanderer is the sister record to Accordion & Voice also available on cd from Important.

The Wanderer is based on a single modal scale (B C# D D# E F# G#) and rhythmic modes based on a meter consisting of ¾ and 3/8. Part I, Song, is intended to explore the unique resonant qualities of accordion reeds through long sounds. Subtle variations come about from differences in tuning and air pressure. Part II, Dance, demonstrates the sharp accenting power of the accordion bellows in a mixture of cross rhythms characteristic of jigs, reels, batucadas, Bulgars, klezmer forms, Cajun dances, and music of other diverse cultures.

The Wanderer was composed in November, 1982 especially for the Springfield Accordion Orchestra, directed by Sam Falcetti. This recording documents The Wanderer''s world premiere, as it was performed 27 January, 1983 at Marymount Manhattan Theatre. The orchestra consists of twenty accordions, two bass accordions, and five percussion, with Pauline Oliveros as soloist, Sam Falcetti conducting.

Horse Sings From Cloud, written in 1975, is one of Oliveros'' best known works. Like most of her Sonic Meditations, it can be performed vocally and/or instrumentally, solo or in collaboration. A solo version of Horse Sings From Cloud has been recorded on Accordion & Voice. An early version of the score reads, “Sustain a tone or sound until any desire to change it disappears. When there is no longer any desire to change the tone or sound, then change it.” This time, Horse Sings From Cloud is performed in ensemble. Joining Pauline Oliveros on bandoneion are Heloise Gold on Harmonium, Julia Haines on accordion, and Linda Montano on concertina. This quartet version incorporates the microtonal differences in tuning of the selected instruments, creating shimmering reed sounds somewhat similar to the shimmering of a Balinese gamelan.


1. Duo For Accordion & Bandoneon

2. The Wanderer

3. Horse Sings From Cloud


“A quixotic body of work that seems to hover -- like that of John Cage, to whom she is often compared -- somewhere in the interstices among composition, philosophy, religion and self-help.” -San Francisco Chronicle

"Her solo accordion work "Rattlesnake Mountain" was a simple, haunting melody over a pulsating drone. Few composers can summon such gentle majesty from this instrument." -New York Times

"Oliveros' music makes you listen afresh to the simplest sounds." New York Times "A particularly beautiful example of experimentalism --- genuine musical individuality." -New York Times

"On some level, music, sound consciousness and religion are all one, and she would seem to be very close to that level." -New York Times


also by this artist


Eliane Radigue, Pauline Oliveros, Yoshi Wada, Sun Circle

Attention Patterns

Pauline Oliveros

Accordion & Voice


Eleh / Pauline Oliveros

The Beauty Of The Steel Skeleton / Drifting Depths


Pauline Oliveros & Michael T Bullock

Accordion To Bass


Pauline Oliveros

Reverberations: Tape & Electronic Music 1961-1970

Deep Listening Band

Great Howl At Town Haul


Deep Listening Band

Octagonal Polyphony


Pauline Oliveros Oscillator Dial Shirt


Pauline Oliveros And Connie Crothers

Live At The Stone


Pauline Oliveros

Reverberations I

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