Twenty years ago music, technology and recording had only limited points of contact. As we approach the millennial flip-over they have, like many other areas of human endevour, expanded to the point where their edges now overlap, creating a complex boundary known as Music Technology. In the wake of this process comes the need for a boundary book.
This is intended to be such a book, It is not a glossary of music, nor is it a glossary of technology or recording, It is a guide to the twisting pathways through the territory where these three disciplines meet.
I have tried to write a book that will give the studio musician a clearer understanding of the fast-evolving language of Music Technology. It is becoming increasingly necessary for musicians to understand MIDI and mixing desks, for computer users to understand the principals of musical performance and sampling, and for sound engineers to understand the microprocessors and musical notation. If you are entering this territory, then this book is aimed at you.
When it first occurred to me to write a glossary, I undertook a little market research. There was nothing then tha covered all three areas. Without producing a book the size of a telephone directory, it would be impossible to give comprehensive coverage of all the terms encompassed by the individual disciplines of music, techonology, and recording. My criterion for selection has been to define those terms most likely to be encounted by the studio musician. Thus, you will not find biographies of composersm descriptions of acoustic instrumentsm wiring diagrams of computer circuits or the layout of outside broadcast vans. Information on all of these may be found in separatem more specialised publications.
In picking up this book, you will have noticed that it is cast in paper not in stone. Words change their precise meaning and usage and, although I have tried to reflect "state of the art" thinking at the timre of writing, there are bound to be divergances and omissions which I would hope to remedy in future editions.
I would like to take this oppotunity to thank the many firends and professional colleagues who have helped and encoureged this endevour and, in particular, Dr Roger Beeson, Andy Smithm Eric and John Welch and Elizabeth Wolton. Thanks are also due to my wife, Helen, for her indulgence and support.
May all beings communicate peace.
Godric Wilkie, London, 1993, 1997 ©
Using the Studio Musicians' Jargonbuster - a dictionary of music techonology
Entries that inlcude the words "Italian for" invariably refer to terms found in musical notation. Those that mention the word "message" are terms wich form part of the MIDI specification. Readers who are new to MIDI will be relieved to know that software, such as sequencer programmes, will generally shield the user from much of this highly technical information, at least for more basic work. However, byte values for the various messages do sometimes need to be input by the user. These hav been given in decimal numbers, rather than hexadecimal notation - a conversion chart is included on page 113.
When additional information may be found under some different heading entries inlude a reference to see also the topic concerned. Within each entry, words tha have been capitalized are generally termsi whtat may be looked up elsewhere in the book. If there is more thanone definition for a particular term, these cross-references may be followed by a superscript to indicate the particular meaning intended.
Current trade names have generally been omitted, except where they are used in a wider sense, such as ADAT or Portastudio.
A very small number of definitions ar not intended to be taken too seriously, but are there to break the monotony for those who insist on reading clossaries from cover to cover,
For readers who woul like to use the book to explore a certain area, a route map is printed on pages 114-115. This shows key entries for a number of important topics, many of which have further cross references in the text. Although the coverage of the chart cannot be comprehensive, it may help the reader to navigate more effectively than could be offered by random plunging into the complete alphabetical listing.