Resonant Thoughts: On Dominic Pettman’s “Sonic Intimacy”


“An interesting pedagogic exercise in sonic economics: identify and attend to the most prominent voices of capital. At the time of this writing, candidates might be Rupert Murdoch, Donald Trump, Christine Lagarde, Kanye West, Taylor Swift, Jeff Bezos, Elon Musk, and so on. Toward the other end of the spectrum: a humming child laborer in Bangladesh, the hoarse cry of a teen mercenary in Angola, the exhausted but perky voice of a telemarketer in the Philippines, or the impoverished and wheezing welcome of a Walmart greeter in Ohio. Thinking beyond the human voices of capital, we might include the squeal of a factory-farm pig, the boot-up sound of a Mac computer, the chime of Big Ben, the opening bell on Wall Street, or the ping of a black-box flight recorder from the bottom of the ocean.”

-Dominic Pettman, Sonic Intimacy (2017), p. 102, n.26.

2 thoughts on “Resonant Thoughts: On Dominic Pettman’s “Sonic Intimacy”

  1. Fascinating as always… An idea for a future post: individual vs group in music-making. Would love to hear your ruminations on this, as there are many angles for the binary distinction – soloist vs rhythm section, singer vs drummer, song vs album, note v vs melody, superstar vs fans, harmony vs melody, point vs counterpoint, personal connection vs universal appeal…

    1. A wonderful idea Tom! I’ll give this a thinking-through and maybe a whirl. Thanks for your comment…

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