Chipmusic

The Sound of Playing on CHIPFLIP

Thought provoking (but old) paper on the makeup of chiptune artists, carefully dissected by goto80. Great read!

In 2007 Alex Yabsley (dot.ay) made an ethnographic study of the chiptune community, which is available online: The Sound of Playing. This may be very old news, but since it is 39 pages I wanted to give it some attention and mention some of the parts I liked in particular. I hope you don’t mind that I bring out your old university work, Alex! : )

He made interviews or questionnaires for 7 participants from the UK, Sweden, and USA, and also did participatory studies of 8bitcollective and micromusic.net. Statistically speaking, seven people is not representative for a large subculture, but that is usually not the point with a qualitative study anyway. I think Alex rightly generalizes some of the results.

* Chip music composers usually talk about limitations when they motivate why they make chip music, and secondly about timbre. Newcomers seem instead to talk about this culture being “fresh and new”, what Alex describes as cultural reasoning rather than musical creative reason. No one really talks about videogames. Far from everyone has a background with making alternative electronic music.

via The Sound of Playing: « CHIPFLIP.

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