We can learn a lot from artists who put their connection to the natural world at the center of their practice — like David Rothenberg. David is a clarinetist famous for his live performance collaborations not only with other brilliant musicians, but also with birds, insects and whales. Few people have gone as deep into considering the meaning of animal sounds, or their musicality, as David. He is now releasing his latest endeavor, Nightingales in Berlin — which includes a music recording, a book and a film. As Ken and David discuss on the show, the Nightingale’s song has its own personality, volition, and temperament. They prove to be provocative collaborators, as you’ll hear towards the end of the program, when we play a piece from the new album. It’s wonderful stuff.
David Rothenberg has written and performed on the relationship between humanity and nature for many years. He is the author of Why Birds Sing, on making music with birds, which was turned into a documentary by the BBC. His next book, Thousand Mile Song, about making music with whales, became a film for French television. His book on insects and music, Bug Music, has been covered in the New Yorker, the Wall St Journal, the New York Times, on PBS News Hour and on Radiolab. As a composer and jazz clarinetist, Rothenberg has sixteen CDs out under his own name, including a record on ECM with Marilyn Crispell, called One Dark Night I Left My Silent House. And he is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy and Music at the New Jersey Institute of Technology.
You can find more about David at http://www.davidrothenberg.net.