Milton Babbitt

Babbitt, at system

Happy Birthday Milton!

Just found out while streaming David Garland during dinner that today [for another half hour at least] is Milton Babbitt's 88th birthday.

Hope you're still up and maybe Googling, guy!

What a treasure, and what a delight to have him around us.

A composer who asserts something such as: "I don't compose by system, but by ear" thereby convicts himself of ... equating ignorance with freedom, that is, by equating ignorance of the constraints under which he creates with freedom from constraints. ...A musical theory must provide... a model for determinate and testable statements about musical compositions.
- Milton Babbitt, "The Structure and Function of Musical Theory"
Okay, It still bothers me to know how much he loves American musicals, but nobody's perfect.

[both image and quote from Camille Goudeseune]