Jack Tamul ‘Electro/Acoustic’

Jack Tamul 'Electro/Acoustic' front cover
Jack Tamul 'Electro/Acoustic' back cover

US composer Jack Tamul, born 1948, Providence, Rhode Island, studied classical music composition in the 1960s before moving to electronic and computer music in the early 1970s, first in Jacksonville Univ., Florida, then in Finland under Einojuhani Rautavaara and at the Finnish Radio Electronic Music studios. From then on he composed electronic music for radio or TV broadcasts, film soundtracks, as well as incidental music for museums and planetariums of the Southeast. Working from a recording studio in Jacksonville, Tamul was able to pursue his research in acoustic vs electronic music, writing a Symphony for orchestra and synthesizer, for instance, and computer-assisted, multimedia projects for dance or poetry settings of William R. Strickland’s writings. Lately, he teamed up with James T. Miller to release 2 CDs about the Everglades, featuring baritone singer, chorus, electronics and field recordings of natural sounds. In 1979, Spectrum Records released William Strickland’s An Electronic Visit to the Zoo and Sound Hypnosis (posted on Lunar Atrium). Gershon Kingsley and Philip Springer contributed synthesizer arrangements to another Strickland disc, ‘William R. Strickland Is Only the Name’ LP [date?].

'Electro/Acoustic' LP side AElectro/Acoustic consists of a succession of powerful tracks build from dense layers of sustained, electronic sounds, with occasional addition of a chorus. The uneasy, even menacing electronic sounds recall The Hafler Trio or Lustmord, while, on the first 2 tracks, the addition of a chorus brings the music closer to Ligeti’s vocal music (Rautavaara also wrote a lot of choral music), the pre-recorded Florida Junior College chorus parts being submitted to radical sound processing and studio effects. All compositions are rather imposing in their style and impressive in the ability with which Jack Tamul mixes massive drones, endless loops and rich keyboard sounds from his Prophet V, Arp 2600 and Moog synths. Some of this music is clearly ahead of its time.

Jack Tamul Electro/Acoustic:

01 Genesis (6:33)
02 Lament for Gettysburg (8:10)
03 Canon Cancrizans (5:05)
04 Fantasia (6:32)
05 Mogul (6:55)
06 Wave Rhapsody (6:30)

Total time 40mns
LP released by Spectrum Records, USA, 1980


Jack Tamul’s discography (tbc):

  • ‘Electro/Acoustic’ LP, Spectrum Records, 1980
  • ‘CURA’ CD, JTM Studios, 1997
  • w/ James T .Miller ‘Pahayokee: A Plea for Life’, CD, 2007
  • w/ James T .Miller  ‘Voices of Everglades National Park’, CD, 2007

10 Responses to “Jack Tamul ‘Electro/Acoustic’”

  1. 1 NRC January 22, 2010 at 7:22 pm

    Whoa, this looks great. Another killer post!

  2. 2 continuo January 22, 2010 at 8:17 pm

    You’re welcome.

  3. 3 Dave M January 23, 2010 at 3:47 am

    I remember this one – thanks!

  4. 4 continuo January 23, 2010 at 8:16 am

    Then you have a good memory, Dave! This one is 30 years old.

  5. 5 Dave M January 24, 2010 at 3:02 am

    Well, yes, but I didn’t hear it *immediately* upon release … Still, 30 years? How time flies when you’re getting old.

  6. 6 continuo January 24, 2010 at 9:34 am

    Don’t you know a blogger is never getting old, Dave?

  7. 7 Jack Tamul December 28, 2011 at 10:20 pm

    This is Jack! I was looking for a contact in Finland and this page came up on my google search. I still have a few of these LP’s. It’s hard to imagine it has been 30 years.

  8. 8 continuo December 29, 2011 at 12:50 am

    Hi, Jack. Congratulations for the great music on this disc.

  9. 9 Jack Tamul December 30, 2011 at 10:39 pm

    Thanks…I still spending all my days composing. I haven’t been very active with getting material out on media sites but that’s my new years resolution.
    Happy New Year

  10. 10 Bill Ectric March 14, 2015 at 4:46 pm

    Here’s an old videotape I recorded of Jack Tamul and Arvid Smith in Jacksonville, FL.

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