COMMENT BY JOHN GULLAK
On Friday, June 27 , the owner of the metal scavenging yard across the street dropped by our offices. This was no casual visit. There was something on his mind and he wanted to speak to me. He made reference to the loud noises which were at that moment resounding off the side of his building and echoing through the block. He mentioned that these noises were coming from our roof. Some explanation was in order.
What he said was almost true. Yes, there were what he described as "loud noises" coming from our roof, emanating from a large public address system installed the night before. But I had to explain this was serious business, not just noise. In reality, what he was listening to were specially prepared sound tapes made by various people and sent to us specifically for broadcast that day. The event, entitled "Public Hearing One", was sponsored by Another Room.
Miniature version of original poster:
ANOTHER ROOM PRESENTS: PUBLIC HEARING THE PUBLIC HEARING, AN EXPLANATION:
On Wednesday, June 27 1980, the audio-industrial din that permeates our offices on 18th street in Oakland will be continuously accompanied by electronically stimulated sound waves generated by a 3,000 watt public address system located on the roof of these offices. We are now soliciting the submission of sound tapes (no punk rock please) to broadcast for the PUBLIC HEARING. Individual pieces can be no longer than two minutes and there is no limit to the number of pieces you may submit. Send tapes plus one dollar per tape (for return postage and handling) to" Public Hearing, s/o Another Room, 1640 18th Street, Oakland CA., 94607.
I was surprised he hadn't paid us an earlier visit. We had been broadcasting similar sounds since 6 am that morning. It was now noon. When he found out we were only half way through the program, he didn't appear too happy. Most of the tapes we played blended in with the other sounds in our neighborhood, but some were a little disturbing. They weren't exactly something you'd want to hear when you were trying to give your driver instructions over the phone. Our neighbor had no grounds for complaint though. His business is responsible for much of the industrial din that invades our offices and becomes a way of life here. We feel if we have to live with it, we should be able to make our contribution. If you think some of the local bands are loud, you should hear two tons of scrap metal hit the pavement. It gives you new insights into your audio threshold.
By now you should be wondering what types of tapes were sent us, but, with such limited space, all I can say is you had to be there. Some of the artists who participated were: Jim Nisbet, Marina LaPalma, Ana Conda, D & V. Carothers, Nancy Mass Mosen, Puzzling Evidence, Jim Friedman, Pink Noise Studios and many many more. Most of you must be saying to yourselves, "Hmmm....no one i've heard of." That's the point. Few people have heard of these artists, much less have heard the work they produce. If you do performance art in the Bay Area, you're lucky. You have a pretty good choice of spaces to present what you do. But in the Bay Area, an ever growing number of people are working with sounds and making tapes with them. A lot of the work is of a remarkable quality. But no matter how good, there is no established outlet they can use to reach the public. It's an unfortunate situation, one that Another Room is trying to change.
On Halloween 1980 we will present "Public Hearing Two." Same location, same format and, like last time, there will be a 12 hour Risk marathon for recreation in the War Room. Hopefully by then some of the radio stations we've approached will accept some active participation with us. There will be more information in the next issue. Until then, mark your calendars and get to work on those tapes. P.S. KEEP THOSE LETTERS COMING! p. 2