Talking With. . .
A Different Drummer
Musician Todd Rundgren has made a career out of
being an iconoclast. In his 1972 album Something/Anything?,
he sang all the vocals and played all the instruments.
Soon afterward, he says, he began to see
the potential of "using computers to change the way
music is experienced." Two decades later, Rundgren, who is now
47 and living in San Francisco, has fulfilled that vision with his
new album, The Individualist.
When did you first start using computers?When I was still in high school, around 1965. I was interested
in all sorts of technical things, like robots and rocket ships. You
needed a computer to build a robot. They used computers at the telephone
billing office not too far from my high school. So I used to go there
and hang around.
How did you get the idea to put music videos on the computer?Upon hearing a song, the average person creates an emotional picture.
Music evokes a specific line of imagery. I wanted to reinforce that by doing
visualizations of the music.
What kinds of things will music fans be able to do on their computers in
the future?Eventually, with the interactive music CD, you will be able to specify
how you would like the music performed. For instance, if you like the
instruments, you can listen to an entirely instrumental version of the
album. The only limitation will be how much music you can stand to listen to.
Back to the Todd Rundgren
Temporary Sanity Refuge