Artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White present a series of experimental events exploring the sonic potentials of materials gleaned from the edges of the public domain. Simpson and White have sourced a range of songs from early commercial releases that are currently subject to a conflict in copyright status through a split in ownership between lyrics and musical composition. Manuscripts and recordings have been edited, redacted, cut-up and processed to suppress copyright-secured elements and enable the release of public domain layers from the proprietary control of commercial publishers. Invited guests process the collected material through short live performances.
This hauntological experiment plugs into the beginnings of the recording industry at a time when emerging models of peer-to-peer distribution and collaborative production are urgently problematising established notions around the authorship, ownership and distribution of culture.
The material generated for the project forms the basis of a soundtrack for the artists’ ambitious upcoming film Auditory Learning.
The Song Division performances will be broadcast live on thisistomorrow.info