“This is written for the purpose, necessity and desire to be original at all times.” So says Matthew Herbert in his Personal Contract for the Composition of Music [incorporating the Manifesto of Mistakes], available in full (along with sound clips) at his website Magic and Accident. Herbert (one of his several personas) is an original electronic musician with strong forays into both the DJ and jazz worlds. Well-known for taking normal, mundane objects – such as chip bags and kitchen appliances – and sampling them into refined and coherent music, Herbert’s PCCOM offers twelve interesting points – such as:
2. Only sounds that are generated at the start of the compositional process or taken from the artist’s own previously unused archive are available for sampling. The use of, ordering and manipulation of noise-sound is to be held as the highest priority in composition.
5. The inclusion, development, propagation, existence, replication, acknowledgement, rights, patterns and beauty of what are commonly known as accidents, is encouraged. Furthermore, they have equal rights within the composition as deliberate, conscious, or premeditated compositional actions or decisions.