Broadcasting in Exile from the TOWER of SONG— "Somewhere Else" Radio
This page is to aid listeners to "see what I mean" by the Tower of Song (both visually through the images and cognitively through the ideas).
Note: The "Gypsy Scholar," as a radio handle, isn't meant to claim the host of this program is a professional scholar; only an amateur scholar (with an advanced degree) working in radio as a "public intellectual," who aspires to Orphic Scholarship. In the same way, the Tower of Song is not a finished product, but is a structure that is a work-in-progress, built up program after program.
Program airs Mondays 12 to 3 a.m.
Here you will find the Re-Vision Radio's Manifesto & Visionary Recital
Tower of Song
is now ascending over the horizon--broadening your radio horizon--from the Invisible Landscape on the banks of the Neptunian
"River of Dreams ... in the Middle of the Night"
"I know I'm searching for something Something so undefined That it can only be seen By the eyes of the blind In the middle of the night"
--the TOWER OF SONG
(Not held together by common mortar, but by music & dreams. Some ancient authorities claim that its Orphic architecture is "frozen music").
River of Dreams
Re-VisionRadio’s Tower of Song, as a type of “underground radio,” is a "Soul-making" program from the "invisible landscape,” and thus"Somewhere Else" Radio. And that "somewhere else" for which we long—"My haunt" (W.W.) or "My retreat and view" (V.M.)—is (in the GS's idiom) the TOWER OF SONG.
“… Initiation into depths, but also into longing, and this will not, should not, ever cease. This longing keeps us in proximity to our souls. It reminds us, as we conscientiously go through the obligations and activities of every day, that there is a place, a "somewhere else" where we also belong and need to go to from time to time. We are reminded of this place by a sentence we read in a newspaper, a picture on a subway wall, a memory brought to life by a smell, [a piece of dialogue from a movie that speaks to us, a beautiful face that haunts our dreams, a passage from a book taken randomly off the shelf] or by a song we hear on the radio …” ~Jan Bauer
Troubadour of Knowledge: “a man so empowered by the spirit of knowledge that he invites miracles" (or miraculous synchronicities of Argument & Song).
Because Philosophy is (according to Plato) a form of “play”—an artistic endeavor—, it has the possibility of making the student of philosophy a kind of artist, an "Orphic Scholar," who is distinguished by his or her ability “to play with knowledge and create a collage of ideas or intellectual mind-jazz.” Thus the Gypsy Scholar converts conventional scholarship into scholarship as performance art (what William Blake called "Mental Studies & Performances" of "Argument & Song")—not from the Ivory Tower but from “that tower down the track,” the Tower of Song. Through his Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack, the Gypsy Scholar presents a Musekal Philosophy, discovering the music in ideas and the ideas in music; a philosophy that is musical and, conversely, a music that is philosophical. The Gypsy Scholar's scholarship as performance art is designed to make academic philosophy sound more musical, so that popular music will sound more philosophical. Thus, in the TOWER OF SONG, philosophical essays in the form of the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack aspire to the condition of music; to the condition of music translated into words.
“Here we have demonstrated the one possible relationship between poetry and music, word and tone: word, image, and idea seek a metaphorical expression analogous to music and now feels in itself the power of music. In this sense we can distinguish two main streams in the history of the language of the Greek people: language which imitates appearance and images and language which imitates the world of music.” ~Nietzsche. The Birth of Tragedy Out of the Spirit of Music.
RE-VISION RADIO’s RE-VISION RADIO’s TOWER OF SONG, hosted by the Gypsy Scholar & Bohemian Essayist, is a Musical & Philosophical-Literary program dedicated to the "life of the mind" and broadcast—"in the middle of the night"—from an imaginal window on your radio dial, 90.7-fm, KSQD. The Tower of Song "music'" program is an eclectic, free-form radio program (looking back to Sixties "underground radio") that falls between the cracks of traditional radio formats, with either "information" or "music" programs. Combing the two formats, the program seeks to both inform/educate and entertain.The Gypsy Scholar, practicing "scholarship as performance art" in a rhapsodic (rhapsōidia) way, presents his Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack which, in mixing (or rhapsodically stitching together) the spoken word with music (Argument & Song; high argument with deep song, high academic culture with low popular culture), allows the Gypsy Scholar to "rave on words on printed page." This dialectical relationship between Argument & Song means that the prose essay contributes gravitas to popular song and, alternatively, popular song gives wings to the essay, composing a Musekal Philosophy by way of the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack. However, in mixing and remixing Argument & Song (highbrow academic culture with lowbrow pop-culture), the program comes to listeners not from the Ivory Tower but from "that tower down the track"—the Tower of Song. Because the concept behind the Tower of Song program is Re-Vision Radio, it means that this "music" program is (like the "concept" rock album) a "concept" radio program, featuring the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack (conceptual: "unified by a theme, which can be instrumental, compositional, narrative, or lyrical"). Thus, it's a program that deals in Ideas—the ideas in music and the music in ideas. In this sense, because of the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack, it's a "music" program that doesn't just play songs—it showcases songs; con-text-ualizes them so that listeners will hear familiar songs in a new way. And the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack also means that there’s an essay waiting to be unpacked in a song and, conversely, a song waiting to be evoked out of an essay. The concept of Re-Vision Radio means that the Tower of Song program is (a) radio itself seen in a different way (re-vision) and (b) radio designed in an audio-visual way (vision). Thus, the Tower of Song website is an integral part of the broadcast, with thematic images that are synergistic with the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack. Re-Vision Radio's Tower of Song program looks back in a new way to old-time radio—radio as "Theater of the Imagination"—, making Re-Vision Radio the alternative radio concept that lets you see what it means. Therefore, the goal of the Gypsy Scholar's "music" program is to transport its listeners, "in the middle of the night," into that great architectural "acoustic space" of song—the TOWER OF SONG.
“Oh let my Lamp at midnight hour / Be seen in some high Lonely Towr, / Where I may oft out-watch the Bear, / With thrice great Hermes.” (Milton) "In the lonely, dead of midnight / In the dimness, of the twilight / By the streetlight, by the lamplight .... / And I'm workin', on the insight." (Van Morrison)
The Gypsy Scholar & Bohemian Essayist(a.k.a. DJ Orfeo, "Radio Master of Ceremonies")--with a flower in one hand (or name) and a sword in the other--is tied to this table and paying his rent every day by broadcasting (in his capacity of "Minister of Information & Culture" for the Romantic "Visionary Company"and "Ringers in the Tower") in exilefrom the Ivory Tower to "that tower down the track"--the Tower of Song.
"And twenty-seven angels From the Great Beyond They tied me to this table In the Tower of Song . . . And I'm paying my rent every day In the Tower of Song."
The goal of the Gypsy Scholar’sOrphic Essay-with-Soundtrackgoes beyond just listening to a song; the goal is to have listeners enter completely into a Great Song (not just listen to it from the outside), which, metaphorically speaking, means to find and enter completely into the TOWER OF SONG.
The Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack fulfills the ideal of a radio program. It's mentally stimulating and emotionally satisfying and, therefore, unites the mind and the heart.
"Music that can deepest reach." ―Ralph Waldo Emerson, Essays
“music heard so deeply That it is not heard at all, but you are the music While the music lasts.” ― T.S. Eliot, Collected Poems
“Everything in me feels fluttering and free, like I could take off from the ground at any second. Music, I think, he makes me feel like music.” ―Lauren Oliver, Before I Fall
Give a listen to the Gypsy Scholar's (60-sec) program promo-spots.
The Gypsy Scholar hopes you will be within the sound of his voice at 12 am
In the lonely, dead of midnight In the dimness, of the twilight By the streetlight, by the lamplight . . . In the sunlight, in the daylight And I'm workin', on the insight . . . (Van Morrison)
"Day Surrendering Unto Night"
If you can't sleep at night and are “searching for something / something so undefined” (outside the usual formats of radio programming), then the Gypsy Scholar invites you on this radio-journey “in the middle of the night,” because “everybody knows” what you're really searching for in Radioland: “The Invisible Landscape.” So come along and let the Gypsy Scholar help you find and enter ... the Tower of Song.
The Tower of Song is the free-form radio program that creates what avant-garde media theory calls an “acoustic space”—a radio space of “auditory surrealism”—that falls in between the cracks of traditional community radio programming; in between informational and musical formats. The Gypsy Scholar’s purpose, in presenting the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack, is to both entertain and edify (i.e.; inform, instruct, uplift, enlighten).
The Tower of Song, then, is the “music program” deals in Ideas—that mixes and remixes Music & Ideas; ideas embedded in music and music imbued with ideas—musical ideas. Through the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack, the Gypsy Scholar attempts to evoke ideas that resonate with music and, conversely, play music that under-stands ideas. In this sense, the Tower of Song program fulfills the ideal of a radio program: it's mentally stimulating and emotionally satisfying and, therefore, unites the mind and the heart. The Tower of Song is, then, the “music program” of Argument & Song whose “Musical Philosophy” means that it doesn't just play songs; it showcases songs.
GS's Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack creative process
Re-Vision Radio’s Tower of Song program is Rhapsodic
The Greek word for “rhapsody” (rhapsoidia) comes from rhaptein (to stitch) and oide (ode, song). (Another etymology has the word from rhaptein; to sew, stitch together + aidein to sing.) In ancient Greece, a rhapsode or rhapsodist was a professional reciter or singer. Ancient scholars connected the word rhapsoidos with the poetic act of sewing (rhaptein) the poem (oide). The word rhaptein was used to describe the act of poetic composition. Thus the rhapsode was a “stitcher of songs.” The common opinion today among classical scholars is that rhapsodes were reciters of the compositions of others (such as the epic poetry of Homer), which they consigned to memory. A rhapsode’s performance could be accompanied musically by the sound of the lyre or the aulos (a wind instrument with a double reed), or it could simply be declaimed. Again, the word rhapsode is derived from the Greek (ῥαψῳδός, rhapsōidos), a reciter of epic poetry: a rhapsodist.It came to be used in Europe by the 16th century as a designation for literary forms, not only epic poems, but also for collections of miscellaneous writings and, later (as in the era of Romanticism), any extravagant expression of sentiment or feeling.
The Tower of Song Program is rhapsodic in a double sense: (a) parts of its Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack are delivered in a heightened mode of speech or recitation (i.e., in a highly emotional utterance, in an effusively rapturous or extravagant discourse, in an effusively enthusiastic or ecstatic expression of feeling); (b) the music played out the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack evokes in the listener powerful feelings and emotional excitement or enthusiasm, which puts the listener in a state of overwhelming pleasure.
This characteristic of rhapsody is because of the the Gypsy Scholar & Bohemian Essayist's method of scholarship recognizes, in an age of academic postmodernism, the fragmentary nature of knowledge. Thus, the GS’s composition of the Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack consists in stitching together bits and pieces of information and song with corresponding images in order to artistically “play with knowledge and create a collage of ideas or intellectual mind-jazz.” The GS (riffing off of the philosophical jargon of Heidegger) would say that the stitched-togetherness of scholarly composition is, at its imaginative best, rhapsodic. The rhapsodical Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack comes out of stitching-together of Argument & Song.
(In the best of avant-garde, academic scholarship, this style of the fragmentary and stitched-togetherness is often structured textually in the aphoristic form of writing. This is because of the broken or fragmented state of epistemology and truth. “Aphorism, the form of the mad truth, the Dionysian form…. Broken flesh, broken mind, broken speech. Truth, a broken body: fragments, or aphorisms; as opposed to systematic form or methods. 'Aphorisms, representing a knowledge broken, do invite men to inquire further …. All knowledge is particular, goes into the natural man in bits, a scrap here a scrap there.'” ~N.O. Brown, Love’s Body)
The Tower of Song—“Not for everyone, but for madmen only.”
TheTower of Song—“not for everyone, but for madmen only”—is the radio program that puts its philosophy best in song—and, just maybe, puts you into theTower of Song, where “only the right guests meet.”
“‘What luck,’ I said, ‘to find myself here with you today!’ ‘Nothing ever happens by chance,’ he answered. ‘Here only the right guests meet. This is the Hermetic Circle.’” (Herman Hesse interview, 1961)
And about a radio program that's “not for everyone, but for madmen only,” it should be known that the Gypsy Scholar isn’t trying to do a program that will please everybody, but instead a program that creates its own unique niche of an audience.
“The present and the future are about getting a very loyal tribe on your side. I think this idea of being everything to everybody is a sort of old fashioned idea.” —Daryl Hall (of Hall & Oates, “Live from Daryl's House,” 10/15/11)
"Divinity" (L. Dyer)
Given that the Gypsy Scholar & Bohemian Essayist (as intellectual outsider) is in exile from the Ivory Tower and has moved to "that tower down the track"--the TOWER of SONG--, he stands outside the other dominator institutions of church and state, and thus stands with the"Romantic Outsiders"of history; on the side of the popular (outside academia), the profane (outside the temple) and the outlaw (outside the state)--taking his stand (as a "public intellectual" on radio) on the side of "Always Lost," the "Beautiful Losers" (the bohemian "Beats"), who carry on the eternal "Mental Fight."
Rouze Up, Oh Young People of the New Age! Set your foreheads against the ignorant Hirelings! For we have Hirelings in the Camp, the Court, & the University, who would, if they could, forever depress Mental & prolong Corporeal War. --William Blake
The Sixties Passion for (non-commercial) "Underground" FM Radio
Turn up your radio and let me hear the song Turn it up, turn it up, little bit higher, radio Turn it up, that's enough, so you know it's got soul Radio, radio turn it up, hum La, la, la, la ....
Listen Mr. DJ Won't you play me something slow Play me the songs For the lonely ones Play me something That I know.
Hey Mr. DJ I'm in a sad mood tonight Play me something just for me and my baby Won't you make everything alright.
I'm gonna turn it way down low Leave it on all night long Till the morning comes Like my lover my friend until the end And that special someone ...
Well, Mr. DJ I'm in a sad mood tonight Play me something for me and my darling Want you to make everything Alright ...
Well, Mr. DJ I just wanna hear Some rhythm and blues music On the radio On the radio On the radio Uh-uh, all right Uh-uh, all right....
And the music on the radio, and the music on the radio Has so much soul, has so much soul And you listen, in the nighttime While we're still and quiet And you look out on the water And the big ships, and the big boats Came on sailing by, by, by, by And you felt so good, and I felt so good Felt so good ....
As a former programmer (and head of the “KUSP Forward” committee to keep KUSP “community based”) once expressed about KUSP Community Radio (since 1972): “I love to be surprised. I got into radio because I have a passion for music and ideas, and celebrating what connects us. We need things that feed our souls. Let's hope this format is broad enough to encompass what we love.” (7/2016)
This could be about the Tower of Song program specifically. I mean, if the Tower of Song isn’t about “music and ideas” and “things that feed our souls” then I don’t know what is! Indeed, the Tower of Song is so innovative that it transcends the hard-and-fast dichotomy in “public radio” of “Information” programming on one side and “Music” programming on the other.
TOWER OF SONG
"Our High Romantic Argument"
RE-VISION RADIO’s TOWER OF SONG is a Musical & Philosophical-Literary program broadcast from an imaginal window on your radio dial from the TOWER OF SONG. It’s hosted by the Gypsy Scholar and Bohemian Essayist, with a flower in one hand (or name) and a sword in the other. TOWER OF SONG is a “Soul-making” program, because it’s essentially an “underworld perspective”—a seeing below surface appearances to the occult or symbolic truth of things. Thus, Everybody Knows, TOWER OF SONG is truly Underground Radio.
The RE-VISION RADIO’s TOWER OF SONG program—“not for everyone, but for madmen only”—is underwritten by its ancestral tutelary deities: Hermes-Mercury—Trickster-god of those radio communications and connecting synchronicities—and Our Dark Lady of the Romantic Tower of Song—Goddess-Muse of Eternal Wisdom & Wit and ancient lonely-tower libraries. TOWER OF SONG program is co-hosted by the Angel of Imagination & Music, along with its “twenty-seven angels from the great beyond” in hyperspace, where Ushahina, angel of the hours between midnight and the dawn, gets you on her wavelength.
The purpose of the RE-VISION RADIO’s TOWER OF SONG program is to help guide its listeners—“in the middle of the night”—in searching for, by following the song (the “song-lines” of the planet), and entering into that long-abandoned Romantic “Lonely Tower,” situated in that alternative mental dimension—the “invisible landscape.” “Oh let my Lamp at midnight hour / Be seen in some high Lonely Towr, / Where I may oft out-watch the Bear, / With thrice great Hermes.” (Milton) Because TOWER OF SONG is broadcast in the midnight hour from this ancient Tower of the (Romantic) “Visionary Company,” where “the poetic champions compose” (those Romantic “ringers in the tower”), you can hear “those funny voices” sing out: “You can call my love Sophia, / I call my love Philosophy.” And, since the beginning of real Philosophy is the “sense of wonder,” Everybody Knows that the “sense of wonder” with radio is all in the mind’s eye—radio as Theater of the Imagination—, making RE-VISION RADIO the alternative radio concept that lets you see what it means. And what it means, by way of the Romantic “Arts & Sciences of Imagination,” is that Golgonoozan “artifice of eternity”— The TOWER OF SONG.
This first part of the "Manifesto & Visionary Recital" is read (recited) on air at the first of each month. To read the entirety of the "Manifesto," click here
The Synergy of the Tower of Song's Radio Broadcast & Website
The relationship between the Tower of Song's radio broadcast and the Tower of Song's cyberspace website: they are integral parts of one another; they are synergistic.
synergistic relationship could be thought of in the following way: the synergy
is so integrated in mutual compatibility that you don't know when
experiencing it whether you are listening to a radio program that is
supplemented and enhanced by an internet website or, conversely, you are
looking at an internet website that is supplemented and enhanced by a
Though the fact is that the Gypsy Scholar's radio
program was on the air before the interlinking of radio with the
internet and therefore primary, it is nonetheless true that the
program's experimental and novel format of mixing the spoken word with
music logically lends itself to the innovational nature of the new
internet webcasting media. And the innovation for the Tower of Song radio program is not so much the spoken word as cyberspace "radio-text" as it is the image. Thus the Tower of Song's modus operandi,
the "Orphic Essay-with-Soundtrack," which originally mixed the spoken
word with music ("Argument & Song"), is enhanced with the thematic
image. Thus the Gypsy Scholar can now state (as he does to introduce the
program): "If you go to the website, you can see what I mean by
the Tower of Song—both conceptually through the ideas and visually
through the images." This means that the synergistic (i.e., the working together) conjunction of the Tower of Song's radio broadcast and its website are designed ideally to produce a synaesthetic experience (i.e., a concomitant sensation of two senses—sound and sight). The audio-visual component of the Tower of Song enhances the overall radio experience. This is why the Gypsy Scholar calls the concept behind his experimental program format "Re-VisionRadio" (in
the double meaning of seeing the communicative medium of radio in a
different way—"re-visioning"—and actually seeing radio—"imaging").
with the conjunction of word and image (and let us not forget that
radio is a "theater of the Imagination"), the Gypsy Scholar can say
that the Tower of Song program traffics in imaginal ideas, which (unlike strictly analytical, abstract ideas) do not leave out feeling, but instead appeal to both head ("argument" or logos) and heart ("song" or mythos). And when this application of imaginal ideas
is consistently applied in an artful way through the mixing and
remixing of argument and song, it sometimes happens that a dialectical
transference of the usual head and heart functions occurs. As the song
goes: "If my heart could do my thinking / And my head begin to feel / I
would look upon the world anew / And know what's truly real." [Van Morrison]
Synergy represents a dynamic process in which a joint action issues in a total effect that is greater than the sum of effects when acting independently. All this means that for Tower of Song program, which is about communicating Ideas, the synergy of radio and website issues in an idea embodied in the simultaneity of song and image. So the knowledge-based format of the program (a format that falls between the cracks of traditional radio programing—either information or music) is actually that of a lyrical knowledge, which is communicated by discovering big ideas in popular song (songs that sum up or condense an essay and, conversely, essays that unpack a song). This is why the Gypsy Scholar, making scholarship a performance art (in remixing high culture with popular culture) has his theme-song proclaim that the program doesn't originate from the Ivory Tower, but from "that tower down the track"—the Tower of Song.
This Tower of Song website is a kind of cybertext Illuminated Manuscript.