William C. Harrington was born in Yonkers, New York. His grandmother played piano at silent movie theaters: by the time he was a sophomore in high school, he was working as a professional musician playing parties, roller-skating rinks, and more.
While at CSU Dominguez Hills he studied composition, performance, electronic music, and prepared piano techniques with Richard B. Evans, who authored the classic book on John Cage, “The Well Prepared Piano.” He was also influenced by seminars with several composers including Nicholas Slominsky.
After leaving college he worked in the wholesale record industry for two years (where he amassed a sizable collection of electonic and avante-garde recordings) before going on tour. Working as a keyboard technician, he toured with several bands including, Gentle Giant and Frank Zappa (making a brief, credited appearance in Zappa’s movie, “Baby Snakes”). He was with Zappa in Paris when Pierre Boulez visited.
Upon returning to LA he attended the UCLA Extension's Music Business course where he was awarded two NARAS scholarships. He studied music business, law, and management - as well as record production with Nick Venet - producer of The Beach Boys, Creedence Clearwater and many others.
Recently, he has performed at The Ventura New Music Festival, electro-music 2006 (Philadelphia), and appears in the indie film, 40 Bands in 80 Minutes.
Urban Electronic Music is unlike any other cd you've ever heard. It will transport you into a different world. No two tracks are alike and they have to be listened to several times to hear everything.
Urban Electronic Music was constructed using loops recorded over a 30-year period, analog and digital synthesis, as well as traditional instruments and found objects.
Use Urban Electronic Music as a soundtrack to alter you conciousness and change your life.
Buy Urban Electronic Music now!
The Harrington CD is brilliant. Highly entertaining yet uncompromisingly experimental. Never boring or pretentious either. Very, very well done. Airplay coming assuredly.
1. The Overture
[random sample hold pinched cycles of faux bagpipes and tweeting electro-birds circling overhead - wooden branches of electric trees cracking in the wind – particles of sunlight brushing against insistent green]
2. God Bless the Miners
[tolling of industrial bells calling the laborers to work – action and time passes unnoticed – the divine intrudes on the consciousness and interferes with work – labor is the opiate of the Masses]
3. Enola Gay
[the hum of summer – the hum of engines – the hum of a tune – signs of summer – signs of engines – whistlestop]
4. Cuckoo to You
[electric beak and steel perch – silver forest and aluminum leaves – twist and turn and twist again]
5. Belles I
[on the back porch - moonrise]
[I heard it – so did you – something this way comes – circus of freaks in buses – reality Ruth! – epileptic, schizophrenic manic depressive]
7. Jungle Birds
[path and undergrowth – signs of life – hidden safely – observant eyes – who has seen the wind – tendrils and claws – shake, rattle and roil]
8. Days Left
[direction to go – fork in the road – journey ahead – a ringing in my head – only my hair dresser knows for sure – sunlight draws a circle in my eyes – heat and haze and heart – hour glass and horticulture works the same ground as my hands]
9. Organ Song part I
[the body electric sings – sound the portals open – conversation ensues – communication seems possible – transmission is desired]
10. Belles II
[metal skirts of purest iron – brazen tassels swing and sway as they walk – they are the belles of the ball]
11. My Guitar
[repetition is the mother of learning – wisdom is the fountain of life – living provides examples of consequence – stay on the path!]
[precious fragility – the imposition of time and demand – attention dwells – think outside – a breath of fresh air? – six sides are enough]
13. One for Nick
[the saint? – the devil? – why only one? – traumatize and fantasize a willing reality – no chance for regrets – one foot in front of the other]
14. I Slept Through Vespers
[black and white – recrimination – somnambulant sisters – ring of cloth, ring of bells]
Review by: John Gore
I’m not what you’d call a “big-city” person. So when the Angry Vegan Records release “Urban Electronic Music” by William C. Harrington arrived, you’ll have to understand that the title didn’t conjure a whole lot of positive images for me. In my limited experience, “urban” is too many people, too little privacy, not enough green– all the best excuses to live somewhere less intense. “Urban” is somewhere I’d visit, but wouldn’t want to stay.
If Harrington’s intent is to capture this feeling, I think he does it well. Don’t get me wrong, I’m enjoying the album quite a bit. It’s a fascinating trip to take! Like any good-sized city, Harrington has populated his album with a diverse set of voices– Arp 2600, E-mu Classic, and VK-7 keys clamor for attention alongside bowed guitar, cell phones, loops, saxophone, salad bowls, and a host of other unlikely objects.Within many tracks, like “I Slept Through Vespers” or “Cuckoo to You,” distinct sound events play a lesser role; with more of a blended, futuristic, electroacoustic feel. However, some tracks, like “One for Nick,” sound dated– I had some similar synth percussion presets on my old Casio– but isn’t part of the “urban” experience the contrast and layering of old and new? Would a city like St. Louis or Chicago (or Memphis!) retain any of its flavor if it stayed “updated” all the time? Oddly enough; one track on the album, “Enola Gay,” really is dated– 1973, to be precise– but fits so well you won’t suspect a thing.
“Remnants” seems to best reflect this layering, with Harrington providing a real hubbub of activity. This track best reflects the vibrant “aliveness” present in a city like New York, where the pattern and activity of the city itself seems to take on a life of its own. For a one-man album (composed, realized, produced, and engineered by Harrington) it’s a marvelous accomplishment.
November 23rd, 2006 by startlingmoniker