Devon Tipp-"Pale Blue Dot"

Music By: Devon Tipp 

Shaped by sonic sensitivity from a young age, Pittsburgh-based composer/performer Devon Osamu Tipp creates unorthodox musical environments from ostensibly incompatible realms. A PhD student at the University of Pittsburgh, Tipp’s music draws influence from his Japanese and Eastern European roots, his experiences as a jeweler and painter, and his studies of gagaku and hogaku in Japan and the United States. His compositions focus on rhythmic and timbral transmutation of cyclical materials, ranging from the orchestral to string basses prepared with honey stirrers to concerti for traditional Japanese instruments. Carles Badenes’ research focuses on several aspects of stellar evolution primarily related to supernovae that mark the end of the lifetime of certain stars. In the words of Dr. Badenes, “the iron and blood and the calcium in our bones were formed billions of years ago in supernovae that exploded before the solar system was formed … [seeding] the birthplaces of stars with the raw materials that are necessary for life.” My composition, “Pale Blue Dot,” explores the statement “we are made up of stars” through microscopic investigation of sounds, revealing the “iron and calcium” of small musical structures that serve as the building
blocks of something larger.Tipp received his Bachelor of Music degree from Montclair State University, where he studied composition and microtonal music with Dean Drummond and shakuhachi with Elizabeth Brown. His music has been performed by microtonal specialists Kjell Tore Innervik, Veli Kujala and Tolgahan Çogulu. He also has worked with Rarescale, the Thin Edge New Music Collective, the Sudbury Guitar Trio, and members of Avanti! Chamber Orchestra. His compositions have been featured at the Soundscape Festival, Bowdoin Festival, Atlantic Music Festival, Sävellyspaja Summer Composition Master-classes, and the Tokyo International Double Reed Society Conference. For more information, please visit