A weekly look at SoCal life covering news, arts and culture, and more.
Hosted by John Rabe

Partch-work: Microtonal Music from Harry Partch

John Schneider, of Partch, playing the Bass Marimba.
John Schneider, of Partch, playing the Bass Marimba.
Kevin Ferguson

Listen to story

Download this story 8.0MB

Ever heard of an adapted viola? What about a chromalodeon? Or a harmonic canon? They're all instruments invented by avante-garde composer Harry Partch. Partch was a California native who threw out traditional keys and patterns in favor of strange and complex 43+ note microtonal scales. Off-Ramp's Kevin Ferguson headed to a rehearsal studio on Mount Washington to talk to John Schneider, a music professor and a member of Partch, a musical tribute to the late composer. Click through to see a video of John Schneider performing Harry Partch's "The Letter" on the harmonic canon! Partch—the band—will be performing at Disney's REDCAT in Downtown LA on Wednesday, June 2 and again Thursday, June 3. More photos of Partch's bizarre instruments: