Smithsonian Folkways Remembers Tod Dockstader (1932–2015)
Electronic composer and musique concrète pioneer Tod Dockstader passed away on Friday, February 27, 2015, at the age of 82. Dockstader began his career in Hollywood as a film editor, moving into sound engineering and eventually composing in 1958. Dockstader’s first release was the 1968 Folkways album Eight Electronic Pieces, which later became part of the soundtrack of the 1969 Fellini film Satyricon (Wired).
Throughout Dockstader’s career, he blended electronic sounds and tape manipulation with acoustic instruments. A documentary about his life, “Unlocking Dockstader” by filmmaker Justin H. Brierley, is currently in production. Upon Dockstader’s death, K. Martin from The Wire wrote, “Dockstader will be remembered as the innovative, visionary figure he undoubtedly was.”
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