Heinz Bohlen, R.I.P.

Since Herr Bohlen passed away recently I’ve wanted to write something but couldn’t find the words. Sometimes music can express things that words cannot, or would do so only clumsily. Heinz has been in our thoughts lately and I’m so glad that we had a lot of correspondence last summer. With heavy-lifting from Paul Erlich and Martin Gough we solved a puzzle that he had proposed years ago. I hope to write it up this spring or summer and share it here.

Now I happen to be writing a paper about a piece in Bohlen-Pierce (and Carlos alpha) tuning which will be played at the funeral service today. This is just a coincidence but lets me be there in spirit; I can’t be there physically but will hear about it from my musical partner and muse, Nora-Louise Müller.

The BP paper might be picked up for a conference at the end of summer. Many BP-related projects on my desk lately. What was I doing when I got the word that Bohlen had passed away? Something trivial in light of his many contributions (not only to our esoteric music but to electric engineering). An idea for an isomorphic keyboard… another day I’ll show a picture, it’s really not important now.


Tonight I will raise a glass to the inventor of this tuning theory that brought so much good into my life, and opened doors and passages I would never have dreamed were possible to walk through. Thank you, Heinz. Research in peace.


About th

musician, thespian
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