12BACH 003LP 12BACH 003LP

There was a time when ringtones were important. At first, they simply identified the few who actually owned cell phones, before the possibility emerged of distinguishing oneself by choosing a cool ringtone. In May 2014, the Doofe Musik (Stupid Music: Songs for Dreaming, Sedation and Forgetting) festival took place at Haus der Kulturen der Welt (HKW) in Berlin. As part of the HKW's Anthropocene Project, the festival focused on escapism and the special function of music when retreating from reality. HKW curator Detlef Diederichsen and Sound Studies Lab principal investigator Holger Schulze decided to focus not only on music that music-lovers usually hate -- e.g. Schlager music, easy listening, light jazz -- but also on ringtones. The audio logo of Deutsche Telekom has been part of Germany's mobile phone culture from the very beginning, so it acted as a starting point from which to question the usual conceptual understanding of ringtones. Using Christian Kellersmann's idea of the "Pocket Symphony," Diederichsen and Schulze invited ten artists to come up with adaptations of Telekom's audio logo. The results were performed for the first time during Stupid Music and once again in October 2014, when most of the recordings on this album were made. The short motif, as simple and unforgettable as it is, is ideal musical material. Everyone knows it; everyone has some sort of connection to it, and these ten different versions open up the most varied possibilities for associations. It is time to take the ringtone seriously again. As the most reduced yet most widely available form of music in the world, it contains enormous unrealized potential. Includes tracks by John Kameel Farah, Ana Maria Rodriguez, Zeitblom, Eliav Brand, Guido Möbius, Juliana Hodkinson, Alex Paulick, Ari Benjamin Meyers, Adi Gelbart, and Patric Catani.