Composer David First has explored microtonal systems and pitch bending with instruments ranging from the Casio to the theremin to his electric guitar, and more than one reviewer has pointed out the relation of his music to that of composer Alvin Lucier. While growing up in Philadelphia, First was exposed to opera through his grandmother, a former opera singer, and learned about just intonation and overdubbing from his father. While his primary instrument is the guitar, First also plays synthesizer and EBO bass on his recordings. Some of First's compositions can be heard on the 1991 release Resolver (with Joseph Celli and the World Casio Quartet) and The Good Book's (Accurate) Jail of Escape Dust Coordinates (1995), both on O.O. Discs. His music has garnered much attention and performance in New York, and has been performed in Amsterdam's De Ijbreker and Berlin's Podewil. First is also the recipient of an NEA grant for opera and music theater. His group the Joy Buzzers has toured several countries, and he collaborated on an installation with Patricia Smith in 1997.
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