Thousand Mile Song: Whale Music in a Sea of Sound

( 2 )

Overview

For centuries, no one thought to suspect that humpback whale song was lingering in our seas. But its discovery has inspired many to contemplate underwater intelligence. By consulting with leading researchers around the globe, philosopher and musician David Rothenberg tells the story of encountering an unexplored world of music as vast as the ocean. Through this journey, Rothenberg uses the enigma of whale sounds to examine the question of whether we can ever truly understand ...

See more details below
Paperback (First Trade Paper Edition)
$16.30
BN.com price
(Save 9%)$18.00 List Price
Other sellers (Paperback)
  • All (12) from $1.99   
  • New (6) from $4.09   
  • Used (6) from $1.99   
Thousand-Mile Song: Whale Music in a Sea of Sound

Available on NOOK devices and apps  
  • NOOK Devices
  • NOOK HD/HD+ Tablet
  • NOOK
  • NOOK Color
  • NOOK Tablet
  • Tablet/Phone
  • NOOK for Windows 8 Tablet
  • NOOK for iOS
  • NOOK for Android
  • NOOK Kids for iPad
  • PC/Mac
  • NOOK for Windows 8
  • NOOK for PC
  • NOOK for Mac
  • NOOK Study
  • NOOK for Web

Want a NOOK? Explore Now

NOOK Book (eBook)
$9.99
BN.com price
(Save 44%)$18.00 List Price

Overview

For centuries, no one thought to suspect that humpback whale song was lingering in our seas. But its discovery has inspired many to contemplate underwater intelligence. By consulting with leading researchers around the globe, philosopher and musician David Rothenberg tells the story of encountering an unexplored world of music as vast as the ocean. Through this journey, Rothenberg uses the enigma of whale sounds to examine the question of whether we can ever truly understand nonhuman minds.

In its combination of science, music, and narrative, Thousand Mile Song is an exceptionally insightful and imaginative attempt at understanding some of the most intriguing creatures with whom we share our planet.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly

Biologists know that whale songs, which may carry for hundreds of miles, change over time and are passed on from one generation to the next, but they don't fully understand what these complex sounds are for. Philosopher and musician Rothenberg (Why Birds Sing ) proposes that music played by humans can help us find answers. He tested this theory by playing his clarinet into an underwater speaker and recording the whales' responses on an underwater hydrophone. His intriguing book includes sonograms and a CD demonstrating that the orcas, belugas and humpbacks he played for seemed to interact with his music. He also includes much information about whales and accounts of attempts to discover rhythm, shape and form in their songs; colorful descriptions of the whale scientists he has worked with; and a chapter on composers who have incorporated whale songs in their pieces. As Rothenberg points out, it was a recording of whale songs in the 1970s that led to the whale conservation movement. His paean to the beautiful music these great mammals make should lend further support to attempts to save the whales at a time when they are increasingly threatened. Illus. and CD. (May)

Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.
Library Journal

Exploring the connections between human and animal intelligence, Rothenberg (philosophy & music, New Jersey Inst. of Technology; Why Birds Sing) has played his clarinet to communicate with whales in Canada, Russia, and Hawaii aboard boats equipped with microphones, underwater speakers, hydrophones, and headphones. His belief that "we are not the only musicians on the planet" has been reinforced through a study of the sound patterns and rhythms resulting from the whales' responses. The accompanying CD is an unusual mixture of songs, cries, gurgles, and clicks combined with the author's clarinet, guitar, percussion, and violin played by other musicians. Rothenberg traces the history of whale-sound research from the navy's interest in the 1950s through the work of Roger Payne, who produced the 1970 recording Songs of the Humpback Whale. He attributes the passage of the Marine Mammal Protection Act in 1972 to the growing popular consciousness of whale intelligence; ironically, however, this act considers playing music to whales a form of harassment. Enhanced by acoustic diagrams and a fine bibliographical essay as well as bibliographical footnotes, this intriguing book will capture the imaginations of music and nature lovers and is suitable for high school, public, and college libraries.
—Judith B. Barnett

Kirkus Reviews
A joyful ride among the orcas, belugas and humpbacks, aimed at enticing these behemoths into a jam session. In his seventh book, Rothenberg (Philosophy and Music/New Jersey Institute of Technology) reprises the approach he took in Why Birds Sing: A Journey Through the Mystery of Bird Song (2005). There, he sought to understand the practical and transcendental aspects of birdsong, as well as engage birds with his wind instruments. Here, he turns his clarinet to a microphone attached to an underwater speaker in hopes of playing music with whales and finding some common ground through sound. Humans may have scant understanding of what whale song is all about, Rothenberg writes, but as an accomplished jazzman once said, "sometimes the real music only comes when you have absolutely no idea what is going on." The author gets as much understanding as he can into the mix before he attempts any session work. He covers the scientific work done on whale song, the role whales played in the growth of the environmental movement and the various musicians, from Pete Seeger to Paul Winter, who have sought to bring the whale into their work. The book's meat-and-potatoes sections chronicle Rothenberg's encounters with whales in Canada, Russia, the Caribbean and Hawaii. His ruminative yet rather merry prose only occasionally tips into fruitiness ("where whale and human songs wash together over distant leagues"), and his sheer enthusiasm is remarkable. Even when a hard-bitten scientist upbraids him for a project that "doesn't really yield anything except a gratuitous level of self-satisfaction," he holds faith in musical communication. He may "have no idea what is going on" in a clarinet/whale duet, but for afew minutes, playing with the humpbacks, he "entered their wild world of sound."Approaches the stirring border of interspecies contact with dignity and glee. Agent: Kathleen Anderson/Anderson Literary Management
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780465018895
  • Publisher: Basic Books
  • Publication date: 3/9/2010
  • Edition description: First Trade Paper Edition
  • Pages: 304
  • Sales rank: 1,146,460
  • Product dimensions: 5.70 (w) x 8.90 (h) x 0.90 (d)

Meet the Author


David Rothenberg is Professor of Philosophy and Music at the New Jersey Institute of Technology and the author of books including Why Birds Sing. His articles have appeared in Parabola, The Nation, Wired, Dwell, and Sierra. He lives in Cold Spring, New York.
Read More Show Less

Table of Contents

1 We Didn't Know, We Didn't Know

Whale Song Hits the Charts 1

2 Gonna Grow Fins

Humans Take Up with Whale Music 25

3 Those Orcas Love a Groove

Making Music with Killer Whales 51

4 To hear the Dolphin Call his Name

How Smart Are They? 77

5 Beluga do not Believe in Tears

Russian Whale Music 101

6 The Longest Liquid Song

Humpback Music and Its Changes 131

7 Moby Click

Sperm Whales Got Rhythm 169

8 Thousand Mile Song

Moanin' in the Deep Sound Channel 189

9 Never Satisfied

Getting Through to a Humpback Whale 211

Acknowledgments 243

Whale Music: The CD 247

For Further Reading 253

Notes 259

Illustration Credits 277

Index 279

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 2 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(2)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 7, 2013

    Room 3-1

    Small, slightly cramped room with gray walls and linen sheets.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
  • Anonymous

    Posted January 24, 2013

    Trouble~ By Taylor Swift -Lyrics by ~*Sapphire*~

    Once upon a time • A few mistakes ago • I was in your sights • You got me alone • You found me, you found me, you found me-e-e-e-e. • I guess you didn't care • And I guess I liked that • And when I fell hard • You took a step back • Without me, without me, without me-e-e-e-e. • And he's long gone • When he met me • And I realize • The blame is on me • (Chorus) Cuz I knew you were trouble when you walked in. • It's a shame on me, now I blew me to places I never been. • Till you put me down, oh. I knew you were trouble when you walked in. • It's a shame on me, now I blew me to places I never been • Now I'm lyin' on the cold hard ground. • Oh, oh oh. Trouble, trouble, trouble. • Oh, oh oh. Trouble, trouble, trouble. • No appologies • He'll never see you cry • Pretend he doesn't know • That he's the reason why • You're drowning, you're drowning, you're drowning-ing-ing. •And I heard ya moved on • From whispers on the street. • A new notch in your belt • Is all I'll ever be. • And now I see, now I see, now I see-e-e-e-e. • He was long gone • When he met me • And I realize • The joke is on me, hey! • (Chorus) • And the saddest fear • Comes creepin' in • That you never loved me • Or her, or anyone, or anything, yeah-eah! • (Chorus) •

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews

If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
Why is this product inappropriate?
Comments (optional)