The Complete Beatles
8 Channel sound installation
conny blom  
In September 2018 the Members of the European Parliament voted through the previously rejected new copyright directive, which includes the controversial Article 13 that might very well be the end of the free Internet. Whilst many non-profit organisations, activists and intellectuals warn about the effects of the new directives, a number of figures in the music industry have come out in support of the new copyright law, arguing that the framework would protect the rights of artists over their creations. Former Beatle, Sir Paul McCartney, has published a letter urging the MEPs to support the copyright mandate. Every time copyright law, or the enforcement thereof, has been adapted to "fit" Internet (read: preserve the power of the big players in the media industry) it has resulted in severe infringement on freedom of expression, creativity and development. With the current laws genres like jazz and rock music would not be able to emerge since they, as any culture, are built on borrowings and references to previous achievements. Not even Mozart would be able to release music today, unless he had the lawyers of a major multinational corporation behind him, protecting him from copyright claims from composers like Clementi and Haydn of which he sourced material. The industry is always claiming that they are protecting the rights of the musicians, the artists and inventors, but in fact they are only protecting

their investments and position in the power hierarchies, whilst at the same time hindering the natural development of culture. Few capital interests have been protected more fiercely in this way than the music of The Beatles, a band who themselves were borrowing a lot from old blues tunes. The old pop band from Liverpool was also one of the reasons why the copyright for recordings was prolonged so that the cash flow to the owners could continue uninterrupted beyond 50 years. Whether you make a cover version, sample a second of a drum beat for your hip hop song, or post a funny video clip of your infant niece dancing to "Love Me Do" you are likely to find yourself under heat from copyright lawyers threatening you to immediately cease and desist or face criminal charges.

The sound installation "The Complete Beatles" consists entirely of music recorded by the band. As a matter of fact, every second of officially released studio recordings by The Beatles is included in the piece, but none of the compositions are ever discernible. Every individual track is looped and played simultaneously, so that at any given instant of the continuous sound you hear all of The Beatles studio recordings. As you walk through the room and get closer to different speakers the sound shifts. Overtones shimmer and vibrate. The production on the earlier and later albums differs and this is notable even though not a single note of the original music can be identified. The Beatles production is presented in its entirety – but is it The Beatles that we are hearing?

Listen to a sample of the installation recorded in the silo at Neon Gallery in Brösarp, Sweden, 2009. Click here.

Conny Blom   Conny Blom
Conny Blom   Conny Blom
Conny Blom