James Joyce's Finnegans Wake set to music unabridged
we set the book to music unabridged twice. different musicians each time. this is the first edition, which premiered 2015 May 4. our third edition premieres 2017 may 4.
Waywords and Meansigns Favicon
image by Robert Berry
The idea was a simple enough question. How many ways are there to read James Joyce's great and bizarre novel Finnegans Wake?
Seventeen different musicians from all around the world, each assigned to render a chapter aurally. The only requirements: the chapter's words must be audible, unabridged, and more or less in their original order.
This is a labor of love, not profit. We have created this to be shared, so please tell your colleagues, students and friends.
To the wonderful world of Finnegans Wake readers, newcomers and devoted followers alike: Here Comes Everybody
A note from project director Derek Pyle: "It has been an absolute joy producing Waywords and Meansigns. Thank you to everyone who has supported us, and a special thanks to all the contributors. You have poured your hearts into this work, not to mention nearly breaking your backs, and it really shows."
Waywords and Meansigns would not be possible without the support of many people. Thanks to the fwread listserv, especially Peter Quadrino, Peter Chrisp, Roman Tsivkin, as well as Adam Harvey and Mariana Lanari; your collective knowledge of Joyce is astounding. Marie Broadway, Jake Tozer, Sam Nordli, and Emma Pampanin co-hosted the Finnegans Wake parties that inspired this project. Kelley Kipperman was instrumental in the project's co-founding. Zach Leavitt and Chelsea Westra co-hosted the parties of the future. Elaine Thomas, Dylan Muhlberg, the Amherst Irish Association, Jacqui Wise, Krzysztof Bartnicki, Mike Moran, Mike Medeiros, Jason Gross, Rebecca Hanssens-Reed, Billy Mills, and the James Joyce Gazette played pivotal roles spreading the word about this project, through press coverage and otherwise. Thanks to Mackenzie Libbey, and Michael Robbins, for their support throughout. Thanks to L. Brown Kennedy and Annie G. Rogers for first introducing me to Joyce. Special thanks to Mark Traynor and the James Joyce Centre in Dublin, and to Robert Berry.
Infinite thanks to the project contributors, and all who channel the spirit of James Joyce.
Finnegans Wake is organized into four books. Roman numerals indicate the book, Indo-Arabic numerals indicate the chapter within that book. Chapter names are italicized, followed by the names of musicians. Finnegans Wake is circular, so you can start listening wherever. Mariana Lanari and Sjoerd Leijten suggest beginning with Book IV. To locate a particular passages of the text, use http://www.trentu.ca/faculty/jjoyce/ and http://fweet.org/
I.1 - Fall, pp. 3-29 - Mariana Lanari & Sjoerd Leijten, with Erik Bindervoet
I.2 - The Humphriad I: His Agnomen and Reputation, pp. 30-47 - Robert Amos; Chelidon Frame; Alan Ó Raghallaigh
I.3 - The Humphriad II: His Trial and Incarceration, pp 48-74 - Greg Nahabedian
I.4 - The Humphriad III - His Demise and Resurrection, pp. 75-103 - Un monton, torero; with Charlie Driker-Ohren & Walker Storz
I.5 - The Mamafesta, pp. 104-25 - Tim Carbone
I.6 - Riddles: The Personages of the Manifesto, pp. 126-68 - Kevin Spenst
I.7 - Shem the Penman, pp. 169-216 - Belorusia
I.8 - Anna Livia, pp. 196-59 - Dérive
II.1 - The Children's Hour, pp. 216-59 - Street Kids Named Desire; with Derek Pyle, Parker McQueeney, Zach Leavitt & Samuel Nordli
II.2 - The Studies, pp. 260-308 - Liz Longo & Izzy Longo, with Leo Traversa
II.3 - The Stories: Tavernry in Feast, pp. 309-82 - Hayden Chisholm
II.4 - Mamalujo, pp. 383-99 - Ryan Mihaly
III.1 - Shaun before the People, pp. 403-28 - Gareth Flowers
III.2 - Jaun before St. Bride's, pp. 428-73 - Steve Fly, with William Sutton
III.3 - Yawn under Inquest, pp. 474-554 - Peter Quadrino, Jake Reading & Evan James
III.4 - Humphrey Chimpden Earwicker and Anna Livia Plurabelle: Their Bed of Trial, pp. 555-590 - Graziano Galati
IV.1 - Dawn: Return to the Beginning, pp. 593-628 - Mariana Lanari & Sjoerd Leijten; with Eloísa Ejarque, Grace Kyne-Lilley, & Erik Bindervoet.
Additional personnel // production credits:
Track 1: Produced and performed by Mariana Lanari and Sjoerd Leijten, with special thanks to guests reader Erik Bindervoet (pp.13-18, pp. 21-24).
Track 2: Robert Amos recorded by Robert Martin.
Track 3: Keyboards, Voice, Guitar, Bass, and Drums by Greg Nahabedian. Recorded and mixed by Greg Nahabedian and Paul Schmelz.
Track 5: Tim Carbone (fiddle, guitar, drone, tan, keyboards, samples), Andy Goessling (zither), Phil Ferlino (piano). Recorded by Tim Carbone and mixed by Don Sternaker and Tim Carbone.
Track 6: Background arrangement by Josh Pitre, featuring a Stravinsky circus polka and two ragtime pieces
Track 8: Dérive is Greg Nahabedian (keyboard, voice), Paul Schmelz (guitar, voice, keyboard), Noah Jacques (bass, voice), Paul DeGrandpre (drums, voice). Recorded by Paul Schmelz. Mixed by Dérive and Paul Schmelz.
Track 9: Recorded by Derek Pyle and Zach Leavitt. Sound collage by Derek Pyle, featuring many of the musical allusions found in Joyce's text. With Derek Pyle (bass, voice), Parker McQueeney (piano, voice), Samuel Nordli (mandolin, violin, and viola) and Zach Leavitt (guitar, bass, voice).
Track 10: Leo Traversa on bass. Recording by Taylor Roig.
Track 11: Recorded by Robert Nacken at Nucamusic Studios in Cologne and by Hayden Chisholm in the Moers Residence house, and at Sant Vicenc beach in Mallorca
Track 14: William Sutton reads pp. 429-42 469-73; Steven 'Fly' Pratt reads pp. 443-68. Drums, turntables, guitar, arrangement, production, recording in Amsterdam by Steve Fly. Mastered by Tim Egmond at Ei-Complex Studios, Amsterdam.
Track 15: Produced by Jake Reading & Peter Quadrino. Executive producer: Evan James. Recorded and mixed by Jake Reading at Casa de Feelgood. Additional vocals by Evan James and Melba Martinez.
Track 17: Produced and performed by Mariana Lanari and Sjoerd Leijten, with special thanks to guests readers Eloísa Ejarque (pp. 610-612), Grace Kyne-Lilley (pp. 613-615), and Erik Bindervoet (pp. 13-18, pp. 21-24).