Mode celebrates its 200th release with a special installment in its John Cage Edition - works performed by John Cage himself, released for the first time.
These recordings were made in Buffalo, New York in April 1991. Cage and Mode Records were in Buffalo to work on the premiere of his Europera 5, which he wrote for Yvar Mikhashoff, a longtime collaborator and specialist in New Music.
Cage and Mikhashoff had performed this special duet of Empty Words simultaneous with Music for Piano in concert several times, and decided to make this recording, without an audience, especially for Mode.
The single sounds of Music for Piano, many of them quiet, make for a beautiful counterpoint with the mysterious and somewhat lonesome voice of the elderly Cage.
As part of the events surrounding Europera 5, Cage gave a performance of the solo piece One7, recorded in a live performance here.
Like most of the other Number Pieces, One7 is written in what Cage called time brackets - flexible measures whose start times and end times are specified. In this work, the performer has more freedom in that Cage gives no specific content for these time brackets, but rather a series of 10 numbers from 1 to 12 (1 and 10 do not appear) which represent sounds that performer chooses himself.