Jonathan Glasier is
largely responsible for the current popularity of Xenharmonics,
Microtonal Music, Just Intonation, Harmonic Singing and other Tuning
Jonathan grew up in San Diego with Harry
Partch as a frequent house guest. His father, John Glasier senior, was
a violist and violinist with the San Diego Symphony, who could
improvise in many different microtonal scale systems, and was a friend
and supporter of Partch.
As a child, he developed a form of Harmonic
Singing, before the Tibetan and Tuvan styles were generally known in
America, and taught this method to Harry Partch and others.
Jonathan was a member of the Harry Partch
Ensemble, the ID Project with Tom Nunn, and the Interval Ensemble, a
microtonal group with Ivor Darreg, John Glasier Senior and Prent
His instruments are on display in various museums in the United States
and Europe, including the San Francisco Exploratorium.
He taught guitar, composition and musicality both privately and in the
California School system, and started the music school, Making
Music in La Jolla, CA. His teaching strategy was a radical
departure from the usual method. His position was that we learn to
speak before learning to read and write, and so it should be with
The primary class, Beginning Music Experience
began with rhythmic
speech using bongos, recorder and tenor ukulele to play beats to each
syllable in speech, i.e.: "ev-ry-syl-a-ble-gets-a beat".
He personally cared for Harry Partch in the
composer's last years of failing health, and also supported Ivor
Darreg to the extent of buying a house for him to live in during his
last dozen years or so.
In addition to his life long
career as a microtonal musician and instrument builder, Jonathan self
published the historic magazine, Interval
- a Microtonal Newsletter throughout
the late 1970's and most of the 1980's.
While Ivor Darreg's Xenharmonic Bulletins appeared
from time to time, they were written entirely by Ivor and sent only to
his correspondents. John Chalmers Jr. published Xenharmonicon on an
irregular basis as well, and this was read by a select few.
Interval was an
important publication, as it was the first microtonal magazine in the
Indexes are available here:
http://interval.xentonic.org/ and copies are available directly
through Jonathan at:
San Diego, CA
With his wife Elizabeth, he is co-proprietor
of the Sonic Arts
Gallery in San Diego.