This cartoon, found at Paleo-Future, accompanied a short article from the August 28th, 1949 edition of the San Antonio Light:
CHICAGO, Aug. 27 – (AP) – Some day composers won’t write music, and musicians won’t play it – yet fans will enjoy it in never-before-heard perfection.
The composer or artist will simply project it by brain waves – “thought transference,” says Raymond Scott.
This man, who thinks in terms of electronics and music, thinks that is all quite possible. Scott said in an interview:
“Brains put out electrical waves. I wouldn’t be at all surprised if some day it were possible to do away with lines in music, such as writing it out and playing the notes. You’ll just be able to think it.
“Imagine fastening electrodes to your head, inviting some people to your home and then thinking your music. If you wanted 1000 violins you could have them – and if you wanted the bass fiddle to play piccolo parts, you could do that, too.”
Raymond Scott, a pioneer of electronic music, had remarkable foresight. His prediction that music would one day be generated by brain waves came true: two years ago, James Fung, a musician and computer engineer at the University of Toronto, organized a concert in which the “music” was generated by the brain waves of the audience, via EEG devices suspended from the ceiling. The film clip below describes Fung’s work, and includes footage of the performance.