Thomson, William

William Thomson is Emeritus Professor and former Dean, School of Music, University of Southern California. He is an Associate Editor for publications Music Perception and Empirical Musicology.
Professor Thomson is one of the world’s leading musical theorists. In the course of his lifetime he has published several major works on the use of the twelve-tone scale in music, and innovation that was created by Arnold Schoenberg.

Metamusic versusthe Sound of Music: A Critique of Serialism
2010 0-7734-3807-6
This study utilizes knowledge banks: acoustics, cognition/perception, ethnomusicology and cultural records in probing Serialism’s basic assumptions. It examines analyses by such leaders in the serialist world as Milton Babbitt, David Lewin and Allen Forte.

Why Twelve-Tone Music is Not Musical: An Explanation and Critique of Serialism
2015 1-4955-0355-0
This book is a re-titled soft cover version of Meta Music versus the Sound of Music which was first published in hard cover in the year 2010.This study utilizes knowledge banks: acoustics, cognition/perception, ethnomusicology and cultural records in probing Serialism’s basic assumptions. It examines analyses by such leaders in the serialist world as Milton Babbitt, David Lewin and Allen Forte.
Professor Thomson argues that serial twelve-tone music is an artificial construction by academics who do not realize that musical tonality is routed in deep biological or cultural forces. Professor Thomson calls such music “metamusic” by which he means that one can only understand it through a non-musical intervention of the mind.