1. When I listen to Goethals’s music, Fibonacci numbers always pop up in my mind.
1. And permutations of these, a very useful way of of playing with numbers.
2. And a measure for growth: I was very young when I rang IPEM’s doorbell in 1975.
I hated ‘conservative’ music and hoped to find there music closer to its time.
1. Lucien accepted me in his world, in a friendly way though exuding intransigence.
2. IPEM was a kind of hothouse of modernism: tape music as the FOP of avant-gardism.
I soon learned there that the modernists and the ‘established’ composers were at war.
3. Lucien was maybe the first Belgium composer who really got into electronic music.
Before I got to know him, much of his output embedded electronics into his scores.
Though head of IPEM, he always composed meticulously on the top floor of the studio.
2. I begged him to become my teacher of composition. The guts! How naive I was…
I showed him my first scores: he nixed them. I wasn’t hurt for I felt he was right.
3. Webern, Schoenberg, Berg and then Boulez, Stockhausen, Bo Nilsson, Pousseur:
these serialists would become the sparring partners in my ‘rigorous’ training with Lucien.
I even loved b a c h, the main sequence in Webern’s tone row for the quartet op. 28.
5. Lucien let me horse around in the studio where I spent whole nights cutting tapes.
The studio was partly funded by brt (now VRT) money: which meant free tape.
The only obligation was: allowing the radio to broadcast your electronic endeavors.
You can imagine how bad the composers from all over the world felt about this deal.
Heifetz, Barroso, Camilleri, Kiraly, Mandolini…: we all adored our godfather Lucien.
8. Bit by bit I dared to open more my mouth around the coffee table there at 10:30 AM.
Prof. Sabbe, musicologist, encouraged me to expound on my incipient deviancies.
Though my face still turned red hot when I presented him and Lucien my first tapes.
The latter continued to grumble advice. In return I performed his instrumental oeuvre.
He then wrote his most famous and cherished piece: ‘Pampa’, SPECTRA’s favorite.
And also ‘Música con cantus firma’ for he adored counterpoint. I sadly enough did not.
The beginning of his disappointment in me: my triadic chords he considered as cheap.
When I confessed attraction to the minimalists, his black eyes drilled holes in my soul.
5. 1980: IPEM got the biggest modern analog synthesizer ever. The EMS Synthi 100.
Prof. and engineer Landrieu’s homebuilt hardware immediately became obsolete.
We all shed a tear when his buttons studded analogue sequencer went dark for ever.
Soon after, the university and the radio parted ways too: computers bypassed tapes.
The small Yamaha X7 could almost do more things than the EMS: Lucien went dark too.
3. I made one last piece in the studio which really made him happy.
The title: ‘Les angoisses de Cynthiçân’. Lucien didn’t read the future in my title.
Around this time his life became a nightmare: the brt sent him to the Reyerslaan (Brus.)
2. 1985: I wrote ‘Rastapasta’. We stopped seeing each other: no pop for my musical pop.
Only a few years before his death we talked again, though he still deplored my choices.
1. Nowadays, when I mention Fibonacci in class, I always think about Lucien.