On Thursday, the news was abuzz that a space satellite (Voyager 1) launched nearly 35 years ago had finally left our solar system and had entered what is known as interstellar space. Fascinating stuff for a guy who grew up in the age of Mercury, Apollo, and Gemini space shots, drinking Tang, and watching Walter Cronkite.
You can find out more about Voyager 1 here: http://www.space.com/22729-voyager-1-spacecraft-interstellar-space.html
But there is an eclectic music link here and it’s an interesting glimpse into some artists true immortality.
On board Voyager 1 there is a gold-plated copper record (a mix tape if you will) of 26 pieces of music and instructions on how to play them on the accompanying turntable. The instructions (etched on the front) look like hieroglyphics but the people who created this (led by Carl Sagan) are certain that listeners beyond our solar system will be evolved enough to know that the writing on the edge in is binary code. It seems incredible to me that beings in a galaxy beyond ours could someday be listening to the tunes below. Don’t know about you but I hope it happens!
Among the 26 pieces of music are included tunes that are very familiar to us and some that are not. I’ve provided a few for your out-of-this-world listening pleasure. The full list can be found here: http://voyager.jpl.nasa.gov/spacecraft/music.html
- “Johnny B. Goode” – Chuck Berry
- “Fifth Symphony – Movement #1” – Beethoven
- “Melancholy Blues” – Louis Armstrong
- “Night Chant” – Navajo Indians
- “Dark Was the Night” – Blind Willie Johnson
- “Tsuru No Sugumon” (Crane’s Nest) – Goro Yamaguchi
- “Jaat Kahan Ho” – an Indian raga) – Surshri Kesar Bai Kerkar
- “El Cascabel” – Mexican mariachi music – Lorenzo Barcelata