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Ramon Sender

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Name  Ramon Sender
Role  Composer
Education  Mills College

Ramon Sender httpsiytimgcomviQaju5XaGvIIhqdefaultjpg
Books  Being of the Sun, A Death in Zamora, A Planetary Sojourn: Stories - A, Zero weather
Similar People  Morton Subotnick, Alicia Bay Laurel, Pauline Oliveros, Robert Erickson, Maggi Payne

Ramon sender on san francisco tape music center 1997

Ramón Sender Barayón (born October 29, 1934) is a composer, visual artist and writer. He was the co-founder, with Morton Subotnick, of the San Francisco Tape Music Center in 1962. He is the son of Spanish writer Ramón J. Sender.



Sender was born in Madrid, Spain. He studied piano with George Copeland, harmony with Elliott Carter, and counterpoint and fugue with Harold Shapero (1948–1951). Sender attended the Conservatorio di Santa Cecilia in Rome and Columbia University in New York, where he studied with Henry Cowell. He also studied with Robert Erickson at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music (1959–1962) and at Mills College, where he studied with Darius Milhaud. Sender holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the San Francisco Conservatory of Music and an M.A. from Mills College.

San Francisco Tape Music Center

Sender co-founded the San Francisco Tape Music Center in 1962 with Morton Subotnick and also collaborated with composers and visual artists including Pauline Oliveros, Tony Martin, Joseph Byrd, Terry Riley, William Maginnis, and many others until 1966 when the Center was incorporated into Mills College. It was later named the Mills Center for Contemporary Music and continues to function today.

Sender participated with Don Buchla in the design of the Buchla Box, one of the first music synthesizers.

Morningstar and Wheeler Ranches

In January 1966, he co-produced the Trips Festival with Ken Kesey and Stewart Brand. It was a three-day event that, in conjunction with The Merry Pranksters, brought together the nascent hippie movement for the first time.

In April 1966, Sender became the first resident at Lou Gottlieb's Morning Star Ranch (Sender has, at times, referred to himself as Ramon Sender Morningstar) open land commune, which evolved into a Digger Farm / open land commune in 1967. After the residents' homes were bulldozed by Sonoma County authorities three times, he moved into the Wheeler Ranch in Occidental, California; he lived and worked in the area until 1979.

One of the residents there was Alicia Bay Laurel, writer and musician known for her 1970 best-seller Living on Earth. He collaborated with her on another book, Being of the Sun, which contains information about homemade music, drones, modes, and open tunings as a means of spiritual growth, as well as information about yoga, creating ritual, and forming intentional communities.

Sender is also a visual artist whose visual works are sampled on his web site and in a 2009 book, Barayon, a Catalog of Prints, Drawings, Original Art. The book is based on a one-man show at the Gallery Sanchez in 2008.

After the death of Sender's daughter Xavie in 1989, he founded the Peregrine Foundation (for people "living in or exiting from experimental social groups"). He was the administrator of the foundation until 1999.

Sender identifies himself as a "transcendental, post-monotheist hippie pagan sunworshipper, with one foot planted in the nondual teaching of Candice O'Denver and the other in the Archaic Revival culture".


To distinguish himself from his father Ramon J. Sender, a well-known Spanish novelist, he uses the Spanish-style name Ramon Sender Barayón. This is also to honor his late mother Amparo Barayón.

Sender's novel Zero Weather was published in 1980. He has several other unpublished manuscripts and some of his short stories are published on the internet. In 1989, Sender published Death in Zamora, a book investigating the execution of his mother by Franco's forces during the Spanish Civil War. Most recently, he has published an anthology of his short stores and essays, titled A Planetary Sojourn. He also wrote a novel based on his experiences at the Tape Music Center, entitled Naked Close Up, which was published in 2012 as an ebook by Intelligent Arts Publishing, a project of The Electronic Music Foundation in Albany, New York.


  • "Donkey Gruntler Serenade", audience participation on Donkey Gruntlers with pre-recorded tape – 2003
  • "Aidan's Gamelan (in memory of Lou Harrison)", audience participation on tuned water drums with pre-recorded tape – 2003
  • "Seashore Snake Sizzle," audience participation on rattles with pre-recorded tape – 2003
  • "Audition" for two open-tuned autoharps and dalruba – 1982
  • "Great-Grandpa Lemuel's Death-Rattle What-In-Tarnation Reincarnation Blues", dixieland band, accordion, tape – 1981
  • "A Tewa Prayer", mixed chorus – 1978
  • "I Have a Dream", mixed chorus – 1978
  • Loopy Gamelan "Oh 'C' Can You Say", for Oakland Children's Chorus – 1976
  • Loopy Gamelans on 'A' and 'B' for four performers – 1976
  • "64 I Ching Chants" (instructions) – 1976
  • "Outdoor Music for four Open-tuned Autoharps" – 1970
  • "Enoughing," tape – 1968; "Ushas", tape – 1968; "Xmas Me", tape – 1968
  • "In the Garden", clarinet, viola, projections and tape – 1965
  • "Desert Ambulance", amplified accordion, voice, 3-track tape, projections – 1964
  • "Balances", amplified str qt (with db) – 1964
  • "Tropical Fish Opera", four instruments – 1962
  • "Time Fields", sextet – 1962 (Pacifica Directors Award, 1963)
  • "Traversals", tape – 1961
  • "Kronos", tape composition (approx 15 minutes) – 1962
  • "Kore", tape – 1961
  • "Four Sanskrit Hymns", four singers, four cellos, double bass, harp, piano, celesta, three percussionists, tape – 1961
  • Recordings

  • Various works included on the DVD published with the book in David Bernstein's The San Francisco Tape Music Center: 1960s counterculture and the avant-garde, ISBN 9780520248922 (2008, University of California Press)
  • Desert Ambulance (2005, Locust 70)
  • Worldfood (2004, Locust 55)
  • Music from Mills, an anthology which contains a short excerpt from his "Audition" (1986, Mills MC 001)
  • Books

  • Naked Close Up (2012)
  • Planetary Sojourn (2010)
  • Catalog of Prints, Drawings, Original Art (2009)
  • A Death in Zamora (1989)
  • The Guide to Everywhere (1988), a hypertext CD-ROM
  • Being of the Sun (1973) with Alicia Bay Laurel
  • Zero Weather (1980)
  • Zero Summer (1984)
  • References

    Ramon Sender Wikipedia

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