Born: June 24, 1918
Died: July 31, 2005
Country: Springfield, Illinois, U.S.A.
Studies: University of California, Los Angeles (A.B.1951, M.A.1952), University of Amsterdam (Ph.D.1954)
Teachers: Ernest Toch
Born and reared in Springfield, Illinois, Hood studied piano as a child and played clarinet and tenor saxophone in regional jazz clubs in his teens. Despite his talent as a musician, he had no plans to make it his profession. He moved to Los Angeles in the 1930s and wrote pulp fiction while employed as a draftsman in the aeronautical industry.
After Army service in Europe during World War II, he returned to Los Angeles. He enrolled in the School of Agriculture at the University of California before transferring to UCLA. Between 1945 and 1950 Mantle Hood studied Western music under composer Ernst Toch and composed several classical pieces. Hood earned both his BA in music and MA in composition from UCLA in 1951. As a Fulbright scholar, Hood studied Indonesian music under Jaap Kunst at the University of Amsterdam.
He wrote his Ph.D. dissertation on pathet, translated as the modal system of Central Javanese music. He proposed that the contours of the balungan (nuclear theme) melody are the primary determinants of Javanese musical modes. The dissertation, The Nuclear Theme as a Determinant of Patet in Javanese Music was published in 1954.
After completing his doctoral work in 1954, Hood spent two years in Indonesia doing field research funded by a Ford Foundation fellowship. He joined the faculty at UCLA where he established the first gamelan performance program in the United States in 1958. He also founded the Institute for Ethnomusicology at UCLA in 1960. UCLA quickly became an important American hub of this rapidly developing field. Hood's work spawned a legion of teachers and leaders of the more than 100 gamelan groups in the United States today.
A renowned expert in Javanese and Balinese music and culture, Hood received honors from the Indonesian government for his research, among them the conferral of the title Ki (literally "the venerable") in 1986, and in 1992 was one of the first non-Indonesians to be honored with membership into the Dharma Kusuma (Society of National Heroes).
Hood wrote numerous novels, scholarly books and articles in journals and encyclopedias. Some of his works include The Ethnomusicologist (1971, 1982), Music in Indonesia (1972), the three-volumed The Evolution of Javanese Gamelan.
In 1973, Hood left UCLA and retired to Hawaii where he composed music and served as an editor of The New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians. He also wrote contributions for the Harvard Dictionary of Music and the Encyclopedie de la Musique.
In the 1980s, he came out of retirement in Hawaii to become Senior Distinguished Professor at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County, where he remained until 1996, establishing an ethnomusicology program. He was a professor of music at West Virginia University and a visiting professor at Harvard, Yale, Wesleyan, Indiana, and Drake Universities and the University of Ghana. He also served as President of the Society for Ethnomusicology from 1965 to 1967. In 1999 he was the Charles Seeger Lecturer at the annual conference of the SEM.
Mantle Hood's wife, Hazel Chung, was a teacher of Indonesian and African dance. Hood, with Chung, shot footage in Ghana and Nigeria for their film, Atumpan: The Talking Drums of Ghana (1964).
In 1990, Mantle Hood presented a paper at the 7th International Congress of the European Seminar in Ethnomusicology in Berlin under the title "The Quantum Theory of Music." The concept sought to revolutionize research in music by developing theoretical and practical constructs to close a 75-year gap between the 1920s, which were the beginning of the quantum age in the sciences, and the present. An international consortium was formed (England, France, Germany, Italy, the Netherlands, Russia, and the United States). This consortium resulted in an interdisciplinary five-day workshop with the keynote paper on this subject held in Trieste, Italy, including scholars in physics, mathematics, acoustics, computer-based musical composition, and ethnomusicology. In the following year, seminars in ethnomusicology were held in Venice, Italy. In subsequent years, a core group continued to explore new paradigms inspired by Hood's concepts, and worked through correspondence and meetings. The group included Giovanni Giuriati of the University of Rome, Rudiger Schumacher of the University of Cologne, John E. Myers of Bard College at Simon's Rock, and others. Schumacher and Myers delivered related papers at the annual conference of the European Seminar in Ethnomusicology, held in Barcelona, Spain, September 20–25, 1993. In 1999, Hood outlined key principles of his quantum theory - influenced thinking in his paper "Ethnomusicology's Bronze Age in Y2K," delivered as the Seeger Lecture at the congress of the Society for Ethnomusicology held in Austin, Texas.
Hood died in Ellicott City, Maryland. His son Made Mantle Hood (BA (Maryland), MA (Hawaii), PhD (Cologne)) was a research fellow in ethnomusicology at The University of Melbourne in Australia.Since 10 Januari 2013, Made Mantle Hood is an associate professor at Music Department of Faculty of Human Ecology,Universiti Putra Malaysia.
Works for Percussion