Paul Hembree is a composer, creative technologist, and educator, working in music artificial intelligence, new music, and interactive media.
As a composer, his works focus on uncanny, anthropomorphic utterances of non-human objects, arrayed into dense, choric clouds. These clouds often condense into patterns of visceral rhythmic articulation, on the chaotic brink between randomness and periodicity. Both extremes are explored through careful traversal of visual and auditory spaces, guided by feedback loops, the emergent (mis)behavior of hand-crafted algorithms, and the agency of human performers.
His recent projects include the score and sound design for Goodnight Traffic City (2017), a game by developer Loren Schmidt and artist Kia Labeija, and The Mycosis Series (2016-2018), for real and virtual instrumentalists, with premieres by cellist T.J. Borden and trumpeter Sam Wells. His audiovisual improvisation environment, Apocryphal Chrysopoeia (2016), was featured at National Sawdust on the 2016 New York City Electroacoustic Music Festival.
As a computer musician, he has collaborated with many prominent performers of new music, including the JACK Quartet, Irvine Arditti, the International Contemporary Ensemble, Ensemble Signal, and the Callithumpian Consort, on compositions by Pauline Oliveros, Brian Ferneyhough, and Kaija Saariaho, and Roger Reynolds, among others. As a computer musician, Hembree has collaborated with Reynolds on several major projects since 2011, including FLiGHT (2016) at the Park Avenue Armory, and Shifting/Drifting (2016), at the Darmstadt Summer Course for New Music.
In 2015 he received his PhD in music, specializing in composition and computer music, from the University of California, San Diego, where he taught music theory, history, composition, and game audio courses as an instructor. During 2017 and 2018 he was a visiting assistant professor at Bard College and a lecturer at Skidmore College, where he taught courses on interactive media with MAX/MSP, game design and audio implementation in Unity, and game studies courses.
In 2018, seeking to responsibly shape the future of music creation in an age of automation, Hembree joined Amper Music as an asset developer, helping to design and curate data for their music artificial intelligence software.