Rock 'n' Physics

Classes in Rock n Physics: MUS 264 (Rock History, 1950-1970), PHYS 152 (Physics of Sound and Music), and PHYS 199 (College Connections).

This FIG covers the influences changes in technology had and still have on rock 'n' roll and modern day music. Rock 'n' Physics has been taught for many years and it has been well received by first year students considering becoming music or science majors. 

College Connections Faculty: Stan Micklavzina

Photo of College Connections faculty for Rock n Physics, Stan Micklavzina.

Stanley Micklavzina is experienced in the history of Rock ‘n Roll, and is one of those guys who hangs out with a bunch of musicians…In other words, a drummer. He also plays a few chords on the guitar and ukulele and can sing – well, rock ‘n' roll anyway. The musician who had the biggest impact on his life, and according to him, the world, is Jimi Hendrix. He looks really young but actually lived through the original Beatlemania, Acid Rock, Punk Rock, Disco and Indie waves. Now, with a 17-year-old in the house, he has exposure to hip-hop, dubstep, house, electronic, DJ-style mixing, electronic chill and so on.

Micklavzina has been a faculty member in the UO Department of Physics since 1985.  He is in charge of physics lecture demonstrations, which requires expertise with coordinating the universe around us in such a way as to demonstrate, in action, the nature of a phenomenon being discussed in theory. He designs ways to show physics principles for lectures and the public. He teaches courses in the department including the introductory physics sequence, lab courses, and special topic courses such as ‘The Physics of Renewable Energy.’ He is also renowned for his public physics demonstration shows and working to combine demonstrating science with performance.

The connections course will focus on Stan’s vast knowledge of physics demonstrations to bring an understanding of the physical world by observing the applied physics behind the instruments, amplifiers, effects and sound of Rock ‘n Roll. This study will always be interwoven into the history of Rock ‘n Roll from the 1950s to the present. The overarching idea is to change the way you look at the physical universe that surrounds you.


FIG Assistant: Abbie Winn


Summer Assignment

For your summer assignment, please read the book This is Your Brain on Music by Daniel J. Levitin. The book is available for around $10 on Amazon or can possibly be found at your local library.

Week of Welcome FIG Meeting

The first meeting for the FIG is Friday, September 22nd at 11:00 am in Columbia 150. Please arrive on time as we will be relocating shortly after.