Host Bill Hutchison (PhD Candidate, Department of English, UChicago) conducts a conversation with composer Pierce Gradone (PhD Candidate, Music, UChicago), while host Anya Bershad (PhD, MD candidate, Psychiatry and Behavioral Neuroscience, UChicago) is out of town at a conference. Pierce, a 2015–16 Arts, Science & Culture Fellow, discusses the intradisciplinary distinctions between musicians and composers; his musical family, and their tradition of singing harmonies while driving cross-country; his early introduction to the upright bass and the influence of Elton John's "Bennie and the Jets"; and the choreographed interplay of order and open-endedness that characterize his compositions. Listen carefully for the clips of Pierce's music scattered through the interview, and the game of "alternate universe" that wraps up the episode.