||This biography of a living person does not include any references or sources. (April 2013)|
Rolnick's compositions have appeared on 16 records and CDs. A pioneer in the use of computers in performance, he was a researcher at the Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (IRCAM) in Paris in the late 1970s.
Since 1981 Rolnick has taught at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, where he founded the iEAR Studios. In 1991, as head of Rensselaer's Arts Department, he led the establishment of the nation's first MFA program in Integrated Electronic Arts. As of 2007, he is still a professor at the RPI arts department, commuting weekly from NYC to teach.
Much of Rolnick's musical output involves the use of computers and digital media, but it is generally notable for its accessibility and good humor. His music has been characterized by critics as "sophisticated" (Ken Smith, Gramophone), "hummable and engaging" (Steve Barnes, Albany (NY) Times Union), and as having "good senses of showmanship and humor" (Kyle Gann, The Village Voice).
Rolnick studied composition with Darius Milhaud, John Coolidge Adams, Andrew Imbrie, Richard Felciano, and Olly Wilson. He studied computer music with John Chowning, and James A. Moorer. He earned his B.A. in English Literature from Harvard in 1969 and his Ph.D. in Music Composition from UC Berkeley in 1980.
- Neil Rolnick: Extended Family (2011) (Innova Records 782)
- The NYFA Collection: 25 Years of New York New Music (includes The Gathering from Extended Family)(2010) (Innova Records 233)
- Neil Rolnick: The Economic Engine (2009) (Innova Records 724)
- Neil Rolnick: Digits (2006) (Innova Records 656)
- Neil Rolnick: Shadow Quartet (2005) (Innova Records 631)
- Neil B. Rolnick's Fish Love That (2002) (Deep Listening Records DL 18-2002CD)
- Neil B. Rolnick: Requiem Songs: for the victims of nationalism (1996) (Albany Records Troy188)
- Transforms: The Nerve Event Project (includes NerveUs) (1993) (Cuneiform Records 55011)
- Neil B. Rolnick: Macedonian Air Drumming (1992) (Bridge Records BCD9030)
- Neil B. Rolnick: ElectriCity (1992) (OO Discs #8)
- CDCM Computer Music Series Vol. 11 (includes The Persistence of the Clave) (1992) (Centaur Records CDC2133)
- CDCM Computer Music Seris Vol. 7 (includes Vocal Chords and A Robert Johnson Sampler) (1990) (Centaur Records CRC2047)
- Imaginary Landscapes (includes Balkanization) (1989) (Nonesuch Records 9 79235-2)
- CDCM Computer Music Series Vol. 2 (includes What Is The Use?) (1988) Centaur Records CRC2039)
- Neil B. Rolnick: Real Time/A La Mode (1987) (Composers Recordings, Inc. CRI SD 540)
- Neil B. Rolnick: Solos (1984) (1750 Arch Records S-1793)