I read a scifi story years ago. It may have been in one of the scifi magazines.

It involved Earth having established a relationship with an alien race that valued above all art in all its forms.

  • They have technology that can both read and transmit thoughts.

  • A music store owner buys a house that among other things can play music.

  • While viewing the house he keeps noting the technical errors in the music which are each automatically corrected as he notices them.

  • The fact that he was able to notice those things, however, tipped off the aliens that he was far more musically gifted than his life would imply.

  • Examining his life further the aliens realized that this man's fingers weren't nimble enough to play any musical instruments Earth had to offer.

  • They give him a different house, one without any telepathic illusions or broadcasts (because they have a firm rule about not tampering with the perceptions of artists) and also give him a cone shaped device that responds to his thoughts and produces any music he can imagine.

  • He becomes a very famous music performer.

1 Answer 1


It can be Creative Constructions, Inc. by Kent Patterson

I searched Google Books for house correct music subject:"science fiction" and the Analog Science Fiction and Fact record was the fourth result:

Hansell let the music flow through him. Bit dead on the upper register of the second violin - no. One of the kettle drums too tight - no. Incredible. The second he spotted the slightest flaw in the music, it seemed to correct itself. Pure magic. Marvelous acoustics!

"I'll buy it! How much?"

"Only $149,999.95, complete."


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