I’m excited to perform next week as part of the Sonic Frontiers season. I plan to play a set of pieces for banjo and electronics drawing from the material on Post & Beam, adding a few new twists, and hopefully including one or two “sound bug” pieces from my Radicans project.
Also on the bill is Justin Peake, a New Orleans based percussionist/composer known for his work as Beautiful Bells. Justin is a Tuscaloosa native, so this will be a homecoming performance for him.
I think it’s going to be a great night!
Thursday March 7 2013 at 7:30pm Bama Theatre Greensboro Room
600 Greensboro Ave.
Admission is Free.
Thanks to Eric Hardiman for shooting and posting videos from Saturday’s Albany Sonic Arts Collective show.
This is the premiere of a soon-to-be-titled work built around the idea of treating a fader box as a set of pump organ pedals, rather than simple position sensors. Using Cycling ’74’s Max I can control the organ sounds with a variety of gestures: “pumping” the faders makes the sounds louder, rhythmic motion creates harmonics, sudden and abrupt changes add distortion and bite. The samples that appear at 5:30 are from a 2010 recording session with choreographer Jill Sigman (previous story here).
(Start at 1:32 to skip the embarrassing banter and the hopeless yet obligatory banjo tuning…)
“No Mule” is another brand-new tune. The rhythmic chopping effect is a kind of slow-motion walk through a live sample of the banjo. I add a few more live samples beginning at about 4:00 and get into full-on Steve Reich mode by 6:00.
Cycling ’74 has posted a new video from the Science Fair they hosted as part of the recent Expo ’74 event in Brooklyn. I show off my extended banjo instrument (along with my unashamedly geeky enthusiasm). My segment runs from 2:16-3:13, but watch the whole thing and marvel at the wonderful, strange things people do with Max (and their own geeky enthusiasms). Other videos in the series can be found here.
And a big shout out to Eric Prust who built the fine fretless banjo (minus the electronics) in the video.
The cFCFAb tuning is one I came to after trying a more standard minor (fCFAbC) or sawmill (cFCFG) tuning. I use a Pythagorean temperament based on F which doesn’t change the tuning of the C’s and F’s very much, but makes the Ab significantly flatter than an equal-tempered Ab.
The whooshing, windy sound throughout (heard prominently during the intro) is generated by walking on a pair of foot pedals, almost the way you would pump an old pump organ. (You can see this motion in the video.)
While recording, I kept missing the foot pedals and accidentally stepping on a mic stand instead. I decided to embrace the resulting bass drum thumps and include them in the piece.
Kraig Grady has posted some entrancing videos from the Shadow Theatre of Anaphoria. I love the traditional shadow puppet forms with the decidedly contemporary lighting effects–and Grady’s non-equal tempered tunings are a delight to hear.
This time last week I had the pleasure of working with choreographer Jill Sigman/thinkdance and videographer Peter Shapiro who were artists-in-residence at EMPAC. I recorded some sounds of the objects and materials Jill was working with and then improvised with the samples, my fretless banjo, and vocalist/composer Kristin Norderval (remotely via Skype). Peter has posted some raw footage from our sessions.
Jason Cosco was kind enough to post a video of me performing Wichita Mind Control for bent electronics with MaxMSP at the Upstate Artist’s Guild Gallery last April. This was the premiere performance of the piece. Though my pieces often changes incrementally (or sometimes substantially) as I continue to perform them, this first shot at WMC still feels definitive to me.
Here’s audio of the same performance (previously posted here)
I’m finally putting some videos online from the Faust/Century Plants/Holland Hopson show at Proctors. A few can currently be found at YouTube and Vimeo, with another clip or two to arrive soon. These are definitely “performance documentation” videos. If you want to bring your 3-camera HD setup and skills to my next show, feel free to drop me a line!