Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Droneshift recap and Slide Trumpet!

Dronshift was a lovely and illuminating evening. I had just rolled into San Francisco on a late flight and went directly to the Luggage Store Gallery from the airport. I was not the first arrival, but there was still space around the outside of the gallery to set up. The picture to the right is my view from my chair. CJ Borosque it chilling with her trumpet and Rent Romus' table is front and center. The room was full with participants and audience as well. As things got underway, there was a sense of sparseness that required people to step up from time to time to keep the drone going.
I got the hang of timing my contributions with the stopwatch on the Iphone. About two thirds of the way through the event Matt Davignon walked around the room with a bar napkin with "+ 5 minutes to your time." I was delighted to get the high sign. This amounted to a total playing time of 28 minutes in two hours. I liked the game like parameters of setting the amount of playing for each participant. It seems like an interesting way to get groups of players to interact in a uniform but undefined way. Something I would like to try with a quartet setting.
The next night in Oakland was equally amazing at Frank Moore's performance. A dance studio was transformed with lights, murals and warmth, Frank asked only questions of his audience and achieved amazing results. I see Frank on the vanguard of mining the human psyche to find fear and transmute that into action. I was honored to be there.

On the acquisition side of things, I located a slide trumpet on Craig's list. It required some serious repair. I took it to the legendary repair person Bruce Belo and it has been remediated. Bruce also put some true fear into me in terms of the proper maintenance of the instrument. Using phrases like "it is building a coral reef inside the horn." Bruce persuasively sold the idea of ongoing maintenance as a form of brass hygiene. I see a world of microtonal possibilities and slippery intonation with this tool! Stay tuned for further developments!

The new CD 23 Duets is entering the final phases of mastering. Pictures have been taken and the cover is coming together. The hum of excitement is pulsing through the Coastal Lair.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Droneshift tonight at the Luggage Store Gallery, SF

I am heading up to San Francisco for Droneshift tonight. It is at the Luggage Store Gallery on Market St. at 8PM.

I will be one out of many in this event, with 23 minutes of "play time." I thought this sounded intriguing enough to book a flight to do this. Long tones in the dark of winter. What a theme.

Here are some notes on the event:

This event should be a drone concert in that each person's notes begin
and end gradually and are of very long duration. There should not be
any noticeable rhythms or melodies. Please think of your contributions
as elements and aspects of a singular "group sound". If you play a
breath-related instrument, and do not have circular breathing
techniques, you can play in a "gradual ebb and flow" style. There will
be natural changes in dynamics and mood. At some points, non-drone
sounds such as field recordings or singular bell sounds may be
appropriate element to the group sound.

As I mentioned earlier, you're each going to need some sort of
stopwatch. Cell phones and ipods often have them, but I realized last
time that my ipod seems to turn itself off after a minute or so. I'm
not worried about the quiet beeping noises of wristwatches. (In fact,
they may be kind of nice.) The rules are:
1) Each musician can play for up to 23 minutes. When you play is up to
you - just make sure your stop watch is running as you play.
2) We will get started at exactly 8pm and finish at exactly 10pm.
3) As a group, however, we need to make sure that the music
continuously happens for the entire 2 hours.

On Friday I will be sitting in with Frank Moore for his performance in Oakland.