Friday, April 25, 2008

Do not go quietly

So I've spent the last couple of weeks listening to lots of Morphine. Which is not to say that there is a lot of material, but that I listened to all of it multiple times. It's basically impossible for me to be objective about this band. They were a huge part of my life during some very significant times, were one of the best live bands I've ever seen, and since Mark Sandman died nearly a decade ago, that moment in time is gone, thereby making it an even more treasured memory. I really shouldn't even be writing about them, all I'll end up doing is gushing. I will say this one, non-musical thing: the very next disc in my collection, Joe Morris Quartet ~ A Cloud of Black Birds, features Jerome Dupree, the original drummer for Morphine.

Thoughts on the AS220 gig. Over-all I was very pleased. There were about 30 people there, which wasn't bad for a Monday night with four bands that nobody's ever heard of. A good turn out from my friends, and I think more people watched my set than any other that night. The positive reception seemed to be genuine, (including direct feedback from said friends) and the video element worked as well as I had hoped. Which has actually gotten me thinking about what my next step is, both in terms of output and performance. The biggest question I'm looking at right now is "What exactly is a b/3.1 performance?" As I move towards a more integrated film/music experience, I wonder if I'm creating a film to be marketed as such, or am I creating a live musical performance that happens to have a visual. To create something that I present as a "film" is not such a bad idea. Lots of people in this community know me as a "filmmaker." In fact tonight at work someone asked me if I was working on any new films. On the other hand, music gigs are a way to gain new audience. Another thought that has been in my mind lately is that perhaps I should concentrate more on the studio music than the live music. As a solo performer I have to either work with backing tracks (as I've primarily done up till now) or create systems for triggering, looping, etc.. in order to make a passable "live" performance. With a film, I can take my physical self out of the picture, as it were, and ask the audience to just concentrate on the images and the sounds. I think ultimately (or, at least right now) I'm less interested in sound that can be re-created every night, and more interested in sound that can be perfected to the best of my current abilities. Which is somewhat ironic, considering my love of improvisation, but perhaps that love was meant to open the doors to different sound worlds. Perhaps what I love the most, what I strive for, is to start with the freedom of improvisation, to capture it as the fleeting moment it is, and to then manipulate and massage it into something even more beautiful. In other words, I want to be Wah Wah, with an accompanying film.

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