Yo party people. I’m working on a new piece with big man Osvaldo Golijov and Accordiopimp Michael Ward-Bergemann. We’re doing a premeir at the opening day concert of their new Green Space, which is an invite only thing, but you can check it out on-air on April 29th at 2pm. Jon Schaefer’s program SoundCheck will host a performance as well.
We’re using some cool old samples from the WNYC archives to create rhythms, etc. It’s pretty awesome.
I actually didn’t fall off the face of the planet, I’ve just been crazy busy. I accidentally moved to the Napa valley in California just after the new year, for a really cool film project called Tetro. I’m doing some Music Editing and writing some little ditties here and there. I play some guitar here, which is both great and frightening at the same time.
In what little free time I have while I’m out here I have been frantically writing for my piece called Self Destruct which will be performed on the Chicago Symphony’s Music Now series in June. It’s about prolonged freaking out and how it messes with my head. I’m also working on the slow movement for the Carnegie Hall commission which to this point has been called Three Songs, but I’m not sure if that will stick. Big bad Olga Bell found this totally ace poem by Elizabeth Bishop that we’re going to set called Keaton. It slays me. In any event, anyone in the Chicago and/or New York City regions, I hope to see you at these performances if you can make it out.
In Other news, I’m off to Europe with the craziest party on stage – David Krakauer’s Klezmer Madness. If any of you are near Austria, Poland, Swizterland or France, let me know and I’ll hook you up with the infos. I’ve been working on some beatbox and Videogame inspired jams for this tour – and I’m pretty stoked. I think it’s going to work well.
No, seriously? The last thing I remember was saying “I Do” in June.
So what has happened since then? Well, I went to Hawaii and lived on the ocean for two weeks. Then I did some consulting work. In October I rocked some Olga Bell Supernovas at Bard College and rekindled a love affair with bowed string instruments. I also started writing my music down for the first time since music college. It’s amazing what it does to your thought process – I immediately started thinking too hard about things, trying to be too “clever” and put in notes that were “cool.” Thankfully a night of listening to Low and Lightning Bolt kept me grounded.
I buttoned up some work on Animas Perdidas, the juggernaut of a documetary that my homegirl Monika Navarro made. It will be coming to an outlet somewhere near you, keep your eyes peeled at animasperdidas.com for up-to-the-minute information.
I’ve landed another sweet gig in film, and will drop more about it when I have more time, suffice to say it is shaping up to be an awesome film. Right now I’m in NYC rehearsing the Ainadamar circus for a performance in Carnegie Hall on Sunday, then it’s back to Boston for a few weeks of editing work, then recording overdubs for the aforementioned film, then editing and dubbing the film, then a few tours, one off concerts and a couple commissions and the next thing you know it’s July 2009.
Plans are in effect to record a bunch of material that is imploding from the SmOlga project for Carnegie Hall. I hope to record these songs in Brooklyn in July with an all star cast of associated players. There are a few of you out there that have been waiting for this shit for years.
So I’ll leave you with the newish track that is posted in the player to the left called “on the cob” … dirty, nasty, slow. Virtually all of this track is Nord Modular. I set out trying to make a track without playing one note on a keyboard. It’s all “virtual analog sequencers” having their controls automated. I can’t remember the last time I did that. Ok, ok, ok – /geekout.
Oh, techno, techno, techno. Is it totally 2006? 1996?? 1986???
Whatever, here’s your chance to own the first official Techno release from Keepalive on the formerly-of-Boston Zero-G Sounds imprint. Digital Release only, so get out your paypal or plastic money and Buy, Buy, Buy. Available from Beatport and other fine online beat vendors. These are not just 128Kbps MP3’s folks, these are way high quality digitals mastered by the Germans.
Release Name: Platinum Chart Topper
Platinum Chart Topper
This and That
6 Million Dollar Life Insurance Plan
So, Newbury Comix is turning 30 (i think) and I’m playing a laptop set at their Stoughton/Avon, MA store. My Brother-in-law happens to be the manager there, so I’m heading out to play a set of my slow-core drone stuff. I’ll be hitting it with fellow villain and Zer0GSounds labelmate Todd Gys and local Boston superhero Tiny Wight.
Again, don’t head to the store on Newbury Street and expect to see a keepalive set. The deal is going down at 6pm on Saturday the 13th of September. I’m not sure when I will go on, but if you’re coming out, let me know. Gys has promised to bring some of his glitchy space-dub championics so get ready.
That’s All folks.
I am absolutely thrilled to have a chance to work with the fabbo Olga Bell (myspace here) for a commission from Carnegie Hall on their “Professional Training Workshops” series. We will be workshopping some stuff together in September in NYC, October at the always beautiful Bard College and then in May we’ll head down to New York Citah and play the piece for all of you ravenous Bell fans. Do not miss this girl – big ups.
The piece is still in it’s gestation period – the words are still up for debate, but it looks like they will be originals of Olga’s. There will be Piano, Guitar, Percussion, Strings and a laptop – maybe others as well. More details will come once the piece is written, or at least some of it.
An update on the projects I’m working on at the moment…
Animas Perdidas is this amazing documentary I’m writing music for, written by a friend of mine, Monika Navarro. (The song “Grand and Sand” in the SoundCloud player is a sketch I’ve put together for the film.) Anyway, this film is starting to really come together. I’ve been fortunate enough to see it many steps of the way, and I have to congratulate Monika and everyone working with her on a job well done. It looks like in the next few months I’ll be finishing the final recordings of the music and putting it all together.
I was fortunate to be selected as one of the Composers awarded commissions in Carnegie Hall’s Professional Training workshops. In October I’m headed to Bard College to workshop some music with an ensemble of instruments and two of my favorite singers ever. Unfortunately I have absolutely no idea what the piece will be about, so wish me luck on that deadline. We will be heading to Carnegie Hall in May to perform the final versions. All of you NYC folk, I hope you can come check this out…
Also, I am totally psyched to be writing a piece for WNYC’s opening of their performance space. I’ll be writing the piece collaboratively with accordiopimp Michael Ward-Bergemann and geniusman Osvaldo Golijov. I just took delivery of 8 or so CD’s full of 1930’s and 1940’s Radio Broadcasts that I’ll be using as source material in the piece. This piece will be performed January 14th at the new space located at 160 Varick Street in Manhattan.
After that, I’m performing as a laptopper on some new pieces on the LA Philharmonic’s Green Umbrella series, headed to Europe with Klezmer Madness and working on my Chicago commission that I mentioned in a previous post. There’s also a European tour of Ayre in the works. So. Much. Music.
So as a guy that has spent the better part of the last 20 years in front of a computer, I get a little tired of things coming and going. IUMA was supposed to change the world. MP3.com was supposed to be the end all and be all. These things have either died or failed and transformed into tools for monkeys.
So why does this concern me? Because I’m spending an evening that could probably be better spent doing dishes trying to hook together all the tools I use into one cohesive online profile for people to check out. I keep a profile on facebook, this blog, am a member of soundcloud, last.fm and I’m even still on myspace. Will these tools even be around in 2 years? How does a guy like me link them all together so that if (god forbid) someone was interested to listen to this music, it would stand as a body of work with tidbits of my “online profile” coming from each of these things.
I’m starting on this journey by trying to link my blog, soundcloud and facebook. I’ve uploaded songs to soundcloud (which is awesome by the way, you should try to weasel your way in) I have added them to a “set” which allows me to put them on my blog in the same little widget/player thingie. You see this to the left of what you’re reading now.
Is this player better than the simple flash player I was using before? Yes and no. It is not better because it’s not as low-impact (ie, it takes more resources and is bigger with more graphics, etc… I am a minimalist at heart). It is however much better because when I upload a song to soundcloud, I can with the click of a button add it to my blog as well. You can see the comments that other soundcloud users make on the song (if they ever do) and so on. This realtime linking, this “internet” if you will, is totally dope.
What I haven’t figured out how to do is get these songs to show up in my facebook profile. Not a really big deal, except a lot of people check facebook every day, and not a lot of people check my blog every day so in order to get more people over here to my blog where they can learn about my music and stuff, I need to post things on facebook.
“At the end of the day” I probably should just shut up and write more music.
So I’m headed to Reno.
Off to play some jams with David Krakauer and his Klezmer Madness. Cannot wait. The last time I played with them in North Carolina was pretty much insane. These guys rip and don’t stop until everyone in the place is sweaty because they are throwing down in their seats. That’s a good thing.
Next on my plate are three commissions: one for WNYC with genius-man Osvaldo Golijov and Accordiopimp Michael Ward-Bergemann. I never spell his name right and he’s one of my bros. That’s a shame. After that one it’s a piece for Carnegie Hall (sick things in store for this one, just wait!) and one for the Chicago Symphony’s MusicNow series. Needless to say I have a busy fall and winter ahead of me. I say fall because summer is almost gone already. Wow. Time flies when you get married.
Music tidbits for you this week?
Here you go.
It’s an oldie but a goodie. An old Mom’s tune called “I wanna go to Mollywood.” Blatantly written about a girl named Molly I had a mega-crush on sometime in college. Slammin.
In other news, I figured it was a good idea to update my blog software at 7 in the morning at the airport. I totally didn’t backup my modified wordpress theme, which was a brilliant idea. So here we are… stock themes for a few hours anyway – I’ll change it up this evening after dinner.
So next June (2009) I have a piece on the Chicago Symphony’s Music Now series. It will be a short-ish 10 minute chamber piece for roughly 10 instruments and a laptop. Needless to say I am very excited for it. STOKED! It’s going to be paired with Michael Ward-Bergemann’s “Three Roads” which is a gut wrenching piece that we did a couple years ago (one? two years? i forget) at Carnegie Hall’s Professional Training workshop series which I am applying to this year. Crossing my fingers on that one.
Congratulations to my bro’s who have also won commissions, Derrick and Gonzalo. Totally awesome.
In the meantime I am collecting my thoughts before the onslaught of the next few weeks. Ainadamar in Phoenix for a week, then the Youth Without Youth Suite in Holland, a jaunt to Switzerland for a wedding, back to Amsterdam, then to Athens, then to Boston, sleep, then get married. Good times will be had by all.