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preamble | audio recordings | disclaimer | acknowledgements
In the past six months or so I’ve started work on solo (or duet with the guitar) playing. Last time I performed solo was as a pianist (anyone remember that?), so I decided to start by translating the stuff I learned on piano onto the guitar. Specifically, I’ve taken some techniques and strategies of a few improvising pianists and remodeled them for the guitar. These improvisations are hopefully moving away from their pianistic roots, but nonetheless, for the interested, the following was the june 2003 (rev. 0.0.1α) description of the improvisations:
…The [second] is a transposition (from piano to guitar) of a particular technique associated with a certain improviser. The [first] recording is a stylistic impression of another improvising pianist. A piano solo I heard performed at a concert some years back (thus mediated by my memory) forms the basis of the [fourth] recording. The [third] recording is a kind of structural paraphrase of a recorded piano solo.
I leave it to the curious to guess the identities of the pianists… ;-)
Additionally, I am finding this context to be an interesting platform to amplify and examine the dialogue between myself and the guitar. I imagine that io 0.0.1 beta could describe this tangled network of relationships in a manner more elegant and succinct than I could:
When you are in play with the guitar, you are physically involved in the negotiation between, say, physiology and physics. The guitar and you compromise, and negotiate solutions to accommodate the human form and the physics of the vibrating string. The guitar itself is a terminal of a techno-cultural narrative involving humans—including crafts people, engineers, theorists and other guitarists—and less corporeal actors—such as traditions, styles and tastes. I use the word ‘terminal’ to denote that the guitar is the end point of this narrative, and also that the guitar forms your interface to this network of relationships. As the guitarist, you are just one actor among many involved in this negotiation.
However, io cannot describe anything.
All audio clips are encoded as MPEG audio layer 3 (aka mp3) files. For playback, you will need a suitable decoder or player.
|impression_002a.mp3||3'54" improvisation (1.7MB, mono mp3 audio file)|
|transposition_002a.mp3||4'00" improvisation (1.8MB, mono mp3 audio file)|
|paraphrase_002a.mp3||3'19" improvisation (1.5MB, mono mp3 audio file)|
|mediated_002a.mp3||3'24" improvisation (1.5MB, mono mp3 audio file)|
Since I haven’t tested these out with an audience yet, I’d like to invite you to contact me with any comments or criticisms you may have. (I hope you find the stuff entertaining.)
For those who are interested in such stuff, a single microphone was used to capture the sound of the speaker cabinet, and the recordings were made to MiniDisc. Unlike the clean’n’dry june 2003 recordings (rev. 0.0.1α), I’ve begun to reintroduce some audio effects (Wa-hey! Reunited with the trusty volume pedal) and minor-league ‘preparations’ into these improvisations.
This is all pretty new (untested and unpolished) stuff. Additionally, all audio files were taken from the first few takes with minimal editing (there’s three splices). If you’re looking for something a bit more polished, concise and/or sophisticated, have a look elsewhere ’round buster & friends’ d’da.
Thanks to Mel, Pete, Elspeth, Phil, Jan, Stu, Murray, Paul, Alex, Kat and Martin for feedback and for preventing me from losing my nerve. Thanks also to Katje and the Church of Sonology. Technoscientific services and support provided by buster & friends’ C-ALTO Labs.