Thursday, August 24, 2006

The KFJC experience

Tuesday night was my live mic on KFJC. My first live mic, with Thurston Hunger as my host, was back in 1998 so it was good to be back. The campus has been rearranged a bit since then but I managed to find the studio and my host, Austin Space.

Austin went above and beyond the call of host duty. He'd brought a microphone from his personal collection and a tube preamp for me to play and vocalize through. The engineers, Katie and Eli, were completely on the ball. I felt really welcome and appreciated, which for independent musicians is all too rare an experience.

I played "Plaquemine Brulée" followed by a bass flute improvisation over "1 p.m.", a remix that Joel Krutt has done of sounds from my second album Summerland. The words I used for that one were the Houses of the Moon from the Picatrix, a thirteenth-century grimoire. I am getting ready to write a new piece around those words. It will be called (not surprisingly) "Houses of the Moon".

After that I did "Three Visions" and "Davenport".

The interview with Austin that followed focused on the West Marin event that is coming up. I also got to plug Matt's album a little bit and Austin played a track from it.

At the end of the live mic, I found out that Ophelia Necro, another KFJC host, had been listening from home and had really dug "Sugar Skulls", which is part of "Three Visions". So much so that she made me a sugar skull and brought it down to the studio for me! I was SO pleased and I was really glad when she called, just as I was leaving, so I could thank her.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Publication and premiere

I just sent away the signed contract that confirms that my flute quartet, Remove Before Flight, will be published next spring by ALRY Publications. Turn to them if you want Remove Before Flight sheet music for your own flute quartet!

Also, in case you want to save the date, my new piece, The Flip Quartet, will get its first performance on November 2nd at the Luggage Store Gallery. This piece is in a very different vein than Remove Before Flight, in that where RBF is in the "contemporary classical" style (insofar as these terms really MEAN anything), The Flip Quartet is a structured improvisation with many of the details left up to the performers.

For the first manifestation of The Flip Quartet, those performers are Lucio Menegon, Suki O'Kane, Moe! Staiano and Theresa Wong. I'm stoked anticipating what they'll come up with. The score calls for them to work with four amplified stations at the four cardinal points (north/east/south/west), and explore the four medieval elements (earth/air/fire/water) using objects, instruments, and text.

Friday, August 11, 2006

I got my Matt Davignon CD!

And if you don't have yours yet, you can get your own by clicking here.

I like it a lot.

My mind races a lot when I'm trying to fall asleep, and I have turned to certain albums from time to time on headphones to help calm the mind and get it moving in the direction of the dream realm. For a while, I was listening to "Other Times" by King Chubby for that purpose. Then I was using "Apollo: Atmospheres and Soundtracks" by Brian Eno, especially on long train trips and long flights.

Matt's new album is one of those I might turn to in the future. It is intriguing, and beautiful, and experimental, but also soothing. I can see it getting my mind off my day-to-day obsessions and steering me towards an otherworld inhabited by strange organisms making oozey organic sounds and flopping around.

I have Matt's album "Bwoo" also, and it's good, but "SoftWetFish" is better. It takes me deeper into that otherplace and offers up even more sounds you'd never expect to come out of a drum machine. I think (and I hope) Matt will go down in history as the discoverer of all a drum machine's extended techniques. Because he's nowhere near done yet, as far as I can tell.

Monday, August 07, 2006

Celestvs Avgvstvs, Reine de Berkeley

Celeste is here and although she can't come to cooking class with me, I've gotten to hear her twice, once on laptop and once on the tuba. This is very cool. She played tuba at the Skronkathon, and after her set I got to hang with her and Nicole and her dad (Celeste's dad) Ed and her old old friend Mitch. We sat outside the Mama Buzz Cafe and entrepreneurs attempted to sell us video of the original Temptations lineup and speculate about where exactly Jesus celebrated the Last Supper, in Ethiopia or in Jerusalem.

She is still under the weather and couldn't stay for all the skronking that ensued thereafter. There were some very enjoyable sets and a lot of great food on the grill. I found out that I was the very first customer to order Matt Davignon's new album, SoftWetFish. (Something I recommend you do as well, even if you can't be first.)