Thursday, November 16, 2006

Long Time No Blog - Improv Summary

Well after letting my blog slide something chronic over the semester I thought I should comment on what has been the final semester of the degree (as long as I pass).

I’ll start off with improvisation. At first I was a little weary of the concept having not really been involved in anything like this before. We started out by getting divided into groups and it became apparent that our group would be quite interesting. We discussed what we each could bring to the group sonically and over the next few weeks slowly bought these elements together. Our group consisted of bass guitar, fx pedal, microphones on vocals and objects and then myself on laptop doing some live coding. We experimented with this configuration and slowly worked out some sort of structure. In the middle of the semester we improvised with saxophonist Derek Pascoe in front of the rest of the class. It was an interesting experience not only performing with someone who we had never met but also performing in front of the class as we were open for criticism. It was also good to hear about Derek’s experiences with improvisation.

In the next two weeks the other two groups performed with guests. The week after us improvised with Dr Chandrakant Sardeshmukh, a classical Indian Sitarist. This too was interesting to hear about his experiences with improvisation and it was good to be in the audience this week. The following week last of the 3 groups performed with Tyson Hopprich aka DJ Trip. It was very interesting to hear how he uses technology in his compositions and performances. I was quite surprised at how he on his computer he limited himself to Fruity Loops, which a lot of people would agree is a very basic program. It is his use of Gameboy and CDJ that makes things very interesting and for me I got the most out of hearing his angle on improvisation than the previous two weeks.

In-between these sessions and end of the semester our group made weekly changes to how we would be configured. Finally we ended up with Marco using miked objects, Henry on bass guitar, Will on effects pedal, Martin on vocals and myself on a granulation program I made for my minor project in Creative Computing and shotgun mic running through a delay in Logic. I also had a send of the group running into a long reverb which was sent back to the desk. Our group performed an ambient mix of sounds which was fun and challenging to perform especially in front of the rest of the class where we hadn’t tried this new configuration before. Hopefully it was interesting for everyone that was listening.


At 1:03 AM, Blogger Tyrell Blackburn said...

I was really impressed with your group and it really struck me how tight everyone's playing was... Some very good listening. You seemed to all also be aware of your places in the spectrum of frequencies. Your final year performance was also notably a lot more together since you played with Derek. Perhaps all those comments made by our three guests were useful.


Post a Comment

<< Home