what is going on in your musical life

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(xps) I have a Vox Amplug AC30 and it is surprisingly good.
(this is not me in the video, btw)

just another country (snoball), Tuesday, 6 August 2019 20:13 (nine months ago) link

two weeks pass...

One of my best friends, and a regular collaborator (we've had two bands together), has always made really interesting music. About two years ago he showed me these weird a cappella recordings he'd made, just him overdubbing his voice and singing. They are unquestionably some of the most interesting music I've ever heard, and stand head-and-shoulders over anything else he's made (or anything I've made, for that matter). It has the dense writing of Mary Lou Williams (a big influence on him) coupled with dense Ligeti fugues. They are completely bananas.

I told him I wanted to transcribe them for live performance. I've been asked to curate and compose for a concert to accompany the opening of the Rubens exhibition at the Art Gallery Of Ontario. (I'm having an antiphonal choir sing the final posted text from the Heaven's Gate cult, a suggestion aero made several years ago. I'm also arranging a couple of Julius Eastman pieces for two harpsichords, which will be performed-- the harpsichords are recreations of the Flemish harpsichords that would've been contemporaneous with Rubens.) We're also staging a performance of one of my friend's pieces.

It's ten-minutes long and is 27 overdubbed tracks of his voice. I am taking the day to transcribe it and arrange it for the antiphonal choir. I'm posting here because I'm really having a moment with his work, his is unquestionably some of the best and most interesting choral writing I've ever encountered and I can't wait til I'm done so I can send PDFs to all my friends to show them.

flamboyant goon tie included, Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:26 (nine months ago) link

The writing is so dense I'm having to go track-by-track-by-track. I'm really good at transcribing from mixes but this is just too complicated for my ears. So exciting.

flamboyant goon tie included, Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:28 (nine months ago) link

oooh this sounds incredible

brigadier pudding (DJP), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:40 (nine months ago) link

Wow, that sounds amazing, I hope it will be recorded/released at some point (the solo version esp)?

My album is finally coming out tomorrow, and I'm actually really glad that I will be involved in attending/DJing/wrangling the PA for a friend's wedding this weekend, so that I don't get totally strung out on social media.

change display name (Jordan), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:41 (nine months ago) link

Speaking of voices, my deep listening Pauline workshop went really well last night! 20 ppl showed up and we got lots of positive feedback. Very enjoyable to hear and make human voices

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:43 (nine months ago) link

xxp - what Dan said! I wanna hear this!

I have a couple shows coming up next month (both solo, 2 different projects). The curator/booker for one of them is asking me about merch, and I feel like there are way too many tapes, cds, etc. and plus, it's only a month away, so I think I will do a zine. ... Maybe at some point, I will have an idea for a shirt design and do shirts.

sarahell, Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:44 (nine months ago) link

Jordan I would like to listen to your album. I need to figure out how to beat do that bc my listening situation is messed up!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:44 (nine months ago) link

Yeah yeah to different kinds of merch!! Toss me $15 and I’ll toss u a cool T-shirt. I’d like to make some merch actually but have been stuck.

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:46 (nine months ago) link

fgti that sounds like fascinating work

president of deluded fruitcakes anonymous (silby), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:46 (nine months ago) link

LL - did my friend N0rman come to your workshop?

sarahell, Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:46 (nine months ago) link

Ya DJP and sarahell it's right up both your alleys, I think. He hasn't made it available yet so I can't share it publicly but https://princenifty.bandcamp.com those are his albums. His albums are great but his choral work is beyond beyond.

flamboyant goon tie included, Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:52 (nine months ago) link

Thanks LL, aren't you doing mp3s these days? The workshop sounded really interesting btw.

change display name (Jordan), Thursday, 22 August 2019 16:52 (nine months ago) link

Hmmm I’m afraid I don’t remember a Norman. We did introductions and I got about 15/20 names for the email list however I do not have perfect name recall. Face, I could answer definitively!

Jordan - I do mp3 but my download/device situation is in flux. I might try to use WiFi/streaming on my old phone but right now I’m “cds in the car” for most enjoyable listening experience lol

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 22 August 2019 17:16 (nine months ago) link

Sorry! I forgot to google proof!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 22 August 2019 17:17 (nine months ago) link

slender, african-american guy, kinda quiet

sarahell, Thursday, 22 August 2019 17:18 (nine months ago) link

No, afraid he was not there but I cordially invite him to give me his email address so he can stay abreast of our next one. I’m already plotting!

weird woman in a bar (La Lechera), Thursday, 22 August 2019 17:32 (nine months ago) link

I am very impressed and inspired by everyone’s recent activity and output!

I learned how to play Blackbord pretty well last night. I need to get that Pink Floyd butts poster to complete the experience

Karl Malone, Friday, 23 August 2019 01:34 (nine months ago) link

If and when this event happens and you are able to attend, you will see a copy of that poster on the wall of the hall: NYC FAJ? How many ilxors make music in the nyc area?

TS: “8:05” vs. “905” (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 23 August 2019 01:38 (nine months ago) link

Just bought a bass

Another guitarist who thinks they can teach/play bass? You are dead to me now (j/k)

TS: “8:05” vs. “905” (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 23 August 2019 01:53 (nine months ago) link

I got a work bonus with which I bought a Thinline Telecaster (a longtime lust object). I also ordered a bouzouki / octave mandolin, which isn't here yet.

Rumspringsteen (Ye Mad Puffin), Friday, 23 August 2019 09:28 (nine months ago) link

I was teaching bass (to relative beginners) over the past year, actually, and have done it before. I just didn't own one and was using a school's bass. As the song goes, that's nothing; you should hear me play piano.

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Friday, 23 August 2019 11:10 (nine months ago) link

I heard you play some nice numbers

The Fearless Thread Killers (James Redd and the Blecchs), Friday, 23 August 2019 12:17 (nine months ago) link

FYI Jordan's album bangs


brigadier pudding (DJP), Friday, 23 August 2019 12:39 (nine months ago) link

Exhausting week is over. Performed my own composition at guitar festival on Thursday, played wedding ceremony + 2h of solo guitar music for the reception on Saturday, gave a lecture on my guitar composition work at the festival on Sunday. Took the day off except for one lesson today. The wedding reception was the longest I've ever played solo, unprocessed guitar in one stretch in front of people but I know I can do it now (at least one easy lower-level classical piece between every comparatively challenging piece, lots of improvising on standards; in the end, no one's listening that closely so it seems like you can do p much anything as long it's tonal and has a pulse).

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Tuesday, 27 August 2019 00:20 (nine months ago) link

two weeks pass...

I am arranging Julius Eastman's "Evil N" for duo double-harpsichord performance. I was excited to receive the score and then I received the score-- it is essentially just guidelines for improvisation. In order to effectively recreate the effect of four-pianos, I set about transcribing the work from audio. I have never engaged in such a mind-numbingly difficult and tedious job. I am finding myself needing to take breaks every 20 minutes. I am drinking water every break so, at the very least, I'm well-hydrated.

flamboyant goon tie included, Tuesday, 10 September 2019 23:54 (eight months ago) link

Ha, wow, that does sound difficult for an arrangement job.

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Wednesday, 11 September 2019 01:24 (eight months ago) link

Dang. Fgti, are you familiar with Jace Clayton's Julius Eastman project?

change display name (Jordan), Wednesday, 11 September 2019 02:13 (eight months ago) link

Yes indeed I love it. I am supremely frustrated with this transcription, though. I just finished the legwork, it's on to the formatting. I thought this would be simpler than it has been. I guess it's part of the Eastman experience... pieces that are punishing to perform and punishing to transcribe. I hope there's a feeling of enlightenment on the horizon, right now I just feel ear-tired and butt-soft from spending so many hours on it.

flamboyant goon tie included, Wednesday, 11 September 2019 02:23 (eight months ago) link

I now have an octave mandolin


Ramen? No thanks, I prefer them cooked (Ye Mad Puffin), Thursday, 12 September 2019 01:00 (eight months ago) link


I just bought a backup archtop for my normal archtop.

flamboyant goon tie included, Thursday, 12 September 2019 02:08 (eight months ago) link

This is the thing I've been working on btw

I'm pretty excited about it, I've never taken on such a large project before


My choral piece is insane, aero suggested to me a while back that somebody should set the final missive of the Heaven's Gate cult and so that's the piece, for antiphonal choir? Very excited about it.

flamboyant goon tie included, Friday, 13 September 2019 17:30 (eight months ago) link


All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Friday, 13 September 2019 18:42 (eight months ago) link

Very cool!

DJI, Friday, 13 September 2019 19:32 (eight months ago) link

I might join this group: https://open.spotify.com/artist/64mXwTe92xIUKqJCTdfRnK?si=wOLgOwTORtyx8vBra1V6TQ

Here's one of their recordings: https://open.spotify.com/album/5bOrj3e1FP7mmZPwIxfJGu?si=kl79-n4sSOORcffpfc3fYQ

However, their rehearsals are on my D&D night

brigadier pudding (DJP), Tuesday, 17 September 2019 16:13 (eight months ago) link

Finally caved and put up ten minutes of my Frippertronics-ish guitar improv (combined with field recordings) on Bandcamp, more to come as I find the time/inclination:


It’s a decent start, maybe?

spastic heritage, Thursday, 19 September 2019 05:03 (eight months ago) link

I’m standing in on bass for one upcoming gig only with the 46th best Scottish band ever (other polls may present different results).

It’s helped prompt me to sort out my home recording set up to some extent too, so I’m actually enthusiastic about that at the moment too - results unlikely to emerge for a while.

Just need to stop coveting synths and guitar pedals for a while.

michaellambert, Thursday, 19 September 2019 05:17 (eight months ago) link

New single/video out today!

DJI, Friday, 20 September 2019 15:15 (eight months ago) link

Idk how it happened but I fell behind over the past week and only ended up with five days to write a 25 minute choral work for four choirs

I have been working constantly and subsisting on DUMPLINGS!, basically, having manic outings after 11pm if possible but otherwise a couch potato with a Rewire Piano Object attached to my right and a MacBook to my left

The process is basically I slow-improvise my way through each section of the lyric with my iPhone running and then transcribe it later

I got halfway through the piece and I got cold feet about “onslaught of new material” on the audience for 25 fucking minutes so I prayed to “The Drift” and I prayed to “Music For Strings, Percussion and Celeste” and said fuck it I’m done composing, now it’s time to start copy-pasting

The text is the final text of the suicide cult Heaven’s Gate and so I did it like Scott Walker and Bartok— it is just an ornery repeat of every section right from the beginning, like Scott does in “Clara”— you heard it once, now listen again, shithead— but also Bartok because there are so many elisions, we’re going back through it all. Not faster, just shorter, like a recipe you’ve gotten good at

At the end I have the full choir screaming triad slow-glissing from triad up to mediant-related triad and the words are a synthesis of Heaven’s Gate begging the reader to come down to Southern California and kill yourself with Kool-Aid to board the spaceship, synthesized with Jesus and his disciples telling the listener to come to Galilee and give up their life so that one might find eternal life under the shadow of the Father

So it’s been a lot of work and I look great, every morning I slice a lemon in six so I have six glasses of water to remember to drink. My body is not so good, no muscle on my calf anymore, just on my ass all day writing whatever this is

I snuck away for 90 minutes and had dinner with my friend and her new boyfriend. They were intimate with each other, with their hands, at the dinner table, in the restaurant. I was happy when the food arrived! but I would’ve been impressed if they kept their inside hands on each other while feeding themselves with their outside hand. Olympic level PDA. That’d be amazing to see

I’m walking home, I have my bike but I was a cigarette, and my boyfriend calls me. He misses me. He tells me so. He says, “I want my boyfriend back.” I don’t respond especially well. I say, “this choral piece sliced my brain in two.” I feel my inner thighs chafing. I feel bad and also bad.

I thought I could finish it in three, but it took me four. I finished it. I formatted it. I mailed it off. Then I listened to it, all 79 pages, 25 minutes, and I thought: this piece is strong, both conceptually and compositionally

And there’s a little mental solar flare that happens right when you finish the writing process so I’m documenting it here. Tomorrow I’m going to take my boyfriend to the park with the dog and take him out for Filipino food

fgti (flamboyant goon tie included), Thursday, 26 September 2019 07:39 (eight months ago) link

*stands up and applauds*

change display name (Jordan), Thursday, 26 September 2019 12:05 (eight months ago) link

Best Music Writing 2019

brigadier pudding (DJP), Thursday, 26 September 2019 12:29 (eight months ago) link

Congrats, fgti

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Thursday, 26 September 2019 15:42 (eight months ago) link

one month passes...

Bizarre: a (probably cassette?) recording of a harsh noise gig I played with a friend as a late teenager in 1998 seems to have been uploaded to Youtube, unknown to me or the friend. I couldn’t remember if I ever had a recording. I actually remember feeling unsure and harried about the set itself but it was startling to hear it again. An interesting time capsule from when I did things like play harsh noise.

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Monday, 28 October 2019 03:50 (seven months ago) link

Last night, I sang in my first concert of the season:

Desenclos - Requiem (I had a "blink and you'll miss it" solo bit in the Sanctus)
Parry - Songs of Farewell 1 - 3
Schuman - Carols of Death

It was rad! We pretty much nailed everything and I can't wait to hear the recording.

brigadier pudding (DJP), Monday, 28 October 2019 13:31 (seven months ago) link

Oh wow nice

All along there is the sound of feedback (Sund4r), Monday, 28 October 2019 13:44 (seven months ago) link

We're doing Bach Cantata #140 in my church gig's next concert, which has two baller soprano/baritone duets in it. I know I'm going to be doing one of them but I don't know which one yet.

brigadier pudding (DJP), Monday, 4 November 2019 20:51 (six months ago) link

Here they are, for reference:


brigadier pudding (DJP), Monday, 4 November 2019 20:52 (six months ago) link

damn, Dan that is so cool you're still doing that.

It is weird/amazing/so fulfilling for me now that I can play music with my sons these days...hearing them play instruments is a true joy of parenthood, but a whole other level when you start playing with them. And then an even weirder sensation when they start blazing by your abilities.

Joe Gargan (dandydonweiner), Tuesday, 5 November 2019 01:21 (six months ago) link

I have been working off-and-on for the past four months on a very involving film score-- 100 minutes of music, all orchestral, all very dense. The temp score was Copland, Nyman and Glass. One of the key moments used "Prospero's Magic" as temp-- it's one of my favourite Nyman pieces and it was a pleasure to write something to replace it, and I knocked it out of the park, it's a beautiful piece of music.

I was ignoring the Glass and replacing with completely different stuff and it was starting to work. The Copland was some of the super rhythmic weirdfun stuff, and the stuff I wrote to replace it was coming off all disjointed and terrific. It was shaping up to be the best score I've ever worked on.

Then they showed the MIDI demo cut to the executives. They like it. They want it to be more basic bitch. They want there to be a more unifying compositional tone. It all sounds like my own music but the distance between Nyman-style writing and Copland-style writing was pretty large. I decided that I'd have to rewrite the opening, write something that bridged the gap.

"How do I bridge Copland and Nyman" I asked myself and I slept on it. I woke up and had the idea. The answer was John Adams. Get that rhythmic minimalism and the dense fifths, keep the phrasing square, a more elevated pulse. I worked on the opening for seven hours straight. It turned out perfectly. It was textured, pulsing, unspooling. It sat perfectly under the dialogue and was audible and effective. The ending itself was thrilling. Even as MIDI it was just working terrifically.

I sent it to the director. He texted me, "I got chills". "YOU GOT CHILLS FROM THE MIDI" I texted back. I played the cue for my ex, and for another friend, and another. "You nailed it," they all said, "this is perfect". I felt so job-well-done that I went out to reward myself with a bowl of chicken vermicelli.

I got a call from the director in the Vietnamese restaurant. The producer vetoed it. I paced for 17 minutes in the Vietnamese restaurant. I talked very loudly. They want catchy themes AND they want it not to compete with the dialogue. They want recognizable textures AND they want it to be unobtrusive. They want it to be dramatic and optimistic AND they want it to not be overbearing. They want it to sound like the other cues. They want me to establish the theme in a space of 2.5 seconds before the dialogue enters.

They do not understand anything. They don't understand anything. I rode on the streetcar for 30 minutes near tears writing my letter of resignation. I have lost months of my real life to this film and years of my sanity. I did not send the e-mail. I love my job and I hate my job and I hate my job

that said, I’d prefer a single serving of you (flamboyant goon tie included), Wednesday, 13 November 2019 00:33 (six months ago) link

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