Sunday, November 07, 2010

anyone get to either xenakis performances in la this weekend? if so can you give me a report? im bothered that i missed both the downtown recreation of persepolis and this afternoons performance of oresteia. let me know.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

thought i would make some noise with alessandros little module. his suonoio. thought for this momentary music i would limit my self to only this module. so for those keeping score at home, i recorded only this module into ableton live wherein i used two plugins, one instance of soundtoys echoboy and one audio damage eos reverb. that is all. i was going to dig into the mix but i got tired and tinkering too long undoes the spirit of what im trying to do with 'momentary' music anyway.

its a cool gadget. dont judge its capabilities only on what i did here. i am currently a synth dilettante. in better qualified hands it could do a great deal more. but i did what i did. here is a few minutes of noise to bounce your pigtails to. momentary music 3- suonoio.

Momentary 3 - SuonoIo by ericavery

Saturday, October 16, 2010

i have great affection for janes addiction 1.0. not only the music but all it represented and all it has done for me personally. i owe it a great deal. i have never been one to say, like musicians often do, that i didnt want to talk about it because i had moved on. ive been happy to answer questions about my experience in interviews or conversations with folks or friends. but i have always tried to stay on my own side of street, so to speak. i tried, not always successfully, not to just talk shit. but in so doing i think that the truth has at times gotten an incomplete presentation. so this time around, as i left, i decided not to let all the half truths, mischaracterizations and misunderstandings to go unaddressed. i decided that i wanted to create a small record of my story while dispensing with concerns about stepping on toes, hurting feelings, disillusioning, disparaging etc. i just wanted to answer some questions candidly as if i was just talking privately to a friend. i wanted it to be on camera so that anyone interested could have access to the source material. no editing. no quotes taken out of context. i reached out to sonny at an unofficial janes addiction site that has maintained the conversation about all things janes for many years. because of the net i was able to directly read/hear the feelings of people like them and i carried those voices with me throughout the past couple of years. in most ways i failed creatively this time around. but i take small solace in the fact that i know i made all my decisions based on what i thought would produce the best quality work, that would challenge and best represent the wild spirit of janes 1.0. living is a messy business. we do what we can. so be it.

so i now take a large step, personally, toward placing janes back into a box and putting it back onto its shelf in the hall closet. now i need my coffee. sonny has posted the first installment here. he will be dropping more. each week i believe.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

yesterday i had an interesting conversation with chris kallmyer at the little william theater. i generally do. he said something thats been resonating with me. he said that he thought contemporary composing was beginning to cycle back to the days when composers like mozart not only wrote the music but they brought it all the way through to production and finally also conducted and performed the work. we were talking at the time about "classical" contemporary (whatever that really means) but i think that the same thing applies to music in general. through the confluence of a few different things, artists do alot more these days than just write or perform music. and this applies to bands and djs and solo artists et cetera. the rise in frequency of the multi instrumentalists, the rise of home studio recording, the increased quality of the affordable home studio, the drop in available recording budgets large enough to live and produce on with the accompanying drop in royalty monies; the list goes on. whether or not that is a good thing i dont know. thats a discussion topic for another day but i do think we can all agree that artists are increasingly more involved in most parts of the process. there will of course still be big acts, christina aguilera or some other mouseketeer types, that are performers in the previous sense. but the rest of us in the creative middle and lower classes are clearly wearing many more hats. personally, it was a conscious decision, a few years ago, to learn more about the technical side of music making. i couldnt make mortgage payments waiting for bands in need of a bass player to come calling. i had a really good run of that but it was neither interesting nor sustainable. then more recently my goal became even more refined and ambitious, i wanted to see if i could get to the point that i could record my work well enough to drop it directly onto the net. i think it was survival instinct that brought this about but thankfully i have ultimately found it fascinating and inspiring. it intersects nicely between my interests in science, tech, design and art. so in summation, i have no summation. i will disregard the dictates of formal essay form and just end a damn post. thats what i was thinking about. have a nice day.

Monday, September 06, 2010

todays labor. did some synth homework this afternoon. im learning. i give you momentary music number two:

Momentary2 by ericavery

Sunday, August 29, 2010

this weeks micro concert featured pieces written for two tuba. pretty amazing sitting in a little cloak room with two of those going. but it was interesting as a bass player, hearing composers writing for two bass instruments. it was decidedly different from the previous three weeks; two violins, two accordions and a day with mostly supercollider on a mac with trumpet. those other instruments are obviously instruments that produce mostly higher notes. higher than basses and tubas. most of the works for tuba were decidedly less dissonant than the works written for those other instruments. i wonder if the composers found it difficult, as i have, to do more challenging chordal stuff with bass. higher dissonant notes can more easily sound interesting. whereas dissonant bass notes tend to just sound bad. wont bore you non-musician types with why that is but it does seem, to our ears to be so.

highlight for me was a piece by jacob sudol. managed to do some of that low dissonance with musicality and had a nice balance between being challenging and just being pleasurable to hear. my favorite musical balancing act. actually i think that balancing act applies to art and culture writ large as well.

have a good sunday. did you know that god took this day off because he was beat after creating the universe. all-powerful but he got tuckered out. who knew.

Monday, August 23, 2010

today i was thinking about my adolescent contempt for authority. i think that by and large, it was then mostly just about my wanting to be left alone to do what i pleased. mostly. i found fault in those with positions of authority basically because i wanted just cause to challenge their authority when they tried to get me to do something i did not want to do. again i will say mostly because i am not cynical or shallow enough to believe that it was my only motivation. there was a good amount of hypocritical nonsense that needed policing as well. which brings me to today. that spirit is still alive in me today. my instinct is still to bristle when i perceive, correctly or not, that someone is telling me what to do. a silly blend of adolescence with middle age, i know, but it is so. but i think that the true questioning of authority is something akin to that impulse but certainly not limited by it. i have learned over my lifetime that there exist many fewer authorities in the world than one expects to find when looking at the world from childhood. good mundane case in point. i am in a bicycle shop trying to buy a bike for and with my wife. as usual i am full of questions. i really enjoy asking people questions on topics about which i know very little and they know a great deal. learning. its a good thing. so im asking about old classic schwinn beach cruisers, how often one should grease a chain, when did the sort of low rider bicycle culture get started etc. and at a point i realized that he was just making shit up to fill in the gaps in his knowledge. he never once said that he just did not know. therefore he is entirely unreliable. this is a common strategy for people assuming positions of authority. they fear that if you see that they dont know everything then you wont believe anything and most importantly wont believe in the validity of their authority. of course no one knows everything. when someone does not ever say that they simply do not know, that is a good indication that you should definitely begin questioning their authority. when one begins to develop the ability to ask good questions of the world, and to reason well with the answers given, then one finds a considerably smaller amount of authorities. but then again who the fuck am i to say?

oh and for further reading i recommend christopher hitchens book "letters to a young contrarian". thats all for today.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

dismiss this as looking for silver linings around dark clouds (it might be dismissable anyway because i have done no fact checking) but i was remarking to belle that someone had tweeted that arcade fire is the number one record in america. maybe it was pitchfork. not sure. either way, she thought it remarkable that a band of obvious quality had the top spot. that is remarkable, i believe. but i also wondered if that wasnt a symptom of the fact that less people are buying records these days. one might think that the quality of bestsellers would rise as sales dropped. dont know if they have or even how you could measure that but...i figured that if less people are buying, then a larger proportion of them will be real music fans. those of us left are really here because we love music. are we distilling better taste out of smaller quantities of buyers? separating the wheat from the musical chaff? i dont know. does it matter? it might. i dont know that either but thats what i was wondering as i was waiting in line for my afternoon caffeine bump.

Sunday, August 01, 2010 might have thought that i had finally, after numerous threats, really quit this blog thing. i do remain unconvinced that the directly connected blog tweet facebook thing is right for me. might be. just not sure. but for now i remain. and i have a new, at least temporarily, convincing reason to be here. i thought i would periodically upload some music i create here at home. no studio. no engineer. not even another musician (at least for now). i want to devote a day every couple of weeks to doing what my wife anabelle and i have been referring to as 'momentary music'. i have terrible trouble tinkering and overthinking things to death. with my momentary musics i will not do that. i will devote no more time than a day to any of them and i will then post them here; warts and all. these things will probably be all over the map stylistically because that is how my mind works and that is how i stay interested. i am not an engineer so the recording quality will be scruffy at best. so be it. so without further ado, i give you moment 1. a short piece put together with bits of weberns spare masterpiece called 'five pieces for orchestra', ives' 'trio for violin,cello and piano', george benjamins 'ringed by the flat horizon' a couple of snippets from david lynchs film 'mulholland dr.' plus a little of my own nonsense.

so make of it what you will. there will be more. this one was a small joy for me to make and is a homely little beast that i ultimately find charming. it is a little droplet to add to the unrelenting firehose of media that comes at you all the time these days.

one more thing. this doesnt mean i will stop making solo records. but for that i need near endless hours of tinkering,obsessing, rewriting and, of course, overthinking. i will also be involving other folks and engineers, mixers, etc. and they cost money so i will be asking you to buy something to help me pay them. but for now its on the house. see you again soon.

Moment1 Take2 by ericavery

Sunday, April 11, 2010

william gibson. my affection for this mans writing has run hot and cold from book to book over the years but i am consistently astonished by the man himself. i heard him say once, at a book reading, that he considered illegal copying of his work as an 'organic tax on his celebrity'. simple and brilliant. here is some more simple brilliance i read at his blog thanks to a boingboing tweet:

Q Creator's block. If ever: how long, when/why it happened; or how was it avoided, palliated?
A "Creator's block" sounds like something afflicting a divinity, but writer's block is my default setting. Its opposite is miraculous. The process of learning to write fiction, for me, was one of learning to almost continually be doing it *through* the block, in spite of the block, the block becoming the accustomed place from which to work. Our traditional cultural models of creativity tend to involve the wrong sort of heroism, for me. "It sprang whole and perfect from my brow" as opposed to "I saw it mispelled, in mauve Krylon, on the side of a dumpster, and it haunted me". I was much encouraged, when I began to write, by Manny Farber's idea of "termite art".

Sunday, March 21, 2010

alright. you win. i surrender. i wanted to keep the blog filter free but it seems thats not possible. i am happy to allow negative opinions of myself and others to exist. nice thing about being a big boy is that name calling has no emotional effect on me. in fact, i find good honest criticism helpful. i certainly learn much more from criticism than from accolades. might not be as easy on the ears and heart but so be it. like i said, i enjoy being a grownup. which brings me nicely to the matter at hand. everyone has the right to publicly embarrass themselves in any way they feel. for our purposes here thats actually a serviceable definition of free speech. i have even enjoyed some of the middle school taunts aimed at me. but unfortunately it all gets beyond tedious when the 'smell my finger' comments begin to outnumber the rest of us. so i am being forced to delete comments and forced to change some of the settings on this blog. i am dubious that this is a fix. but i will see how it goes. this is a work in progress. feedback appreciated.

...oh yeah. to the guy who calls me herman i say: i know you are but what am i. youre gay. suck my dick. neener neener.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

alright. for fuck sake. i am going to post here again. take a run at this blogging thing. janes sort of stopped me up for a while but i no longer have that problem. still got all my others but...

so ive broken the proverbial ice here again and i must now go to dinner.