[rumori] live performance

Steev [rumori] live performance
Sun, 17 Jan 1999 09:29:38 -0800 (PST) (00916594178, Pine.LNX.4.05.9901170839000.20143-100000atflotsam.detritus.net)

On Sun, 17 Jan 1999 wobblyatcompcurr.com wrote:

>So I guess what I'm interested in hearing from any of you is any of the
>reactions you've had as studio musicians who are making/have made a
>transition to live performance -- because this really is a new environment.
> I'm taking home live tapes, i.e. documents, and since the on-stage
>performance decisions are IDENTICAL to my approach in the studio, my

This is an interesting observation and I must say I'm happy for you
that that's true in your case.

For me, ever since my work began centering around electronics and sampling
(rather than electric guitar and lyrics like it did when i was playing in
punk/goth bands), there has always been a marked division between my live
music and my studio music. They've been by neccesity 2 completely
different things, because I still can't really do what I really want to
do live, whereas I feel like I have reached that point in the studio.

(in fact my live electronic work pre-dates my first dabblings in the
studio, [tho radio tends to blur the line between live and studio], and my
current studio methods have only been possible over the last 3 years thanx
to cheap desktop hard-disk editing systems - so in other words, my style
has developed in the studio and progressed to the aesthetic level i'm
pretty happy with, while my live work has not.)

In the studio my process centers around very long bouts of digital
processing, very meticulous editing, very careful thinking and laborious
decision making. Each piece takes a tremendous amount of effort and goes
through multiple versions and mixes before I consider it done.

On the live side, i've either done ad hoc, stiff re-creations of studio
pieces, performance art type stage activity to augment taped studio pieces
playing, or improv-based electronics that has nothing to do with my studio
pieces. Most recently the latter method has managed to have more and more
to do with my studio work, and i've been very happy with that, but the
connection is mostly due to the use of the same source materials, & managing to think about similar juxtapositional ideas in real time. My
present live set up I first started using about 6 months ago, and before
that i didnt play live for ~2 years, mainly because i couldnt do what i
wanted to do. The solution came with a lucky inheritance of a piece of
equipment, a guitar/midi interface. That makes it possible to control my
sampler with a guitar, allowing me to use the physical skill i have on
guitar to manipulate the kinds of recycled sounds I like. This has also
begun to solve the other problem i have with live electronic music, and
that is a lack of physical/visual elements in the performance (a whole
other thread!).

I've been heavily interested in free improvisation for longer than i've
been into sampling, so I see my live/studio dichotomy paralelling another
in my work, which is the improvised/composed dichotomy. I may be
satisfied with always having this separation, this dual nature to my work,
or i may someday (maybe soon!) more successfully merge the 2. I see hope
for this in 2 areas:
1. recent advances in inexpensive, portable, high-powered computers.
2. recent advances in software that supports algorithmic yet real-time

The combination of improvisation with prepared software stimulus-response
algorithms to control large amounts of sampled audio (and video?) data
is a pretty exciting idea and the direction i am hopefully heading in.

However there may fundamentally be an impossible chasm that i cannot
bridge - free improvisational, on-your-feet thinking may not ever be
compatible with the sort of semiotic, meaning-rich sorts of pieces that
I'm most interested in producing. So the live/studio question may boil
down to the aesthetic priorities I've set for myself.

>This just occured me as the most likely list that'd have people who've been
>staring this thing in the face for a while.

yes. thanx for bringing this up, Jon. (I hope Bob Ostertag weighs in,
since he's just finished a new live instrument that's been in the works
for months.)


Steev Hise, Head Chump
steevathise.org http://www.cyborganic.com/people/steev recycled art site: http://www.detritus.net -----------------------------------------------------------------
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