Homewood Studios Events Archive
March 14, 2011
IMPROVISED MUSIC AT HOMEWOOD STUDIOS
Milo Fine (marimba, B flat & alto clarinets) ~ Charles Gillett (guitar) ~ Stefan Kac (tuba) ~ Aerosol Pike: Philip Mann (alto/tenor saxes, bass clarinet, drum set) ~ Ryan Reber (soprano sax, cello) ~ Rick Ness (drum set, B flat clarinet, alto sax, multi-toned tenor bugle)
Music begins at 7. Suggested donation $5-$10.
a pause. a hiatus. a recalcitrant recorder. traffic outside and conversation inside. pause, hiatus, does not signify silence.
give me a second to focus. and hit the appropriate button. and the push-push-shudder-push-lean-inch-push begins. halfway round our little blue planet from the current disaster sites. years of building pressure. eons of conflicting urges for purchase against the sliding global plates. energies moving the other day. but something below all that. offering a simple place of respite. for both directions to rest. at once. outside of time. and urging. outside of eons. and pushing. inside. right now.
what was i. saying? inside somewhere... inside the machine. inside the landslide. inside the breaking glass. inside water falling. inside the model-t rattling over a muddy back road. on he day to duluth.
city square in ciaro, in tunis, in tripoli. arms raised. flags aflutter. in one cul-de-sac a snake charmer and his basket of cobras. each of the snakes deaf to the sound. the illusion of music. of the charmer's flute. but hypnotized by the swaying of the bell, the graceful curve at the end of that ancient instrument.
learning to walk. in ice. on animal skins. on the stretched carpet of the earth. learning to move. across the ice. the pelts. the earth.
lava. urging its way up from deep. inside the earth's skin. far from the ice. finding the meaning of upward. of release. flooding across sloping fields. toward the waiting sea. clouds of steam, inviting. the flowing fire. to become stone. again.
inexorable footsteps. strolling across wide and empty fields. from far away. toward us. birds on a wire watch. bob and thrust their tail feathers. for balance. the wire bows. the footsteps slow. the birds reach down their yellow beaks. and untie all the shoe laces.
remember the slide whistle. remember the town band. the concert in the park. by the river. geese flying over. ya-honking. remember the stories. your read about. remembering the stories. before you. lost your slide whistle. in the park. under the. gazebo. maybe a goose took it.
if the brass drum were a bell. if the insistent booming were a dirge. if the leaping flowers of sound were perfume. if the pulse in the heart was a feather. in the wind. if the fistful of colors pouring down the canals of the inner ear...
how does one stand still? inside this sound. how doe one remain attached to the ground? what use feet if one is floating? ballast? or hands? the ears the heart hold everything in the glowing. air.
geiger counter. counting geigs. marimba geigs. cello geigs. drum stick geigs. guitar string geigs. keep track. filing reports. charting analyses. predicting outcomes. gathering musicians. opening the floodgates. dropping into the lifeboat. for a quick ride.
here. there. and in. between. in between inbetween. inside the inbetween. under the inside. behind the under. abound back from the behind. across the street from the around back. through the alley to the front. door to here. or there. or. in. between.
someone bends her knee to the floor. gen. u. flects. the floor warps. into a loose. fabric. of. dreams. undelivered. because the stamp. fell. off.
toss an handful of pebbles. into the night air. wait years for, them. to. fall. back to. earth. they eventually. do. each with message written. inside. a chart of which stars. illuminated their flight. which moons plied. their gravity pull. to spin them. away. for a while. then back. as if they were never. gone. expect for those words. etched in their. memory.
empty space behind eyes. bus ticket to last year. car ride to the birth canal. boat trip upstream. to the beginning. the start. of the song. of the poem. of the thing that comes. before. the start. the beginning. before that. before the beginning. that.
a calorie of sound. the energy needed to life the audience one foot into the silver air.
reedy forces gather. at the okay corral. red dirt around everyone. 's feet whips into whirlwinds . dust devils. red ones. drifting. as if shot from. pea shooters. seeding the clouds with makings. of a storm. a cloudburst. a gully washer. a deluge. swirling everything in its path. toward some low point. in the landscape. where everything slows. bobs and turns. pauses. for a month. a year. an eon.
from across a wide blue valley. a voice. a bark. a yelp. a song. a sandwich. watercress on light rye. hot mustard! knife glinting in sunlight. picnickers strolling down the hill. to the riverbed. where bountiful baskets open. waiting.
bones seize up. fingers cramp. spider toward each. other. locate the nexus of pain. and flick out. for light. for flex. for youth.
the dolls must be returned. they were only on load, the button mouths must be quieted. their songs only on loan. the way their colorful shoes dance in the moonlight. must be forgotten. the dolls will melt. soon. leaving oily pools of color. rainbows on the sidewalk. washing away. in the rain.
slide whistle. again. the one i had as a boy. walking the playground. believing i was the pied piper.
aerosol pike in charge now. the room tilting in their direction. something across from them. on the other side. a watch chain. pendulous. against the night sky. electric raindrops. on a plastic plate.
so easy to fall. to surrender. so easy to give. into the sounds. float away. forgetting. dreaming a new. so easy. so easy to lean. so easy to perch, on a limb. become a bird. fly off. leaving mind behind. finding that clear. empty. place.
the map of fault lines. around the world. shows blue. the distance from one. active volcano. to the next. indicated by flowing white. light. edged. in blue. folds in the map make. creaking sounds. crackling sounds. like stone. moving against. stone. when read, the map wilts. like cut flowers in a sunny. window. not in water but. lying on a table. seventeen and a half inches. from the. clear glass vase, holding the clear crystalline water. which keeps you afloat. like magic. like white lines with blue. edges.
tiny crow-like bird. riding a bike. over the martin olav sabo bridge. suspension wires humming. in synch with fluttering. wings. of the bike bird. the crow bird. pedaling. the bridge. itself. going into syncopation. dancing away. down the street. cars dodging. swerving. bridge last seen. heading in the direction. of south high.
what do you bring to an evening of sound sculpting? like this? what do you need? to listen. only your breathing. what names do the pieces played carry? cloud. earth. snake. show. spoon. curtain. rabbit. moon.
someone comes to the door. she uses a cane. a black one. black like her coat. her pants. her hat. she smiles in the door. reads the sign. goes away.
tonight you leave your shoes on. unlike so may nights. the pieces of music falling around us. hitting the floor and breaking like dropped stained glass. your toes unwilling to dance in that room. so tonight you wear shoes. you elevate you horizon by another half inch. the earth tiles. on its axis to accommodate. the change in perspective. the rivers of the world, like strings on an oud, play themselves into song.
something goes limp. sound induces paralysis. mind shuts. off. eyes. close. helium enters the joints. light fades. the conveyor belt of sound moves. your inert form across. the nightscape. you know at the end of the ride a fall. awaits. not interested in falling, the music shakes your hand. slaps you on the back. flings you. into the sky.
q: when did you begin writing in the second person?
a: who is the second person?
q: he is.
a: no. that's the third person. second person is sitting on the floor. listening.
q: who is first person.
a: i. will tell you later.
the tuba needs four valves. the right hand grows four fingers. chromatic scales are the matter of memory, reflex. surrender. only the thumb gets to hang out. for free.
the beginning contains the ending. the stone slipping free at the top of the precipice holds the sheltered wall in it heart. the night hawk scanning the ground for scurrying sounds is already sated. the sounds leaping form the horns, drums, strings contain their won silence within the folds, grains, tubes and coils of their bodies.
remove a part of how you do it. let air, space, fill the place you hand used to move. throw your breath into that effort. give it a name. call it next.
what is over the hill is unknown. it is coming in your direction. you can guess. you can wait. you can fear it. or hope it veers off before cresting the hill. what makes you so hesitant? what makes you think it will hurt you?
the light floods up from the floor. the shadows are larger than the objects which create them. what if you suddenly realized the way you have always done it isn't the only way...?