Memory Tapes

chimps_1This is a blog entry by way of protracted apology – I’m a day late, but my excuses are many and wondrous. Normally I write my blogs over the weekend, starting them based on notes from the week and finishing them on a Sunday, but this week has been busy even by my standards. This weekend was spent with long-time artistic conspirator Adrian Giddings who is the visuals half of the A/V equation for temp0rary. Over a productive 36 hours we’d hammered out the shape of our forthcoming performances, done a site visit (which just happened to be situated behind the beer garden) and marvelled at the stage production of the Eurovision Song Contest.

chimps_2Then, at about the point where I should have been putting my feet up and resting for the week ahead, instead I joined the Cheltenham Improvisors Orchestra for the final event of the Cheltenham Poetry Festival, creating an improvised soundtrack around poetry readings. I’m loving my time with the CIO so far, it’s making me think about music in a completely different way, moving me even further from the already loose structures of the performances I do as part of temp0rary.

I guess I don’t really think very often about how far the music I make and enjoy can stray from what other people consider music – this was driven home on Friday when I popped into a school to do a talk about the music I make and specifically the Great Gamelan Experiment that I’m currently running on a Monday afternoon. It turns out the teacher was in a band with me almost 30 years ago, and reminded me of experiments with tape recorders and broken bottles. I’d entirely forgotten about early forays into music concrete and tape loops until then. The ghosts of the past didn’t stop there – over the weekend, another early collaborator got in touch to tell me he had unearthed previously lost recordings of my first ever band playing live. I listened to them with a mix of awe and embarrassment. I don’t think I’ll be sharing them with the general public any time soon…

gamelan-poster-A4_1It did get me thinking about how much the world has changed in the last 30 years – back then, all music had a financial barrier and electronic music making equipment was still prohibitively expensive whereas nowadays you can get a phone for a few quid a month that’s capable of helping you compose, record, mix and master your tracks, and then upload them to a global platform. Keeping copies of things you made used to involve buying tape stock,┬ádeveloping photographs and trips to the library to use the photocopier. To this day, I’m still pretty bad at remembering to document the work I do, and need reminding of the projects I’ve been involved in. On the plus side, however, it’s easier for me to hide the recordings of synth pop renditions of 1970’s metal songs…

I thought I’d end each blog in future with a list of forthcoming performances – as helpful for me keeping track of deadlines as it is for me to promote the work I’m doing. More info coming as it gets confirmed.

Forthcoming performances:

Saturday 18th June (Afternoon)
The Wilson Art Gallery Takeover
temp0rary performing ‘Suggestion Box’ – a long-form silent disco performance with audience interaction
Wilson Art Gallery, Cheltenham
Free Entry

Saturday 9th July (Time TBC)
The Great Gamelan Experiment
Performing with a gamelan orchestra and live electronics
Imperial Gardens, Cheltenham, as part of Cheltenham Music Festival
Free Entry

Saturday 16th July, 7.30 – 10.30pm
Sunset Lumiere
temp0rary performing a full A/V set with very special guests TBC
Skillicorne Gardens (next to Imperial Gardens), Cheltenham, as part of Cheltenham Music Festival
Free Entry

Sunday July 31st, 6pm
Dali Males
Performing improvised electronics as part of Vinestock Festival 2016
The Vine, Cheltenham
Free Entry