I'm still trying to figure out how this website is supposed to work, i.e. whether this belongs in "news" (no) or "video" (maybe) instead. I think the length and predicted lack of focus of this post, though, will reverse-justify its placement here. Soon my blog posts will forgo this self-reflexive language, but for now I am warming up, so chill out.
This piece, THE piece for a long time, by which I mean the kind of culmination of what I've been up to for the past many years, is how I chose to open my set at the Queens New Music Festival. Twenty intense minutes, vulnerable, personal, difficult to perform in their way. I had a generous and gentle audience, as you will hear, for which I am really grateful. Prior to this performance I did the same piece at Cakeshop and that was a kind of disaster, though there were some kind folks in the room then, too. But nothing like this show. Friends, family, students, colleagues. Some said "whoo." It was great!
I haven't actually watched the video I'm posting here. I didn't watch the video of the premiere (actually the dress rehearsal of the premiere) until my defense, many months later, so this is nothing new. Someone tell me how it is. I checked out the first minute, maybe, and the sound is not great, speech at the expense of samples. I guess that's more favorable arithmetic for this sort of thing than the other way round.
The next life for The Exchange will, I hope, be a record. I'm working on working on it, which is not a typo. First I have to get a few things up and running. Next year's course, and Electrobot, and a set for Wassaic. But after those things are done or have legs I'm turning to a new project: definitive audio for four pieces that have been around for awhile but never received proper treatment, one of which is The Exchange, which I've thought of as a performance piece rather than something that could stand alone with eyes shut and headphones on. Two others are recipes (also not a typo) that were intended specifically for closed eyes and headphones, but I've learned a few tricks since I committed those to "tape" so want to revisit them. The last is something called "Plant a Flower," kind of the genesis for this whole new direction, a leap of faith. I can't wait to get that one right. I have a draft but it's unclear whether that draft is a stopping point on the way to the best version I can make or something I'll need to discard. Either way it's going to happen soon. I'm eager to begin.
Thanks for reading. As I said earlier I'm still getting my footing. I used to blog a lot, in a kind of unselfconscious, antagonistic, and highly unhinged way. I sort of miss the swagger of the language, and the feeling that it was necessary, that I was creating a kind of resource ("Thank You Campaign is a free culture resource," I might have said). But I don't miss what it took from me on its way out and onto the page. Sometimes I think the really, truly compelling versions of what I could make are unsustainable, that I could have maybe done great work for a little while, before burning up. I'm playing a longer game now. Hence The Exchange works well as a title for THE piece in a way I hadn't imagined before. This is what you get when you make the trade.