Saturday, March 17, 2018



March 10, 2018
Large Cortical Areas - Robert Pearson [from Sonicabal Volume 2]

newness, as in what we would expect to be an entrance of a new idea, comes across here as opening a door in order to hear what has been going along already, but from a different room, reverberated against other walls

Assembly Rechoired 49 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Kelly W, Allen Welch, Suzanne Winter-Welch [April 2006]

What is this activity we do, as experienced by some who beforehand have only a verbal description
that time cool people came by - photo by Allen Welch
of it, and who, then, are asked to experience it, first, by joining into it, and thus creating uniquely what they experience as the experience of the activity, that what that we do? It is a test. Everybody supplies their own hurdles. 10 minutes in more or less a groove is achieved.
a valid entry to a larger scope for the question of what sound sounds like

Prelude - Paul Kikuchi - Jesse Olsen Bay, Stuart Dempster, Bill Horist, Paul Kikuchi, Alex Vittum [from Portable Sanctuary]

sleep drizzle still pacific shore
what wakes us

Banned Rehearsal 907 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer

missing from my experience of listening back, which was omnipresent in my experience of doing, is the internal monologue of decision making - what one is thinking about what one is doing while one is doing it, an experience unavailable to memory and thus to the recording, which itself is a memory, a trace

we do not play our toy instruments as though they were less than instruments

Wallace, do we hear thee?

as Neal said, we don't know what we are doing, but (as I add) we are listening very carefully as we do it

In the old days the session was over when the cassette tape ran out. In a concession to getting to bed eventually, and especially now that the recording device we use could keep recording for hours and hours, we give ourselves 30 minutes or so, at which point I move toward the device and wait for a spot to push "stop." Once the participants realize that is what is going on, a game ensues. Each sound made is both dare and question. Do you think we're done (punk)? now? now? now? how about - no wait - how about now? or . . . ? If I am patient (which I occasionally am) it can lead to a lengthy improvised-out fade as everybody get smaller and smaller, and smaller and yet smaller.

March 13, 2018
Ariel - Greg Sinibaldi - Greg Sinibaldi, ewi/electronics; Ryan Ferriera, guitar; Ted Poor, drums

For my third pass, in anticipation of a more formal review, I listened to each the tracks one at a time. It's surprising how much difference simply standing up and opening each file separately can make. Oddly, as a whole it seemed shorter, or rather, it was over more quickly than I expected.
1. Arrival of the Bee Box - specific pitch focus is present but not crucial, or not so crucial as touch or breath. tripartite. answered by drumguitar power pounds giant boot stomps Godzilla shrieks stomping giddy giant ewi, airborn, drifts off seeps into undergrounds
2. Lady Lazarus - fancy echo/reverb effect grappling the sound lovingly if not quite gently. interlude.
3. Cut - settling into a groove but just off center, keeping its distance. dropped into the droid factory
4. Lady Lazarus Part II - signals rhythm radio dial short wave chatter insects and bones tiny lizards dismantling machinery hulk radio signals from the underworld as Cocteau's Eurydice into which pours saturate flesh
5. Black Sweet Blood Mouthfuls - reverie massive dance strenuates to ascend falls back weightful impressive craters deep traces a long moody dragon passed by here
6. The Atrocity of Sunsets - drumrattle solo begins, ewi poking at the flesh it cracks open the beast's wings are spread to dry
7. Wintering In the Dark - in a room alone imagining the demimonde as imagination bitters and dries
8. Elm - working down a terraced grade, finger mirror child's play itsy bitsy spider twisting down ponderous grace whales or stone kites overgrown in dense woody talons

In Session at the Tintinabulary

March 11, 2018
Maple Leaf 180311 - Keith Eisenbrey

Neal borrows a bass

a noisy bird at sunrise, and traffic

Banned Telepath 61 Chignik Lagoon School - Aaron Keyt

So far, just rumored to exist. fingers crossed. Intended for what will eventually be Banned Rehearsal 954.

March 12, 2018
Banned Telepath 61 Seattle - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Neal Kosály-Meyer

Our local go at it

March 14, 2018
Banned Telepath 61 Port Haiden - Aaron Keyt

And a supplement from parts in the far away  northwest

March 15, 2018
Bass Tracks for Fish Distributor and Ruined It - Your Mother Should Know - Neal Kosály-Meyer, bass

Saturday, March 10, 2018



"The mind can't help trying to say something true. Nothing wrong with that, unless it believes in what it says. We become fundamentalists of our own constructions. Perhaps poetry is what saves us from ourselves, from our continuous surrender to the siren of our own voice claiming to tell the truth. The will of the poem to continue, to keep coming back, to leave behind the already said -- a rescue mission from a part of the mind that knows better. But this too is uncertain."
George Quasha "Uncertainties" Open Space Magazine issue 17/18 spring 2015/fall 2015


In Session at the Tintinabulary

March 5, 2018
Gradus 329 - Neal Kosály-Meyer

full to the brim of proceeding or of not proceeding
what of what we have heard can we discover in what we are hearing now?

2nd part opens with entrances
the expanse of it isn't necessary for the bare presentation of the combinations
it is though for the enduring of it, the exploring of it, the surviving of it

repeat a pattern
vary a pattern
go elsewhere from a pattern
go elsewhere from places in it
gambits of mind-making

progressions draw lines or dig ruts

March 6, 2018
Ruined It - Your Mother Should Know - Karen Eisenbrey, drums and vocals; Neal Kosály-Meyer, acoustic guitar and vocals

March 8, 2018
Ruined It - Your Mother Should Know - Karen Eisenbrey, tambourine and maracas; Neal Kosály-Meyer, electric guitar, piano, and glockenspiel

I spent two evenings recording a bunch of tracks for YMSK.

Saturday, March 3, 2018



February 24, 2018
Preludes in Seattle Part 5 - Keith Eisenbrey
Chapel Performance Space, Good Shepherd Center, Seattle

Kam Morrill   Puppet Pieces (2013)
     Make Way for Puppets
     Fanfare for the Common Puppet
     Puppet Heartstrings
     The Puppets Have Left the Building
Benjamin Boretz   Partita (1955)
Keith Eisenbrey   Two Pomes Play (2000)
Ken Benshoof   Patti's Parlour Pieces (2000)
     17 Reflective
     18 Intimate, freely
     19 Waltz
     20 Dark
Keith Eisenbrey   Seventeen Prepuntal Contraludes (1981)
Lockrem Johnson (1924-77) 24 Preludes, op. 50 (1965)
     XVIII Pesante e drammatico
Ken Benshoof   24 Preludes (2003)
     17 free, like dandelion seeds
     18 reflective, questioning
     19 relentless
     20 narrative
Keith Eisenbrey   24 Preludes (2011)
     XVII Lacustrine
     XVIII Mirrored
     XIX Occluded
     XX Amber
Greg Short (1938-99)  24 Tonal Preludes (1966)
     XVII "Arctic Wind"
     XVII "Nocturne"
     XIX "Sonorities"
     XX "Nebula"

For the most part I think I kept this all pretty well together, with the exception, alas, of Ben's Partita, whose contrapuntal parkour leaps got the better of me several times. Miss one rooftop and b'bye. I think I forgot to breathe here and and there.

March 1, 2018
second utterances - Bonnie Whiting & James Falzone
Chapel Performance Space, Good Shepherd Center, Seattle
with <abc> - Afroditi Psarra, Bonnie Whiting, Cameron Perry Fraser
and Radix Ensemble - Robin Holcomb, Ha-Yang Kim, James Falzone, Paul Kikuchi

Prelude - Bonnie Whiting & James Falzone
Null a - <abc>
New York Counterpoint - Steve Reich
Null b - <abc>
The Collect - James Falzone
Lament on Ash Wednesday - James Falzone
Control/Resist - Bonnie Whiting
Null c - <abc>
Postlude - Bonnie Whiting & James Falzone

Professional correctness (these cats know how it's done) in the service of time-line structured sound lists. Post-Experimental Minimalism? I do try to keep an open mind, but, as well played as it was, and it was, I wondered why the sounds were kept so severely in chains. For me, time is not the immutable slate upon which music is writ, the screen upon which it is projected, it is the clay that music shapes, the body with which music dances. I really love how well these folks were playing (damn they're good!) and I honor their fierce engagement (laser eyed), but I felt like I wanted to unlock their cages. Fly free, little bird!

March 2, 2018
Seattle Composers' Salon
Chapel Performance Space, Good Shepherd Center, Seattle

Sarah Bassingthwaighte - Ecco Ensemble - H20

Sarah used an attractive game-spinner score as a lens through which her trio (Stacey Mastrian, Mark Hilliard Wilson, and the composer) concentrated their awareness on the sound of how their sounds were sounding, so as to evoke, in their corporate intent, the sounds of water in several of its forms. For me their intent, and the score's conceit, was drowned by their own intense awareness of the sounds they were hearing themselves make. The ear wins!

S. Eric Scribner - Convergence

"What would happen if" - always a good place to start. My people! Steve putters around with sound files, piling different performances of the same piece on top of each other. The results were full of wafting billows floating free, canons at the willy nilly.

Brooke Richey - Paradox (for string quartet) and Two Nocturnes (for solo piano) [I didn't catch the names of the performers]

Paradox proceeds as a packed series of tightly wadded cylinders. Dense both top bottom and side side. No space for anything but clarity.

Alas, I was not so enamored of the piano pieces. Brooke is just starting out, and all of us, to a certain extent, begin by imitating models. I know I did. I would only suggest that imitating anything in the standard repertoire, and in particular this overpopulated swath of it, should be ventured with great circumspection. It has acquired an odor. It infests everything. There are so many odd-ball chambers of keyboard music to explore! Rope up! Fresh batteries in the headlamps! Spelunk!

Doug Palmer - Doors

He says he's just dinking around with files he found on his computer, but in doing so Doug has created a video/audio piece that starts where Tati left off and creates a dizzyingly surreal conceptual space between ear-world and eye-world. "I stopped just short of melting clocks." DIY for the win.


February 25, 2018
Banned Rehearsal 626 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Neal Kosály-Meyer [December 2001]

shiver rattle ice shiv cymbal
northern dawn slow and low
temple bell speech
emptiness ghostless shaker
rhythm in the wrist
fresh wound
careful of our sounds
setting for a song from the other side of the pond
distance alienation loss antique
O rupture!
heartfelt washboard eloquence modulated to the rattlesnake desert
picking pieces up we move on by invention here:
washtub bass washboard potlids
moving to hand drum pentatonic marimba drums
gentle comfort
big frame reminder drum of deeper than that
tambourine rolls flutish fanfare bowed washtub bass
lidalong spoken here
drum and birdcall
amplify! testify!
(testate. amplate.)

Jacob's Ladder - Bruce Springsteen [from The Seeger Sessions]

great snare drum sound
we get Bruce and snare drum
everything else is mooshed into the mass of phony gospel sound
is a great snare drum though

Banned Rehearsal 790 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt [April 2011]

reedy buzz and electric guitar and zither and drum (low) could loop aye-ever

Heading Home - Denise Glover [from Pathways]

standing stanzas which we cobble to our stance
travel through past

February 27, 2018

The Maydens Song - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]

extending the span of notes' speaking
not resolving into its pitch immediately unadorned
time is taken for grace
opens moments up to multiple vectors
as sung tunes are graced with words and words' articulations

Smoke House Blues - Jelly Roll Morton [from Alan Lowe's Really The Blues]

multiple thumb to nose endings fingers wiggling
exaggerated heaviness

One Night of Love - The Voices of Walter Schumann [a Rescued Record]
Advert from the back of the above

just what are your suggesting, you cad?

My Bonnie - The Beatles with Tony Sheridan [from The Beatles Anthology Volume 1]

the boys are having a good time back there

The Weather Forecast - The Master Singers

sodden with syllables and vowels

Unnamed Track 5 - Tillicum Junior High School Band, Bob Runyan, director [from my mom's tape of a concert given March 3, 1971)

there is some jazzy big band music back there somewhere beyond the boomed out bulldozer bass

Hot On The Heels of Love - Throbbing Gristle [from Greatest Hits]

cyclic (cyclified?) elements without much doing with each other
until the vocal seems to turn them into a backing texture of cyclic elements doing with each other
one of TG's smarter compositions and one of Cosi's strongest vocal statements

Banned Rehearsal 72 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, and Neal Kosály-Meyer [April 1986]

feedback systems can deprive or corrupt the agency of others, limiting choice
sizes of sounds and sizes of places in which to cram them
a blunt object music
heavy lifting
the everpresent heaterhum
hollow inside
spinning disks like a DJ
the sort of session we allowed ourselves
to allow ourselves to be stuck
to inhabit crud
electroshock dis-therapeutic
some membranes are exceeding tough

February 28, 2018
Drain You - Nirvana [from Nevermind]

the interval pattern, at the open, the Brahms of the E minor symphony in mind
moving to the Pink Floyd of Corporal Clegg
not because of that, necessarily, but rather a sophisticated tune in fact

Banned Rehearsal 438 from DAT - Isaac E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Neal Kosály-Meyer [November 1996]

Among the earliest digital recordings of BR. It wasn't long after this that we acquired our own DAT and left cassette tapes behind us. Now that I think about, our next live show after this (Banned Rehearsal 440) was recorded digitally, and featured a bank of cassette tape players with mixed outputs from our past coming from speakers that were literally behind us.

ghost voices on the etherwaves
what is a single time?
chimney magnificent
heady brew of backing noise
hindsight to history
not that any path, including ours, was inevitible
but that this was the path we happened to take to get where we got to
prepping for the last live gig of the century

In Session at the Tintinabulary

February 25, 2018
Hail - Keith Eisenbrey
A hailstorm drummed on our metal chimney for a few minutes Sunday afternoon.

Banned Telepath 60 St. Paul Island - Aaron Keyt

St. Paul Island, Alaska, is not near anything much except the chilly expanse of the Bering Sea and vast herds of king crabs. Aaron sent some wind.

February 26, 2018
Banned Telepath 60 Seattle - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy

We were not near the Bering Sea.

Banned Rehearsal 953 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt

Saturday, February 24, 2018



February 17, 2018
You'll Do - Rachel Harrington [from Celilo Falls]

a hook
upon which to hang lines
lines that point to the hook
that point to the hook and riff around it
that's what

Gradus 286 - Neal Kosály-Meyer [March 2016]

particular qualities of otherness
not that other
but how other

an interval set is a set of ways that two pitches can sound when compared

odd how suddenly it now sounds like parts of triads
as though a new layer had appeared from where?

applying precise oomph to these notes can effect a sense of modulation
one key sense to another among just only these 3 or 4 pitch classes

merged voices: played voice / space voice

February 18, 2018
Will Yow Walke the Woods Soe Wylde - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]

the keyboard setting of a song becomes a staged dialogue of the song it sets
virginal: lute simulator

Black Bottom Stomp - Jelly Roll Morton [from Smithsonian Collection of Classic Jazz]

circus clown juggle act

End of My Line - Woody Guthrie [from Columbia River Collection]

a scene from the electrification of the rural West (recent then and not yet 100 years done)

Mine Or Yours - Chet Baker and Art Pepper [from Playboys]

selling cool elegance
up-to-the-minute expertise

Cry For a Shadow - The Beatles [from The Beatles Anthology Volume 1]

an audition tape instrumental
would you hire this band behind your singer?
Lake Hills ca 1971

Scarborough Fair - Canticle - Simon & Garfunkle [from Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme]

How very English! To what extent was folk rock's influence on rock in general a bulwark against African-American culture, and to what extent was it an implicit, but near silent, acknowledgement of it? I suppose it would take some subtle tweezers to determine.

Unnamed Track 4 - Tillicum Junior High School Band, Bob Runyan, director [from my mom's tape of a concert given on March 3, 1971]

the muscular West
triumphalist tales we teach our teens

The Sheltering Sky - King Crimson [from Discipline]

a silent journey into the wilderness
a soundtrack
as it passes over the horizon the drum remains last seen
the tallest mast

Spirit In The Night - Bruce Springsteen [from Bruce Springsteen Live 1975-1985]

Mock Myth Romantic Days of Freedom
but sincere, as though everyone was exactly there
sharing shared experience exactly
each desiring so strenuously to be larger than life could be

February 19, 2018

Banned Rehearsal 260 - John E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt [June 1991]

at Toad Hall, an echo place

reading from On The Road (Ezekiel vision of Wrath to the West)
cosplaying literarily as angels

Aaron at Toad Hall ca 1991
make sounds like snoring

plunk plunk mbira plunk

not energetic
importing sounds doesn't change that - still not energetic

drunken spouting
each on their own bar stool
into feedback coda

Happy Happy Happy We!

Handel and Shakespeare duel it out powerless
exit clown into my grave
Kerouac returns to close

Gonna Have Fun - The Boss Martians [from 13 Evil Tales]

neo Sun Records sound

February 20, 2018
Ariel - Greg Sinibaldi - Greg Sinibaldi, ewi/electronics; Ryan Ferriera, guitar; Ted Poor, drums

I'll be writing a review of this album soon I hope. These are from my notes of a second listen.

breathing in dense atmosphere or liquisphere deep ocean saturn exhalation bubbles rise irretrievable The Monster caged rattles something in the room [did the first time around too, the shades?] 1st cut has lots of power rock vibe to it downbeats seem clear until you try to latch on

roles: of ewi || of drums || of guitar

or: when it does resolve into power repetitions it doesn't last, it dissolves or just falls apart glueless

chopped sound like dicing attitude-challenging fleas

the stage moves around us to a different room
not moving forward through time from then to now and beyond
sense of looping back without repeating cyclic drones notwithstanding
GS has come stuck in untime

what remains unprocessed the substrate of real life or the encrustation of it upon

certainly nothing light about it nor glib

cats are going a bit bonkers

Ruggles monumentality? hm.

a homogeneity: same? amp system; same? guitar; same? drums? for each cut
has always seemed an alien mindset (my problem though I guess)
or rather: the space is so repletely filled at all moments that we are thrown upon variations in viscosity as a lifeline

ends with gentle quiet

In Session at the Tintinabulary

February 19, 2018
Gradus 328 - Neal Kosály-Meyer

quite the list of notes to begin with, taking up a considerable time in telling them

first sounds all thick close
close wound ivy vines
thick and woody

each either new or a reference or mathematically postulated
folded into the crumple of crumpling time
the exactly knife edged →there←

a compositional stance earnedly arising within a weberberance of further indextualization

Saturday, February 17, 2018



February 10, 2018
Government Flu - Dead Kennedys [from Plastic Surgery Disasters/In God We Trust]

fancy guitar (learned to play with the ventures?) patter lyrics spat out

Banned Rehearsal 71 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Neal Kosály-Meyer [April 1986]

roll roll roll roll
N&A's wedding announcement
that this rhythm is unsubtle is a stance
something is going to break I know it
hammering man dueling flootle tootles
pitch talking across the degrees of recordedness
melodies not strictly imitative
self-contained multi-media portable sound projection devices boom boxes yeah!
behind of us the specter of Wozzeck
the passage narrows in on us alarmingly the walls close
sinuously slow into a swimmy sort of place
I do not recognize the tape that is on the playback in the wayback
arriving in another land caught in the act of invention
dulcim dulcimer dulcimest

Ariel - Greg Sinibaldi - Greg Sinibaldi, ewi/electronics; Ryan Ferriera, guitar; Ted Poor, drums

Greg has asked for a review of this fine album, so these are from my notes on my first listen through

clear melodic speaking saturated harmony embracing
dig that crazy rhythm
earns its moments compositionally
chattery chopped
form is onward leading guiding pulling along, compels, breathes
calm this morning at the beach
composed with the structural tokens of jazz arrangement (heads, solos, changes, (or changes-like))
rather than rock arrangement (verse chorus bridge)
and yet the power entrances come on like Pete & Keith if Pete & Keith were Fripp & Co
howling at the moon isn't about the moon
echoes recede, bending like mermaid hair
really lovely playing golly!

February 11, 2018
Structure - Infamous Menagerie

rhythm scrims
crossing several generations of media
an installation

Banned Rehearsal 438 - Isaac E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Neal Kosály-Meyer [November 1996]

hm. essentially the same scrimmy idea, but not an installation exactly
more like a junkyard clown act
handpuppet battles Punch and Judy style
into a different ecology of din
a roaring roar for roaring recedes into the past from the past at its distance
what it sounds like it is it probably is
enter the bee hive
righteous pedal tone from the Mighty W
a continuous sense in process
but noting the inventory of instruments in play, of layers in evidence, pulls one out of the time of the continuity
weirds it
pedal still hanging in there growing dire
guitar too big in the mix but, in general, conscientiously allowing space

Gongalong - Steve Barsotti, Dave Knott [from Sonicabal 2001]

surgically careful application of sound
it'll be there for aye better get it right
and with great imagination
some serious work down there in the pianississimo

Banned Rehearsal 700 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Neal Kosály-Meyer [April 2006]

hm. essentially the same careful application as above
but we are more reckless with our space and size
what comes next is a pleasurable anxiety
similar mixtures of same as and different as a midden-tation session
Funmaker late in life (best drummer we ever had)
midden-session sensibility but loosened
snare drum sounds fab
clear, picks up its pitch variability
I recognize my piano playing by my ear
ideas unfold from inside
switches gears almost instantaneously
no fuss

In Session at the Tintinabulary

February 12, 2018
Banned Rehearsal 952 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer
I spent some time digging about in the big red bag of fun. Aaron played viola.

February 13, 2018
Fish Distributor - Your Mother Should Know - Karen Eisenbrey, Neal Kosály-Meyer

We recorded tracks for this YMSK song: acoustic guitar, drums, lead and backing vocals

February 15, 2018

Fish Distributor - Your Mother Should Know - Karen Eisenbrey, Neal Kosály-Meyer

More for the same: tambourine, electric six and twelve string guitars
bass tracks to follow

Saturday, February 10, 2018



February 4, 2018
Banned Rehearsal 437 - Isaac E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer [November 1996]

waiting for the right door to come around
Neal, ca 1996
so that we can step in and do that dance

Neal Sax Keith Guitar Aaron Violin or Anna Violin
big squeeeeeek toy wailing and shredding (shredding in our own way)
big sax sound we hack at and scrape at

rather a battlefield of standing waves
(more a working-at-things session than a presentation-ready session)

First: ascertain the exact contours of our present argument
Next: compose together a chord - for want of a better word - a harmony perhaps - precisely in the
temperament of the contours of our present argument

gets quiet down to the hiss
and moving about put the baby on the back
barely whistling

Banned Rehearsal 625 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Isabel K, Neal Kosály-Meyer [December 2001]

the differences in distance between the senses of presence is a thicket
frog marimba wash tub bass piano tiny plunk
discuss in prose paragraphs amidst all these drums

but because it was a thicket of distances these new ones enfold the old ones
layered pasts layered in layered presence

zither drone drumming AM radio am speaking to you from a great distance
FM radio am here with you in your room

drum beating makes a name for itself in this rather hot playback

Isabel protospeaks

Hypernova - Brad Anderson [from Dark Energy - Interstellar Pianos]

an opera or the entracte for the Hyperprog Band of LEGEND!
wanders close to Nancarrow through the basement watercloset back of a famous minimalist's seedy beginnings

Gradus 191 - Neal Kosály-Meyer - Neal Kosály-Meyer [April 2011]

dynamic range and its echoes
watch your fingers
might get chopped

Arsenic & Lace - Strange Like Us [from Strange Peeps]

Mixed thick with snarl and c'mere baby
freak flag freakflagfly freak flag freakflagfly (repeat)

February 6, 2018
A Voluntarie, "For My Ladye Nevell" - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]


each and every element of texture both homogeneous - to easily fit together - and granular, specific, high-definition - to curve just so
on multiple scales

Partita in B-flat Major - J. S. Bach - Gunther Hasselmann

proceeds in a series of direct lines
only wending with friction or drag of mode and dissonance
living to break free

offset lines drag each other
but still direct
looking ahead

the Sarabande's stumbling ornaments balance perfectly

O Death Where Is Thy Sting - Rev. J. M. Gates [from Anthology of American Folk Music]

near to singing in tongues
cooperating independencies

Pastures of Plenty - Woody Guthrie [from Columbia River Collection]

us migrants. US migrants.
must always be free (not the migrants, the pastures)
more land reform propoganda

Mine - The Voices of Walter Schumann [a Rescued Record]

for choreographed singing
as for Broadway, or as a demo for a Variety TV Spectacular

Ain't She Sweet - The Beatles [from Beatles Anthology Volume 1]

eyes on the prize burning bright

Ninety-Nine And A Half Won't Do - Wilson Pickett [collected from Dave Marsh's Heart of Rock & Soul]

the pitch qualia of the bass line is obscured, or given a specific index, by the kick drum (which is huge)

Unnamed Track 3 - Tillicum Junior High School Band, Bob Runyan, director [on March 3, 1971, from my mom's tape]

pretty sweet horn solo. cornet, trumpet, flugel?

February 8, 2018

Symphony of Sorrowful Songs (#3) - Gorecki - Polish National Radio Symphony Orchestra, Antoni Wit

count to 3
nest it
slow and fugueish

A.H. in the dark
or a clownless Shostakovitch
Pachelbel's Canon with depression

narrow, bound
the voice enters singing what might be, might as well be, partitions of the identical close stepwise counterpointing texture stuff

all frame
no mona lisa

why do I so mistrust the politics of this?
Is it possible to hire people to put themselves through this?

interminabularity to the max, man
grinding to an eternal halt

oh boy a coda

In Session at the Tintinabulary

February 5, 2018
Gradus 257 - Neal Kosály-Meyer

distances unbridged
left distant
drift off

singular light source
like morning

Saturday, February 3, 2018



February 2, 2018
Capella Romana, with guest conductor Marcel Pérès
St. James Cathedral, Seattle

Messe de Nostre Dame (with propers for the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord in the Temple and
the Purification of the Virgin Mary) - Guillaume de Machaut

The class in Ancient Music History that I took as, I think, a Sophomore, at the UW, was humming along without making much impact until the prof dropped the needle on this 14th Century wonder. My ears perked right up. A few weeks later Ockeghem produced a similar effect, but that's another story. I don't really know where to start, but even more so live than recorded (and I do have M. Pérès's Ensemble Organum recording) this is some seriously weird shit.

Unimaginably consonant spaces open up suddenly, like frozen dragons or sci-fi time bubbles. Beneath, in the murmur, multiple layers of articulate thinking, in scholastic process. Invention inventing itself anew.

Or: With one voice these ten men speak with all possible readings of meanings, a synthetic poly-voice, beyond any individual's utterance. A sense of meaning that only ten voices speaking as parts of one voice can speak. One thinks forward to Schoenberg's polyphonic voice of God in Moses und Aron, or (now bear with me here) to a completely integrated version of what David Bowie was up to with his multiply layered lead vocal tracks on "Stay".


January 28, 2018
Rebreather goes octophonic at the Seattle Art Museum - Rebreather [from Sonicabal 2001]

sci-fi highway traffic, signal interceptions.

Gradus 96 - Neal Kosály-Meyer [April 2006]

The choosing of the particular distinction we make between 'the music' and 'the noise outside the music' as being the most problematic, or, that this is the distinction of all others that is the most virtuous to not make, but, leaving all the others, presumably, intact, becomes less a spiritual mode and more a cheap parlor game mind trick, like somersaults. That is, which part of the complex of which that complex distinction is made is it important to somehow not make? And how could I know if I were successful in not making that distinction, if I couldn't somehow specify the nature of the distinction I was not making - thus somehow putting myself in the position of focusing on the distinction that I must, virtuously, force myself not to make. To not make the distinction is to posit that music, all of it, is noise, and that noise, all of it, is music, neither of which positions I choose to hold. Neither music nor noise benefits from the nullity of the distinction. For me it is no either/or case between them. It will always be an open question, with ramified implications.

Your blogger, battling driftwood dragons
Very Nice Things - Youth Rescue Mission [from Youth Rescue Mission]

A recitation of privilege and grace, a self esteem bolsterer that veers, oddly, into humility, or, perhaps, satire of subtle sort.

Jerseyville Illinois (demo 160310) - Your Mother Should Know

Over there, in paradise.

January 30, 2018
The Passing Mesures, "The Ninthe Pavian" and The Galliarde to the Ninthe Pavian - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]

Each voice is an independent elaboration of exploratory elaboration. Query: did the notion of 'full score' arise out of the keyboardists' imitation of vocal counterpoint? I love the non-functional pitched sounds of harpsichords' release at the ends of things. The Galliarde is a page of time spans crammed with curlicues.

Must Be Born Again - Rev. J. M. Gates [from Anthology of American Folk Music]

elbows all in

Ramblin' Round - Woody Guthree [from Columbia River Collection]

The concept of gleaning and the mythos of the migrant worker, of internal refugees. Political note: Is it not ironic how the anti-immigrant rhetoric currently rampant among us fails so utterly to remember that, we are and always have been a nation of internal immigrants, and of internal refugees?

Matchbox - Carl Perkins [from Sun Records Definitive Hits]

Early electronic music, as practiced outside of academic journals

Big Leg Women - James Easley, Guitar Pete Franklin, Raymond Holloway [from The Art of Field Recording Volume 1]

A part (a big part) of what the blues always was: bend it up, bend it down. An improvisation-bent rhythm sculpture.

Mexico - Allen Toussaint [a Rescued Record]

Circling arrangement, a novelty riff that could go on forever, were we drunk enough.

Track 2 - Tillicum Junior High School Band [from my mom's tape of a concert given on March 3, 1971]

A march, sprightly!

Father Death Blues - Allen Ginsberg [from Holy Soul Jelly Roll]

No more tune than necessary to transform either poem or song out of either poem or song. Depends on where you start.

February 1, 2018
Seventeen Prepuntal Contraludes - Keith Eisenbrey - Keith Eisenbrey (recorded January 2010)

I wrote this set of tiny little pieces in 1981, while studying with John Rahn at the UW. They became,
Your blogger, in the past
after a fashion, my parting shot to undergraduate study. They are serial, being based on 5 note segments of a 10-tone row, and (if I remember rightly) quasi-Stravinskian rotational arrays. It was a 10-tone row, rather than 12, because I left two pitch-classes out entirely, creating a lumpy (or hole-some) aggregate. They were the first pieces I had presented in a while that came across like regular music: witty, melodic, full of stylistic references. Some members of the faculty at the time, who seemed (to me) to be regarding what I had been doing with increasing dismay, approved of my new-found musicality with relief. John couldn't, I think, resist the moment and announced that they were "probably the most sophisticated serial work any of his students had ever written." I don't think he really thought that at the time, but it was a pretty funny line, and I appreciated his support. Systems aside, I got quite a bit right in these: scale, proportion, lyrical wit. I will be performing them as part of my recital in February.

Hey Mr. Rain (version 2) - The Velvet Underground [from Another View]

Perfect title for a damp February evening. Mr. Cale's scribbling can't avoid sounding, occasionally, like its about to go all concert virtuoso on us.

Banned Rehearsal 259 - John E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt [June 1991]

Stand back! It's right there big in your face when you push play. No intro. Then ultra-delicate sensations of reverb. Un-on-going flatly presented. Wurlitzer Funmaker Sprite was no Hammond B3 but it had a sexy charm about it. Daddy's going to read Dante. Parenthood is an improvisatory art form. The concept of 'whole', i.e. completeness, as in beginning, middle, and end, is an unnecessary construct, an infliction upon music, alien to it. Activities can abort with salutory abruptness. Amid the reed and bow the quiet of nursing baby breathing. Contrasts made big with tape. Motto rhythm. Be wary of: It could have been done better. Often a hidden way of saying it could have been done so that it sounds more ordinary, or more professional. gag.

In Session at the Tintinabulary

January 29, 2018
Banned Telepath 59 Maple Leaf - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Neal Kosály-Meyer

January 30, 2018
Banned Telepath 59 Lake City- Aaron Keyt
Banned Rehearsal 951
- Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt Neal Kosály-Meyer

Those are Aaron's crows, in mid murder.

Saturday, January 27, 2018



January 20, 2018
Haywire! - The Boss Martians [from 13 Evil Tales]

Just like The Ventures, but with added Wailers ultra-fat B3 organ sound.

Banned Rehearsal 624 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Isabel K, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer [November 2001]

ringy metal sound catalyzes
loopy background hockets
(K's Vistalites sound great)
counterpoint for chimney solo
even with all the noise the trombone made me jump

sneeze patent pending

this is an instrument and I am playing it as though it were true

feedback is a structural component of these melodies
like a game with ground or pedaltone
hide and seek
dramatic focus
instant sympathy

comings and goings
who is here now?

we do not know how the room will tune the mix
play what is wonderful in any mix
that's how to get that Banned Rehearsal sound

are we at the edge yet?

Erie Canal - Bruce Springsteen [from The Seeger Sessions]

gets to a big rousing chorus because everybody loves to sing this

Banned Rehearsal 789 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer [April 2011]

a very tiny drum roll is the basis for all aspects of this
percussion ensemble develops as a dissipation

bundle tightly bound by the weak magnetical-sonical-gravital force

gets weird

fluctuates real quiet-like

wide open uncompressed space

finally the fife

melody a game like chase
to follow

get out of the way of the really small

A Song for Firefighters - Denise Glover [from Pathways]

How does one treat of the personal sublime? Perhaps this.

January 22, 2018
The Eighte Pavian - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]

Long, elegantly long, elegantly long negotiated phrases with literal, flat-line, by the book, phrase end markers, as custom dictates, fits or not. Ta. Da.

The more central to the structure of the whole they are, the more plainly they are made. Clarity the watchword.

Christians Fight On Your Time Ain't Long - Sam Butler [from Alan Lowe's Really The Blues]

steel on guitar spring-loads the song
winds up tight

ready to bust out

Washington Talkin' Blues - Woody Guthrie [from Columbia River Collection]

"Lotsa good rain"

"Ain' no money changin' hands / just people changin' places".

(hard times)

Love's Old Sweet Song - The Voices of Walter Schumann [a Rescued Record]

Back in the way-back-when, when soft-jazz was blatantly advertised as seduction's soundtrack. Would you like to come up and see my etchings?

Mama Said - The Shirelles [from The Shirelles Anthology]

The first line turns around on itself every time, all wrapped up grammatically. This allows the verses to tell their stories. A well-played Chuck Berry trick.

Love Me - Billy Stewart [from The Best of Billy Stewart]

Recording contracts, labels, the star system: how the economics of the recording industry and the economies of touring musicians collided mid-century. No wonder the business is in such a mess.

Concertina - Weber - Tillicum Jr. High School Band, Bob Runyan, Paul Eisenbrey [from my mom's private tape]

How operatic! When that tutti comes in it by god COMES IN!

Walk Along The Heavenly Road / I Am A Poor Pilgrim of Sorrow - The Phillips Wonders [from The Art of Field Recording Vol. 1]

lean in to that portamento half step slide
so we know where we are
and a fussing baby in the back
music as what we are about when we are about doing what we do

Unnamed Track 3 - The Empire Brass Quintet [from American Brass Band Journal Revisited]

This one sounds vaguely Straussian (JS not RS). Trumpet imitates a violinish cross-string arpeggio.

Banned Rehearsal 70 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Neal Kosály-Meyer [March 1986]

three treatises
fallback position: parallel play planned and strayed from
the Oboe Roi makes its appearance blatant as blatant could be
throbbing heater throb
quiet quacker
squeaking the furniture

toy piano: how presciently up to fashion!

long sung tones tongue shaping mouth to elicit partials for flute long tones to intermessaround with

coming down from a high sort of tape
intent on hanging out near the floor

continues to be about exact intonation (yes I really mean that)

we play, Neal and I, the kazoos of eternal eloquence
Karen keeps us free of ground on ukelele string strung cat's cradle

we pause to readjust our positions and instruments

Anna sings a song with dulcimer appalachienne

we pause again to readjust and discuss

the clavichord when it was new and in the same room
soulful bass ocarina to ukelele choir
conversation among tempos

avante rhythm duel in dual microphony

speaks in the past pawntificate

big snake lumbers past

let the dead bury the || feedback has been summoned again || becomes magic

January 23, 2018

Hillbilly Drummer Girl - The Young Fresh Fellows [from Electric Bird Digest]

My wife has taken the name as an alter ego.
song: A character sketch with very little fat on it.

Banned Rehearsal 436 - Isaac E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer [October 1996]

huge in your face not easy to fit in the alotted space box canyon then to deeper waters veggie choked
Karen with drummer girl grin - ca. 1996
rock slide panic mode twisted river cramped for space
hardly lets up every few moments a new crazy enters tape
like a country slaughtered hog every part used e'en the oink
a heap of anything
acres of it
bits and scraps of old sounds and old agendas old activities crammed together shoved in clown car Tokyo subway no respite blot it blatt sax into cassette distortion far from easy listening commute music

and yet it is about sensibility, in the sense that an onslaught against all is a form of about-ness, of concerning itself with all

baby finally cries "enough!" or feed me more

we intone
to calm ourselves

In Session at the Tintinabulary

January 22, 2018
Gradus 326 - Neal Kosály-Meyer

fluctuates in the partials like flowing whale fins
ocean tempo
heavy fluidity of waters' resistance
shift of body's weight is shift in thought's weight

gesture in metaphor

in action

Saturday, January 20, 2018



January 19, 2018
Triptet - with guest Stuart Dempster
Gallery 1412, Seattle
Greg Campbell, Michael Monhart, Tom Baker

Grows from the center out
Triptet with Stuart in carefully matched tops
and a rhythm of beards
successively shedding each past against chronospheric abrasian inexorably
seasonal dormancy
alien body antibodies
Stuart joins! late night FM station sea shore sea shell show
bouy bell
kalimba magma man
electronic squeezy wormhole to outer sci fi
Punch (sans Judy) in space toy time


January 13, 2018
Jacob's Ladder - arr. Ernest Kenwal - Lake Washington Singers, Betty Eisenbrey, Joanne Deacon [from my mom's tape of April 11, 1961]

Each verse is arranged to do exactly the same thing in a slightly differently arranged way. He could do this all day. To anything.

Hastings River, New South Wales
Just Like A Woman - Bob Dylan [from Biograph]

A song all scrubbed up and shiny for public consumption, just rightly arranged. Syllables are not set to notes, but to pitch vectors, pitch curves.

Behind Blue Eyes - The Who [from Who's Next]

The Romantic imagination mythologizes itself in order to imagine growing up. No Drums! (til later). The songwriting is blatant in the songwriting.

Stay - David Bowie [from Station to Station]

A careful slicing into a funky rhythm hoping to find whom? James Brown? His solo vocal is a collection of overlays, each complete, each integral to itself and complete. Together they form a composite reading of how the song might be sung. Bowie thinking.

You'll Never Be a Man - Elvis Costello [from Trust]

A simpler version of the same (Bowie) idea. Simpler not in the bad stupid sense, but in the clarified pointy sense. Or, how a single song can render Billy Joel entirely unnecessary.

Banned Rehearsal 69 Part 2 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Neal Kosály-Meyer [March 1986]

starts out somewhere in Late Beethoven Slow Movement Serious Mode, until it gets just out of sight around the corner. An internal psychic anatomy. Back to LBSMSM, i.e. sustained harmony with inner energy that feels as though at any moment it is about to become . . . [never complete] [refrains from] [rather, it slowly deconstructs] its sense of self into another and runneth then over [repeat ] drumming does a number on the clock chime - oh that Bickleton clock chime! - long dim.
My Sweet Euchabibilla Baboo, Electric Garbage, then the Aaronsbundler March in all its pomp triumphal and glory grandiose

nobody, but nobody
pomps triumphally and grandiosally like we does

Territorial Pissings - Nirvana [from Nevermind]

slides knife into its groove

Banned Rehearsal 435 - Isaac E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Anna K, Aaron Keyt, and Neal Kosály-Meyer [September 1996]

Even in the decade of chaos we make a remarkable sound. Keeping the rhythm lively - and all while
Karen was nursing the baby right there. Familial. Banned Rehearsal lullaby.

January 15, 2018
Embryonic in the Same Traditions - Dale Lloyd [from Sonicabal 2001]

the human mouth is the cavernmyth of language, dragon's lair.

Banned Rehearsal 699 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Neal Kosály-Meyer [March 2006]

Incongruities joined by a near-common pitch
or by cooperative winding entwining
on the down low barest smallest of sounds
muttering with exactness into the big space around small sounds
guitar (neal) kicking the sound around on the floor
into hot spots where it glows in feedbacklight
improvisation: helping each other's sounds out.

The Chronicles of Dirty Dick Part 2 - Antique Scream [from The Chronicles of Dirty Dick]

Beat invention. Beat elaboration. Part 2 is in Two Movements.

Selections from Music for Wallace - Aaron Keyt [from my recording - Seattle Composers' Salon, January 5, 2018]

I'm coming at these pieces, in part, in my guise as pianist who has read through them often and who plans to work them all up in the next year or so. Clearly they are music. Just as clearly they are poems, thorny poems. Think a Dada Ezra Pound. thinkadada thinkadada thinkadada thinkadada POUND!

January 16, 2018
The Seventh Pavian - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]

How many voices can be got to be seeming to be doing exactly the same thing, while all the while always doing entirely different things actually?

Birth of the Blues - Paul Whiteman, Ray Henderson, B.G. DeSylva, Lew Brown [from Alan Lowe's Really The Blues]

The Official Whiteman Tour Guide to Rhapsody in Blue, with favorite bits!

Grand Coulee Dam - Woody Guthrie [from Columbia River Collection]

In celebration of the industrialization of the West. "prancin' dancin' stallion". poet he was at that.

Jezebel: Overture - Benjamin Boretz [midi realization]

intimations of repetitions
that never
get repeating
they make
you wonder
if you
heard it right
the first time

Great Day - Vincent Youmans - Lake Washington Singers, Betty Eisenbrey, Joanne Deacon [from my mom's tape of April 11, 1961]

Intricate rhythms nearly obscured by the boomy old tape sound.

Let Her Dance - The Bobby Fuller 4 [collected from Dave Marsh's The Heart of Rock & Soul]

Wisely does not make the song much more than a vehicle for the rhythm. In which the guitar riff neatly invokes a subtle cross-meter in 3.

Won't Get Fooled Again - The Who [from Who's Next]

There are some words in there inside the emphatic locution. How the words are spoken, not what the words speak.

Wild Is The Wind - David Bowie [from Station to Station]

Picture an awful movie, just dreadful
the credits roll disconsolate
past the first credit roll song
everybody leaves
just then is where this song belongs
brilliant unexpected brilliance
"you touch me I hear the sound of mandolins" barfy song lyric lifted into incandescence.
I know he's just showing off, but this is one of my favorites.

Undifferentiated Functions - University of Washington Contemporary Group Improvisation Ensemble [live at Brechemin Auditorium May 1981]

Now with tape wobble! Me, in closet, gaveling.

January 18, 2018
I Know What I Know - Paul Simon [from Graceland]

Third verse wraps the first around crazy high backup singers.

Banned Rehearsal 258 - John E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt [June 1991]

All tapes begin with fuss
quite thin the sound of rattling big red bag of fun
with pre-recorded music layered in: My Chart, my Sonatina, Cantus
gentle sounds then the rhythm band cymbals
an apparent harmonic tendency upwards or not downwards
Toad Hall? probably. We'll say so.
my Sonata in 2 Movements
Such Words (must have been Neal's)
we all sing to baby

In Session at the Tintinabulary

January 15, 2018
Banned Rehearsal 950 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer

Saturday, January 13, 2018



January 7, 2018
Banned Rehearsal 623 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer [November 2001]

intoned among the reverb a keening tale
wholly indecipherable resolving into small talk (enlarged!)
percussion feedback washtub piano
in avante jazz dreamscape mode
an opera twisted sense of compositional response
episodes, with screams certainly wandering
out of chamber symphony territory
upon which could be inscribed temple rooms
no longer regular passing of time
at multiple rates
dissimultaneously, ritualistic, a grim march into future's moil
excerpts of architecture inserted
transparent and lucid utterance stick with it to the end
Someone to Watch Over Me and other Gershwin Favorites

Cotopoxi - Brad Anderson [from Dark Energy - Interstellar Pianos]

Perfect intervals and ray guns
static as the speed would seem to increase

Gradus 190 - Neal Kosály-Meyer [March 2011]

in order to follow the thought precisely


to catch a glimpse of thinking happening

the long silences are evidence of a larger idea overshadowing, or holding, cupped
{stray inappropriate thought: punitive silence}

free improvisation is a strict method of being particular

I am playing back a sound in this room that is a sound that had been made in this room. Their various acoustical spaces share similarities across a medium.

purposeful silence

placing a tone so as to thread the needle's eye
the eye between the partials of other tones

split them like kindling whack!

patience testing silence

January 9, 2018
Mind The Gap - Strange Like Us [from Strange Peeps]

hollow shell
the center not empty so much as gone, never was.
(arthouse punk)?

Pavana the Sixte "Kinbrugh Goodd" and The Galliarde to the Sixte Pavian - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from Ladye Nevells Booke]

Here the independence of voices is achieved largely by other means than current voice-leading practice would suggest.

What is the role of the extraneous noise of virginal playing, essential to its charm, the effect of its image on how its music hangs in space?

first voice, then second voice, then a conjointure of voices, folded in continually
dough making

Senegalese Stomp - Savoy Bearcats [from Alan Lowe's That Devilin' Tune]

In loving imitation of keyboard figurational shenanigans.

Song of the Coulee Dam - Woody Guthrie [from Columbia River Collection]

He kept trying to get the same song right: retry, re-write, re-use.

In The Middle of the House - Vaughn Monroe [a Rescued Record]

a 50's pop novelty song with great train sound effect. I learn this actually reached number 11 on the Billboard magazine's Most Played by Jockeys chart, and 21 in the Top 100. Imagine that. I wonder if Dr. Demento ever spun it?

In Session at the Tintinabulary

January 8, 2018
Gradus 325 - Neal Kosály-Meyer


up and down

it does not move
things in it

some of them

a vast
combination lock

a long way around
to clear

Saturday, January 6, 2018



"What am I doing, mind in the concert hall like that? Maybe it's better to state things more generally: something happens, which will have had, quite inadvertently, any number of complex, variable, and unforeseen interactions with everything else, down to the molecular level. This immanent vitality is quite incidental, belying the notion that one ever does more or less than simply take part in it. Music situates parts -- gathering up bundles of messy connectivity, listening in; putting an ear to all that vast, tangled darkness, we draw close to the beating heart. The question of what we do in music is therefore revitalized by the exploration of incident."
Mark So "Music is Full of Incident (Christian Wolff at 80)" Open Space Magazine Issue 17/18 spring 2015/fall 2015



December 31, 2017
Sheridan Riley (with 5-Track)
Red Ribbon
Ben von Wildenhaus (with Amanda (?) Blue (sp?))

Gainsbourg, Seattle

Decades ago I lived in an apartment that shared a long wall with Benjamin Boretz's basement music studio in Red Hook, NY. When improvisation sessions were happening in that next room I would often turn the television on without the sound and see what the crazy music next door did unto Barney Miller or baseball. It was more often than not the best thing that had ever happened to television. Gainsbourg is a 'French themed' bistro in Greenwood, Seattle, that, among other things (including excellent food), features (or at least did that night) old French films projected silently, with sub-titles, on the wall behind the tiny stage. These continued through the three musical presentations. I have seen many intentional multi-media works, strenuous juxtapositions of elements, curatorial and high-toned, but rarely have I been so ravished as by this haphazard mashup. Earnest late night conversations across the traveled years.
Red Ribbon at Gainsbourg, December 31, 2017

Sheridan Riley presented as a well-dressed drummer/guitarist/singer joined by 5-Track (or so I'm told), who is a local musician playing bass (or playing guitar as though it were a bass - memory fails). They came on so gently into the evening as to be a near ambience, inviting and warm. It was fabulous to see Red Ribbon again, this time as Emma Danner just herself, her guitar and a little keyboard. Freed from any need to rise over a full band, she was finding all sorts of wonderful spots in her upper register that I had not heard before. A marvelous voice with, I suspect, riches she hasn't discovered yet. More please. Ben von Wildenhaus, back to mostly guitar playing, but with occasional vocal-percussive interjections. A singer, costumed to the French nines, joined him on several numbers, or perhaps stepped forward out of the old time cinema wall, for sure at least playing along with the oldies act, hand gestures and vocal styling streaming from mid-20th century continental torch-song. Too bad she couldn't bring one of those old radio show microphones along with!

January 5, 2018
Seattle Composers' Salon
Chapel Performance Space, Good Shepherd Center, Seattle

Ian McKnight - The Trees Awaken

Story telling is a mode of experiencing time. Melody is another. The reticence with which many composers approach even the notion that they might be exploring the landscape created between them is due, in part, I think, to the unquestionable difficulty of, first: getting the story and melody modes right, and second: getting those modes to work together as a synthesis. Or rather, the issue may simply be one of trajectory. Is this a melody that tells or is it a tale told in melody? In this case, clearly the former. Unfortunately Ian was ill, but we experienced his piece as a projected video file of a live (situated in a lively Tacoma cafe) performance. The players were Ian on flute, Clement Reid on piano, and Carson Farley on cello.

Carson Farley - Film Music

Same set up, same ensemble, video from the same cafe performance, customers walking through the frame, coffee grinders grinding, espresso makers hissing. I must admit it is quite a mind bend to experience, on film, as it were, a performance of a music written for a different film than that which we were witnessing. Between the mind bend, the frozen-eye videography, and my increasing anxiety concerning my own impending performance, I admit to not being as focussed on the music as I would like to be.

Patrick O'Keefe - A Morning Stroll - Thornton Creek Clarinet Quartet

We heard an earlier version of this piece last year. Patrick has tightened it up considerably, and the ensemble of 3 regular sized clarinets (not sure if they were B-flats or A's) and one bass clarinet sounded great. An attractive and entertaining jaunt somewhat in the vein of Nielsen, but happier.

Aaron Keyt - Selections from Music for Wallace

Aaron and I go way back. Wayyy back. On top of that, these pieces are in my stack of "prepare these next" scores, so I wasn't hearing them cold. However, hearing them while playing them is quite different from hearing them while not also concerned with fingering and note reading. What shines, and it shines bright, is their knife-edge poetic focus. These pieces do not bludgeon, they incise.

Keith Eisenbrey - Selections from Second Thoughts

I'll refrain (this time) from commenting on my own pieces, other than to list their names: A a, B a, B b, C a, C b, C c, D a, D b, D c, D d. Since I only found out I was on this show at 1:30 that afternoon (at the time it was thought that Ian's illness might leave two spots open) I stopped before I got to any that were difficult to play. I mentioned during the Q&A a midi version of all the parts packed in the box. Here it is:

And here are all the parts spread out on the floor, performed on a real life piano:


January 1, 2018
The Fifte Pavian and the Galliarde to the Fifte Pavian - William Byrd - Elizabeth Farr [from My Ladye Nevells Booke]

Phrases to savor in the mouth, ornamented with florid scholarly encrustations, glossed, commentaried, captioned, titled, moraled, glowing with all of text's accoutrements.

Black Cat Blues - Old Pal SmokeShop Four [from Alan Lowe's Really The Blues]

Sitting close to that uncomfortable region where the blues veer near or into their own caricature.

Jackhammer Blues - Woody Guthrie [from Columbia River Collection]

Each line is short a beat, which is to say that they is some sevens in there snuck among the eights.

I Walk The Line - Johnny Cash [from Sun Records Essential Hits]

There is a quiet bowed tone just before JC enters, or is it hummed? It sounds like a cello to me.

My mom, seated in the middle, with me. 1959.
Elijah Rock - arr. by Jester Hairston - Lake Washington Singers, Betty Eisenbrey, Joanne Deacon [from my mom's tape]

The Hollywood style counted then, in 1961 suburbia, as popular, modern, with it. It wasn't.

It's All Over Now, Baby Blue - Bob Dylan [from Biograph]

Rhythmically aware accentuation of the verse in at least three independent modes of delineation -  pitch, duration, emphasis - all cooperating at different rates.

January 2, 2018
Going Mobile - The Who [from Who's Next]

beep beep. The lighter acoustic guitar arrangement upfront allows room for the electric to enter into the space opened up by the drums.

TVC 15 - David Bowie [from Station to Station]

What it's about (its words) is not the point. What it is is an excuse for rhythm games, how to accentuate the title as an ordered set of syllables.

Improvisation - University of Washington Contemporary Group Improvisation Ensemble [from Neal's Recital Tape, May 1981]

applause bravo author
goes rockish
heroic fanfare
count ONE!
the gavel bangs

In good humor I suppose. We tried.

January 4, 2018
Fall On Me - REM [from Life's Rich Pageant]

Even the drum track sounds strummed with subtle tambourine, softening the whole harmony.

Banned Rehearsal 257 - John E, Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt [June 1991]

Me and John, 1991
Oh that new parent yawn! I guess it had finally caught up with us. Reed organ (a toy) beset by radio on radio off. Shifting sounds, that is, the sound of us shifting ourselves, picking up instruments, moving about in the room. We have weight and bodies. We can be heard. These instruments do not magically appear. Sudden entrances, sudden blossoms.

Hot Foot - The Boss Martians [from 13 Evil Tales]

Sliding down the Ventures' side of Surf Mountain.

In Session at the Tintinabulary

January 1, 2018

Greenwood 180101 - Keith Eisenbrey
Waiting for a bus at Greenwood Avenue North and North 85th Street. Fireworks for a new year and a tow-truck. beep beep.

Banned Rehearsal 949 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Steve Kennedy, Aaron Keyt