Saturday, September 28, 2019



September 21, 2019
graphic scores by John Teske
Chapel Performance Space, Good Shepherd Center, Seattle

Any Ensemble:
Greg Campbell, percussion
Luke Fitzpatrick, violin
Haley Freedlund, trombone
Nel Kennon, viola
John Teske, double bass
Neil Welch, saxophone


by the fucking neck
bone flute
libera me
brain slap
klaxon wail
papercut butterflies
blood on the hearth
death rattle

to imagine how fine any ensemble might sound
imagine them tuning

it never isn't tuning
pitch match activity

attention drifting through a space not designed to be attended by that particular attention



d'y'wan'a tune again?

all together
now a tuning
might be a polyvalent trajectory interwoven


dance -cession :: (pro-) (re-) (ob-)

September 22, 2019
Bill at 93: Clarinet Works of William O. Smith
Gallery 1412, Seattle

Variants for clarinet alone (1967) - Eric Mandat, clarinet
1412 (structured improvisation, 2019) - William O. Smith, clarinet; Greg Campbell, percussion
Epigrams for clarinet (2009) - Robert Spring, clarinet
Evening Ritual (2019) - Rachel Yoder, clarinet
Jazz Fantasy (2019) - Jeffrey Cohan, flute; Tate Cohan, oboe
Five (Six) for clarinet ensemble and clarinet soloist - William O. Smith, clarinet; with Deanna Brizgys, Jesse Canterbury, James Falzone, Beverly Setzer, Rachel Yoder, and Jenny Ziefel; Paul Gillespie, conductor

Largely possibly due to the long residence here in Seattle of William O. Smith, we have an
embarrassment of riches in the clarinet department. On this night that cup ranneth over.

September 26, 2019
Canções Profundas (Deep Songs)
by Steve Peters
Greg Campbell, percussion; Jesse Canterbury, clarinets; Lesli Dalaba, trumpet; Amy Denio, clarinet, saxophone, voice; Steve Peters, saxophone; Christian Pincock, trombone; Joshua Parmenter, additional electronic processing; Rafael Carvalho, viola da terra


is land
by its shore

is an 
experiment in

a sweep upward
a most 


even from afar

from which
how strange this other
shore must be

and vast


September 24, 2019
Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing - Robert W. Thygerson - University Temple Chancel Choir, Chris Vincent, conductor

with a light touch airborne dance

O Magnum Mysterium - Morton Lauridsen

really really gooey
lives to linger

Gradus 107 - Neal Kosály-Meyer (October 2006)

the first 6 A-naturals one more time

The silences could be where it is going on elsewhere
prone to wander, Lord I feel it

high tones suddenly close, poke lights

you awake?

In Session at the Tintinabulary

September 23, 2019
Gradus 356 - Neal Kosály-Meyer

Obvious Observation:
When there is only one note in play, that aspect of musical curiosity that might be called the "which note(s) next?" anxiety is set aside.

leaving: when? how loud? how pedaled? how prolonged? how terminated?

When there are two, anxiety returns

a book
on each page a word
and an aperture

through which aperture
can be read all or some part of
the word on the next page down
or not
in both directions


any more than what is works are fixed what
know how to live without spiritual
or temporal things as substance passive

a crow in the distance
to tell them through the middle
to see how far reaching

Saturday, September 21, 2019


"Snowflakes, maple leaves, spots on leopards, stripes on zebras, palm fronds, banana skins, identical twins, lizard's tails, men's eyes, women's toes, Joans and Johns differ, each unto themselves. For physical survival, I need to be able to distinguish each lizard and each mushroom. For psychic survival, I desperately want to be able to distinguish each eye and each leaf and each E-flat. How not always to think in terms of terms and kinds and types is hard work; the eschewal of broad generalizations and categories, cases and classes takes time. But there's always an unexpected payoff when I try.

Virginia Woolf said simply 'Think of things in themselves.'"

Elaine Barkin "Rules of One's Own" from "e : an anthology"



September 7, 2019
Sonata in D minor, K. 41 - Domenico Scarlatti - Pieter-Jan Belder

a mock fugue
a probable canon

like JSB, the contrapuntal conceits are just the ground, the bramble through which what it actually is

Messiah Part 1 - George Frideric Handel - Atlanta Symphony Orchestra & Chamber Chorus, Robert Shaw, Kaaren Erickson, Sylvia McNair, Alfreda Hodgson, Jon Humphrey, Richard Stilwell, Layton James

An historical thought:
in our culture composition is considered to be an intellectual activity, the province of experts, geniuses, immortals. but listening is for anybody. Why is that? Ben Boretz says "Listening is primal composition."

One problem with music such as this, in one's own tongue, is that the word painting sticks out.

It is orchestrated like a brick wall.

An amusing tidbit:
the use of wordpainting is often pointed to, not just to help neophytes into the listening, but also as the very fingerprint of genius itself. I aver that that is most certainly what it is not.

now become a cult classic
sing along
like Rocky Horror Picture Show

A Quick One, While He's Away - The Who [from A Quick One]

in the image of Bob
but the scenes change

how many songs is this song?
Story line: a really good stupid movie.

September 10, 2019

Year 1 - X [from Wild Gift]

In my confusion I had conflated X with Talking Heads. I got most of the way through without cognitive dissonance, trouble-less, before I clicked back. Many of my favorite Talking Heads songs are by X.

It Came Upon a Midnight Clear - London Symphony Orchestra [from Listen To The Joy]

but it was so polite you missed it.

Desert Angel - Stevie Nicks [from Timespace]

memoir song
desert storm I suppose
one of those designer label wars from the '90s.

Das Dörfchen - Franz Schubert [from Robert Shaw Master of the First Art]

piano may as well be
not there

Rain In The Dust - Robert Tree Cody, Will Clipman [from Heart of the Wind]

The reverb makes it difficult to hear what sounds the lips are making. Short.

September 12, 2019
Gradus 196 part 1 - Neal Kosály-Meyer [live at the Chapel Performance Space August 2011]

Chapel, at the
which has a low breathy tone about it just catching air as it does
one should not hear the entrance

one should be being social during the entrance
then, once social being is done
come in

some organism is making a blowy noise on something

windy in the real world tonight
Donnerwort! for real in the world tonight!
September of storms

So why is it this luscious recorded ambiance should so luscious be, as compared to any, including this actual ambiance?
Because it is a layer upon experience : experience experiencing

far far away rumble
somebody's rattling dishes

bit closer that one
long long rumbly sky

each A a mark

slowly doing doings
are afoot

September 17, 2019
Hjarta og Eldur - SeaStar [from Never Go Back]

of heroic deeds and dire

Sonata in B-flat Major, K. 42 - Domenico Scarlatti - Pieter-Jan Belder

perfectly ordinary
were it not for that bit that hangs
and quite tiny

Central Park In The Dark - Charles Ives - Saint Louis Symphony Orchestra, Leonard Slatkin

layers combine but never bend
forever incongruous accumulation to no end

Dry Bones - Lake Washington Singers, Betty Eisenbrey [April 1966]

no trombones in this one

Leather and Lace (remastered) - Stevie Nicks [from Bella Donna]

public analysis of self with other :: thin
not as affecting as would have been hoped
another half song
in all sorts of dimensions

September 19, 2019
Amazing Grace - Neal Kosály-Meyer [San Diego, October 1986]

and its pitch set as ordered and inflected
as I imagine it might be like, mutatis mutandis, to understand a raga from within its womb
gospel raga blues
composition in minute differentials

{NB: Neal sang the hymn unaccompanied in an empty church for 47 minutes}

On Excursion in Portland and Environs

September 13, 2019
4 33 Hawthorne Bridge Song - Keith Eisenbrey

No blog last week because we were in Portland so that Karen could help staff her publisher's booth at
the Rose City Comic Con. I took a walk around the Willamette River. Under Hawthorne Bridge I stopped and recorded cars on the bridge deck above me. All I had was my phone, so that is what I used.

Steel Bridge - Keith Eisenbrey

On the north end of my walk I recorded this train crossing Steel Bridge.

Robert Meyer Tour - Keith Eisenbrey

We were staying with relatives in Milwaukie (Karen's Dad's Brother and his Wife). Uncle Bob showed me, with demonstrations, his fine collection of brass instruments.

Gramophone Demonstration - Keith Eisenbrey

Then he demonstrated one of his gramophones. This was one where the stylus moves up and down and the diaphragm is horizontal to the record's surface - like as if a snake had swallowed a silver dollar - and the records themselves are nearly a 1/4 inch thick.

September 14, 2019
Propane Tank Bell - Keith Eisenbrey

The next morning I recorded the sound of the bell that hangs outside their front door, made from a propane tank.

Steel Bridge (Worthy) - Keith Eisenbrey

I had left Karen at Comic Con and walked to a spot on the esplanade near the Steel Bridge to record the sounds of traffic and Max trains crossing. It ended up being an excellent spot also for passing cyclists, scooterists, and pedestrians. I had been sitting there for about 30 minutes, reading a magazine, when a younger man - mid 40's perhaps, with an intense air, wound tight, asked if I was going to be there a while and would I watch his wallet and stuff. After some confusion on my part, having not been expecting to be addressed, I agreed. He told me his name, left his phone and jacket and perhaps a syringe. "Nitro"* he said, if you do drugs. I told him I didn't. Then I told him "Come back soon," which I had to repeat. He seemed focused elsewhere, pumped, psyched up.

He met a younger man with a skateboard a few dozen yards away and together they walked out onto the walkway under the bridge. My heart began to pound some. They got to a point just before the first support. He removed his shirt, looked over both sides of the walk. He hoisted himself, gracefully, onto the rail, then back to the walk. He replaced his shirt, climbed back to the rail and with a dramatic sweep of his arms leaped feet first into the Willamette.

He surfaced quickly and began to swim to shore. His companion came back near to where I was sitting and clambered athletically over the rail and, apparently, down the embankment. A few minutes later they both re-appeared over the rail, the leaper dripping wet, and recovered his belongings.

I had been considering what to say, finally settling on "That was an extreme baptism." He said "I like that." His companion said "That was awesome," and they walked on south along the esplanade. It's all on the recording, including the splash.

*listening back I realize that my memory had failed on this point, even though I wrote the story down just a few minutes after the fact. He actually said they were his nitroglycerin pills, concerned I suppose that I might think they were worth experimenting with.

Max Train Luna Milwaukie - Keith Eisenbrey

On the orange line back to Milwaukie the announcer kept saying "Linea de Milwaukie." (I hope I spelled that correctly. My Spanish is shamefully nonexistent.) I turned my recorder on too late to capture the line, but the moon was out, hence the Luna.

In Session at the Tintinabulary

September 9, 2019
Gradus 355 - Neal Kosály-Meyer

no end in mind?
the mind can't conceive of this end
to which there is no approach

September 12, 2019
O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort (one way) - Keith Eisenbrey

The third chorale in my chorale project, being the twelfth part of Études d'exécution imminent.

September 16, 2019
Banned Rehearsal 989 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt

We are back indoors for the fall and winter and spring.

September 19, 2019
O Ewigkeit, du Donnerwort (other way) - Keith Eisenbrey

The fourth chorale of the above, being the same tune, but blandished an other way.


the and the the weather be very fine
usually congregate below a
clerk's improved is seat who could be wife on

we turn a corner
in stop frame motion

Saturday, September 7, 2019



September 1, 2019
Peter Piper - Lake Washington Singers, Betty Eisenbrey, director [April 1966]

an adorable plush toy of a piece

Big Sister's Clothes - Elvis Costello [from Trust]

His song smithery is respectable
though I'm not sure those weird sound intro-outro bits do it any favors

The Turning - Screaming Trees [from Clairvoyance]

Syd Barrett in the new world

Jeremy - Pearl Jam [from Rearviewmirror]

this song doesn't need its presented size in sound, this need to fill a large space, inflated into stadium architecture. It belongs in a cosmically smaller sort of infinite space. There is no room, no crevice, withintowhich we might slip secure.

Ave verum corpus - Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart - Atlanta Symphony and Chorus, Robert Shaw [from Robert Shaw Master of the First Art]

that moving inner voice on the im of immolatum
a spark to die for

Carnival Overture - Antonín Dvořák [from Naxos The Very Best of Dvořák]

barker, more like
Come on in! Thrills Chills Romance and Joy!

wonder magic

Gradus 195 - Neal Kosály-Meyer - Neal Kosály-Meyer [August 2011]

3 rungs in memory of John Cage the rehearsal
measuring out a long space circling past fixtures
then relativistically from the other side having been passed over after passing over the threshold to an otherly measured time

another thing Gradus is:
as the whole of Gradus is:
a piece about thinking about pitch space that acts like a micro-neural network brain flash

a crawler arising from within its own context
alarm will sound
distant accordions on the echo walls

Ocean Ambience Rocky Coastline Vol. 1 Part 1 - Pete Comley

the sea snores by the sea shells
and we have heard her
the sea caressing smooth her pebbles
for how long has the sea been making sand

the hands of the sea beat the drums of land

the lands are plate drums
the sea drums

shakes us through our soles

September 2, 2019
Sonata in C minor, K. 40 - Domenico Scarlatti - Pieter-Jan Belder

in imitation of another's manners
theater of being
mimics and coerces

Symphony in D Major (#2) - Jean Sibelius - London Symphony Orchestra, Colin Davis

his ways
to count 3
to meter 3

That tune is such a diva!

If there are scenes they move.

not scenery, but that too
and all within the path of the melody wheresountowhere'ere it goes
(nice job on the timps back there!)

heroic postures
somewhere between Duck Dodgers and Alberich

a composer who, as a theater manager keeps intricate track of his props

entry through the gates triumphal and pomp and there are the crowds and there the streamers
Daddy's home.

granular melodic synthesis
(one of the great tuba parts of all time)
nationalistical, natürlich

September 3, 2019
Where Are The Snows? - Harvey Schmidt - Mary Martin, Robert Preston [from I Do! I Do!]

is an interesting question, considering they wonder nightly and twice if there's a matinee

Dead End - Dead Kennedys [from Plastic Surgery Disasters/In God We Trust]

2-bit even among the sophomorics

Assembly Rechoired 7 - Karen (Meyer) Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey [September 1986]

We had some technical issues, but this is the first tape we made in the big Greenwood House whereintowhich Karen and I moved just before we got married.

mountain dulcimer and penny whistle
(there, I fixed the missing channel)

on my part mostly obsessively noodling on small instruments - penny whistle & monochord - perhaps in an attempt to feel comfortable with them

funmaker in a new space
the phone rings
domestic: music made within house life

September 4, 2019
Once - Pearl Jam [from Rearviewmirror]

too much Bono in this one for my taste
the song is packed to the point of homogeneity

Dona nobis pacem - Johann Sebastian Bach- Atlanta Symphony and Chorus, Robert Shaw [from Robert Shaw Master of the First Art]

slow tempo nearly inert fiddly bits clarify their function without giving away their destination, which simply arrives because there it is

Banned Rehearsal 709 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Neal Kosály-Meyer [October 2006]

one is not articulate upon a device
it doesn't pay to pretend to be

and if:
one is articulate, in some or any sense, upon a device
it does not pay to pretend not to be

it is not a simple nor quick task
to discern which you may be upon any given device

one makes the attempt in good faith
with ears open

so that:
the benefits of sticking with it long enough to discover something
emerge resplendent

The Memory of All That - Benjamin Boretz - Megan Berti, mezzo-soprano; Zuzanna Szewczyk Kwon, piano [from Open Space 31]

the doubled struggle of
finishing a word
and sounding an interval

the tempo of the argument
as it destroys
its erstwhile subject

the piano sounds are a posture
within the stating voice

Half a Bus Closer to Home - St. Rage [at the Common Good Cafe August 2016]

"Carol Anne would have been ready to go." (Karen to Neal, who was tuning the guitar again)

In Session at the Tintinabulary

September 2, 2019
Banned Rehearsal 988 - Karen Eisenbrey, Keith Eisenbrey, Aaron Keyt, Neal Kosály-Meyer

On the porch as the September evening darkens and quiets
Aaron warblers his warbler


australian the years buried beneath that
black cloud the cultural I told him it
was supposed to my primary task to

through matrix
trace result
sand paper