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Re: BAY AREA new music scene

David wrote:
"I had a nasty and humiliating experience in Berkeley a few years ago
when Henry Kaiser and John Oswald invited me to participate in a
noise-type event.  my guitar playing was way too pretty and
conventional for the context, and I wound up feeling kinda stupid by
the time it was over."

I know the feeling, although in recent years I have really gotten more 
being a complete
chameleon, stylistically.................so that if it's a noise event,  I 
just go for it in that context.
I've found that it has helped my musicianship to put myself into scary, 
uncomfortable positions, stylistically.
When my DSP unit completely failed during the Dark Elektronix festival and 
was left with only
non-reberbed found sound looping in the middle of all of this extremely 
intense and loud dark techno, drum
and bass and experimental music I had the worst shame attack on stage. 
And yet, a young woman came up
to me afterwards and said that she had been to all three nights of the 
festival and that what I did was the best thing
she saw in the three days and that it totally inspired her.   I was glad I 
risked it after that one response.

I've been lucky enough to be asked to play the Disquiet Dark Ambient 
Binaural Dimensions, the Dark Elektronix Festival,  the Boise Experimental 
Music Festival,
The Kobe Underground Festival (where I did goth/pop work as a 
singer/sonwriter of all wierd things),
the Zurich International Live Looping Festival (where I did my found/sound 
multi-instrumental schtick)
and every one of these performances was catered to the specific styles of 
the festivals.

the cool thing is that I"m really into relatively conventional pop music 
with vocals and chord progressions these days but
all of the aspects of these styles that I've given myself to can sneak 
the songs that I'm writing.

An example of this is that I saw an unbelievably inspiring and creative 
concert last night in San Francisco..............the british band, ELBOW. 
Ultra minimalists,  they are a five piece band that plays quiet and 
melancholic songs but there is the hint of
3rd world music ............glitch electronics.............rock and 
roll.............singer songwriter vibe.....even
avante garde and found sound sensibilities in what they play,   yet they 
a fairly straightforward pop band (with a singer with
an beautiful voice and a lot of melodic and emotional range).

It's as good a concert as I've ever scene and my wife and I (she, as 
turned me onto them) were blissed out
at the end of it.

But, back to your comment , David,    you certainly must know that Henry 
Kaiser is an amazingly versatile musician who
plays a lot of pop as well as his avante garde stuff.    did you ever find 
out what he thought of your playing?   I only ask
because I've discovered that frequently the way we feel about our playing 
not necessarily how we are percieved.

But I too,  feel that I like conventional music too much for the avante 
garde scene and am too 'out' for the conventional pop world
so I can relate.