] [Thread Prev
Re: videos and music and music sales
Warren Sirota wrote:
*"I've played with unrehearsed, uncoordinated visuals on several
occasions. I have not liked the results.
As an audience member, I have frequently seen visuals that, while
interesting enough, were so randomly
related to the music that I had to shut my eyes in order to hear the
music (forcing me not to see the performers,
however boring or unboring they might have been)."*
I hear what you are saying (or perhaps I should say, I see what you are
saying), Warren, but
what occurs to me is that it all depends on the quality and
appropriateness of the visuals that accompany
a looping artist (or any artist) even if they are uncoordinated and
I've actually played with a lot of really excellent interactive video
artists in my own live looping career to varying degrees of success.
I've also played a lot of shows with random visuals that seemed highly
inappropriate or distracting.
Let's face it, there are just some visual artists who just don't think
musically and consequently don't accompany very well.
But for all of those insensitive or perhaps just inexperienced video
accompanists, there are wonderful artists like our own Dr. Emile
Peter Knudsen (who did exquisite video improvisations for the Y2K8
Loopfestival in Santa Cruz),
David Tristram (who does live interactive digital animation and has
toured, doing world class
visuals with people like the Dead and the Stones) or Henry Kaiser's
exquisite set, creating a live 'soundtrack' to his amazing
Antarctic under ice cap ocean videos.
I don't know how many people caught Norwegian Peter Knudsens' work
at Y2K8 but I thought it was beautifully enhancing to the whole
experience and he 'read' the energy of every performance
really effectively. I thought that Y2K8 was far more visually
compelling in a way that enhanced performances than
Y2K9 which had no video at all.
In this way, some of the video was stylistically coordinated if not
specifically rhythmically coordinated.
I do have to say that after having a really hard time getting anyone to
do visuals for the Y2K9 festival (mostly due to lack of time and
energy because the festival became so overwhelming in the final three
months before it happened) that when I see Jim Goodin's video
sampler, it all looks depressingly drab after a few acts because the
background lights were completely static. Y2K9 was arguably
the strongest loop festival I've ever produced in terms of the overall
level of all of the performances but it was visually
mesmerizing in a way that, for me, weakened the impact.
Of course, visually compelling live loopers certainly don't need extra
visuals. I think of the amazing performance that Lumper/Splitter
did at the Boise Creative Music Festival a couple of years back with
their 'guitar' operation theme, or Margaret Noble spinning
her rings on her miced table at Y2K8.
There are also instances like Lili Lewis' brilliant solo voice (with
only and RC2 and no effects) performance at the Y2K9 Festival
where adding nothing was entirely the ticket.
So, I think that all of these instances have to be taken on a
performance to performance basis to really get
an accurate analysis of the efficacy of adding video to live looping
performances rather than deciding on a blanket assessment of
augmentive or diminishing qualities of the same.
And hey, guess what, that's exactly the same approach that needs to be
taken with each live looping artists' performance style.