A New Band of ‘Bots

Back in November 2013, I saw Compressorhead (the robot band) perform live in Union Square. Although robots will always be super cool, I was disappointed that someone would build a 78-fingered guitarist to perform “I Love Rock and Roll” and “Blitzkrieg Bop.” The music performed by robot bands should either be impossible or extremely difficult for humans to execute. Otherwise, what’s the point of building the machines?
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Composers are people too…

And like people we make mistakes. In fact, we make mistakes when we write music. Sometimes (and often I would wager) composers are not completely aware of what we’re doing when we compose. Sure, we set up structures, devise patterns, create systems and boxes for our music to exist in. But as of late, I’ve been finding that these tools we make and utilize in the process of composing are there to assist the composer, rather than the listener; and sometimes a choice made in our process that we might consider integral or pivotal to the work, is virtually–if not completely–imperceptible to the listener or the performer.
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Reflections on Nirvana

Yesterday was the 20th anniversary of Kurt Cobain’s unfortunate suicide. I remember when I had received the news of Cobain’s death: I was in eighth grade and I had just purchased In Utero only a week before. Not only was it the first Nirvana album I had bought, it was really the first time I bought an album because I liked the way it sounded. I often cite that action as the beginning of my personal, independent experience as a listener and consumer of music. Continue reading