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drum machines live and "in person"

  I haven't heard the track yet, so I can't comment on that directly. But
Reverend Bob does bring up an interesting point.  It seems to be mixed 
musicians- some feel a drum machine really adds to a live performance,
others think it is distracting and superfluous. Personally, I don't
particularly like them used live- I am more likely to bring a hand
percussionist along on those types of gigs, or play solo and force some
creative rearranging. Any other opinions? How about from an audience
member's point of view?

** interesting questions.

having done a fair amount of live improv gigs with drums machines back in
the 80s (dating meself now boy) . . .  

in my view it comes down to how you use the damn thing. if you try to use 
as an instrument rather than just a time/groove keeper, i think that you're
better served. one thing that we used to do (we had two-three machines for
each gig) was have one being the groove machine and another being texture -
- for instance, i'd crank up the tempo on mine (these weren't sinced
together) and turn off everything but the cymbal/highhat sounds, instant
textural wash. bring it in an dout as the piece progresses. another thing 
bringing in different parts of any one groove in at different times. still
another was starting and stopping the machine and letting stuff happen
without any groove and then slamming back into the groove that you had left
behind. they require a lot of attention! when they just sit in the "on"
position without any sort of manipulation is when they are deadly dull. 

the biggest problem with using them (at all really, not just live) is that
they're rather static and won't go into uncharted territory - - ever. of
course ask any drummer to play the same damn thing for a long time and you
could be sunk. 

i've heard 'em used well and heard 'em used poorly . . . sometimes in the
same set (some of the tapes i have of those 80s gigs).

 . . . so, i guess that i feel that it's like any piece of tech - - it's 
you use it.