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bum notes/ lumpy loops
Mark Francombe was talking about bum notes
and it reminded me that in my live looping clinic at the recent
PASIC convention (7 thousand drummer/percussionists all in the same
convention hall/hotel all talking about wing nuts at once............teee
I demonstrated that one could make a lumpy loop (one that truncates a
to early or late)
and that if one learns the loop that it can become musical and plays
appropriately with it.
I purposefully made a very , very late truncation of a beat box loop,
so that famed drummer
Billy Ward who was sitting in the front row (as intimidating as possible)
was in physical agony over
how 'bad' it sounded. But I got the audience to learn the 'actual' rhythm
of the loop and start to sing in unison with it.
Amazingly enough, the whole room singing in unison with this obvious
at the end of the loop
suddenly started sounding good and I started to sing a melody over the top
Steve Lawson gets all credit for hipping me to this wonderful phenomenae
(although I had learned in my early
loop trio gigs with my brother Bill and multi reed/multi instrumentalist
Gary Regina that many a bad loop could be salvaged. I think I"ve
mentioned this before, but for those who didn't read it earlier, Steve
would lay down a really long loop with a lot of rubato parts in it and
play it over and over and over until he memorized the shape of the loop.
This is so incredibly effective for training ourselves to play with
musicians with either idiosyncratic ways of feeling time or
musicians from culturals with radicall different metric maps than our
typical metronomic western approach.
In a way, if we learn what actually IS in a loops' timing, we get
and deeper with our understanding
of where the ONE is.