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The Man attracted The Controversy:

>> But the whole idea of (re)contextualising comes from how the sample is 
>> in another piece of music. Sure 5 guitarists will play "Black Dog" 
>> differently, and 5 techno artists will use the sample from "Black Dog" 
>> different ways in wildly varying styles, but the guitarist is still just
>> playing "Black Dog". 
>And the DJ is still "just" sampling it!

The way I look at it is like this:  either view it as a partnership between
DJ and player, or a partnership between composer/conductor and orchestra. 
Either is still considered creatively acceptable@ :)

>> So in a way, just as the guitarists sensibilities
>> affect how he plays the guitar riff, a DJ's sensibilities affect how he
>> uses the sample in a song or dropped into his set.

>But again, the "sensibilities" that are at work with a guitarist are an
>intangible, organic, built-in thing, and they're there from the crack of
>the cosmic DNA.  

Woah, I think there may be a touch of overemphasis on that point. 
Guitarists are no nearer the cosmic source than anyone else ('cept maybe
Jerry Garcia), we're just hittin' bits of wire an' wood in a way that
pleases us.  I _do_ understand where you're coming from, in that I find
synths etc sort of "isolating" instruments where I don't have enough
control over the sound, like I do with guitar.  But that has nothing to do
with the quality of music produced.

A good example - how do the sensibilities of a harpsichordist fit into 

>It's like the difference between a painting and a photograph.  Different
>photographers will take different sorts of pictures of the same thing, but
>the degree of implicit, preliminary variation and distinction just isn't
>on par to what you'll get if different painters work off of the same

Yes, but a painter will never be able to achieve the look, the clean lines,
of a photograph.  And I (as a guitarist) will never be able to sound like
Kraftwerk.  Damn.  :(

>This is all very true.  I think for me the bottom line is that if you're
>working with samples, even if you're tweaking and recontextualizing the
>thing to the nth degree, you're still working with blocks of other
>people's material, in a way that's far more overt and undiluted than if
>you're translating that material through your own performance.  

Andre, you mentioned in another post that you would be playing in coming
gigs with a guitar synth.  If this is anything post '88 or so, you are
fundamentally _playing_with_samples_.  OK the samples are short sections of
sampled intrument waves, but samples nonetheless.  Now we get to a second
question - how long does a sample need to be before it ceases to be the
DJ's own creation?  :)

>True, but within that general realm of similarity is contained a universe 
>of different possibilities.  (This is getting a bit high on the "muso" 
>scale...  maybe I'd better go watch "Contact."  8-/)

No, I think maybe The Simpsons... back to ground level!  :b


|Dr Michael Pycraft Hughes | Tel:0141 330 5979 | Fax: 0141 330 4907 |
|Bioelectronics, Rankine Bldg, Glasgow University, Glasgow, G12 8QQ |
|  http://www.elec.gla.ac.uk/groups/bio/Electrokinetics/main.html   |