Jam-session Project homework assignment:
“Describe the kind of music you would like to make, by what it is inspired and how you envision it. Use feelings, keywords and subtle descriptions.”
Hm… Okay, that’s an interesting idea. I don’t know yet if it’s gonna live up to your expectations, but for myself and my future musical projects this is an interesting question as well – so let’s just make a beginning!
The music I want to make has to be pure, honest, from the heart, primal. It has to work, in the sense that it just has it’s basic ingredients that supplement each-other. Everything that’s in it should have it’s function and fit. Less is more, to me music has a function. It has to portray something or invoke something, and whatever it is that you are trying to express – the message should be clear. So if it’s energetic, it should energize, if it’s dreamy it should create images, if it’s relaxing it really has to slow people down.
Next to being functional, it has to be creative. It shouldn’t become a trick that you can pull off, like some people love to eat mayonnaise with everything, or have that one powder that makes all meat taste good. I want to create variety, but still with a very strong signature. Every person or combination has their strong points: stuff that really works… Don’t be shy to use that!
But that is all more about how I think that what is being created should somehow have a level of quality. If I look what I make – haha, it isn’t all that high in quality… It is pure, it is raw, it is honest and primitive. I want to represent that ethnic roots feeling. Tribalism. To me in essence we are still humans with a need to express. All this cultivating and development and ways and customs to show off how well cultured you are – creates cultivated music….
I like to make uncultivated music. I don’t mind being the same homo sapiens then 30.000 years ago. We are Cro-magnon people that draw on canvas instead of cave walls, our whistles and flutes are made with machines instead of own made bones and reeds. Now we have synthesizers and amplifiers and pedals to create effects that mimic emotions… We used to have animal sounds, our voices, rattles, and natural materials for that during ceremony.
I like ethnic root music, traditional music, folk music… Music from a solid ground, music with a background – with a history. I like culture, because culture is identity… I want my music to represent my identity, whatever that might be… My music should bring me closer to myself.
My music is like a tool. A tool to discover, to challenge, to go further, to confront me with myself. Music should be intimate, a reflection of the soul, and it should resonate with like-minded souls. People that resonate on the same frequency.
My music should be like a beacon: it should be recognizable for the members of my tribe – but doesn’t matter where the people come from… Music should be a signal thrown into the universe, and be picked up by those that need to find it.
Well I think that part is clear now, let’s move on to another aspect: How would I like to compose? What do I want to happen, which feelings, what kind of travel or trip / experience do I want to give the people with the music project we might be about to start?
Well at first I want to disorientate them… I want to create an open atmosphere in the intro: We are taking you somewhere, you don’t know where – but it is good and fun… So soft and inviting intro’s: open spaces in the forest, with sun-rays falling thru the branches after a spring rain… You have been walking for hours, minding your own business, but this open sunny space makes you aware to the sounds, the feelings, the things you see…
In the intro I want to trigger your playfulness and curiosity – I want you to start focusing on the bees, the little shiny drops on the leaves, the song of the birds… And I want them to lure you deeper into the forest… I want you to chase that which pulls your attention, to give in to natures attraction – whatever that element might be… Doesn’t matter if it is the guitar, the drums, the flute, the jaws harp… Everything has to collaborate to make you curious, playful, and willing to follow… It has to be an invitation to an adventure.
The next phase is the densening of the forest… It doesn’t matter what goal the song has, but the suggestion given in the intro should become a very clear picture of where we are headed… So you are giving the follower what you envisioned: a solid piece after the intro – whatever it is, it has to be very clear and obvious which path we are walking.
The third part is climbing the ladder: intensifying and building up, making the wheels turn faster, rising the energy and make it challenging to hang in there. You want the lovers of your story have their hairs go stand up… Make them aware that you are aware… That there is no coincidence: It is obvious you planned this, and literally force them unto a higher level – the lovers can’t do anything else but follow.
The fourth part: Control, keep it exciting, make variations, choose directions and make unexpected turns. Don’t stay in the tense state, but be able to play with dynamics, surprise people positively and make them wait what is about to come next… Go from extatic to neutral, from excited to an almost standstill, from aggressive to loveable – Make sure you have a clear storyline, and know how your music affects the energy…
The fifth part: Go free! As musicians amongst each-other, express whatever comes up and respond to each-other, celebrate the chemistry! The people love to see / hear your soul shine! Find ways to loose yourself in your own music, but don’t go to complicated because in the enthusiasm you might loose the way, and thereby loose control and kill the magic! So do those things what your fellow-musicians love you for! Inspire them, make them shine and light up, so they too give to you what makes you so happy… It is the feeding each-other part, because there is plenty to share by all that you have build up!
The sixth part: Drop back to the second part, where all is firm and steady, clear, and impossible to get missed… Show control and knowledge of what you are doing…
Seventh part: a last climax, and an in-sync studied final lines, which havent been used in the piece before, and of course a simultaneous end, followed by an overwhelming applause and screaming by the people giving their positive energy release!
So basically I want to take the people on magical journeys, tap in to their primitive emotions, create intimate feelings of oneness, love and togetherness… Respect to the people that follow, telling stories in a way as if they might have told themselves…
My music should be for a specific audience, but those people who it’s meant for live in all levels of society… They should recognize and resonate as soon they hear it… The music I want to make should be naked… People have to be able to easily identify and see you… And the people I make the music with, should have the same kind of approach… It doesn’t matter how or who they are… As long they are their selves. They have to be able to deal with that kind of deepness, and self-confrontation. My music is my medicine, it exposes my true self… And I think that’s a very nice way to share a self-healing process…
In my music, I am the brave one. I give, I show, I challenge, I do exactly that what I seem to miss in society. My music gives me what society somehow has forgotten. A kind of belonging, kinship, roots, identity, to be completely open amongst those that you consider as of your own…
My music should be a shout-out to my clan or tribe, where ever they might be… It is a cry and a laugh, it is making a shout-out and at the same time showing a middle finger. It says We are still here.. It is an expression of a birthright, a celebration of being.
My music is a way to manifest my dreams and visions, and I have many. The sounds I make is my way to communicate to the world. They are prayers, they are emotions, they are memories and longings… My expression is a necessity to my being.
Okay, well that is clear, so what influences do I want to use? What am I inspired by?
I am inspired by roots music all around the world.. So I am going to categorize them: (use youtube to check them)
I am inspired by Celtic music:
Traditional & contemporary Irish jigs & reels and the sean nós singing style
Lunasa, Bothy Band, Capercaillie, Cara Dillon, Julie Fowlis, Christy Moore, Peatbog Faeries, Flogging Molly, Anuna, Old Blind Dogs, Karren Casey and many many more…
I am inspired by Joik and other scandinavian music:
Wimme Saari, Lars Ante Kumunen, Mari Boine, Sofia Jannok, Angelin Tytot, Eivor Palsdottir and many other great joikers, Hedningarna, Garmarna, Krauka, jònsi,Wardruna, Gjallarhorn, Värttinä and many other traditional scandinavian folk artists that make use of old ballads and polka’s lol
Im inspired by Mongolian music and throatsinging styles:
Huun huur tu, Egschiglen, Yat-kha, etc.
I’m inspired by australian didgeridoo music:
David Hudson, David Blanasi, Si Mullumby, Mark Atkins, Ganga Giri, White Cockatoo, Aphex Twins, Xavier Rudd, Djalu Guruwiwi, Resonance, Andy Graves, and many many others.
I am inspired by contemporary pagan, paganfolk, shamanic and ceremonial music:
Moving breath, Libana, Lisa Thiel, Ulali, Wendy Rule, Kailash kokopelli, Brooke Medicine Eagle, David and Steve Gordon, Spiral Dance, and many others – Omnia, Faun, Balfolk, Valravn, Adivarius, Streuner, in extremo, heidevolk, Tyr, skyforger etc.
Well I hope this is enough to get an idea of what I like and what I like to make!
What I literally like to make varies greatly!
Because I like to have melodic projects – that means exploring the Irish and Scandinavian and eastern European melodies and find people that can play together and make nice renditions, and turn it into something more entrancing repetitive mantric meditative thing… This means Nordic folk with a strong shamanic twist to it haha… shaman drums, jaw harps, and guitar chords – combined with breathing rhythms etc.. with the tune faded into the background – bringing back the ceremonial factor to the folk LoL…
I also want to have recitation projects – mantrafying old Scandinavian ballads and Edda-texts – returning the shamanic value into Germanic mythology… Musical storytelling: Rewriting and translating the old stories so they fit existing folk melody patterns, so you can sing a jig about Frey for example haha….
An african percussion project: Where I can really go fully into the full depth of traditional african rhythms with someone – I am a great fan of Malinke rhythms, especially by the playing style of Famoudou Konaté, and the entire Konaté family… They have a very clear, clean and traditional style from Guinea that I like very much! And is also the style ive been playing and inspired most by the last years… Although Sega Sidibi has a very nice style too, but that’s more because of he uses the duns very creatively to accompany the djembé and usually only with an ensemble of 2 or 3 players haha… So that’s very practical! But also beautiful!
I want to be able to explore and use everything! As a didgeridoo player I like to be challenged with surprising input and be able to design complicated rhythms that would fit… challenging in the percussive style, being able to show and develop my skill… Same goes for djembé and whistle.
If it isn’t challenging, or at least new and a bit of a struggle, I’m gonna get bored or frustrated and it’s doomed to fail. I don’t chase things that aren’t worth the effort. To me playing together should add something more then just “the fun of playing together” – it has to have added value. If not, I do as I always did and go on by my self.
I find it interesting to see what others want, and to help them manifest their ideas. My own desires I will fulfill for myself. I like projects where someone wants to try out something, to see if it can be what they expected. So playing together to me is always a side thing: I always keep true to myself, no matter what… Playing together is fun, but I will always be an independent artist… I don’t care if something stops, because I know I always keep going. Playing together for me is just a fun extra, and an interesting rendezvous: I like spontaneity and finding out what might happen. I stand completely open and free to whatever is suggested lol… I really don’t care, in the positive sense of the word haha… We’ll see what it brings, my expectations are never too high!
So I wonder what grade I get for my homework… It’s done! Copy, paste, publish, tag… and off to bed!