Wednesday, November 30, 2011

CJD- "Glass and feathers.."Contains Disturbing images..please be advised.

Let me start by saying...this blog contains some disturbing images and matter regarding the attacks of 9/11. Please be advised....

In exploring one of the more physical parts of the piece, "The Window Woman", I keep coming back to this haunting; the falling body. As the footage and news stories after 9/11 show, this was a reality of the day.

In dance, there can be few things more beautiful than a body in motion, and I thought that the medium of dance might be an interesting way of exploring this topic. But the bat cave...i mean, image bank/library. I came across the above.

It is Strange; when first saw some of these images, i thought they were macabre. I flinched. My friends inhaled through their teeth and turned their bodies in recoil. Mostly in memory. However, after spending some time with them, they look less like bodies about to meet an end, and more like bodies on the verge of something larger, with infinite potential. Like Icarus...rising.....frozen in time, in a free moment, they're kind of beautiful, no?

Given the choice to fall freely or go up in ash, what do you choose?

CJD: When Hip Hop and Sound Experimentation Collide...

Ahhh the magical Reggie Watts....I love this man, hard body. There is no bar he wont push, no corner of his voice he couldn't find in the name of truth and humor. Some people might call his work experimental, and I wouldn't disagree. It can be edgy and, at times, odd. However, it is so uniquely Hip Hop in it's innovation, aesthetics, purpose, and understanding of sound and it's functions. He inspires me, and a LOT of the transitions in "Tapes". I find that there is something hella fun about playing with this:

But, his partner in the storytelling is the fun part.

Ah, what a wonder you are, Kaoss pad ( the sickeningly fun piece of equipment used by Watts in his shows). I am fascinated by how Watts' solid understanding of this seemingly indecipherable board of buttons and sliders frees him into the structure of song to justlay down the backbone and play in the muscle and tissue of a song. It's amazing to be able to split your voice into parts and play on yourself; What does it even mean to sample yourself on a song you are rhyming over? Its like DJ meets shapeshifter. It's like an MC becomes a multiheaded beast. .....did I mention I love the supernatural?

I recently got to play on one of these fun pads; It was a complex experience. While the plethora of functions is, at minimum, overwhelming, it's fun and allows for ALOT of exploration of sound. In a play about how we hear, remember, and expel memory, it feels like a perfect match.

Needless to say, I'll be snagging one this week. Lets go!


Oh, and some other things about sound and dopeness:

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

C & R: Inspiration for a Work in Progress

“There is a vitality, a life force, a quickening that is translated through you
into action, and there is only one of you in all time, this expression is
unique, and if you block it, it will never exist through any other medium; and
be lost. The world will not have it. It is not your business to determine how
good it is, not how it compares with other expression. It is your business to
keep it yours clearly and directly, to keep the channel open. You do not even
have to believe in yourself or your work. You have to keep open and aware
directly to the urges that motivate you. Keep the channel open. No artist is
pleased. There is no satisfaction whatever at any time. There is a queer, divine
dissatisfaction, a blessed unrest that keeps us marching and makes us more alive than the others."- Martha Graham.
The picture shows a collage I made after reflecting on creation. We are all creators, but specifically it addresses ideas about the role of women in creation. There are no limits - we are always moving, shaping, transitioning...but maybe we limit ourselves based on what society has told us about ourselves. What happens when we express ourselves freely?

Friday, November 11, 2011

C&R: Installations, Mirrors & Things

During the Whitney Museum Biennial back in 2004, I was struck by the work of Yayoi Kusama. She creates installations and incorporates themes of repetition and mirrors. I walked into her reflective interior room - Fireflies on the Water (2002) (pictured bottom left) which consists of a small room lined with mirrors on all sides, a pool in the center of the space, and 150 small lights hanging from the ceiling, creating a dazzling effect of direct and reflected light, emanating from both the mirrors and the water’s surface. Really breathtaking and I'd love for our piece to have a moment when folks are transported to a space that allows them to go WOW!

Fireflies embodies an almost hallucinatory approach to reality toward a more ethereal, almost spiritual experience.Over the past three decades, Kusama has often revisited mirrored forms in her work, exploring notions of infinity, illusion, and repetition in discrete sculptures and room-size installations. I've included her Narcissus Garden - top center image. Google her work and watch a video or two...perhaps CHOOSE YOUR OWN ADVENTURE for this upcoming piece...tune in next time

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

BKG: Inspiration #5

Artist: Adele
Song: One and Only

The bridge is what really inspires me.  It sounds like a new song.  And this idea of singing in a round--only you really need are those voices to change the mood, change the quality, change the tone.


Saturday, November 5, 2011

BKG: Inspiration #4

Artist: Jill Scott
Song: Quick

Promise it's the last Jill Scott (for now)

"Quick" again, provides a musical and poetic quality.  Lyrically, vocally, and musically Jill provides a raw song, that's still polished.

BKG: Inspiration #3

Artist: Jill Scott
Song: Here My Call

Yet again, Ms. Jill Scott provides inspiration, and you will continue to do so for a few more posts.

"Here My Call" sounds so "musical" for an R&B Soul album, and yet it still maintains it's genre, with a touch of gospel (and not because she says "God")--it's in the piano.  In many ways it feels  like a Jewel, Tori Amos standard.  Just a hair--just a touch--no?

BKG: Inspiration #2

: Artist: Jill Scott
Song: Le Boom Vent Suite

My girl Ms. Jill Scott has an album out called Light of the Sun.  I'm obsessed with this album because she really cracks open soul, and gets a little experimental, keep her poetic lyricism in tact.

The song Le Boom Vent Suite is a 9 minute song that seamlessly transitions from up tempo, to poem, to ballad.  It kind of feels like an opera!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

C&R: Four Years In the Making...

We just got off the phone with Jonathan McCrory, our TMTC mentor for this project. He has an extremely demanding schedule and in fact, folks, he's meeting our Vice President of the United States. TONIGHT! I thought I was fancy rubbing elbows with my magazine's cover stars. Simply wow. I highly recommend you learn about the show in DC premiering this week - I'm still learning how to blog, so follow this link:

I'm sitting here at my money maker - the day job - and it's a really cool gig. I plan parties, sip on cocktails and make clients happy. If you asked me four years ago if I would have known I'd be in this position, would I have said yes?

This is such a transformative process. At the opening of the conference call, Jonathan is running ten minutes late and I hear the vehicles whirring by...clearly he's in transit. Even so, I can feel his radiating pearly whites over the headset like infectious excitement and passion distinctive of his character.

He speaks, I jot notes on my desktop.

...It's true...what an exciting time to tackle womanhood. Bloggites - did you realize that my co-collaborater will be having a son? Go nudge her and wish her congrats; don't be shy. I'll wait while ya do...

Jonathan exclaimed: What an exiting time to be doing this project and tackling womanhood and babies! I look forward to you exploding on stage and finding your voices throughout this project. The big challenge will be that you are learning each other's've never worked together before. Together, you will find a mutual understanding and rhythm...

I want you to see who I am

The real me
The one beneath the surface
Take a look.
Take a peek.
Creep in.

I want you to see me with my hat off.

Do you see me smiling?
SmiLe FoR ThE CaMeRa

Sing it Louise:
let me entertain you.
let me make you smile.

Who do you think you are?

Are you thinking of me?
You better think…

Whatever you think of me, you’re wrong.

You think what?
That’s what you think about me.

Well, whatchu think?

Pero muchacha déjà de pensar
Y hazlo

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

BKG: Inspiration #1

Artist: Tuneyards
Song: Real Live Flesh

I was introduced to this artist by a friend of mine--the raw emotion, the use of vocals, the naked sound, is everything "love" in a relationship is.  It's pretty sometimes, it makes harmonies--and sometimes it just doesn't.  it's also hard, and takes work to piece together.  It's authentic, and speaks from a place that has no name.  sometimes it exists just in a sound. "ka ka ka ku kee kee ku ka ka ka" Enjoy.

I'm not your fantasy girl
I'm not your fantasy love
I'm not your fantasy flesh
That fits you like a tight glove

I know I've been away so long
You love me only in your dreams
But wake up
And see the whole line of what I'm giving

I know I've been away so long
You've loved me only in your dreams
Lucky for you, I do much better in real life

I know I've been away so long
You love me only in your dreams
Lucky for you, I do much better in real live flesh.

We are not what you wanted,
We are not what you asked for
Look at us
There's a pretty smile on a lion's roar

I know I've been away so long
and maybe you ca-ca-ca-can't remember
Look at me baby, look at me baby
No no dream will end if I scream

I know I've been away so long
You love me only in your dreams
Lucky for you, I do much better in real life

I know I've been away so long
You love me only in your dreams
Lucky for you, I do much better in real live flesh.


BKG: Love is a BROAD topic!


In a self-scripting class I said I wanted to talk about Love and my teacher--said, "that's too broad."

Bingo! I know it's too broad, that why I want to talk about it.
It's the one thing that everyone/thing needs, but not everyone knows how to give it or even receive it.  
Love often gets confused with lust, sex, jealousy, obsession, and a variety of scary words---but love is just love--(until it's not). Love is also NOT "Like".

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 
It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 
Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 
It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.
(1 Corinthians 13: 4-7)

Such an overused verse-- available at every wedding ceremony--but it's truly the perfect definition of this "broad" word that dictates our every move.

We do things for "love", we don't do things for "love", we do things we don't "love".

Love is blissful.
Love is painful.

"Love" is what we go to see in the Movies and in Plays--even the most disturbing movies like "Saw 1"---at the end he cuts off his limb to be with his wife.  

"Happy" will be a piece that will attempt to dig into the deepest parts of love and bring it's complexities to light. Notice I didn't say understand it.  But if we can at least identify it, then maybe, just maybe understanding will be in the foreseeable future.

It's a love story---but #therealone.  #therawone.  we're gonna leave the sugar at home, cuz there's nothing to coat.  We're gonna be honest, and be liberated in the embarrassment, the awkwardness, the joy, and the tragedy that is the love between to individuals.  the will be words, there will be music, there will be name calling, and if we're lucky maybe someone will make up.  If we're lucky--maybe they won't