Antidote To Everything: (hit play)
So, imagine this – it’s a year since we’ve last seen each other, we’ve just released a recording of a show that, to us, sounds impossibly wonderful. Listening back to it elicits a feeling of ‘did we REALLY play that? wow!’ Such is the joy of improvised music.
Our initial encounter happened because of Artemis. She had known Daniel for years. She and I had been Twitter/FB/Reverbnation etc. friends with for quite a while. She had a hunch that we’d make lovely music together. And we did.
So, back to imagining – we’ve had that experience, playing two amazing shows, meeting while setting up for the first one, loving the recordings, releasing it to some flurry of online interest. And here we are, a year later, at the start of our next gig.
- Were the shows in Jan 2012 a fluke?
- Were we deluded, and just taken up in the rush of the excitement of making music in truly post-millennial ways?
- What if we sucked this time… We haven’t got a setlist to fall back on…
Add to that the audience being a lot of old friends of Artemis’, mostly, and a few v. good friends of mine, who we really didn’t want to let down, and there’s a certain weight of expectation hanging over the gig.
But then, you look at each other, and grin. You remember how many options you had last time you played, that sensation of being able to do anything, play anything, to pursue otherwise off-limits directions due to the safety net of your partner’s amazing ears and breadth of skill (at least, that’s how I felt!) And you start…
That’s what you’re hearing here. All of that and more, The room goes quiet, and I start playing that opening phrase. It’s a house concert, so everything sounds so clear. The audience are silent, the room is gorgeous. Everything is right.
The chiming harmonics of the opening chord ring out… I’d just started using a Markbass Mini Dist pedal as a preamp, with the gain fully off, and it made the harmonics spring out of the bass, despite – or perhaps in perfect harmony with – the 3 year old strings.
The title? Improvised music is, for me, a place of refuge, of comfort, solace. A place of honesty, reflection, risk, discovery. An illumination of the mind and heart, a conversation about things that really matter. A chance to sum and make sense of things that words have been failing to process. To ask better questions. To fix things. It is, in essence, the antidote to everything. And it doesn’t get any more enjoyable, cathartic, exhilarating than playing with Daniel.by