Iain Cameron's Diary
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2010-04-27 - 9:26 a.m.

Halfway through Pharoah Sanders, The Creator Has a Master Plan, the comms went and it was a struggle to get them back – so I put on a CD of Steve Reich – the Four Sections from the 1980s and Music for Mallet Instruments Voices and Organ which is from the early 70s. The first of these is a bit symphonic for my taste. MfMIV&O bubbles away very nicely – a welcome contrast to the grandure of the preceding piece. I think I have another version of this somewhere – but this one is actually by Reich’s own group.

Mark and I linked up on Linkedin which takes me up to twelve links. We exchanged thoughts on diarising. I eventually picked up Hutto on LW and pushed on through Ch 2 which is reasonably easy going at least until almost at the end. There is a kind of link between Badiou and LW at this stage in that they both think they have come up with some of the necessary simple structure of the universe - the abstract essence. And possibly you could get somewhere with similarities between the two in terms of the particulars of truth. It looks as if Ch3 of Hutto introduces the famous third way between theory and therapy

The OOO conference in Atlanta Georgia appears to have been a great success.

The opening of the Hot Chip Remix of TT’s cover of Kings Cross always makes me think it is from an early Detroit outfit like Cybotron. This is a compliment. Then communications with the bear went again so I played the Innerzone Orchestra CD– the more I listen to it the wierder the telephone conversation at the start becomes. Wrong Number drops into a Dutch DJ speaking in his native language against some synth swoops. Then a message which may be the point – needs more concentration – something is said about Blakey and Coltrane before an uptempo groove kicks off. Hip hop and a street conversation follow on before a proper rap starts up about the millenium – quite apocalyptic – it was done in 1999 I think.

At this point the bear started to spin P J Harvey’s Dear Darling which didn’t sound totally crazy – anyway I cut this off. The title track, Programmed, has a big beat with a shouted message. After that Erupted sounds like an elephant is roaring over a techno loop which gradually gets more atonal – a real drum kit takes over. Finally on Monsters it’s a proper jazz drum solo leading to a harmonic pattern. Blakula starts with a 2 chord pattern with dimished triad under an electric violin which sounds as if it has been processed by adding a fifth – more structure develops. Then its back to psychedelic soul – pizzicato strings and acoustic guitar – also reminds me a bit of Stevie Wonder – jazz flute and scat singing – an electric piano groove. For me this is where the sequence of tracks really takes off – reaching back into Detroit’s musical history. It’s the last 30 minutes of the CD that are really up my street – a kind of advanced jazz funk – with a violin or is it a viola like on the Detroit Experiment? This music could almost be Zappa from the Hot Rats period. Brings to mind the first time I heard jazz funk at Ronnie Scott’s with the then Mrs Miles Davies – another of Derek Ridgers’ good ideas.

The last track – Bug in the Bassbin – has achieved fame in its own right, I believe -string bass and jazz funk drumming plus big synth chords.

Talking of bears, Ray Mears was strangely unirritating in his bear chasing programme Sunday Night on ITV. This lunchtime bear kicked off with Alice Coltrane’s Blue Nile. AC comes from Detroit so perhaps there is hope for the bear yet. BN is from Translinear Light which she released in 2004 after a gap of 26 years – part of her late period flowering. She uses a synth to sound like her harp but I can’t identify the flute player – could it be Ravi Coltrane?

The bear followed up with Robin’s Sandy Grey which works better and better to my ears. Then the Ladies of the Canyon version of Woodstock – as Whitesell explains it, introverted, yearning lament in Eb minor – an anticipation of the Blue period. He gives 5 pages to discussing the song’s evolution over the years.

Talking of evolution there’s a lot be said about the two versions of Little Feat’s Long Distance Love that the bear mixes up – the original recorded version with Lowell George and a much later live version with female vocal, sax and chorussed guitar. Another version that’s worth pondering is Judy Tzuke on God Only Knows – a heavily processed vocal over deeply ambient backing.

I tried following those chords for Nefertiti from yesterday’s site with the Joni Letters version – just in my mind so I could begin to get the harmonic shape fixed – not easy but good exercise nonetheless. I should maybe write them out in a different key and with some approximations for the non-named chords.

The bear played Anne Briggs followed by La Roux – I think he’s trying to show off.

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