Montag, 31. Mai 2010

Greenscreen Test for Mascara

This is a first test of the greenscreen technique I´ll probably use for the video for my song Mascara. I´m planning to use a mixture of different techniques and try to find out, what works for me.

Freitag, 28. Mai 2010

Experimenting on the Mascara Choir Version

Here you see me trying different techniques for the 4-5 voices of the choir-version of Mascara. I´m playing around with different combinations of kargyraa, khöömi and jodeling.

The score for this version can be found here:

Donnerstag, 27. Mai 2010

Flower Carp

Here are some sketches for the Mascara video, mixing a human singer with a carp, a flower and skateboards.

Mittwoch, 26. Mai 2010

Mascara visual Test

This is a first video sketch for the Mascara music video, just to get a broad impression how the background works on video and how I look before it and so on. In the end, the video will still look ridiculous, but in a more sophisticated way.

Disco Head

This is a sketch for a clip that is in my mind for quiet a long time. The mask was manufactured for me by wonderful artist Agata Schubert.

It´s hard to tell but my head is really inside and I am singing, although the sound you hear is overdubbed of course. This clip is only a study to see how it looks on video, up to now I have only been wearing it on stage with Blotch as you can see below.

Montag, 24. Mai 2010


This is a demo version of my composition Mascara, that is also part of the Fake African Memories. Just like the other tunes belonging to this category, I am also working on a choir version of this tune, replacing the guitar accompaniment with jodeling. This is the first try:

The Mascara Demo is also the reference for a music-video-clip of Mascara I´m conceptualising at the moment. The leading idea for this is the japanese concept of kawaii, cuteness, so I´m researching related imagery, stylings and outfits.

Dienstag, 18. Mai 2010

Scores with Tuxguitar

I did some Scores of my compositions with the Tuxguitar Editor:

This editor is not specialized on writing vocal music and overtone singing, but it´s open source and I think the results are ok. If you have suggestions for a better suited editor or thoughts on the scores, please comment.

Transcending song

Some of my compositions share the same rhythmic feel, which is inspired by african music. I´ve never been to africa so I label these compositions as my "Fake African Memories".

I´ve performed them live with guitar and voice (and sometimes a percussionist) as songs without words: the different parts of a given composition are played successively, just like verse, bridge and chorus in the conventional structure of songs usually are.

Now, I take my Fake African Memories to make something new, that transcends their boundaries in three different ways:

- rhythmical structure

- song structure

- combining material from different songs

Rhythmical structure:
All the Fake African Memories are based on the triplet feel of a 12/8 measure.

Now I combine the 12/8 ternary feel with a binary 4/4 feel by adding a second drum part that superimposes a simple 4/4 beat on the 12/8.

The result is an ambiguity, the patterns can now be perceived from the ternary and the binary perspective, each with a different set of stressed and unstressed notes. This ambiguity adds tension to any of the parts of the Fake African Memories.
I found this mechanism by myself but by now I learned that this is a central feature of central african music (Simha Arom: African Polyphony and Polyrythm).
I love how this procedure broadens the possible interpretations of a single figure and I´m looking forward to play with two drummers, after working on it with ableton live.

Song structure:
Songs usually feature one main voice providing the centre of attention. This voice is usually structured in successive events: either you have the verse, or the chorus. One main focus of attention, one thing at a time - this structure provides that the song can be perceived easily, and it is also the structure I use for the individual tunes of the Fake African Memories.

I wish to create a music that offers a wider perspective to any listener and the means to transform my existing songs is simple: instead of a succession of different parts by one voice, these different parts are to be sung simultaneously by different voices. Now It´s the listener´s choice which voice he considers the most important at a given moment. Instead of a succession of discriminable events this structure implies that everything happens simultaneously all the time - it´s up to the listener to go through different phases of perceiving the music and concentrate on different parts.

I was inspired to try out this way of structuring my Fake African Memories song material by listening to and reading on Pygmy music and I am delighted how perfectly this method fits the material.

There are different possibilities to perform such versions of the material. At the moment I´m experimenting with electronics e.g. the Looper in Ableton live and also video clip-loops, and I´m planning performances with instrumentalists and/or a group of vocalists. If you are intereted in taking part in performing this stuff, live or via video or audio clip please contact me!

Combining material from different songs will follow in the next post.

Working on new stuff Video

Fake Afro-mongolian Fusion

I´m currently working on a combination of overtone singing and central african polyphony. I discovered Pygmy music on a CD my brother gave me and where it is combined with works of György Ligeti and Steve Reich. What fascinates me is the high complexity of rythm - the voices seem so free, so independend, still they are connected. And secondly the collective nature of this music, the co-existence of many interdependent(does this word exist?) voices.

I bought "African Polyphony & Polyrythm" by Simha Arom and apply the principles he describes - well, those principles I consider interesting - to my musical background.
At the moment I am recording demo-versions of my ideas of this fusion in Ableton live and I´m rehearsing with percussion player Peter Halves. The next step will be to bring in drummer Florian Dietz (those who know my youtube videos have seen him play) - to emphasize rythmic ambiguity and the tension this builds.

This is the starting point to build an ensemble that is capable to bring this music to life on stage and make a real show of it - including costumes, electronics and projected interactive video - and I´m quiet enthusiastic about this new project.