Wednesday, March 15, 2006

maximal Drone session, Prospect Park

Yesterday lunchtime Vicky and I went to see a performance of the Exeter University Singers in the University Chapel. I was pleasantly surprised how good they were - singing various works of Purcell, Warlock, Dvorák, Elgar, etc. Their organist was stuck in traffic, so the conductor (a second year student, incredibly professional) managed to conduct some of the pieces while standing up playing a piano sideways. I'm no connoisseur, but the singing sounded properly celestial to me throughout.

The design of the Chapel ceiling
The design of the Chapel ceiling, by Sir Thomas Monnington (1902-76)

Then, in the evening, a rare Tuesday COTD session - a full moon, Purim, and Maceo Parker (James Brown's old sax player) playing in town that night.

The biggest Drone population in a while...Vaughan was able to make it for the first time in ages - always nice - and we had an excellent new pianist/percussionist droning with us for the first time. We probably weren't quite as funky as Maceo and his band, but a great, floaty-yet-percussive session nonetheless...

We ended up occupying two adjacent rooms which meant that Simon's laptop weirdness didn't come out as loudly as it should have. It was hard to decide where to place the microphone - in the end I hung it from the mouth of a raku-style ceramic fish (hung above the door between the rooms), one of Henry's wife Lucy's many raku creations.

raku fish by Lucy Rockcliffe
raku fish by Lucy Rockcliffe

Richard - electric bass guitar, percussion
Henry - percussion
Vaughan - acoustic guitar, mandolin, percussion, nose-flute, voice
John - sitar, acoustic guitar, bouzouki, mandola, percussion, voice
Keith - electric guitar, percussion
Simon- laptop, electronics, mini-keyboard, detuned balalaika
Brian - piano, percussion
me - saz, balalaika, percussion
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