Wednesday, May 13, 2009


Last Sunday morning, the day after my old friend Eldad's wedding (at Kew Gardens - beautiful!) I was feeling particularly happy and inspired. It was a beautiful, still, sunny day, bluebells, stitchwort, campion and other wildflowers in profusion around me, and the birdsong was particularly intense. Mainly because of the birds, I set up my MiniDisc recorder to capture a bit of saz-and-birdsong. As soon as I switched it on, there was a loud buzzing in my headphones. It took me a while to realise that this was due not to a technical fault, but to a swarm of bees which had just arrived above my head. They were getting interested in a nearby, recently vacated hive, and so I seized the opportunity to record my saz playing accompanying a swarm of bees! Sadly, when the swarm was just about over, I realised that I'd left the recorder on "pause". But I carried on recording for almost an hour, and have edited the best bits down. There's still a bit of buzzing audible, but it's the birds which are most prominent. It's mostly free jamming, incorporating a few fragments of recently composed tunes like "Midrash" and "Graviton". Track 4 is an attempt to play "Pisci Cuspus", interupted by an overflying helicopter.

bluebells and beehives
bluebells and beehives

Listen Here

There were also some chickens in the area, and at the end of the first track, you can hear me attempting to respond musically to their squawking (not easy, as there's no predictability in the number of pre-squawk clucks). Distant gunshots (pheasant hunters in nearby woodland) can also be heard throughout - keeping it real, you know how we do!


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