How are you today? Are you okay? I hope so. Thank you for reading and listening today. I’m a little blue, but I think I was due for a blue day. I’ve had some really red ones as of late, so blue isn’t so bad. This week has been full, so I decided to empty my mind a little and create something in which to put the contents.
Etiquette: There are two separate recordings of people talking here. One set of recordings is a microphone being hung from a stairwell near a circle of unsuspecting people who were in a living room in Baltimore, taken a few days ago. Used here, it has been duplicated and the tracks off-set. The other is a recording of the same group of people, minutes later, with a microphone on the table in front of them. There was an bit of a change in demeanor and conversation when the latter happened. Ironically, the topic of discussion in the recordings where the mic was unseen was about social etiquette; but it’s also interesting since it’s not exactly polite to record people without them unknowing. (Who knows, maybe they knew?) Hence, the title. I made them do some hand claps for me. Even that was a bit uncomfortable for them. I suppose someone walking into the middle of your conversation requesting hand claps might create an odd vibe. I had them clap a steady rhythm and then later I cut them up “by hand” into single claps and placed them where I wanted them.
At Ugly Purple Sweater‘s house I found a thumb piano which I used for this little piece. I played it for a few minutes and found a melody and progression. I really like this thumb piano. I have one of my own, but I like this one better. I sat in their bathroom on the floor to record this which took about 15 minutes. I love the overtones of this instrument so much. I thought of over-dubbing some cello, but just couldn’t do it. It was so lovely as it was. A tiny bit effect was used on it, but overall, it’s just as it sounds in real life.
The thumb piano, after stumbling initially, attempts consistency to the end until it’s done, ever traveling, only wavering for a second or so here or there. The hand claps come in and out, sporadic and random, though for a few seconds they might come together “perfectly” or at least complimentary, each affecting the other: voices affecting harmony, claps affecting rhythm, and sometimes, vice versa if you get distracted listening for it all…
instrumentation: thumb piano, hand claps, Baltimore-people in a blue house.