Art + Music + Technology

Trond Lossius has been in a similar orbit to me for a long time. I've known him (virtually) because of his activity within the Max world, but I also know that he was a primary figure in the Jamoma modular patching project. Then later, I found out he was also into a lot of surround environmental work, and I realized that he'd be a good subject for a chat. My friend Tim Place pointed out that he's got a fascinating story, so I went for it.

And I'm glad I did. I really enjoy the stories of people that deal with significant transition in their lives, and Trond definitely has seen this. Having started in the sciences, he transitioned into music composition out of sheer will. He also found a way to pull himself out of shyness, and is always pushing himself by transitioning away from comfortable territory and into new challenging work, technology or collaboration. I really respect this - it can be scary, but Trond has developed it into an artform.

So here's a great interview with him - enjoy! And to learn more about his work, visit his website here.

Direct download: podcast_117_TLossius.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 8:51am CDT

A long time ago, Gregory Taylor set up a dinner hang-out with Arjen van der Schoot, from Audio Ease. They had just released their ground-breaking Altiverb, and it blew away everyone at the AES show. We chatted over pizza, and I learned a little about the process, their plans for the future, and how much fun they were having.

Jump forward a decade (or more...) and I get a chance to catch up with Arjen in this podcast. He is still dedicated to great sound, and is still having a lot of fun. We talk about the process of doing IR shoots, how he chooses a place to record, and some of the complexities of the job (this is one of the few recording jobs where you have to be a little scared of wildlife...). But he also gives a great overview of how convolution reverbs work, how impulse responses are created - and he also gives a great introduction to the Speakerphone plug-in, which is Audio Ease's second product. I now know what I'm getting myself for Valentine's Day!

I've always enjoyed interacting with Arjen, and this was a great way to have a detailed catch-up. I hope you enjoy the chat as much as I did!

Direct download: podcast_116_AvanderSchoot.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 10:25am CDT

Anna Weisling is a typical Wisconsinite: she downplays her accomplishments, points out her flaws and mostly talks about how others really did all the work in her career. But when you look at her work (http://www.aweisling.com/), much of it speaks to a depth that is exceedingly artistic.

Or let me say it this way: I like her work!

In any case, in this chat with Anna, we talk about her trek through a variety of places, people and projects as she's become a busy and active artist - even as she pursues a Georgia Tech PhD. I actually resonate with a lot of her story, since it is that rural-to-not track that I took as well. Hearing how someone from a similar background found a completely different way to succeed is very interesting to me - and I trust it is interesting to you as well.

Enjoy!

Direct download: podcast_115_AWeisling.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 9:24am CDT

Ricky Graham is someone that I came to respect through his work. My friend Gregory turned me on to his music, and listening to it became part of my daily routine. Then I reached out to him about doing the podcast, and was happy to get his consent. I needed to get ahead on recordings, so this one was done while visiting LA for the NAMM conference.

I was intrigued by Ricky's work as a guitarist that is also, clearly, neck-deep in technology. I was also drawn in by his hacker-like mentality in finding ways to make things work - and work together. This chat was as laid back as could be, and I quickly forgot I was talking to anyone but a good friend, because he's as engaging to talk to as can be. We ended up talking guitar synths, rugby, guitarisms within software and even balancing tech with playing.

As happens so often with great guests, this discussion immediately got me interested in trying out some new techniques, doing some actual recording and just plain getting-off-my-duff. Whether you are into guitars or not, you are sure to be inspired by Ricky Graham.

You can check out his work here: http://rickygraham.net/

Enjoy!

Direct download: podcast_114_RGraham.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 6:39am CDT

Douglas Repetto is quietly putting together an outrageous CV. He was the originator of the music-dsp mailing list, the seedbed for tons of music coders. He was also the founder of dorkbot: people doing strange things with electricity, one of the first Maker-style organizations, and a great way of meeting other artists. He is a crazy-prolific media artist, and also the director of the Sound Arts MFA program at Columbia University.

So yeah, he's busy.

But he was also nice enough to do an interview with me twice. The first interview, in early September of last year, went wonderfully - but was also lost because of a problem with the recording software. This, along with the problems during Miller Puckette's interview, let to the Kickstarter campaign that purchased a Zoom H2n for the podcast. But this interview was awesome, and I was really glad we could pull this together.

You can learn much more about Douglas at his online center-of-info.

Enjoy!

Direct download: podcast_113_drepetto.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 8:12am CDT

A short time ago, I saw something on my Facebook feed that caught my attention: Gino Robair had been named Editor in Chief at Keyboard Magazine. Since this magazine had been at the center of my early obsessions with synths, and Gino had sort of 'grown up' in front of me as a contributor to these magazines, I was pleased to see this happen. It was as if my generation had finally taken over...!

So I reached out to Gino, hoping to talk to him about magazine arts and stuff. But I also knew that he had an active performing career - and I ended up focusing on that part of his background and work. He's an amazing performer, has a lot of insights on improv and compositional techniques, and has had a chance to work with some really amazing people. I'll bet you'll be as surprised as I was about the depth of his work.

Enjoy this podcast - it's a killer!

Direct download: podcast_112b_GRobair.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 9:03am CDT

One of the most prolific people I've talked to is Julien Bayle. First interviewed for podcast #17, I decided to revisit Julien's story because of a text interview I'd done of him for the Cycling '74 site. He'd been reworking his systems and performance techniques because of a renewed interest in "everything modular", and I wanted to see where that had taken him.

I also like talking to Julien because he is always willing to talk about his future projects - he doesn't worry about people grabbing his ideas, because he recognizes that it is the voice of the artist, not the name of the concept, that is important in doing art installations and performances.

In this chat, we end up talking a bit about the creative process and different issues that need to be balanced. I think we get a good insight into Julien's way of thinking in this insightful interview.

Enjoy!

Direct download: podcast_111_JBayle2.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 10:36am CDT

Ícaro Ferre is one of those people that I ran across because of his work, and we've ended up getting to know each other a bit. His work on the CV Toolkit was an eye-opener, and it turned me on to working with a computer in a way that was different than I'd ever approached. All of a sudden, the computer was an assistant (rather than an overlord), and I really liked the feeling.

I've also started playing around with his MFL devices, and am finding them equally enjoyable to work with. You probably should take a look at his site:

http://spektroaudio.com/

In this chat, we talk about Ícaro's background, his perspective on software development, and the state of the music/music-tech scene in his native Brazil. He also lays down some knowledge about interesting ways to approach creating variation during performance that immediately had me patching my modular. A great guy, some great products and an easy style translate into an excellent podcast. Enjoy!

Direct download: podcast_110_IFarre.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 10:42am CDT

Giorgio Sancristoforo has been on my radar for quite a while - mainly due to his software development work. He uses Max/MSP to develop interesting composition systems. He's probably best know for the Gleetchlab software, but I really fell in love with the Berna software, which provided a chance to experience 'old school' electronic music composition with all the limitations of the original labs.

If you aren't familiar with his software, you should check out his website:

http://www.giorgiosancristoforo.net/

While you are there, also take a look at some of his other work. His music is really interesting, and he was also involved in the creation of a documentary about electronic music, and he is an extraordinarily busy live performer. He's also been teaching, and working with AGON on various works.

I hope you enjoy this chat; Giorgio is an amazing guy, and I appreciated the opportunity to dig into the details with him.

Enjoy!

Direct download: podcast_109_GSancristoforo.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 2:00pm CDT

It seems like I've known Dave Hill Jr. forever. He was writing magazine articles and book (Ableton Live Power for versions 2-4) about the time that I was writing a lot of magazine articles, running the Creative Synth website and writing about Ableton Live myself. We first met it person at a NAMM conference, and we've kind of been in touch ever since.

So when I decided to try something different with the podcast, my first thought was to talk with Dave, and I'm glad I did. It was a great way to get some insight on how marketing works in the music/art software space, but it was also a chance to talk about the past, the future and even the hardware vs. software thing. Oh, and we get to find out that marketing in the music gear space comes via players, not via Wharton School graduates. Whew!

Dave's super busy, so I'm glad he was willing to take the time to chat. I hope you enjoy this view into a different side of the creative business space.

Direct download: podcast_108_DHillJr.mp3
Category:Performing Arts -- posted at: 8:56am CDT