Here are the recordings from Sunday with Max and Namaste. I’m pretty disappointed, I’m guessing that we were all too high to play our instruments.
Max came out from California to visit his parents before they left the country, and on Saturday and Sunday night he came over and jammed with me and Namaste. Here are the recordings from Saturday; I will post those from Sunday soon. Oh, I believe the first two tracks were not with Max; rather with Ben from the GameDev club here.
Namaste, Jude, Denise and I jammed last night.
- Ouija – the experiment I talked about.
- Relative Minor
- Spontaneous Drumtastic
- Not a Polka
- The Whiner
- Ain’t no sunshine when all your musicians leave – Luke does an impressionist improvisation while the others talk about Reactor 64
Ouija went well—it accomplished its goal. We were in time with each other, and while I picked up on that it was boring to play, it’s not all that boring (for me) to listen to.
In Relative Minor, Denise told me to lead, and she’d pick up on the changes I was doing. The jam started in E minor, and then later on started switching between E minor and G major, and she indeed picked up on them. I think if I had done something reasonably more complex, she would have probably picked up on that too.
Spontaneous Drumtastic was totally spontaneous, totally insane, but I like it. I’m not sure anyone who didn’t participate in the event would like it.
Not a Polka ain’t a polka, contrary to my comment at the beginning of it. It was mostly solo on my part, because people were getting pretty tired.
The Whiner was some of the best monophonic (one note at a time) improv I think I have ever done. Jude was going kind of insane, and Namaste held the beat pretty well at the beginning. Actually, the first part is pretty good. After about five minutes it gets rambly, off-sync, and just bad.
I’m happy that I’m recording these, because although we still suck a lot, we are improving. Learning to play with other people—something none of us has done before (except Denise, who has been a singer, not a bass player, for a band)—is like learning a new instrument. It just takes a lot of practice for a little bit of gain. Knowing our instruments is not enough, we have to also learn our role in the group. I also like the direction it’s going of complete improvisation. It’s an especially interesting study for Namaste, who is learning his instrument completely improvisationally, without playing any prewritten pieces ever.
I got the feeling that Jude was pretty bored through the whole thing. I worried this might happen, because one of my goals for the night was to decrease structure. That is, we’re going to jam by just starting in and playing something and having everybody catch on. Jude doesn’t have a musically trained ear, so he can’t find the root of a chord or hear a I-IV chord change. Next week we will have to get some structure back so Jude can play something.
Oh, now that School is out, we are jamming every week! :-)
We had a rather large group last night:
- Denise – bass guitar, vocals
- Jude – acoustic guitar, percussion
- Luke (me) – organ, piano, synthesizers
- Namaste – drums, percussion
- Rob (my father) – acoustic guitar, vocals
- Sue (my mother) – maracas
- Terry – electric guitar, acoustic guitar, vocals
Here are the recordings.
- R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A. (John Mellencamp)
- Evil Ways (Santana)
- Black Magic Woman (Santana)
- Faith Falls on Different Sundays (Terry)
- Nectar of Life (improvisation)
- Transcendental Number (improvisation)
- Wish You Were Here (Take 1) (Pink Floyd)
- Wish You Were Here (Take 2) (Pink Floyd)
- Namaste Lays Down a Beat (improvisation)
It’s kind of interesting. My favorites were Nectar of Life, Transcendental Number, and Namaste Lays Down a Beat. That is, all the completely improvised ones. I would say we were the most together on take 2 of Wish You Were Here (and we had Denise’s beautiful voice to add some class to this hodgepodge of musicians).
Max came back in town for the weekend, and we did another jam with Jude and Namaste. I’d say it went well (by far better than any other we’ve had so far). Here are the recordings. The last one was our best, but I don’t have the energy right now to find the good parts.
Max was on the electric guitar, Jude on the acoustic, Namaste on the drums (that’s right, no computer this time!), and I was on the piano/organ/synthesizers. My mom, Sue, played the maracas for a little while on the first one.