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Mar 192012

JJ Jones stylin' at the Gallery F Closing Party

The Gallery F closing show was a phenomenal night of art and music and a bittersweet ending to one of Nashville’s most innovative spaces. (Note: It may one day relocate elsewhere on the campus of Scarritt Bennett Center.) Thomas Helton and a group of Nashville improvisers performed Theatre Intangible episode 81 Ghosts in the Hollow live at the gallery. That was just one of many spectacular performances. If you weren’t there, well . . . sucks for you!

Not so fast, cowboy! I recorded several of the performances, and now I offer them up for your listening pleasure.

First, we have what for lack of a better name I’m calling “The War Improv,” starring Randy Hunt on double-bass, Chris Murray on sax, Craig Schenker on sax, Tommy Stangroom on drums, and yours truly on samples. Craig Schenker conceived this structured improv around the Gallery F closing exhibition “23 Years Without War.” I’m pretty sure we blew eardrums with the grenade-filled finale.

Next up is Mike Hiegemann and Rhendi Greenwall performing “The Nashville Scene,” a sharp commentary on the state of music in Music City. Rhendi created the visuals, which were projected over Mike as he performed the music. I wasn’t able to videotape the performance, but the duo is planning on releasing a video soon.

Finally, we have “The Fire Trilogy” by Pop Collage, a project by The Human Snowglobe JJ Jones and Mike Hiegemann. Words. Can’t. Describe. Just. Listen.

Right click to save. Left click to stream. Enjoy!

1. War Improv

2. The Nashville Scene

3. The Fire Trilogy

Feb 112012

Justin Greenlee interviewed me a few months ago for volume 3 of the online Nashville arts magazine Art Art Zine. We discuss making, experimental music, and my “scoop & loop” project Adventure Bomb. The issue just came out!

Justin is a fine writer, and I really liked the way the article came out. I’ll give you the direct link to the interview, but first, a few notes:

I didn’t actually “invent” the Most Useless Machine. I built mine based on the Make Magazine design. I was the first, as far as I can tell, to wrap it up in a Christmas present. (<– YouTube video is now over 100,000 hits. Woo hoo!)

In the interview, Justin asked me about the state of experimental music in Nashville. I answered, but later thought of some people I had left out. I e-mailed Justin the additional comments, but they didn’t make the final article. In the interest of giving credit where credit is due, here’s the full answer:

TY: I think you can partially credit Leslie Keffer, with Betty’s. She doesn’t want Betty’s to be known as an experimental venue, but a great deal of what she does is experimental music (noise music, avant-garde, noise pop), and it’s become the place for people to play. Also Open Lot, with [former director] Jonathan Lisenby; I couldn’t give him enough credit for fostering a scene that wasn’t there before. A few instrumental people include Chris Davis, John Brassil, David Maddox, Matt Hamilton, Dylan Simon, Sabine Schlunk at Gallery F, Brady Sharp, Lesley Beeman and Lain York at Zeitgeist Gallery (Indeterminacies series which Theatre Intangible is podcasting), and Lauren Plum putting on shows in Murphreesboro. So it feels like we’re in the golden age. We don’t really know what it is yet, but we know it’s exciting, and we know it has potential. I think that’s the most exciting time to be in any “scene,” so to speak.

You may have noticed I mentioned the now-noiseless Betty’s Grill. I answered that question several months ago, before Leslie parted ways with the west Nashville dive. Were I to answer now, I’d also include Stephen Molyneux, founder of No Kings Records, member of Horsehair Everywhere, and show promoter at the new house venue Richland Ballroom. Having talked more with Chris Davis since I answered, my “golden age” comment is perhaps over-puffed. Chris, Brady Sharp, Matt Hamilton, and others have been putting on experimental shows in Nashville for many, many years; and they deserve a lion’s share of the credit for the community we have now.

With all that out of the way, check out the article! Also in the issue: T.I. participant Rhendi Greenwell and friends of the show Matt Christy, Megan Kelly, and Nashville craft collective Craftville.

Sep 292011

I’ve been working feverishly on my installation for Sunday’s exhibition opening Digital to Dust: Objects in Transition at Blackbird Tattoo and Gallery. I’m making a slot car tape player. What’s that? Watch the video below for my initial test run.

I’ll be on hand at the gallery for most of the night to answer questions. With the Soundcrawl taking over the Art Crawl, this weekend is shaping up to be a great art experience! Come say hi!

Here’s the press release:

Blackbird Tattoo and Gallery proudly presents:

Digital to Dust: Obsolete Objects in Transition

Examining the overlooked potential in discarded and outdated technology, the works of engineer Tiberiu Chelcea and musician Tony Youngblood create a visual and auditory exploration of objects in transition. Using found re-purposed circuit boards, Chelcea’s drawings and prints offer a meditative exploration of the line that divides …that which is analog and digital and the re-contextualization of the obsolete. Chelcea chooses to slow the rapid demise of these objects and create their alternate existence as maps, subjects of “portraits”, and explores the artist’s relationship to technology.

Circuit bender Tony Youngblood is known for exploring the hidden potential of sounds within electronic circuitry. Using two moving slot cars on a track and magnetic tape, Youngblood creates a kinetic sculpture which plays a recording based on the relationship of the cars to offer his audience a visual and aural exploration of transition. Join us at Blackbird Tattoo and Gallery for the opening, Sunday October 2nd from 6:30-9.

Sunday, October 2nd, 6:30pm – 9:30pm
Blackbird Tattoo and Gallery

2306 12th Ave. S.
Nashville, Tennessee
Sep 192011

Here’s episode 68, Space Waves, the second of three Theatre Intangible presentations, performed live at Gallery F on August 27th, 2011. The performances all sought to bridge the gap between science and art. You can hear the first wave, Brainwaves, on podcast 67. The third, Art Waves, will be on the podcast next week.

For Space Waves, a three-piece jazz ensemble inspired by Don Cherry’s world fusion period meditates on the planets. This theme was entirely conceived and composed by the participants: Jamison Sevits on trumpet/flugelhorn, Randy Hunt on upright bass, and Matt Aurand on percussion.