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Jul 182011

On June 11th, I performed my contribution to the JAPAN 2010 2011 show at Scarritt Bennett Center’s Gallery F live during the opening reception. I’ll be editing and reworking the show for a future Theatre Intangible episode. For now, I thought you might enjoy hearing the untouched original version. Rhendi Greenwell (cello) and Virgile Ganne (harp) played earlier in the night, and they were kind enough to take part in the performance. Forecasting is infinitely better for their input.


My piece is playing on continual loop at Gallery F until August 20th. If you have time, check out the show. The videos, photographs, sculptures, and paintings are some of the best I’ve seen at the gallery.

Here’s my artist statement:

The depth of the devastation wrought by the earthquake and tsunami in Japan hadn’t truly reached me until I began culling sound bites for this performance. Instead of a nation in crisis, here was one man crying in his apartment as bookcases fell around him — one American college student in Japan video-blogging about the scores of American-friendly “junkfood” remaining on the shelves after the other food was picked clean – or one devastated soy sauce business owner who faced a 5 year re-fermentation period before his product could be sold again.In my juxtapositions, you’ll see I am critical of nuclear energy; however, I am not against the power source. My true target is certainty. Beware those who are sure. Before the earthquake, many intelligent people were certain that nuclear power was safe. Many were scientists who were well-equipped with tools to compensate for certainty and other human biases. Nuclear energy WAS safe . . . as long as the world behaved as we expected it to. They failed to imagine the set of circumstances that played out in the Japanese reactors. If there is a lesson to be learned, it is this: We should explore new technologies, carefully weigh the costs and benefits against other methods, and proceed cautiously with great respect for that which we fail to take into account.

Tony Youngblood (Adventure Bomb) creates sound sculptures using field recordings, media clips, and samples culled from the day of the performance. The “scoop and loop” process weaves a one-time-only tapestry with no rehearsal. The result is raw, unrefined, and “of-the-moment.” The sound sculpture on exhibit was performed live at the opening reception on Saturday, June 11th and features Rhendi Greenwell on cello and Virgile Ganne on harp. You can hear more sculptures and live improvs at Tony’s experimental music podcast Theatre Intangible (http://www.theatreintangible.com).

Jan 022011

When Chris Murray, Richard Harper, Matt Jernigan, and I got together to do an T.I. improv around the concept, “Cover Rolling Stones songs so obfuscatingly that they become unrecognizable,” things didn’t go as planned. While idiosyncratic, our covers are also VERY recognizable. Instead of mystifying your ears, we rocked your socks off. And because (as T.I. participant Pimpdaddysupreme once told me) The Rolling Stones are litigious bastards, we can’t put this out as an improv, entertaining as it is. The last thing we need right now is to get kicked off iTunes. So instead, we’re releasing the songs as a New Years Special FREE DOWNLOAD. Our gift to you.

Thanks to Chris Murray for mastering the songs and coming up with the band name.

The Roving Scones are
Chris Murray (Square People Jazz Maturity) — Vocals, Bass, Piano on Ruby Tuesday, Electric Guitar on I Know It’s Only Rock & Roll
Richard Harper (Fly Golden Eagle, Sunshine Brothers & Sisters) Drums, Acoustic Guitar on Ruby Tuesday
Mathew Jernigan (Sunshine Brothers & Sisters) — Synthesizers, Drums and vocals on Ruby Tuesday
Tony Youngblood (Theatre Intangible) — Electric Guitar, Bass on I Know It’s Only Rock & Roll & Ruby Tuesday

You can download or stream the individual songs below or download all songs in this convenient zip file.

01. Jumping Jack Flash
02. Shattered
03. I Know It’s Only Rock n’ Roll (But I Like It!)
04. Ruby Tuesday
05. Let’s Spend the Night Together

May 022010

“We pressed our diving faces into fields of dead, hot grass. . . An empire left in ruins.” — Arclyte — The Rest

Craighead and Bransford, Nashville, 1:30pm, May 2nd, 2010

Louise Street near Wedgewood, Nashville, 1:35pm, May 2nd, 2010

The last two days have been hairy.  I took the above pictures a few blocks from my house.  Check out this video I took on my iPhone.  The basement where we record all the new Theatre Intangible improvs is currently lined with a few inches of water in one corner.  Luckily, not much is damaged.  But that’s more than I can say for other parts of the city, which are literally destroyed.

Quote of the showcase:

“Theatre Intangible is an avant-garde/experimental show.  A lot of people may say that [Arclyte] doesn’t fit that label.” – Tony Youngblood, host.

“Those people can kiss our asses.”  Charlie Rauh, guitarist, Arclyte.

In brighter news, I’ve finally finished editing the Arclyte artist show (Theatre Intangible Podcast 18) contained herein for your listening pleasure.  I have often mentioned that Arclyte is my favorite local band.  The sparse baroque sounds of Arclyte members Chris Rauh, Charlie Rauh, and Craig Schenker go well with upturned cars and uprooted trees.

Arclyte is a Nashville/DC minimalist rock band reminiscent of Emily Haines and Low.  The Theatre Intangible session is the last Arclyte show for the foreseeable future.  Singer and bassist Chris moved to Washington DC the day after we recorded this.

Discussed in this episode: Cultural Reflex Dance, Anthony Braxton, Hildegard Von Bingham, Mary Halvorson, John Butcher, Sigfried Sasoon, Wilfried Owen, Robert Graves, Rupert Brooke, Emily Haines, Lady GaGa, Portishead, Denali

Click the download link below for the entire podcast, including the interviews.  Or, simply subscribe in iTunes.  If you want the music without the interview, you can download the songs here in 320 kpbs, embedded in a zip file, including an improv piece not available in the podcast.  Enjoy.