Friday, November 5, 2010

solo studies II.

Continuing with preparation documentation, plus pictures to aid my aging memory. This first quick one is another version of the knitting needle trick from the last post. In the photo above you can kind of see my 3rd and 4th fingers on my right hand grabbing and moving the needle while ebowing. The thing I've added here is using fret-changing as a rhythmic component: since it's an unavoidable and loud artifact of what I was originally messing with, might as well do something useful with it.

Solo Study 2c (knitting needle/ebow).


Almost every prep I do ends up shortening the string length and thus the scale (could that be b/c it's way more difficult to lengthen the string?), but this one is specifically aimed at trying to emulate violin-like glissandos with an ebow and slide.. Here's what this prep looks like as recorded, but you could use anything as your third bridge, I just happen to like the sound of this wooden spatula at the 17th fret. And then you ebow on the nut side of your wooden spatula equivalent. The capo is there to bring the strings closer to the neck so that they always touch the spatula.

Solo Study 8 (short scale, ebow, slide, wooden spatula).


This one is using a large flat metal baking spatula over the bridge pickups and, yeah, something I can't quite remember is fucking up the 12-string neck (EDIT: I've remembered it's this little cheese knife). I'm also holding a slide in my left hand and picking in front of the slide also with my left hand with some random finger. I might also have an ebow in my right hand. Again, not totally sure. I like this one because the loud weirdness of the spatula hitting the pickup magnets creates a range of attacks that are almost digital-sounding or like a badly-edited cassette.

Solo Study 10 (baking spatula).


This one isn't much of a performance, but there's something very interesting going on in terms of timbre. I'm pretty sure I'm using two precariously balanced metal spatulas that begin wobbling asynchronously, and at some points there's an odd static-y distortion that pops up. Typically this happens when a mute comes in contact with one of the pickup magnets but I don't think that's the case here. Anyway, the point of these three clips is: take notes.  

Solo Study 11 (baking spatulas).


Tying up loose ends: here's a picture of the two superball mallet technique from last post, as well as the "hard foam slide":


arvind said...

thanks for sharing this, mark .. very inspirational!

MEM said...

my pleasure...i was surprised there wasn't more of this kind of stuff out there, but there doesn't really seem to be.