I'm not sure how Music Thing became the clearing house for incredibly talented MPC beat-makers looking for gigs, but it's no bad thing.
The video above is Jel from Anticon, who plays his MPC live, with no sequencing. His new blog speaks for itself: JEL IN BEDROOM LOOKING FOR GIGS!!.
Meanwhile, Londoners now have no excuse for not seeing Anchorsong playing live. He's playing at Jimi Mistry's Sunday afternoon session at The Brickhouse in Brick Lane this Sunday, then doing two nights with The Woodentops at the Water Rats in Kings Cross on 10/11th December.
That's it for talented MPC folks looking for gigs for a little while...
Posted by Tom Whitwell.
I like how he had the SP-303 next to the MPC so he could grab a few extra pads.
I don't mean for this to be disparaging vs. the artist - I don't know anything about his talent and I'm proabably not qualified to judge. But I don't understand how "no sequencing" is relevant when he's playing over a backing track. Or is that video clip not representative of his live performances?
Marc, I'm wondering about something similar: what's the point of saying "no sequencing", or caring, when the music you play sounds like the stuff that comes from a sequencer anyway? Is what we're watching a musical performance, or more of a gymnastic feat? To me, a lot of guitar-based rock used to be gymnastics [look what I can do!], and I wonder if this is similar. Is it more important that the human can play like a machine, or is it that the music should be something a machine couldn't do anyway?
I only ask this because I was inspired by your question, not because of Jel's performance, or even Anchorsong's. I mean no disrespect to either of them... but I had to wonder, as I watched Anchorsong's clips about a week ago, why people are excited to see a person playing a drum machine when what they hear is the same thing a sequencer puts out. There must be subtle differences, and the fact of *seeing* them do it must be part of the fun, and I guess *anyone* could cheat and do the Ashley Simpson thing, except maybe a drummer with a real acoustic trap drum set, so ... I don't worry about it much. Just wondering.
What is the difference between hearing a rock band live, or listening to them on CD? After all, it is the same sort of music on both?
The answer is, that when performing live and not from a sequence, there is improvisation. The artists plays something cool, the audience cheers, the artist gives them more of that. Or, people are digging the song, the artist makes that song extra long. People aren't digging the song, the artist makes the track short. Or the artist just does different stuff.
Not to mention, of course, that his hitting the samples is unquantitized, so that the timing is less perfect that a sequencer.
My main disapointment with this artists is that they are using other people's samples. If they were creating their own samples, from scratch, and using those... that would be the shit!
Wow, these are incredible; I especially like Jel's beats. And, fortunately, I live in (well, near) SF!
As for live vs. sequenced: yes, they both sound great. If I'm at a dance club, I think pre-recorded or DJed stuff is just fine, as I will not be watching them much anyway (dancing, etc. instead) But I think one of the whole ideas behind a live concert is to see the process of the production and the talent/skill involved. If you are sipping a drink or chilling with some friends, being able to SEE something interesting is always a bonus. When I've seen electronic musicians play, I have ALWAYS enjoyed the live performers (Deep Sky, Delerium, etc) over DJ sets (BT, Paul van Dyk, etc)
Somebody book this guy Jel at some sort of chill lounge/bar/coffeehouse/art-gallery event and I'll probably show.
It can't be that hard to get a gig in SF if you have talent. Find the time to make contacts within the music scene, identify the party promoters that are associated with the types of sounds you produce, and determine which venues you think would work best (perhaps contacting them directly for booking).
There are lots of venues in the bay area. Take a look at upcoming.org to find some if you don't know where they are. Upcoming.org doesn't just list the large and popular venues where Coldplay and Joe Satriani play when they're here, but also the smaller venues that have a capacity below 100, which could be perfect for a mid-week gig. I think of Club Six and Mezzanine as being the center of the club world in SF, with a number of diverse venues within a small radius (or oval if you like) of those two.