Wednesday, May 16, 2012

This Week

Instrumental Quaalude postings are now available at the Free Music Archive in 4 volumes. Thank you. This blog has passed away.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Week Thirty-eight

Week Thirty-eight is a version of Riz Ortolani's Theme from Cannibal Holocaust. A regular live performance selection, a recent nod to this number by Swiftumz on Don't Trip necessitated a recorded entry. Performed on Wurlitzer 200a, voice, and sine-wave generator. (2 minutes, 33 seconds).


Friday, August 5, 2011

Week Thirty-seven

Week Thirty-seven is an arrangement of Badalamenti's "Laura Palmer's Theme" for the electric guitar. (3 minutes, 2 seconds).


Friday, April 15, 2011

Week Thirty-six

Week Thirty-six is completely unnecessary edit of random bits of jam. Features sufis, babies, reciters, and beat happenings (2 minutes, 14 seconds).


Monday, February 21, 2011

Week Thirty-five

Week Thirty-five is a hairy jam on 5 string red guitar with contact mic, loop, and small amplifier. (3 minutes, 42 seconds).


Saturday, January 29, 2011

Week Thirty-four

Week Thirty-four is a collaboration with the Pacific Northwest instrumentalist Jon Sampson. Jon performs bass over a field of electric guitar pulses, decaying and providing harmonic changes. (2 minutes, 44 seconds).


Monday, December 27, 2010

Week Thirty-three

Week Thirty-three is an acoustic guitar lullaby-for-child degraded to various levels of fidelity by cassette recorders, resulting in the emergence of a hyper-compressed, unintentional melody. (2 minutes, 33 seconds).


Monday, October 25, 2010

Week Thirty-two

Week Thirty-two is an improvisation on a finger-picking melody that is often played for the daughter. (4 minutes, 44 seconds).


Thursday, September 2, 2010

Non-week item

This video promotes the upcoming cassette and album release of "Great Melodies From Around," 44-minutes of great melodies performed by Ben Wildenhaus.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Week Thirty-one

'Weeks' are now a constructed conception of time for this. In non-blog time, a baby is coming any week now.

Here, the red guitar is outfitted with a pickup made in Coos Bay, OR. It battles the usual SG minor chord improvisation. Sharp v. Round. (4 minutes, 10 seconds).


Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Week Thirty

Limited notes by accordion and electric guitar organized. (2 minutes, 40 seconds).


Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Week Twenty-nine

Tapes and bass guitar improvisation. Week Twenty-nine is in honor of the great Pacific Northwest. (3 minutes, 23 seconds).


Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Week Twenty-seven

Piano plays a 4/4 chordal backing. Destructed sine waves ruin accordion melody. Bass enters to compliment the piano while the sine waves attempt to ruin everything. For Johanne Fück. (4 minutes, 12 seconds).


Sunday, March 14, 2010

Week Twenty-six

Week Twenty-six is layered guitar improvisations. The exploited difference here is between wet and dry guitar strings. Ab is the name of the game. (5 minutes, 10 seconds).


Sunday, February 28, 2010

Week Twenty-five

Week Twenty-five is an electric guitar improvisation over a rhythmic and tonal center established with a loop. F. F#. A melody emerges in minute 4. (5 minutes, 25 seconds).


Sunday, February 21, 2010

Week Twenty-four

This is thirty-five seconds of the upcoming 43 minute LP "Great Melodies From Around", to be released sometime in 2010. I made this brief sampler to account for the lack of recordings the past two weeks. Been hard at work (35 seconds).


Week Twenty-three

Week Twenty-three is solo electric guitar. (2 minutes, 34 seconds).


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Week Twenty-two

A version of "RE: I Person I Knew", by Bill Evans. The song moves over a pedal C. Performed on SG. (2 minutes, 53 seconds).


Sunday, January 24, 2010

Week Twenty-one

Been thinking about what life is like in the Pacific Northwest. This is one rather claustrophobic envisioning of it. There are surely others. I suppose it might sound like Bill Orcutt and Dave Holland. (4 minutes, 40 seconds).


Saturday, January 9, 2010

Week Twenty

"Gnossiennes I - Lent" by Erik Satie. This week is a live performance featuring two electric guitars, one of which has been captured by a phrase sampler. In order for this recording to be five minutes, the last portion of the composition has been excluded. (5 minutes, 2 seconds).


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Week Nineteen

Week Nineteen first oscillates between Dbm/Ab and Abm/E. In the bridge the chords Ebm7/Db, Gm, Db/Gb repeat before returning to the previous two chords. There is also a melody. Performed by SG. (5 minutes, 10 seconds)


Thursday, December 17, 2009

Week Eighteen

Week Eighteen is a melody fragment, performed on guitar and sine-square generator. Providing the context are two variations on alternating chords, performed by guitars made to sound like faux chimes. (4 minutes, 58 seconds).


Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Week Seventeen

Week Seventeen begins with slow Fender tremelo providing rhythm. Tonally, two guitars move through chords in syncopated opposition to the "one" of the 6/8 measures. A pedal steel melody follows the off kilter patterns supplied by the chordal movements. Throughout electric hum is manipulated. Performed on electric guitars and pedal steel. (2 minutes, 56 seconds).


Sunday, November 29, 2009

Week Sixteen

Week Sixteen is a cover of "Mount Harissa" by Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn, although the portion I've excerpted is most likely the Duke's tune. The beautiful song which comprises the middle portion of the original composition sounds more like Strayhorn. This melody I've recorded serves as Mount Harissa's "oriental" bookends. The song is one part of their 1966 Far East Suite. Following the suite's motivic contour, this tune opens with an "oriental" sounding melody which then gives way to a typical American blues turnaround. Ellington and Strayhorn's success is that these two factions meld effortlessly into Ellingtonia throughout all of the suite's movements.

Here, I've given "Mount Harissa" the Ventures treatment - and I'd be surprised if the the Ventures hadn't already. Performed by SG, bass, Wurlitzer 200a, and dueling samples of the one and the only Leatherpants on drums (via live Party Favorites recordings). (2 minutes, 44 seconds).


Thursday, November 19, 2009

Week Fifteen

Week Fifteen came quickly - a refreshing change from last week's frustration. This tune will probably end up reworked and re-recorded for the full-length LP I am concurrently working on. The song rides on a crooked but dignified stumble, like navigating on four martinis. The melody, played by SG and nylon, could be a tune whistled by an axeman with a limp who trolls empty alleys seeking murder. (5 minutes).


Friday, November 13, 2009

Week Fourteen

This week's entry is nothing like it was first imagined. After days of unsuccessful attempts to complete the recording last week, I considered it a fail and moved on. "Week Fourteen - take 2" and "Week Fourteen - take 3" were also fails. Perhaps this week's entry was never meant to be. Days later (and already late for the rigid weekly schedule I've assigned myself for Instrumental Quaalude) I listened again to the first fail. It lacked a melody I had intended to create and record, consisting instead of only random backing tracks of tremelo feedback against a single muffled tremelo guitar line punctuated by distant crappy bangs and plastic sizzle. I had ridden the tremelo on the Bronco attempting to put the pulses roughly in time (as 1/8th notes). A higher guitar makes a few appearances playing off the straight rhythm in 3s. Given a few days departure from the frustrating experience of recording this I realized that the pieces fit together in a form that works without a melody. The result sounds like disparate clouds over a very hot and terrible land. (3 minutes, 28 seconds).


Sunday, November 1, 2009

Week Thirteen

Week Thirteen is an improvisation on the SG through the Fender Bronco in D minor. The tone is predictably desirable: tremelo on reverb. I performed this piece on Halloween afternoon this year under the willow tree at the Red Shed community garden, amp powered by a battery. (4 minutes, 26 seconds).


Monday, October 26, 2009

Week Twelve

Week Twelve is a classic 9/8 beat structure with a brief melody in hijaz. The final melody is taken from the tune, Yedikule. Interspersed are blasts of junk. Performed by guitars, drums, wurlitzer, and stuff (1 minute, 39 seconds).


Tuesday, October 20, 2009

Week Eleven

A three note melody is as fixed as the accompanying beat. The guitar's chords move to give the melody new context. The result, however, is a feeling of stasis. Nothing the chords do will affect the relentless and somber beat and melody.
Performed by SG and drum. (4 minutes, 6 seconds).


Sunday, October 11, 2009

Week Ten

Week Ten is a composition of closely stacked chords on the wurlitzer 200a. As the sound fidelity deteriorates the individual tones become indistinguishable. Fidelity is then restored. The clustered tones can again be heard interacting with one another.
Performed by the wurlitzer 200a (2 minutes, 57 seconds).


Sunday, October 4, 2009

Week Nine

A light three note melody floats above a jumbled mess of instruments interrupting one another, each instrument with its individual approach to providing the melody chords. The middle of the performance is marked by an abrupt shift in fidelity as a crappy walkman offers its recorded version of the melody and chords. Eventually the song disintegrates.
Melody performed by sine generator and voice, chords are performed by guitars, wurlitzer 200a, and tapes of guitars and voice.


Sunday, September 27, 2009

Week Eight

Ozan brought me a 2 dollar sipsi from Istanbul. Soft guitar loop provides rhythmless repetition for a rough and nasal sipsi melody. I am clearly not proficient on this instrument. Performed by sipsi and SG. (3 minutes, 51 seconds).


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Week Seven

"Son of a Gun" by the Vaselines. The Vaseline's most well-known and oft-covered song (except perhaps "You Think You're a Man") gets a new reverb-laden Ventures melody before the song's familiar melody arrives midpoint. An arrangement I perform live - performed here by red guitar, SG, wurlitzer 200a. (4 minutes, 27 second).


Monday, September 14, 2009

Week Six

Guitar improvisation heard through the mechanics of a crappy sony walkman. As the tension building chord is strummed recordings begin of a small town Nicaraguan marketplace at dawn. Shops are closed. The gate is locked. Smoke rises from the market's kitchens as they prepare breakfast.
Performed by guitars and recordings. (3 minutes, 10 seconds).