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Member newsPosted by General Manager 20 May, 2014 12:50 Member Walter Ehresman sent out his latest News-letter and here it is for your reading pleasure.
Good Afternoon, Everybody:
Walter here, with a new song for you as well as news about the monthly “2nd Friday” residency at New World Deli.
--Let’s get the bad news out of the way first: James and I want to apologize sincerely to those of you who showed up at New World Deli on the 9th, only to see someone else on the stage. Here’s what happened……After I had loaded all my stuff onto the stage that night and started to set up, an employee approached with a telephone and the said the owner wanted to talk to me. Seems the place had double-booked that night, and James and I were unceremoniously bumped. They weren’t particularly nice or apologetic about it, either. As you know, we’ve been playing the 2nd Friday of every month there since last July, but we won’t be playing there anymore. I have a feeler out for a new place to have a monthly Friday night gig, and I’ll let y’all know as soon as I know anything more. I know your time is valuable, and Friday nights especially so after a tough work week, so we’re sure sorry that happened and hope that you found something else good to do that night. As I said in the e-mail I sent out as soon as I got home from New World Deli that night, I’d like to offer a free CD to anyone who went down there that night. Please just take one off the table at the next gig we have.
--and for much better news: I have a new song recorded for y’all to check out! I just mixed it down in the studio earlier today, and I’m pretty happy with how it came out. It’s called “Blue Eyed Devils,” and will be title track to the new album. It’s about how American foreign policy is used to further giant corporate interests, and the cultural damage that steamroller causes in other countries. Musically, it’s akin to the heavier Fripp/Eno/Bowie period, and has a couple of segments featuring Austin’s own Nigel Jacobs throat-singing. You can listen to the song here:
Since the song hasn’t been digitally mastered yet, you’ll have to crank your speakers up to hear it (plus, it’s just that kind of song……). Hope you enjoy it! It’s one of the most complex recording challenges I’ve ever taken on.
--As many of you know, the biggest news for me these days is that I’m moving to San Miguel de Allende in Mexico at the end of this year. So these 2014 gigs will be my last shows in the U.S.. It’s been a gas living and playing in Austin for the last 34 years, but it’s time to shake things up, and so all these last Austin gigs will also serve as fundraisers to help me get myself moved down South. My goal is to sell out my inventory of solo CDs, as well as all the Snipe Hunt and Delphi Rising discs that I have. A high target…..but do-able, I think. The discs will be on the merch table at the shows, marked with a price, but if you want a disc or two (or three or……) just put in the bowl whatever amount feels right to you. I won’t peek from the stage, I promise. This is the most direct way to help the cause, because it cuts out the middleman when buying the music online or at Antone’s Records. Every little bit helps.
You can also get digital downloads at all the usual websites, but my best cut of download and album sales comes if you use CD Baby: http://www.cdbaby.com/all/snipe. Yeah, they make you register first, which is a drag, but it’s no more onerous than Amazon and they have a vast array of great artists on there who are doing independent, interesting work far from the homogenizing influence of the record companies. I think you’ll find lots of artists there that you like.
--Videos: I’m now up to 102 videos that I’ve made and put on YouTube to go with my past solo material as well as with songs I wrote while in Snipe Hunt and later in Delphi Rising. That’s all I’ll be doing for the time being…….time to focus more on recording again.
NOTE: I saved these videos at a high resolution (HD) so, for best viewing, I recommend clicking on the little gear icon at the bottom right of the video screen for the particular video you're watching, and select the highest quality setting. Just takes a second, and will improve the visuals. And, of course, hit the little “x” at the upper right-hand corner to nuke the obnoxious ad that pops up at the beginning.
Here is a new project I'm involved with, that I think you might
find interesting. It's about improving the driver's emotional experience
in demanding situations - using specially composed music. I'm doing
this with sound researcher Martin Ljungdahl Eriksson and when the music
is ready, it will be released on an album that you get if you rent a car
from Europcar Sweden. This is music not only to listen to, but music
that effects your emotions, that improves your chemical balance.
has, as the first actor in the car-rental industry, started the unique
project “Sounds for Driving”. The goal is to provide Europcar’s
customers with a truly one of a kind driving experience. In order to
achieve this, sound expert Martin Ljungdahl Eriksson and the famous
artist and produces Håkan Lidbo was brought onboard. Together, these two are creating music that will enhance and amplify the driving experience.
with Europcar, Martin and Håkan has identified a number of different
situations where the driver might feel tired, stressed or irritated.For a
long drive, the driver needs to feel alert and sharp, hence, uplifting
music is created. Follow the project right here, and be sure to check
back for more sound snippet and findings from the study.
Member newsPosted by General Manager 03 Sep, 2013 21:05 After almost a year as a cultural mercenary driving other peoples projects there is a new Culture Night project coming up. The ancient ring wall of Eslöv is to be uncovered and recreated! The Ministry of Art & Jump have found out where the old ring wall was situated and how it looked. Friday the 13th is the date for the grand opening!
Member newsPosted by General Manager 17 Sep, 2012 09:29 Good evening to ya, and welcome to the latest edition of my newsletter.
Here's where I'll keep you posted on all my latest musical goings-on,
be they recordings, band or solo gigs, or even just the occasional cool
music that I've stumbled on that you might like. Hopefully these
tidbits will sail through your corpus like interstellar particles, with
the crucial difference that they stick to your gray matter with their
hooked little claws rather than passing between your molecules and out
the other side. I guess I could call the newsletter "Velcro Quark," but
it doesn't roll off the tongue quite the same.....
news from these parts, folks. My new solo album, "Life Outside the
Tent," is now available! Click here to hear bits of each song and to
buy the darn thing (the physical CD or via download): http://cdbaby.com/cd/walterehresman2.
You can also hear three of the songs--Aqua Girl; Your Supersonic
Stare; and Unimpressive Specimens (my song about the wretched Teabagger
Party)--in their entirety here:
http://www.reverbnation.com/walterehresman. And starting next week, you
can also purchase the CD down at Antone's Records on Guadalupe St. here
Stylistically, the new album covers quite a bit of
ground. I'm told that the opening track, "Aqua Girl," sounds like a
cross between early Cure and Interpol, but I think it sounds more like
an updated Byrds. You be the judge. What I can say is that it was the
only track recorded outside of Snipe Bog Studios.......with the session
held at Chronicle Poll-winner Million Dollar Sound Studios last
December. My good friend Kurtis Machler, who owns the studio and
produced this song with me, played bass, and tasty drums and background
vocals were laid down by James Rader. The rest of the album was
recorded and produced by me here at Snipe Bog Studios throughout 2011.
The songs touch on styles ranging from ska to post-punk to Irish pub
rock to West African desert music. If you like Gang of Four, the
Specials, Flogging Molly, Ali Farka Toure', Bill Nelson or Lou Reed, I
think you'll find something to like here. Lyrically, lots of ground is
covered--the hypocrisy of the Teabagger Party, betrayal in
relationships, American jingoism with a heaping helping of war-tech
fetishism, meditations on cognitive dissonance, existential devastation
in this Time of Spin, and the dangers of internet dating.
thanks go to James Rader, not only for his fine musical contributions
to Aqua Girl but also for handling the graphic design for the CD
package. He really captured the look I was going for of an old, faded
circus poster (not to mention the aplomb with which he fielded my
request to Photoshop in a large pile of elephant shit onto my right foot
in the cover photo). Thanks James! Thanks also to Kurtis for his
sensitive mix and patience as we worked on Aqua Girl (27 tracks in Pro
Tools!), as well as for his bass playing on the track and for taking the
photo used on the CD label (there's a story behind it, but you'll have
to ask me over an adult beverage). Thanks also to Nigel Jacobs for his
photographic contributions. I also want to give a big shout-out to the
guest musicians who contributed their talents to various songs on the
album: Vic Ramirez (vocals on the bonus track "Echo Down the
Years--version #3); Bruce Salmon (trombone on "Unimpressive Specimens");
Nigel Jacobs (fiddle and background vocals on "The Company Will Swallow
You"); John Jankowski (background vocals on "The Company Will Swallow
You"); Chris Finelli (rhythm guitar on the hidden track "After HST, It's
All Damn Statistics--instrumental version"); and Max Grossenbacher
(piano on "Echo Down the Years--version #3").
It's been a
blast recording this album, and I feel good about the final product. I
hope y'all like it, and can join me at the official CD release party:
Saturday, June 30, 7:30-9:30, New World Deli (4101 Guadalupe, http://www.neworldeli.com/).
We'll be spinning the album and, as a special treat, there will be an
hour-long performance of new and old songs where I'll be joined by Vic
Ramirez and James Rader, essentially making this a reunion of the Delphi
Member newsPosted by General Manager 24 Aug, 2011 09:57 As August nears it's end a little look in the rear view mirror seems appropriate. During the course of the summer the Ministry completed a couple of small projects: HopArt in his birth-town and an attempt for "The Worlds longest street-painting".
Member newsPosted by General Manager 28 Apr, 2011 08:52 Our member Jeremy Turner has been deeply engaged in the Second Life
virtual community for many years and have currently designed his own
"bot" named Qiezli, as a home-work assignment in his University
Second Life is a popular chat-based virtual world. It is a user-generated world because people can create and exhibit their own content (clothes, objects, architecture etc) in this collaborative space. But there is also "robots" in SL which the creators/designers have put in there in the first place. Most of those robots are "chatter-bots" who walk around as humanoid avatars and engage in Eliza-like conversation.
Jeremy explains: In Second Life, any avatars that are not controlled by a human and are autonomous/automatic are called "bots" (short for "robots"). However, since my entity is meant to be some alien abstraction, I do not think the word "bot" is visually appropriate. I prefer the word "agent" since it applies to all artificial intelligences (as well as ourselves but that gets a bit confusing).
Qiezli is a "living" alien creature made out of shifting abstractions and representations. It wears video on its body. It daydreams about ideas in its inventory and occasionally when interacting with someone else, it may show video-portraits on its body.
I want to start creating artificial agents in virtual worlds. Qiezli may become an automated performance artist or perhaps have its own ideas about what it wants to do..that will take more programming though. I have always been interested in Artificial Intelligence. I also wanted to represent the utopian possibilities of cyberspace somehow so I focused on abstract aesthetics rather than a social message, for its content.
Qiezli hovers around in the air and "wears" various abstract video-patterns on its body...it kind of visualizes what it is "imagining" at the moment. When it meets one person, it "reflects" a video-portrait of one avatar (not the same person). When it meets more than one person, it wears a group video-portrait.
Jeremy has recently put up a blog about Qiezli, in a bit of a haste. The reason to hurry with a blog now is that he is submitting a conference paper about Qiezli and documentation was required to be online so Jeremy hastily assembled a blog. Jeremy says that even before he entered academia, he was in the habit of documenting as much as he could on blogs.
Turning Qiezli into an agent was a homework assignment. Jeremy took "Metacreation" last term (by Prof. Philippe Pasquier) and the goal of the course was to create an agent that appeared to exhibit its own sense of "creativity". Jeremy's ambitions are to turn his dissertation ideas towards designing virtual agents like these. He needs approval of his committee first though... But he says: I will find out this summer. Best of luck Jeremy!