Proof of Concept: “Sure!”


The goal of several recent experiments in the sweltering third floor studio was to test a performance concept: playing live on steel guitar against generative content streaming from an iPad track and an iPhone track (into Logic on a laptop.)

I have been spending most of scarce studio time with Gestrument, a terrific generative sampler for iPad. There are any number of generative audio apps for IOS. On the iPhone’s side of the equation, I reached first for Mixtikl, Immersion Station, and the trio of Eno-associated apps, Bloom, Trope, and Air. Once I imported a slew of Camel Audio Alchemy patches from the laptop and, instantly, Alchemy became part of the potential mix.

This process of trial and error resulted in an initial upload to Vimeo because I exceeded Youtube’s time limit. To my bemusement I realized I didn’t record the live mix into Logic because in all the excitement I didn’t punch the recording in. Fortunately the camera’s mic did a good job of picking up the monitors and also some of the pedal sounds from the Fender steel guitar and buzzing strings from the eBow.

It is not possible in the current physical set-up to mix live as well as play live. Because this is all oriented to my slow music you’ll see in the video how shifting back and forth works out.

Dark ambient drone.

Ambience for Pedal Steel Guitar and eBow from Stephen Calhoun on Vimeo.

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