My good friend and former co-host Tony Youngblood and I are staring down a BIG HUGE project– revisiting, editing, and remastering two years worth of weekly experimental radio shows– these being our collective radio work ~Ore~ Prefab Audio Extrapolations. It’s been about eight years since we’ve heard most of these, and looking at hours and hours of this material waiting for me is daunting to say the least.
I’ve been listening to shows as I have time, and I’ve been extremely surprised to see how good much of it actually is! Although I always believed in the worth of our broadcasts, I also had the general idea that we were barely being heard– and an “us-versus-them” mentality was difficult to avoid. I imagine that for every one solid musical decision I made, two were just to roil an unsuspecting listener. But provocation has it’s place, right?
Still, its incredible how varied the ideas were– everything from a long look at abbreviation, to challenging listeners to create their own listening experience by rearranging their speakers. Along the way, we recorded shows live at a house party, interviewed a “big box” Wal-Mart manager, milked our televisions for every last ironic sample; and used everything from cordless phones to a theremin (oddly, not all that un-alike) as a sound source.
Aside from simply being a formidable task, reviewing this amount of work really requires serious organization skills. I find myself drawing on different aspects of my experience– my work as a DJ has sharpened my skills as a curator, but I’m also pulling from my own artistic and aesthetic ideas while considering where possible edits or improvements may be needed.
Okay, I know… this may not be terribly interesting to the majority of you. “DaveX is whining about having too much work, gee thanks.” But there are a couple things I’ve learned so far, so let me pass them on:
1) If it doesn’t get in the way of what you’re trying to accomplish musically, go ahead and record your work. You can’t know if you’ll end up wanting it later, and you’ll thank yourself if you do.
2) Slap a date on it! Your memory is probably not going to be sufficient to sort out details of when you recorded something, especially if you make a habit of doing so. Give your brain a rest, and break out the Sharpie– recording dates, locations, players, sound sources, it’s all good.
3) CDRs hold up better than you’d think. Sure, they’re not perfect– but with reasonable care, they’ll hold up until you need them next time.
Hope this helps! Now wish me luck. –DaveX