Oral History Aural History
Hello friends, happy new year!
A lot happening now and on the horizon and I’m so grateful to be both alive and excited about being alive and I mean this in the most sincere and earnest form it can be received.
I have a few different projects in the works besides the new album and upcoming touring and am embracing the glut. Having conducted some inadvertent studies these past couple years, I find I would rather dance on the cusp of being overextended as opposed to under. I’m hopeful that a couple of these exciting prospects will be solidified soon, that I can share more details with you and also feel the true power of deadline adrenaline.
I just interviewed my mom for a piece I’m writing on diaspora for The Georgia Review and we had a surprisingly hilarious time recounting and trying to remember the finer details of darker spells from our family/geo-political history. My mom should teach a masterclass on moving forward but she won’t, so as her would-be TA I will share what I gathered from our talk: Keep the memories of anything that can be laughed at or celebrated for its good fortune, and for everything else: erase.
After our conversation I wanted to make sounds that reminded me of the soundscape of my youth.
I’m getting more into semi-modular synthesis with the Moog Matriarch and one of the things I love most is creating sequences and then pitch bending and modulating them to evoke the sounds of my childhood, namely the tones and inflections of the Vietnamese language, Vietnamese folk opera and traditional string music, Buddhist chanting and the muted time-keeping within the chants. It is meditative and relaxing and also a great way to find some hooks. I can approximate the tones and accents of Vietnamese through interval exploration and microtones, and filter settings create a percussive pulse. With just one note and a couple pitch bends I can re-create Vietnamese words. (To my ears :))