Thursday, January 28, 2016

'Silver Blood' at Reedemer Lutheran

It was welcome to feel 'human' again.  I cancelled my last performance the day of because I've been so out of sorts with myself this past year.  The look of that last venue didn't help my imagination much either.  Last night's tabernacle however,  with it's vaulted wood ceiling and nuanced control panel making possible so many configurations of lighting, was perfect for our combined sets (Matt Hannafin, Catherine Lee and John Savage performing Cage's 'Ryoanji', and Branic Howard and I each doing our own things).  As always for me, the most rewarding performances begin with a peripheral 'noticing' of all the friends who don't show up, and end with a few conversations with the unfamiliar listeners who so generously share their impressions of the music.  One guy told me it was his "favorite Loren Chasse show".  Humbling.  Another guy who seemed to be the old guard of Portland art eccentrics asked where he could see/hear me doing this same piece again.  The card he handed me read 'Jimmy Crack Corn Productions' and his persistent smile and sincerity as we spoke in the lobby inspired me to search for that card in my pockets last night and prop it up against the book pile beside my bed as some cheerful charm against the shitty nights' sleeps I've been having.

Last night, my favorite moment was the mylar 'serpent' that I hoisted up while pulling a cord woven through the strings of the viol-uke.  It seemed to float in the center of that room and the light from my flashlight sent silvery fascial forms creeping across the ceiling.  Funny how my love for dim and moody lighting had the effect of subverting my interactions with my gear as I awkwardly groped in the shadows looking for mallets, for the end of a string, and even for knobs on the mixer.  And lastly, it wouldn't be a successful show if I didn't have a mess to clean up afterwards.  Last night included lentils, sand, and volcanic pebbles in neat lines along the aisle carpet as well as wrestling with an ancient vacuum that merely moved the material around as it inhaled and sporadically exhaled from its bloated bag.  I'm 45 and have yet to earn a 'roadie'...