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 Water on the moon 
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Post Water on the moon
I'm just sitting in my car waiting on my sons driving school to end, and listening to greg's cd.
What an amazing piece, the groove is unreal.
Just some of my favorite music ever. It really reminds me of listening to Jaco in his prime.

If you guys don't have this you should.

Greg I'd like to interview you sometime about some of your recordings.
I would play parts (of your recordings), ask specific questions and have you demonstrate specific techniques as well as giving other insights. perhaps as a part of a future seminar.

Just a thought
Brett


Thu Oct 13, 2011 4:29 pm
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Post Re: Water on the moon
Brett Bottomley wrote:
I'm just sitting in my car waiting on my sons driving school to end, and listening to greg's cd.
What an amazing piece, the groove is unreal.
Just some of my favorite music ever. It really reminds me of listening to Jaco in his prime.

If you guys don't have this you should.

Greg I'd like to interview you sometime about some of your recordings.
I would play parts (of your recordings), ask specific questions and have you demonstrate specific techniques as well as giving other insights. perhaps as a part of a future seminar.

Just a thought
Brett
Hi Brett,

I hope it provided an effective distraction from the perils of driving school (I'll be dealing with that in a few years myself)

I've listened to Water on the Moon many times, more than any other of my records, probably. My intent was never to release a single piece like that, but when I tried to parse it up into little bits, it never made sense. As a single hour of music however, it makes a lot of sense. It's the kind of extemporaneous flow of ideas that The Stick is perfect for.

Thanks to bringing it all back home, and for the kind reference to Jaco. Though my skill level will never match his, if I can capture some of his spirit for you, that's great to hear.

I'd be happy to talk with you about the recordings. I have pretty clear memories of how they were done, though I don't know if my chops are up to replicating things "on the spot".

You can download Water on the Moon from BandCamp as a single piece of music, ideal for iPods where importing from the CD may have gaps between the sections from the track IDs:

info here: http://greghoward.bandcamp.com/album/water-on-the-moon

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Fri Oct 14, 2011 3:36 am
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Post Re: Water on the moon
Water on the Moon is a gorgeous album!
Although I must say that my all-time favorite is Greg's Stick Figures Album.
There are really some classic Greg Howard tunes on that one......

Oliver


Fri Oct 14, 2011 11:34 am
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Post Re: Water on the moon
I certainly don't mean to puff Greg's ego. But his music, I think(and probably many others do), apart from being important to the Stick community, is important to improvisational musicians. (dare I say world wide?) Many years ago, before I heard of the Stick or anyone who played it, I thought the be all end all of improvisation was jazz music, specifically Chick Corea. Especially with John Patatucci and Dave Weckl. Now I realize that I was a bit sheltered musically, but most people would admit that they were pretty good. After Chick Corea, I would have probably sighted some of my own friends in Erie.(Pa) Guitarist Kenny Annis and Keyboardist Steve Calebrese. The list could go on, getting to musicians that old timers like SA would add. (but I am already getting bored of my own post)

My point is this: ' Water on the moon' belongs in an improvisational museum, if there ever would be such a place. There is real artistry there and in other improv pieces Greg has played. I am impressed by the way he keeps the pieces moving, yet somehow each part seems related to the last, or next.

In Steve Adelson's "Stickology"(I believe on the DVD), Steve says that improv more reacting, like coming to a familiar street corner and deciding that instant which direction to take from there(paraphrase). You have been each way at some point before, but not always in the same sequence. I don't get the sense that this is what Greg is doing.

Anyway, I certainly don't mean to make an idol of Greg Howard. I am however very influenced by his playing and would love to know what he is thinking when he is improvising something like "water on the Moon". Probably "I wonder if CSI is a rerun tonight?" or something like that.

Mike


Wed Jan 18, 2012 5:49 pm
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Post Re: Water on the moon
A different type of improv than soloing over changes.

fragile, rare and special.

here is one of it's greatest moments

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wO9si26qB0s&feature=fvst

a tradition to be cherished, the spontaneous creation of music.

Brett


Wed Jan 18, 2012 9:02 pm
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Post Re: Water on the moon
Hi Mike,

Thanks for such a kind post. I feel like The Stick is an instrument that is perfect for improvisation. A direct conduit for spontaneous creativity, with a great sound, and all the possibilities electronics offer, thrown in for good measure.

Water on The Mooon uses some conventional chordal, melodic and harmonic elements to build a "spontaneous concerto" on The Stick, but there is much more going on. Conscious direction, subconscious impulse.

The complete circle of mind->hand->strings->effects->amp->ear->mind, and also the inter-relationship of the hands to each other. Infinite possibilities.

What I like best about that performance is that it never gets to a place that happens so often in improvised music where things are just holding on and waiting for what comes next, or the musician just "plays their licks."

I'm not sure what Steve's point was, perhaps you are misunderstanding his intent.
The building blocks are there, in some forms they are really sophisticated, but they are usually bound by rules. In most musical forms your don't make your own building blocks r your own rules, but this is something I like to do, sonically, harmonically, polyrhythmically.

There's no doubt in my mind that truly free, spontaneous creativity is not only possible, but it is essential to true improvisation. So Water on the Moon is a fun listen, in my mind, because it actually works as a piece of music because it was freely composed, not just freely played.

As to what I'm thinking, I couldn't guess 14 years later, except perhaps "hey, this is really working....just keep going...."

Cheers!


mike kemp wrote:
I certainly don't mean to puff Greg's ego. But his music, I think(and probably many others do), apart from being important to the Stick community, is important to improvisational musicians. (dare I say world wide?) Many years ago, before I heard of the Stick or anyone who played it, I thought the be all end all of improvisation was jazz music, specifically Chick Corea. Especially with John Patatucci and Dave Weckl. Now I realize that I was a bit sheltered musically, but most people would admit that they were pretty good. After Chick Corea, I would have probably sighted some of my own friends in Erie.(Pa) Guitarist Kenny Annis and Keyboardist Steve Calebrese. The list could go on, getting to musicians that old timers like SA would add. (but I am already getting bored of my own post)

My point is this: ' Water on the moon' belongs in an improvisational museum, if there ever would be such a place. There is real artistry there and in other improv pieces Greg has played. I am impressed by the way he keeps the pieces moving, yet somehow each part seems related to the last, or next.

In Steve Adelson's "Stickology"(I believe on the DVD), Steve says that improv more reacting, like coming to a familiar street corner and deciding that instant which direction to take from there(paraphrase). You have been each way at some point before, but not always in the same sequence. I don't get the sense that this is what Greg is doing.

Anyway, I certainly don't mean to make an idol of Greg Howard. I am however very influenced by his playing and would love to know what he is thinking when he is improvising something like "water on the Moon". Probably "I wonder if CSI is a rerun tonight?" or something like that.

Mike

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Thu Jan 19, 2012 3:06 am
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Post Re: Water on the moon
This discussion prompted me to pull this from my old press kit. It's from The Washington Post of the day, a review by Mike Joyce, a music critic who actually understood the instrument and the possibilities it presents:

Image

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Fri Jan 20, 2012 5:35 pm
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Post Re: Water on the moon
I've been listening again........wow.


Mon Oct 22, 2012 4:54 pm
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Post Re: Water on the moon
Brett Bottomley wrote:
I've been listening again........wow.
Thanks , Brett, I know it's not everyone's cup of tea, but I still feel really great about that record.

Cheers!

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Tue Oct 23, 2012 4:28 pm
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Post Re: Water on the moon
As I am doing an experiment that is taking a lot longer than I thought it would, I just listened to the whole thing. It's nice and trancy and surprising. Still, I have been pondering lately, the number of people here that consistently show amazement at Greg's work is probably precisely why he gets targeted with such voracity from the people that don't appreciate it. Really, Greg has never showed any ego towards his music that I can find. But with enough of us saying how great he is, it must be easier for these people to lash at him than at the fans.

To tell the truth, I appreciate his technical knowledge of the instrument and his ability and willingness to teach much more than his playing ability. I am not knocking his playing, just showing my preference in ranking.

Cheers from an addled scientist.


Tue Oct 23, 2012 5:42 pm
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