Well, I had plans to post a daily blog entry for each day of MoogFest.. but to be honest… It was way too much fun to spend time writing a blog each day. So let’s go thru the experience a bit.
Friday started with a four our session to build a new sequencer. The MoogFest Engineer ticket gets you time with the designer of a new piece of kit, and you actually get to build your own. This year was a BFAM (Brother From another Mother) which is a companion piece to the Mother-32. Having not soldered since high school I was a bit worried, but it was so well organized and layed out that after 261 solder points, I am almost an export. (Well at least capable).
My board had small capacitor on it that was broken and I had Eric from the design team replace it for me. We ended the four our session with a completely soldered board, and ready for Saturday’s session when we finished build the case and actually running a few audio tests. What a BLAST! The sound of the BFAM was full, loud and fun!
Friday after noon I was only able to do one session, it was a set of video’s with a live performance by “I Speak Machine”. The movies were entertaining, but the music was very cool. The show ended with an ambient version of Gary Numan’s song “Cars”, by I Speak Machine.
The rest of the night was live performances at the Carolina Theater’s Fletcher Hall. The performers were all very trance ‘ ambient music like. Rival Consoles was the most exciting of the three, jamming to the his own music. Alessandro Cortini was a bit too relaxed for my taste, and Grouper sat on the stage playing here guitar (and synthesizers). I was in the front row and couldn’t tell when Grouper was actually playing things, as I saw more of her forehead than anything else.
The night ended for me with Gary Numan playing his “Pleasure Principal” album! This is the concert that he cancelled in Atlanta back in 2010 that I had attended. So I finally got to see it and he did an awesome job!
Saturday started with a great session all about Max-MSP, with the instrucuter showing how he uses it to build very ambient videos for live electronic shows. And then a session on how the ear and brain understands Music. The session was really interesting and informative; however, it came down to they had no idea how the brain understood music. So the title was a bit misleading.
I then went back to finish up building my Brother From Another Mother sequencer. It was tons of fun, and I am looking forward to using the device to create a new entry sound for my podcast GamesAtWork dot Biz. Check out this final image of my new toy:
I then quickly went over to the Carolina Theater to see the final Gary Numan Show… One of my favorite albums of his – Telekon! I decided to sit in the front row of the first balcony which allowed me a great view of the stage show and some incredible pictures – like this one:
Sunday morning started with playing with LittleBits and building an IR LED based sound device… The show ended for me after watching Laurie Anderson on Sunday afternoon. I’ve liked her performances since the song “Oh, Superman!” From my days in high school. She was amazing as she talked about some of here recent work, including an exhibit where she built a giant seated statue where she projected the live video feed from one of the former Gitmo prisoners. The guy is now in West Africa, where he is working to promote women’s rights. He had been rounded up in Afganistan at the age of 14… He claimed not to be a Talbian supporter, but was in the wrong place at the wrong time. Given what he is doing now, and that he was never actually charged with anything… I tend to believe him.
She also talked about her experience as the ONLY ever NASA artist in residence. Amazing speaker… Bummed I missed here performance on Saturday, but it conflicted with finishing up my BFAM Sequencer. A few other interesting artists I saw where “I Speak Machine” and “Silver Apples“… Check them out!!!