the accidental psaltery - series 3

by the accidental psaltery

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    The complete 3rd series of accidental psaltery pieces. 30 tracks in the order they were recorded. Over 13 hours of accidental ambiance!

    The accidental psaltery is loop-based music created by chance or other power. This is the third series of pieces I've recorded. The first two, while pretty, were too repetitive to be interesting for very long. By the end of the second series I'd figured out a solution that involved arranging the music on the computer rather than with loop pedals. Working on the computer allowed me to combine loops of different and longer lengths. The result was an important (probably the most important) characteristic of the work: "natural phasing." As loops of different lengths repeat, their relationship to one another changes. So while the loops themselves don't change, the music they create is never the same. This static evolution or evolving stasis turned out to be the missing link that allowed the accidental psaltery to fully evolve. Several other developments are unique to this series: "Telescoping": where part or all of one loop is contained in another loop. As the loops repeat, the similar parts move towards and away from unison; rarely if ever coming together. "Unrelated delay" is using different delay times on different loops that are not subdividable. This adds to the accidental nature of the pieces and has a calming effect on the mind.

    The earliest pieces in the series contain just 2 loops and explore the natural phasing concept mentioned above. Gradually I added more loops and more complex ways of arranging them. I used 6 or 7 different tunings for the series to keep the music fresh and to keep myself from getting too comfortable on the psaltery. It's worth noting: I posess absolutely no skill or technique on the instrument beyond a beginner's. This was definitely beneficial to the creation of the work.

    The accidental psaltery was inspired by Nature, Japanese aesthetics, Ta Ke Ti Na, and the writings of John Cage. Creating this music demands a great deal of trust. Rather, Trust. When inviting creative spirit, chance, or other power to arrange music, one must accept what comes out. It's tempting to go in and start shoving loops around trying to make things "better." This instantly returns one to the realm of self-power, and this music cannot survive there.

    It's hard to be proud of something you didn't really create, but I do take satisfaction at having had a hand in making and recording this music. I feel privilaged to have heard it develope and become what it is. I hope it finds appreciative ears somewhere out there. I think it is best heard quietly, ambiently, while doing other things. More like weather than music. Please let me know your experience of the accidental psaltery. I'd love to hear it.

    Blessings,
    Rick Tarquinio 2/27/2011
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credits

released September 20, 2013

Recorded by Rick Tarquinio Fall 2010.

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about

Rick Tarquinio New Jersey

My music is created very simply using improvisation, chance procedures or accidental means. I also do a lot of field recording and sound experiments using natural forces to create sound. I used to be a singer/songwriter in a past life, but every caterpillar has its day...

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