Free Music: Check out this very nice live virtual instrument improvisation by Lyle Mays (Pat Metheny Group) and world-class drummer Alex Acuña (Weather Report).
Mays lays down an improvisation with the Acoustic Bass from Trilian Total Bass Module and Omnisphere – both triggered in real-time from a MIDI’ed Grand Piano.
The jam is available as a free download at the Spectrasonics site.
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Pat Metheny has released a series of videos that look at his Orchestrion project – creating a new album and tour that features a backup band made up of robotic musicians.
The series is fascinating. Metheny is doing some really unique work with his Orchestrion project. Metheny talks about what turned him on to the project, working with inventors and what it’s like to play with music robots.
The jazz band at Manhattan’s Legacy Studios is swinging: piano, vibes, bass, two guitars, percussion and drums in fast, syncopated flow. It’s playing an effortlessly melodic piece that could only have been written by Pat Metheny. This much is obvious from the song’s memorable hook and harmonic complexity, but also because he is the only musician in the room. The instruments are playing themselves.
The marimba belongs to Metheny’s old friend and collaborator Gary Burton, but the mallets are being operated by robots, controlled remotely by computers in the next room. The kit, on loan from drummer Jack DeJohnette, has been deconstructed and strung on wires from a steel frame. Each cymbal or snare has its own stick, brush and beater.
“I’ve always had a problem with electronic sound,” says Metheny. “When a whole bunch of sounds are jammed into one set of speakers, that’s not the way I hear it. I’ve been searching for some kind of acoustic expression of ideas ? a means of getting something in the air moving.”
Metheny’s music robot band was developed with the help of several inventors, chief among them Eric Singer of the League of Electronic Musical Urban Robots. Orchestrion, his new album, will be released on 25 January on Nonesuch.