Stay Real (Sock It To Me, Satan)

About a year ago, I made this video for Math The Band. When I lived in Providence, Kevin and Justine lived in the same artist community that I did. We met during one of the meet & greets, and kept running into each other doing our volunteer hours. (They are, by the way, rad people.) I mentioned that I do video (among other things), and they said they were looking to make one video for every song on their new album. I was given a March deadline, and apparently I was one of the only people to stick to deadline, ‘cuz they were still waiting on videos in September.

Anyway, here’s the idea: I created a karaoke video for the song where all the lyrics were replaced with mondegreens – nonsense phrases that sound similar enough to the real one that you could mis-hear them. I had six different people listen to the song and then perform while reading these fake lyrics for the first time, then animated illustrations of the fake lyrics. It was a shit-ton of work, but also a shit-FUN of work, if you sink my lure.

I’m not entirely sure the concept comes across without explanation. Also not entirely sure I care. Kevin and Justine just officially launched this video today, so it’s up to the world to decide now. Not that I’ll ever know; Rule #1 is Never Read The Comments.


From The Archives: Guitaway!

From The Archives:

This is a project I did in my final semester a California College of the Arts. The class was called Mixing It Up – we went weekly to the East Oakland School of the Arts to work with (mostly minority, mostly low-income) kids on art projects. Predominantly we used field recorders and just talked to them, and then chopped up what we recorded. The finished works were, actually-factually, streamed over pirate radio for that year’s Whitney Biennial.

I worked mostly with a kid named Cameron. He was learning to play guitar, inspired by his love of Guitar Hero. So I brought my guitar every week. This project was made by taking a sample of him playing a single note and building a song out of it in PxTone Collage. Then I overlaid samples of him talking about music. (I’d really love to actually sequence this as a Guitar Hero song, someday, somehow…)

On a more somber note: working with Cameron was my first experience with social inequality. East Oakland is the most dangerous neighborhood in one of the Top 10 most dangerous cities in the country. Students at EOSA were often disaffected, as you’d expect teenagers to be, but then the teacher says, “oh yes, DeAndre’s problem is his best friend was shot and killed last week.” Cameron flatly said that his goal in life was to live to be 18, so he could leave Oakland forever.

I don’t have a point, but I felt it was worth mentioning.

Move Right

A micro-chiptune made in PxTone Collage. You can download the looping source file here (requires ptPlayer – I know this site’s in Japanese, look for “download”).

This was output from a rut I got into after a long stretch of not making anything. My girlfriend and I worked out an arrangement where I had to produce work every week our else she had permission to punish me by means of her choosing (fact: my girlfriend owns a taser). I made one PxTone song a week for 7 weeks under this system – this one was the best (might post more later).

That work-or-get-punished system was a good jumpstart for me, basically a Ulysses Compact to get moving our get your ass handed to you. I also coded a lot for OEM during this period. We were cribbing from Dom/sub dynamics, and if ever I am so fortunate as to give a talk on this at the IGF, I’d call it “Nintendo D/s.”