This weekend has been quite the treasure hunt. After an October performance at ArtXchange Gallery, in which I provided musical accompaniment for a Butoh performance by Shinjo, the poet involved in the performance, Piper Leigh, invited me to collaborate in an audiovisual installation to be featured in a museum in Santa Fe, New Mexico.
In Piper's poetry is mist and memory, dream, distance and loss, so I went in search of a jack-in-the-box. One of my very earliest musical memories was a wonderfully clunky jack-in-the-box. It sounded like a bass marimba, and you could wind it forward (to get 'Pop Goes the Weasel') or backwards (for a vaguely familiar tune). You could even wind it back and forth to get excellent rhythmically intricate marimba-like solos. I came away from this weekend's search with a variety of odd treasures found in local recycle shops. A toy piano and xylophone, windchimes, a rain stick, a (particularly tacky) Tinkerbell snowglobe/music box and, at a truly fascinating junkyard, a broken shower curtain rod (with the potential to be an endblown slideflute). These, along with a prepared guitar, frame drum, saluang (Sumatran bamboo flute, a gift from my randai teacher), a cat toy, reversed player piano, cell phone speaker, wine glasses, a fishbowl and some marbles, I was set.
Still no jack-in-the-box, though