Instrumental Demos: Darksound

Music video link

Demonstration, 4 min 15 sec, 16.4 MB Flash Video

smaller screen version available on You Tube

This is one of a series of fourteen electric hammered dulcimer demonstration videos, described in detail in
"Instrumental Demonstrations: Sounds and Rhythm Styles".

I continue the second part of the series, pulling it all together into one serious jam. I was improvising a lot over the course of the four sessions, and this came out of that. This is what I am trying to demonstrate, what the dulcimer can really do, not just the beats and rhythms, not just the sounds it can make, but the power and energy that can come out of it, even in an imporve jam late at night.

When I got going on these sessions, I turned on the studio lights instead of using straight white room lighting. Visual effect is part of performance art, and especialy in these days of video, and the dulcimer is visually impressive. As the session went on I kept tweaking the lighting, playing with different angles and effects, and just so every video would not look the same. The very name of this video came from when I was reviewing the session footage and saw the results here, where I’d managed to create a pool of shadow over the dulcimer, the far bass bridges dim and red like far mountains or towers, and the hammers and hands coming out and disappearing back into that pool of darkness. It was a great effect that somehow matched the stormy darkness of the music, creating all sorts of strange and subtle connections to dream-like images in my mind. I tried to express something about it in the title, the vague shades of fantasy novels and epic folk tales, spirits and dark strangers riding in the night, Hitchcock and Tolkien, All along the Watchtower and The Highwayman. Darksound.

Well, it was late at night in a week of storms, and I have a strong imagination, a good thing in my line of work.

Comments are closed.