SpeechSplit, an automatic encoder that can break down speech into content, timbre, rhythm and pitch

Image source: https://arxiv.org/abs/2004.11284

Human speech can be divided into four important elements: content, timbre, pitch and rhythm. The first “content” component of
speech shows the primary information in speech that can be transcribed into text. The second component, “Timbre”, contains information about a speaker’s vocal characteristics; this helps to match the identity of the speaker. The speaker’s emotion is expressed by the last two components, pitch and rhythm. The variation of “Pitch” reflects aspects of the speaker’s tone, and rhythm characterizes the speed at which the speaker pronounces each word or syllable.

Obtaining unraveled representations of four speech components can be useful in speech analysis and generation applications. Currently, the available models can only untangle the timbre, while the pitch, rhythm and content information is still mixed up. Untangling the three remaining speech components is an under-determined problem without explicit annotations for each component, and expensive to obtain.

This paper offers SpeechSplit, an auto-encoder capable of breaking down speech into content, timbre, rhythm and pitch. This model can blindly break down speech into its four components by introducing three carefully designed information bottlenecks. SpeechSplit is among the first algorithms that can separately perform style transfer on timbre, pitch and rhythm without text labels.

Image source: https://anonymous0818.github.io/

Paper: https://arxiv.org/pdf/2004.11284.pdf

Audio demo (interactive): https://anonymous0818.github.io/

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The Mallett Brothers Band – Reclaimed Timbre

The Mallett Brothers Band’s latest album breathes new life into old backcountry ballads.

By Nick Schroeder
The fall of the pine is available on CD from malettbrothersband.com and downloadable from iTunes. The Malletts tour the east coast this month but return to Maine to play The shelf in Carrabassett Valley on March 25. Photo by Nate Eldridge, courtesy of the Mallett Brothers Band.

[dropcap letter=”T”]The Mallett Brothers Band packed their first four albums filled with crackling Americana, a mind-boggling patchwork of country, folk and rock. But the generally rowdy sextet hits quieter notes on their latest album, The fall of the pine, a ruminative collection of 19th century logging camp songs lent new melodies and arrangements. Through 10 pieces of rich instrumentation and absorbing harmonies, the Portland Malletts revitalize bygone tales of the triumphs and aspirations of working Mainers. For fans of state history – or fans of the Avett Brothers, Okkervil River, or even Springsteen – the Malletts record deserves serious listening.

Some 90 years ago, folklorists Fannie Hardy Eckstorm and Mary Winslow Smyth put together dozens of backwood melodies in a tome titled Le Ménestrel du Maine: folk songs and ballads of the woods and the coast, after having stubbornly traveled the state to preserve the endangered oral tradition. “Bright colors, Homeric in simplicity, here are old woods and old Yankee lumberjacks,” Eckstorm wrote in his prologue – a statement the Mallets borrow as an epigraph from their album cover notes.

Conductors Luke and Will Mallett first found an old copy of The minstrel of Maine with their parents. “We thought this would be a fun, quick little project to perform a handful of songs,” Will says. But the brothers liked it so much that they decided to involve the whole group. “We’re approaching this more as a history and art project,” says Will. “If that convinces one or two young or old to immerse themselves in historic Maine music, we feel like we’ve achieved our goal.”

On the album, the band members dig, hammer and work their way through these historic numbers and unearth a lot of authenticity and courage in the process. For a Portland boy group, some of whom have spent time in hip-hop and metal bands, their North Woods twang has never sounded so serious or believable as when they treat these songs with respect. workers. The results are both fresh and timeless. The title track comes closest to Mallett’s signature sound – a rousing jamboree that would set any tavern on fire – while ballads like “Lake Chemo” showcase the band’s ability to spin restrained melodies. Throughout, Will Mallett’s alluring delivery seems to weigh the sentiment behind every word.

Violinist Andrew Martelle said the group intended to portray the Maine lumberjack as “the North Woods equivalent of the cowboy”: a hardy outsider with a flair for philosophy and an ability for complex lyricism, as in “The Logger’s Boast”: “When the white frost gilds the valleys, the cold freezes the flow; / When many men have nothing to do but earn bread for their families; / When the swollen streams are frozen and the hills are covered in snow, / O! we will go through the wild woods, and we will go to the logging.

This song becomes the centerpiece of the record, with Will and Luke’s old man – acclaimed singer-songwriter David Mallett – contributing vocals. Elder Mallett’s altered and resonant voice has the effect of looping The fall of the pine in the continuum of Maine’s folklore heritage, as if the album floated from one river town to another, over time.

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Drahla in concert at the Timbre Room on October 4th

“Go inward and be bold.” That was Harmony Korine’s advice to aspiring creators, during a question-and-answer session at the British Film Institute in early 2016. For the newly formed Drahla, his words served as a guideline, encouraging the trio to do so. trust their own instincts, however remote they may be. they could be those of their peers. Three years later, the Leeds-formed group defined their own vital art-rock subset with Useless Coordinates, a debut album as fearless as it is thrilling.

Speaking from her current base in South East London with bassist Rob Riggs, singer / guitarist Luciel Brown recounts the somewhat chaotic gestation of the record. “Most of the last year was spent touring, so we were on a rush to write and record from early 2018 through late August.” Between a main tour, supporting slots with Ought and METZ, and several festival appearances – including at Meltdown at the behest of Robert Smith of The Cure – Brown, Riggs and Wakefield-based drummer Mike Ainsley managed 10 days in the studio. in total.

It was the unstable nature of the period that partly inspired the album title. “[Useless Coordinates] summed up all our situations, ”says Brown. “We had all of these shows coming up and we knew we had to quit our jobs and change our living conditions to make it all happen. So we had all these fixed points and deadlines, but at the same time, we felt pretty lost in it all. “

Although they felt adrift in their personal lives, artistically Drahla thrived in confusion. Experimentation was an integral part of the creative process, with Brown and Riggs continuing to swap instruments according to their live performances, as they were collectively open to abandoning traditional song structures in favor of a more instinctive approach. Another integral development turned out to be the involvement of XAM Duo’s Chris Duffin, who played saxophone over large portions of the record and whose esoteric musical tastes were influential.

Via Duffin, they discovered the work of Japanese synth pioneers Mariah and saxophonist Yasuaki Shimizu. These cult figures are among an eclectic array of musical touchpoints, from Glenn Miller and Swell Maps to LA-band Behavior. According to their early releases, No Wave and post-punk are an integral part of Drahla’s musical universe, evident in Brown’s brilliantly unmoved sleigh, in the Gang Of Four guitars on “Gilded Cloud”, and in the skronking saxophone of Duffin on “React / Revolt”, which draws parallels with the work of James Chance and Contorsions.

The sharp angles, austere tones and claustrophobic textures of the ensemble are reflected in the album artwork. Designed by Brown and Riggs – as with all previous record covers and promotional videos – the minimalist and mixed creation is inspired by the Talking Heads and Gang Of Four album cover, the work of American artist Cy Twombly and of the economic and regulated aesthetic of the Bauhaus Movement. “Drahla was born out of the need for an outlet for creative expression,” says Brown. “So the whole aesthetic is extremely important. As important as the music.

Regardless of the medium, Brown’s interests lie in looking beyond the immediate into the abstract and the indefinable. His lyrics are developed from observations, notes and poems, and the fragmented imagery is glued together for a disorienting effect. On “Gilded Cloud” elegant snapshots from Hollywood’s golden age are juxtaposed with abrasive guitar textures, “Pyramid Estate” draws parallels between ancient Egypt and the present day, and “Serenity” evokes the violent energy of a painting by Francis Bacon. Beneath the abstraction are a wide range of themes, including genre fluidity (“Invisible Sex”), city life (“Primitive Rhythm”) and artistic expression (“Unwound”).

The result is an uncompromising yet deeply rewarding start where the internal and the external, cerebral and visceral merge to a rather surprising effect. Harmony Korine would be proud.

Tickets are available here.

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Clockwise from Anna Webber exposes the essence of the stamp

As her biography suggests, Canadian-born / Brooklyn-based composer and multi-instrumentalist Anna webber Lives the overlap between avant-garde jazz and new classical music. Indeed, the material presented on Clockwise, Webber’s most recent recording now available at Pi records, presents this dynamic juxtaposition from many fascinating angles, effectively blurring the line that may exist between these related genres, which are perhaps only separated by the common rigidity of thesis and execution within them.

Performed by a septet including Webber on tenor saxophone and flutes, Jeremy Viner (tenor sax and clarinet), Jacob Garchik (trombone), Christophe Hoffmann (cello), Matt mitchell (piano), Chris Tordini (low) and Ches smith (percussion), Clockwise is a direct exploration and sometimes re-imagining of works from the modern classical canon that influenced Webber’s development as an artist. Webber’s finely crafted compositions are drawn from a focused study of major works, particularly for percussion, by a multitude of undisputed twentieth-century masters, including Iannis Xenakis, Morton Feldman, Edgard Varése, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Milton Babbitt and John Cage. Webber’s interest lies in examining timbre (rather than pitch and harmony) as the dominant formal element and whether a cohesive piece can be arranged in the absence of these latter more components. familiar.

Anna Webber Septet – Photo by Liz Kosack

While the meticulously crafted pieces that make up Webber’s collection Clockwise emerge from a purely timbral atmosphere or a rhythmic motif, there is a coherent evolution drawn through each work by a thread of harmonic material and focused on the pitch. It seems clear that Webber’s intention is not to create a tonal void in reaction to the pitchless pieces she examines, and in each case (aside from a few shorter interludes) the arc she traverses establishes a contrast pattern that starts with a concept. and concludes with the other.

Sufficient room is given in many cases to each of Webber’s talents (including herself) to perform solo and improvise, unfolding in periods reminiscent of a varied jazz-centric paradigm reminiscent of Herbie Hancock, Charlie Haden, Cecil Taylor, Billy Cobham and others, all layered on the ubiquitous specter of the aforementioned classic titans.

Clockwisethe opening and closing tracks, Korē II and Korē I respectively, are inspired by Xenakis’ masterpiece of percussion Persephasa and offer a compelling analogue to this work, mimicking the rigid and primitive structures of Xenakis with extensive percussion techniques in winds and strings. Idiom II goes more in the direction of a John McLaughlin / Mahavishnu Orchestra vibe, and is in fact the only composition on the record without a direct parallel to another existing work, drawing instead on Webber’s own improvisational language.

King of Denmark I / Loper first takes the listener away from a sparkling nebula of timbral ether, then picks up where Idiom II seemed to stop, with a heavy sequence of chords that seem to continually rise up a harmonic scale to an unstable precipice. The first section of this piece, with its companions, King of Denmark II and III are informed by the graphic composition of the same name of Morton Feldman, while Loper draws elements from Ionization by Varèse.

Anna Webber - Photo by Evan Shay

Anna Webber – Photo by Evan Shay

King of Denmark II takes the form of an atmospheric interlude of roaring membranes, sharp bowed cymbals and buzzing crystalline sounds housed in a long crescendo. The top of the crescendo opens like a door to the spacious world of the titular track, Clockwise, inspired by Stockhausen Zyklus. Clockwise begins with a long virtuoso flute solo spread over a fragmented bassline that unfolds like a slow-motion bebop. The cadential spiral of Loper covers, enclosed in an effervescent and pointillist sound, thoughtfully laying the foundations of the following piece, Deploy, which runs through a similar arc from a roomy staccato to a muscular conclusion featuring the full ensemble.

The following two interludes further illustrate Webber’s stylistic pendulum arc. Oscillating from the improvised avant-jazz character of the tenor sax on Best hologram and the spectral and metallic sparkle of King of Denmark III, the listener is finally guided to Korē I, which closes the circle (or perhaps completes a revolution around the titular clock face) with a clear resumption of the overall concept of timbre instead of harmony.

The question posed in the cover notes of whether a piece can be built without pitch or harmony and, if so, what makes it cohesive is often obscured by the luscious and exciting harmonic and melodic content woven throughout. Clockwise. It is of course only by implication that the listener can assume that Webber’s intention is to answer this question by synthesizing these works. Alternatively, what she can do is illustrate these possibilities by using music to rephrase the question in an abstract way. More often than not, one gets the impression that Webber’s position opposes the nebulous austerity of pure timbre as it seems to resolve each piece or direct each interlude of percussive entropy towards fertile and harmonic landscapes teeming with improvisation on complex changes. Either way, Webber has crafted an enchanting cycle of compositions worthy of repeated listening and analysis, and the assured discovery of many embedded truths.

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Toni Morrison’s therapeutic radicalism imbued her writing with a stamp that resonates through time and place-World News, Firstpost

Toni Morrison’s prose is also an engagement with the ways in which the erosion of language, autonomy, tradition, and community has profound implications for the psychological lives of black subjects.

The passing of Toni Morrison earlier this week leaves an irreparable void in the transnational cultural landscape. She was not only an archivist of unprecedented eloquence, expressing the history of black Americans in its various mundane, euphoric and abysmal dimensions; his works, like his strong intellectual ethics, have also examined with lucid honesty and unwavering compassion, the lingering legacy of racial injustice in the form of trauma, alienation and fragmented relationships. Of The bluest eye, through Beloved and Sula, To paradise, Jazz, and Song of Solomon, Morrison’s writing is passionately invested in the elaboration of the relation of language to the silences on which white empires are built, and to the disruptive power of the unspeakable, those atrocious or ecstatic experiences which attack the coherence of the whole personality. by pushing grammar and syntax to their limits. .

How to navigate through the many injunctions to hold one’s voice, how to use a kind of language to reconstitute the abrasions left by another, how to inhabit the literary technique to authentically configure through the image, the gesture and the song, the forbidden, the sublime, and oblivion: Morrison’s books portray survival, hope and recovery by exploring the deep structure of racism. Racism as she sees it is, among other things, the exhaustion over the course of history of the vital richness of black existence, its emotional textures, its creative practices and sensory topographies, its unique ways of to feel, to remember and to be in the world. As a writer seeking to remedy this loss through what Sethe in Beloved (1987) calls ‘memory’, Morrison’s prose is also an engagement with the ways in which the erosion of language, autonomy, tradition, and community has profound implications for the psychological lives of black subjects. .

In Morrison’s narrative universes, there is no restitution without promise and possibility of healing, no effective idiom of protest without space for care, and no true politics of subversion without vulnerability. The work of freedom and rehabilitation is incomplete without the identification of the underlying, inherited grief and its participation in a shared task of grief. It is this therapeutic radicalism, his awareness of the inextricable connection between activism and affect, politics and the psyche, empowerment and healing, that gives Morrison’s writing a resonant timbre through time and time. space.

Nobel laureate Toni Morrison died on August 5, 2019. Image via Twitter

Racist erasures

Morrison began her career with a powerful critique of the invisibilization and erasure of African American culture brought about by the imposition of norms, ideals and standards, including those defining female beauty, which are exclusively and homogeneously white. The object of his criticism in The bluest eye (1970) is the painful coming of age of its young protagonist Pecola Breedlove, and the schizophrenic self-division produced by his obsessive fixation on whiteness is matched only by a self-destructive disgust. A black girl surrounded by white stereotypes of desirability in a dizzying excess of popular culture and returning pedagogical credentials, proof of her own “ugliness,” Pecola is defeated by what Morrison identifies as the absence of affirmative signs of difference and stimulants. in which to anchor its identity. In Beloved, Morrison continues to explore the dilemmas of inhabiting ideologically charged spaces from which alternative paradigms of self-representation have been displaced by the hegemony of white universalism. However, the antithesis of Beloved as Pecola comes as a phantom word struggling to acquire semantic legitimacy. It embodies the repressed reverse side of the dominant systems of meaning, a discarded and erased testimony that resurrects from exile to liberate black vernaculars. His insatiable demand for stories, his endless questions about the recesses of the characters’ past, their desires, their sorrows, their material treasures and their clandestine journeys, allows Sethe and his family to gradually reconstruct the history of the Sweet Home community in a vocabulary which is authentically and inalienably theirs.

Healing tongue

The need to reclaim a language for oneself is not simply a political gesture in Toni Morrison’s writing. It is linked to the process of recovering, in both senses of the word, from the ill effects of living in the shadow of the race. “Make up a story … tell us what the world has been like to you in the dark places and in the light.” Don’t tell us what to believe, what to fear. Show us the wide skirt of belief and the point that unties the caul of fear » – that’s Morrison’s maxim for writing. Language is not only the place of contestation of claims of personality and property, of rights and privileges, of the extension of visibility to those who are erased from the social horizon; it is also the means in and through which the black community can practice self-esteem and perform acts of self-healing. Healing is one of Morrison’s central concerns, recurring as an event, metaphor, and concept in many of his fictional and non-fictional works.

Read also: Toni Morrison, a giant of American literature, perfected a confluence of lyricism and pragmatic truth

In an article written for The nation in 2004, following the re-election of George Bush, Morrison struggles with paralyzing desperation to console himself by recalling the precise role of creative and journalistic writing as bastions of resistance and forces of dissent amid chaos organized designed by modern neoliberalism. States. Forms of counter-discourse are not only necessary as instruments of exhibition, they also offer alternatives to the languages ​​of surveillance, war and commodification. In his Nobel Lecture, Morrison masterfully exposes the relationship between language and forms of institutional or ideological control, be it white imperialism, Western capitalism or American racism. Power is consolidated by suppressing linguistic diversity and by usurping the expressive resources of those it subjugates. Among the many ubiquitous effects of the history of racism in America, the plundering, impoverishment and erasure of the languages ​​of black communities is the most insidious, because to render a society devoid of its modes of creating meaning is take away its ability to recognize itself in its singularity and deprive it of the means to cope with this loss.

Toni Morrisons' therapeutic radicalism has imbued her writing with a timbre that resonates through time and space.

Language is what brings the writer Toni Morrison into the same space as her oppressed and hurt characters.

For Morrison, cultural recovery, the restoration of the health and vigor of black societies eviscerated by colonialism, slavery and institutional racism, must go through the restoration and taking possession of the repertoire of linguistic forms brutalized by the exercise of white supremacy. Writing, conversation, artistic creation, and the daily processes of remembering and translating are essential to collective healing. Language is what brings Morrison the writer into the same space as her oppressed and injured characters, allowing her to offer her craft as a saving common ground:There is no time for despair, “she said,” no room for self-pity, no need for silence, no room for fear. We speak, we write, we make language. This is how civilizations heal.

Racial trauma and recovery

An important part of Morrison’s critical strategy in dealing with questions of the Black experience is his close attention to the psychological registers of the race, the symptoms of its debilitating presence in daily life, and its role in shaping the race. collective unconscious of a community. Morrison is wary of reducing the complexities of African American lives to quantifiable sociological data, even though she refrains from transforming her characters into symbolic and mythical archetypes. In his passionate meditations on language, Morrison suggests that “language can never ‘encompass’ slavery, genocide, war. Nor should he aspire to arrogance to be able to do so. Its strength, its bliss is within its reach towards the ineffable.

The history of slavery thus appears in Beloved not in a linear or direct fashion, but through a slow and irregular recall dispersed throughout the story in the form of linguistic fragments, bodily sensations and sequences of images. Sethe and Paul D, both former runaway slaves, negotiate the trauma through repressive mechanisms: the scar tissue on Sethe’s back is a constant reminder and intimate presence of the experience of racist violence, even then. that the numbness of his skin serves as an external marker of buried and unresolved psychic wounds. Paul D, his lover, imagines a coping mechanism in the form of an image of a rusty iron box, in which he imagines hiding his scarifying memories of the plantation. However with Beloved’s return from the grave to her mother’s house as a guest whose radical otherness is unconditionally welcomed by Sethe, and following her visceral hunger for the testimonies of her loved ones, storytelling, nomination, reiteration, rhythm and verbal discourse become modes of materializing repressed memories and bringing about the progressive metamorphosis of the nature of the trauma.

These unofficial and intimate discourses of racial memory constitute a new language born in spaces of education, empathy and hospitality, through which accumulated trauma can be expressed, transformed and released. In Beloved more than anywhere else, Morrison develops the association between racism, violation and psychic injury, and explores the therapeutic potential of heteroglossic and polyphonic discourses on the fringes of official statist narratives. It is by radicalizing language, by freeing it from what Morrison Playing in the dark (1993) calls “hidden signs of racial superiority, cultural hegemony, and disdainful ‘otherness’ of people and language” as the rich and vibrant emotional and psychic aspects of experience, history, and language. testimony of blacks can be articulated. For Morrison, in order to take part in the atrocity of racism, we must look beyond the language of rights, autonomy and political emancipation, into these alternative micro-languages ​​of private and creative engagements with the grief, loss, pain and death. , and broaden the concept of justice to include healing.

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Album review: Timbre Ghost keeps it simple and haunting on the latest record

Dustin Tessier got the job done. If you read a bit about his Ghost Stamp project, it is clear that this is the avenue for exorcising a lot of emotions. He seeks to make music that blooms from the ashes of all of life’s challenges, and he has a determination and motivation that comes through clearly in his interviews, promotional material, and social media posts.

Of course, as anyone reading this review knows, we’re trying to focus on the music – and the music alone – here. That’s not to say that there aren’t things in people’s lives that can help shed light on their art or better understand where an artist comes from. This is just to say that the music should ideally be able to stand on its own, without needing any additional information. So the question is, does “Life, Death, & Disintegration” exist successfully, without any history?

The answer: hell, yeah. What we have here is a guy who makes guitar music easy and relaxing. Three agreements and the truth. To take it a step further, it’s stuff influenced by (or similar to) artists like Neil Young and Will Oldham, and even people like Radiohead and Trampled by Turtles. The eight songs “Life, Death, & Disintegration” (we won’t count the unnecessary “radio edits” of two tracks from the album that are nailed down at the end) speak of simplicity, humanity and frankness, at least in its sound.

A song like “Melody” has its own role on the record – being kind of an outright marriage of Jackson Browne and the Beach Boys – and it doesn’t really sound like the other songs around it, but it just fits in. very well with them because of its structure and approach.

“Empty Sky” is a fiery Crazy Horse / My Morning Jacket hybrid, with Tessier’s crisp voice hovering over it, painting images of open roads, starry skies, new beginnings and crumbling worlds. It’s nice and softly groove, with harmonies that reinforce the main melodies very well. (There are, in fact, a lot of solid but subtle hooks on this album.)

“Pay No Mind” is built around a drone and a few lines of guitar à la Andy Summers. It practically asks to be put in a movie where someone, determined, drives through a rainstorm with a puckered forehead. The only problem with this one is that it never really opens and goes wild with the flood that is won – after more than three minutes of tension, the song is unceremoniously muffled with the sound of a tape recorder sounding out. ‘stopped .

That might be the only real review of the record as a whole – sometimes it’s a little too shy to go to the really fantastic places he really seems like he wants to go. “Lay Low” might benefit from a few crisp guitar overdubs here and there, “Coming Down” only calls for a few sawn melodic strings in the background, and the hypnotic “Alone” (which features vocals and piano from the former Duluthian Mary Bue de Tessier) could certainly be psychedelic, especially as the outro gains momentum through repetition. A nice tremolo guitar, for example, would have added a bit more movement and drama.

So, a few spices are missing, and there are times when Tessier’s voice gets a bit buried in the mix or seems too shy. But, overall, it’s quality material. Tessier really has something here, but he still has plenty of room to flesh out his ghost more in the future.

Artist: Stamp ghost

Album: “Life, death and disintegration”

Recorded at: Blue Bell Knoll Studios, Minneapolis

Produced by: Dustin Tessier

Website: www.timbreghost.com

Staff: Dustin Tessier (vocals, guitar, drums, etc.), many guests in various capacities

Upcoming show: 8 p.m. Saturday with Sarah Krueger and Superior Siren at Blush, 18 N. 1st Ave.

Tickets: $ 7, 21 and more

Click here to listen to the album.

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Goodbye bassist Breck Long. Get ready for Stamp Stamp

The Tallahassee music community lost a bass player ace and a good guy this month.

Electric bassist Breck Long, 65, died on March 24. A visitation to Long will take place from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. on Friday, March 30 at Bevis Funeral Home, 200 John Knox Road.

“My favorite drummer is Keith Moon and Breck was the closest I’ve ever played to John Entwistle,” drummer Mick Buchanan said this week. “Breck-o has performed in many groups in Tallahassee since the 1970s, but was best known for founding the legendary T-town band called Wrack of Spam.”

Buchanan and Long performed together in The Young Neils. In light of full disclosure, I have a soft spot for Young Neils because the older musicians gave my guitarist nephew, Hub Chason, now 18, his first paid concert in 2012 as part of the Winter Festival. . The incredibly likeable Long couldn’t have been nicer to the aspiring preteen guitarist and gave him plenty of helpful advice during rehearsals.

Long grew up in Albany, Georgia, but lived in Tallahassee for over 35 years. During this time, Long performed in bands such as The Swingin ‘Harpoon Band, Blue Phoenix, RoadHouse, The Common Taters and many more. If there was a jam session at Too Oyster Bar and Grill in Ouzts, there’s a good chance Long is probably somewhere nearby.

While rock and blues were Long’s first loves, he was also an avid golfer, a Florida Gators fan, and adored dachshunds. What’s not to love with a guy who loves dachshunds? What a lie.

In honor of Long, go out and listen to live music. Here is the weekly guided tour of some shows to discover:

Let’s hear it for Hubbard

Florida State Horn Player and Music Teacher Scotty Barnhart, who is also the director of the Count Basie Orchestra, honors one of his mentors, the late trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, during a performance at 7 p.m. Friday at B Sharp’s Jazz Cafe, 648 W Brevard St. There is $ 20 at the door or $ 10 for students. Doors open at 6 p.m. Visit www.b-sharps.com.

Hubbard, who died in 2008, would have turned 80 on April 8, so the show is also a birthday celebration. Barnhart will be joined by drummer Leon Anderson, bassist Mikailo Kasha and pianist Bill Peterson.

“We’ll be covering many of his best tracks, including some funky ’70s,” Barnhart said.

Hey this place is a zoo

Get off the floor and dance to energetic washboard-based rhythms as well as some swamp waltzes with JB’s ZydecoZoo at 9 p.m. Friday at the Bradfordville Blues Club, 7152 Moses Lane. Tickets are $ 15 in advance and $ 20 at the door. Visit www.bradfordvilleblues.com.

Up to Gatorbone

The Gatorbone group is hosting a CD release party for her new album, “Blue Moon,” at 8 pm Friday at The Junction @ Monroe, 2011 S. Monroe St. There is a $ 10 cover charge at the door. Visit www.junctionatmonroe.com.

Saxophone times four

The saxophone quartet Project merger conducts a guest artist recital Saturday at 4 p.m. at the Dohnanyi Recital Hall, in the Housewright Building of the Florida State College of Music. It’s free and open to the public.

Canadian band Timbre Timbre brings their dark, gloomy sound to FSU on Saturday night.

In the dark

Fans of Nick Cave, The Black Heart Procession or The Drones won’t want to miss the Canadian band Stamp Stamp when he spins his dark, brooding magic at 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Club Downunder in the Florida State Student Union. Timbre Timbre is on the road to promote their new album, “Sincerely, Future Pollution”, which will be released on April 7th. Tickets are $ 12 for the general public and free for FSU students at the door. You must be 18 or over to participate.

See Orange in Midtown

Who knows what the Georgia-based band The constant orange will come out of its musical bag – a funk riff, a little band jam groove, an impassive cover of Gloria Gaynor’s disco hit “I Will Survive” – ​​when it kicks off at 9:30 pm Saturday at Fifth & Thomas, 1122 Thomasville Road. There is no cover charge, but you must be 21 or over to participate.

The monkey meets the dog

Two of Tallahassee’s hottest bands with animals in the names, Sage monkey and The dog Apollo, share the stage starting at 8:30 p.m. Saturday at Wilbury, 513 W. Gaines St. There may or may not be a cover charge, so bring cash just in case.

The return of the pianist

The pounding of Savannah’s piano Victor wainwright and his band The Train mingle with these pieces for a show at 9 p.m. Saturday at the Bradfordville Blues Club, 7152 Moses Lane. Advance tickets are $ 30 and it’s $ 35 on the day of the show. Visit www.bradfordvilleblues. com.

Spend the Easter afternoon at B Sharp's Jazz Cafe with the cheerful Kontra Duo harp.

Harp at Easter

Help digest the Easter holiday when Miami Kontra Duo, featuring a saxophone and a very large harp, performs at 2 p.m. Sunday at B Sharp’s Jazz Cafe, 648 W Brevard St. The Kontra Duo was first formed at Florida State College of Music in 2010. There has $ 20 blanket at the door. Doors open at 6 p.m. A reception is also planned. Visit www.b-sharps.com.

The hunt is on

There is something slightly haunting and otherworldly about the sound of Phoebe Hunt and the Gatherers. Maybe it’s the violin, maybe it’s the drifting harmonies. Find out when the band takes the stage at 7:30 p.m. Thursday at Fifth & Thomas, 1122 Thomasville Road. Tickets are $ 15 in advance and $ 20 on the day of the show. You must be 21 or over to participate. Visit www.fifthandthomas.com.

And in other musical notes

The very versatile group Brown goose, who can play any style of music and loves hanging out at George “Atomic Dog” Clinton’s studio in Tallahassee, is having a party at 9:30 pm Friday at Fifth & Thomas in Midtown. Atlanta rock band Greco is also showing. There is no cover charge, but you must be 21 or over to enter. … Free wheel took a tour around Lake Ella with a concert at 8 p.m. Friday at Legion Hall, 229 Lake Ella Drive. Coverage is $ 8 per person or $ 15 per couple. … Songwriters Pat Puckett and Brett Richter Take an acoustic twist at a Campfire Series show at 9 p.m. Friday at Indianhead Factory, 1020 E. Indianhead Drive. There is a $ 5 cover charge at the door. … The Red Hills Group is on the porch from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturdays at Island Wings, 1370 Market St. There is no blanket. … Get your groove on Olivia Newton John hits, Bread and more sweet rockers when Naugahyde Park presents its “77 Dance Party Couples-Skate” at 8 p.m. Saturday at American Legion Hall on the shores of Lake Ella. It’s $ 8 to get in and it’s a party for all ages. … To listen The David Detweiler trio play some songs from the great Sonny Rollins starting at 8 p.m. Saturday at Black Dog on the Square, 567 Industrial Drive in Railroad Square Art Park. It’s $ 5 at the door. … check out some smooth guitar licks when The Rachel Hillman Group struts at 8 p.m. on Saturdays at the Blue Tavern, 1206 N. Monroe St. There is a $ 5 cover charge. … Who can resist a live string quartet playing Beethoven in a Tiki bar? Pass when the Classic revolution gang presents their “String Spectacular” at 8:30 p.m. Tuesday at Waterworks, 1133 Thomasville Road in Midtown. There is no cover but you must be 21 or over to enter. … Just a warning: The rather attractive and fabulous group Larkin Poe is intended for a concert at FSU’s Club Downunder on April 8. Watch the LP live and thank me later. Stay tuned for more.

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Moms adjust the timbre of their voices when talking to their babies

Voices carry so much information. Joy and anger, desires, comfort, vocabulary lessons. As babies discover their world, their mother’s voice is an especially powerful tool. One way for mothers to use this tool is to speak in the often ridiculous and sometimes condescending language of baby.

Also called “mom”, this is a high-pitched, exaggerated language, full of short, slow sentences and great vocal impulses. And when faced with a little human, pretty much everyone – not just mothers, fathers, and grandparents – does it instinctively.

Now a study has come up with another way mothers modulate their voice during baby talk. Instead of focusing on changes such as pitch and rhythm, researchers focused on the timbre, “color” or quality of a sound.

The tone is a bit nebulous, a kind of “know when you hear it”. For example, the timbre of a reed clarinet differs from that of a grandiloquent trumpet, even when both instruments strike the same note. The same goes for the vocals: when you hear the song “Hurt” you don’t need to check if it’s Trent Reznor from Nine Inch Nails or Johnny Cash singing it. The voiceprints make it obvious.

It turns out the stamp is not set in stone. People – mothers in particular – change their tone, depending on whether they are talking to their baby or an adult, scientists report online Oct. 12 in Current biology.

For the study, 12 English-speaking moms brought their babies to a Princeton lab. The researchers recorded the women talking or reading to their babies aged 7 to 12 months, and talking with an adult.

An algorithm sorted the stamp data derived from both infant and adult directed speech, and used that input to create a mathematical classifier. Based on speech snippets, the classifier could then tell if a mother was speaking with an adult or with her baby. The differences in timbre between speech intended for babies and adults were obvious enough that a computer program could tell them apart.

Similar timbre changes were also evident in other languages, the researchers found. These baby-focused changes occurred in 12 different women who spoke Cantonese, French, German, Hebrew, Hungarian, Polish, Russian, Mandarin, or Spanish – a consistency that suggests this aspect of baby language is universal.

Mathematically defined, these timbre changes were consistent across females and across languages, but it’s still unclear what vocal qualities caused the change. “It probably combines several characteristics, such as brightness, respiration, purity or nasality,” says Elise Piazza, study co-author, cognitive neuroscientist at Princeton University. She and her colleagues plan to study these attributes to see if babies pay more attention to some of them.

It is not yet known whether babies perceive and use their mother’s stamp information. Babies recognize their mother’s voice; they may also recognize their mother’s baby patch. Babies can distinguish differences in timbre between musical instruments, so they can probably detect differences in timbre in spoken language, Piazza explains.

The work “highlights a new signal that mothers are using implicitly,” says Piazza. The purpose of this signal is not yet clear, but researchers suspect that the change in timbre may emotionally engage babies and help them learn language.

People can’t just reserve stamp changes for babies, Piazza points out. Politicians speaking to voters, high school teachers speaking to a classroom, and lovers whispering to each other can all shift their stamp to convey… something.

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Timber Timbre’s Taylor Kirk refuses to give in to modern despair

Illustration by Dougall Dawson
The crossing line of Sincerely, Future PollutionWood stamps latest release on Arts & Crafts and City Slang – is the impermanence and precariousness of modern civilizations, Taylor Kirk told me. “I had the feeling of this great distraction, of the fragility of these modern and dystopian urban civilizations, of the idea that things are bigger and more complex, bubbling and stirring under the city,” said the author. -composer and singer. “Things feel really fast.” Some of these sentiments are expressed in the “Western Questions” deck, perhaps alluding to the cynicism and fear that permeates the status quo. “Hollywood halo, UFO light seeping from every screen. Western issues, desperate elections, Halloween campaign.” Previously, Kirk was in charge of instrumentation when he was in the recording studio. With the new album he sang and produced, while Mathieu Charbonneau, Simon Trottier and Olivier Fairfield took care of everything else. “To me that’s why it sounds so good because [I wasn’t] there shit, ”Kirk said. Such an arrangement could explain the album’s departure from the genre Americana, including Hot dreams, the group’s last record, released about three years ago and shortlisted for a Polaris Music Prize. And if it holds up, Sincerely, Future Pollution is a far cry from the eponym of Timber Timbre. Timber Timbre’s wheelhouse was typically imbued with a folk and blues spirit, sometimes drawing inspiration from the occult and the weird. The integration of the weird into much of the band’s music is the result of Taylor Kirk’s affinity for the supernatural. “I’ve always been obsessed with magical objects, certain types of charged images, art, rituals,” he said. This obsession is reflected in the first line of “Magic Arrow”, a song of the same title: “Mystic pam, gem and tarot, some escape your magic arrow”.

Kirk grew up in Brooklin, Ontario, a small rural community north of Whitby, and attended mass weekly with his parents. These visits became the fodder of his fascinations. “I met a lot of Mormons growing up and I was always quite curious about these superstitions. My mother was very superstitious.” It was the environment of the United Church that prompted him to become a musician. Kirk said he saw a child of his eldest perform a cover of “Heart-Shaped Box” and felt so moved by it. “I could feel it in my body and I couldn’t believe this guy had the knowledge to do this. I demanded that he give me guitar lessons in that same basement.” When he started working on Cedar shakes, a woody, independently produced album that was released in 2006, he listened to Alan Lomax’s folk anthology, a collection of field recordings of gospel ballads and folk music across the south. It is not surprising that Kirk also took inspiration from Talk Talk, namely Rise and Spirit of Eden, two “alchemical” albums, as he described it. I asked him how he would characterize Timber Timbre’s latest music. He compared it to Vangelis’ score on Blade runner. “There was something about the feeling,” Kirk said. “There was something very cold and threatening, but also very promising, or promising.” “Skin Tone”, an instrumental on Sincerely, Future Pollution, testifies to this. I guess Kirk is happy: he told me he tries to avoid recycling a particular sound. This record is proof of that. “I’m not crazy about bands that sound more and more like themselves or like that one thing,” he said. “I would rather do something different each time, rather than continue to refine. With this record, there is less fetishization of Americana, the type of music that I had been obsessed with in the past. palette, the instrumentation is very different for me. These sounds were never really part of my lexicon. “

Sincerely, Future Pollution composes intoxicating synths and basslines, channeling 80s music. Typical Timber Timbre elements are still present, such as Kirk’s vocal vocals and steel accompaniment. Sharp and expertly placed guitars and thrilling rhythms continue to be heard. The album is dark, threatening and yet reassuring, a delicate balance that weighs on most of the group’s work. While some songs may be somewhat inspired by events in the United States, they should not be confused with a de facto political record. The fallout from President Donald Trump’s election was just hard to ignore, Kirk said. “The album seemed to mean something else after the election – those few little references really came through. I enjoyed the privilege of being a musician who can be left on my own so I can work my shit.” did he declare. “Somehow it seemed impossible this time to stay completely away from [politics] because you couldn’t not talk about it. I think there was this frequency of anxiety that was right all over the place all the time. And I think it burst my little bubble that I usually work in. ”
Julien Gignac is a writer living in Toronto. Follow him on Twitter.

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Linda Catlin Smith on Another Stamp

Linda catlin smith


Apartment House and Bozzini Quartet

Another Stamp at 105X2

Born in the United States and residing in Canada for over a quarter of a century, Linda catlin smith has become a staple on this country’s cultural radar. She was greeted and feted as one of the Canadian women. For example, she is only the second woman to win the Jules Léger Prize for Chamber Music and has a long association with the ArrayMusic ensemble, of which she was artistic director. Several recordings of his music have been released, but last year Dirt road won its critical praise and belated review in the United States, ending up on many reviewers’ “best of the year” lists (including mine). Posted by Another Timbre, Dirt road was just a taste of this label’s commitment to Canadian music. Another stamp recently released a set of five recordings in their Canadian Composers series (another set of five is expected later this year). Catlin Smith figures prominently, with the double disc vagabond serving as volume 1 in the series. Other composers include Martin Arnold, Isiah Ceccarelli, Chlyoko Szlavnics, and Marc Sabat.

Drifter program is executed by two groups of rooms: Apartment House and Bozzini Quartet. The “drift” in question is not the itinerant hitchhiking, but rather the calm tempo routes frequently chosen by Catlin Smith. The piano trio Far from the shore, played here by Philip Thomas, Anton Lukiszevieze and Mira Benjamin, is an example. Slow and smooth music for the trio, often reminiscent of Morton Feldman’s approach (one Catlin Smith recognizes as a distinctive influence on his work) alongside passages of colorful piano chords. The spectrum passes from inexorably repeated constrained sets of pitches, to chromatic counterpoint, to whole washes of sound. The intuitive sensitivity that Catlin Smith claims as his approach in preference to any dogmatic systematization clearly allows him to move on an ever-changing musical terrain, while retaining an organic sense of each piece. How does she deal with this? An interview in the booklet accompanying the ensemble of Canadian composers quotes her as: “Listening. Lots of listening. You could do worse as a songwriter in any style of listening as intently as Catlin Smith does.

Cantelina (2013) for viola and vibraphone, played by Emma Richards and Simon Limbrick, presents another interest of the composer, that of heterogeneous instrumental chords. Here and in the Quintet with piano (2014), another of Catlin Smith’s predilections, exploring a closely related counterpoint in close register positions, is presented. The overlap in Cantilena is quite appealing (it’s a combination that should be explored by more composers and one that I’ll keep in my hip pocket) and it also affects when written roughly in the quintet. The title work is also for a seemingly difficult combination, piano and classical guitar, performed by Philippe thomas and Diego Castro Magazine, but Catlin Smith’s soft touches of coloristic harmony and uneven ostinatos also work wonderfully in this duo setting. My Who Trembled (1999), played by Thomas, Benjamin and Limbrick, has a pulse piano part which is joined by a sustained violin and bowed percussion. An interesting notation device is used: rather than writing down all the notes and rhythms, the composer specifies that the musicians silently read a poem by Rimbaud and use his rhythms of speech to shape the musical work (for example, the percussionist draws his attack points from stressed French syllables).

Bozzini Quartet appears in two string quartets by Catlin Smith. Folkestone (1999) pits a persistent violin line against articulated, syncopated slow chord blocks played by the other three members (these have an almost accordion quality in their spacing). Gradually, other lines emerge from the texture, the cello playing a poignant solo dissonant with the rest of the harmony. The chord passages begin to disperse, bringing the place of activity closer to the sustained sound of the violin. flautando melody. The mid-register lines now break free and the chords move in double time for a brief stretch before giving way to widely spaced and slowly articulated harmonies again. This alternation of patterns includes still other elements to introduce: pizzicatos, duets, flashes of brilliance in harmonic fourths and a bass melody for cello made really heavy by the registers against which it was balanced before. Check-in over 32 minutes, Folkestone is a substantial and utterly captivating composition. Gondola involves quartet members coming in and out in unison and a gentle rocking boat rhythm that Catlin Smith describes as: in the water. “

Evocative images for a truly evocative musical creation. vagabond is an album (a double album moreover) to be savored.

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