I play solo music by myself and others… composed and improvised… and plenty of cases in between.
For current program info, see Solo Program 2019.
Below a few historical bits and bobs.
Groundwave Rondo (2012)
Groundwave Rondo is a series of pieces for contrabass and “tape”, each version of which is made new (as often as possible) on the way to the gig. While on the train, I improvise for 15 minutes with an AM radio and record it. The radio signal is obliterated by interferences from the train motor, overhead cable, and onboard electronics, turning my receiver into a sort of synthesizer which can be modulated by turning the frequency dial. The recording is played back unedited in the concert – without my having heard it – and we play a duet together.
The electronics in the video above were recorded on the train from Leeds to York, England on 22 October 2013.
See also Groundwave Rondo (Magnetic Traveling), a radio piece consisting of a hybridization of the piece with Christina Kubisch’s electromagnetic sounds.
Wherefor do you, so oft, so oft (2011)
This piece for vocalizing contrabassist perverts a song by the great Elizabethan composer and lutenist John Dowland entitled Lady If You So Spite Me. Richard Barrett flatteringly calls this piece “music you can really slit your wrist to.” For this he deserves christopherisnow.com’s one and only emoticon: ;)
Moonlight in Vermisst (2010)
A collage of solo improvisations recorded over the course of a Saturday in August 2010 in the hay loft at Schloss Schrattenberg, St. Lorenz bei Scheifling, Austria, AKA Hotel Pupik. In the Mur river valley, the weather changes fast, as do the sounds of the valley’s trains, birds, planes, and ghosts.
No overdubs, no effects.
Recorded by Attila Faravelli. Mixed and edited by Christopher A. Williams.
* = personal dedication
First Spectrum of the Contrabass, Chris Adler, 2002 *
Détale, Ben Leeds Carson, 2003 *
Three Songs, Ben Leeds Carson, 2009 *
A Thorough Bass, and thoroughly… based, Philip Corner, 2011
lipidvesikel, Werner Dafeldecker, 2018 *
umeš li ti da laješ?, Milica Djordjevic, 2010 *
Ricercare à 3, Robert Erickson, 1967
Song 18, Michael Finnissy, 1976
Inside, Kenneth Gaburo, 1968
Jade Mountain Soundings, Malcolm Goldstein, 1988 on and on and always slowly nowhere…, Malcolm Goldstein , ???
bass, Kerry Hagan, 2012 *
At Once by Other Ones, Cristyn Magnus , 2001-2 *
Kor, Yoav Pasovsky, 2010 *
Variations for Double Bass, Ben Patterson, 1960
Monody II, George Perle, 1962
Distancia(s), Ana María Rodriguez, 2010 *
Spectral Canon, Marc Sabat, 2005
assigned #12, James Saunders, 2010 *
Binary Experiment for James Tenney, Jeff Trevino, 2005
Persephone, Erik Ulman, 2003 *
For 1, 2, or 3 People, Christian Wolff