Over The Edge on DO or DIY on WFMU

Over The Edge
DO or DIY with People Like Us – Monday, 19 June 2017 – 6pm
https://wfmu.org/playlists/pl
From 1981 to 2015, Negativland‘s Don Joyce hosted Over The Edge, the longest running block of freeform live mix collage radio in broadcast history — a program which continues today, having been inherited by long time show participant and collaborator Jon Leidecker. In this very Wobbly interview, Vicki and Jon discuss the history of collage radio, and the slow evolution of the Edge, as well as its many possible futures, both True and False.
http://www.detritus.net/wobbly/ | https://archive.org/details/ote

A Tribute to Don Joyce

Don't Say Hello

Don’t Say Hello

Don Joyce (Negativland, Over The Edge) has merged with the radio waves.  Don was a close friend and amazing artist.  His influence on the work of People Like Us is beyond measure.  Here is a wonderful piece accurately conveying many of my own experiences, written by Jon Leidecker, who I also first met through Don. 

Don Joyce lived in a second story flat off Telegraph Avenue in what is now the thoroughly gentrified Temescal district in Oakland, but when I visited the Negativland home studio for the first time in July of 1987, after nightfall you had to watch yourself on the way from your car to the front door. I was there to drop off source materials and discuss the theme for the coming week’s episode of Over The Edge, which, after two years of avid fandom, I had finally been invited to play. Don still had his programming day job at that point, and I discovered him in his room tinkering with the GUI for a primitive typing tutor program on his Mac SE with his left hand, while his right hand hovered near the pause button on a cassette deck recording KGO talk radio. Occasionally, while talking to me and coding with one hand, he’d unpause or repause the recording with the other, seemingly randomly. But I soon realized he was precisely waiting for silences between the host and his callers, and making sure host and callers still alternated in sequence. The resulting tape would still sound as if it were a conversation; it just wouldn’t be even remotely close to the one that had actually happened.

This approach to multi-tasking wouldn’t have been a surprise to anyone who’s heard Over The Edge, which I’d randomly channel surfed into at 12:30 in the morning two years before; at first I’d assumed I’d hit one of those magic nodes on the analog dial where two stations were coming in clearly at the same time, and paused to enjoy the accident. The slow rush of recognition came on over the next twenty seconds as I realized it was actually five to ten things at once: talk radio recordings and advertisements cut in with each other and twisted into dialogues, all while loosely played guitars and keyboards mingled with fragments of pop and soundtrack albums. And only when the sound of a disconnecting line terminated the guitar riff did I make that final connection: a number of the lower fidelity instruments and tapes were being contributed by live phone callers. I stayed up until the show ended at three, that night and many nights to come.

Continue reading

CCCitations – a Citation City project

CCCitations is an offshoot of Citation City, an audiovisual performance by People Like Us.

Four artists, Jon Leidecker, Jason Willett, Gwilly Edmondez and Andrew Sharpley were given source material from Vicki Bennett’s Citation City a/v project and asked to make new work, interpreting the footage in a unique way.


Soundtrack: Gwilly Edmondez 00:01
Soundtrack: Jason Willett 02:47
Soundtrack: Jon Leidecker 05:23
Film: Vicki Bennett


Film and Video: Andrew Sharpley – using source material given by Vicki Bennett

About Citation City

Citation City sources, collage and edits 300 major feature films where content is either filmed or set in London – creating a story within a story, of the film world, living its life, through extraordinary times of change, to see what happens when these multiple narratives are combined… what will the story tell us that one story alone could never tell?

Inspired by The Arcades Project by Walter Benjamin, this audiovisual work is created from 1000s of clippings of text and visual media, collaged using a system of “convolutes”, collated around subjects of key motifs, historical figures, social types, cultural objects from the time. By gathering and assembling such groups of similar yet unrelated, he revealed a hidden, magical encyclopaedia of affinities, a massive and labyrinthine architecture of a collective dream city. On reading Benjamin, his approach to editing astonished Vicki Bennett, and the similarity of their creative processes of cutting and collating extensive lists of subject matter by context.

In the live performance a series of story lines (convolutes) sit side by side with a soundtrack sourced both from the movie content, as well as new sample compositions thematically related to the visual content.

The result is a sweeping panorama of London, a London as represented through cinema – not the real city at all, but one that exists in the collective imagination of moviegoers throughout the decades. Filmmaker Magazine

Manchester NOTATIONS – video excerpts

Thanks to those that attended Manchester NOTATIONS at Kraak on 14 Nov 2013 – here are two small edits from the evening with M.C. Schmidt, Jennifer Walshe and Wobbly.  Thanks to Tusk and Sound & Music!

NOTATIONS TRAILER Manchester w/ M.C. Schmidt / Wobbly / Jennifer Walshe. Film by Vicki Bennett on Vimeo.

Notations Trailer, Manchester with M.C. Schmidt, Jennifer Walshe & Wobbly. Film by Vicki Bennett on Vimeo.

Music For The Fire now online at UbuWeb

The 2010 collaboration between People Like Us & Wobbly which became the CD “Music For The Fire” is now available for mp3 download at UbuWeb.

The fruit of many years of work, this album began as People Like Us & Wobbly collected and collaged their way through various depictions of misfired communications and heartbreak sourced from popular culture for a series of live improvisations. Music For The Fire is a plunderphonic concept album depicting the lifespan of a relationship, as told through samples of hundreds of different songs and voices who had no idea they were all telling the same story until they were all spliced together.

http://www.ubu.com/sound/plu_fire.html

It is still available for purchase in CD and FLAC form at Illegal Art.

GESTURE PIECE – a film with a score by 7 artists

A film by Vicki Bennett [2013]
Soundtracks by :
Andrew Sharpley [00:06] | Matmos [01:02] | Wobbly [05:08] | Gwilly Edmondez [07:48] | Dave Soldier [09:38] | Jason Willett [11:02] | Ergo Phizmiz [13:23]

Gwilly Edmondez, Matmos, Ergo Phizmiz, Andrew Sharpley, Dave Soldier, Jason Willett and Wobbly each composed a score for a chapter of GESTURE PIECE, without any knowledge of who else was collaborating on the project or what the rest of the film would look or sound like.

The completed film stitches back together the seven chapters with their individual soundtracks, creating new connections between apparently unrelated film sequences. The result is a fascinating and witty reinterpretation of familiar film footage, with scenes arranged in surprising and often very funny combinations.

The title of “Gesture Piece” is partly self-explanatory – within human communication it is part of our hard circuitry that for instance we use hand gestures to articulate our speech, which is essentially graphically describing/enforcing audio or spoken discourse. Even when spoken language is not present, a whole series of hand and facial gestures are available to us to communicate expressions. By making a film that both contains human gestures (hands, facial, movement) as well as gestures made by natural and mechanical occurrences we are setting up the conditions for a dialogue between the graphical elements on the films and the improvisers, both with the film as well as with each other.

Background info
Gesture Piece @Tyneside Cinema
Review in This Is Tomorrow Magazine
Interview with a-n Magazine
Interview with SyncTank
Interview with Dominic Smith

Screenings
October 2014 – Other Cinema, San Francisco
October 2013 – Gesture Piece at High Zero Festival, Baltimore

Click on thumbnails to download stills:
GESTURE PIECE-2GESTURE PIECE-5GESTURE PIECE-3

Diagram of subjects - created in the development of the film by Vicki Bennett

Diagram of subjects – created in the development of the film by Vicki Bennett

Still from Gesture Piece by Vicki Bennett

Still from Gesture Piece by Vicki Bennett

Gesture Piece has a sister project, Notations – a film created for live performance by selected improvising musicians and artists.  When these two projects began, they shared the same umbrella name of Gesture Piece (the live performance was tested at Tectonics Festival in Reykjavik and Tel Aviv), but as the work developed it felt natural to separate them out into different names as they became two unique and separate entities.

tc_v2s_k_pacelogo

Wobbly on DO or DIY

Wednesday 13th July 2011 on DO or DIY with People Like Us
Wobbly

On this week’s DO or DIY, it’s the turn of Jon Leidecker aka Wobbly to do a 25 minute guest DJ mix.

Since 1990 Jon Leidecker has performed appropriative collage music under the psuedonym Wobbly, aiming for extended narratives spun from spontaneous yet coherent multi-sample polyphony. This Variations podcast series at Radio Web MACBA Jon Leidecker reconstructs the history of sound appropriationism by looking at examples from 20th century composition, popular art and commercial media, and the convergence of all these trends today.

http://detritus.net/wobbly/
http://rwm.macba.cat/en/variations_tag/

First press coverage for Music For The Fire is very good!

Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Go Mag (July 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Magic (July 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Playground (June 2010)
Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Huw Stephens’ Radio show BBC Radio 1 (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Limewire Music Blog (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in MusicOMH (June 2010)
Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Stuart Maconie’s Radio show BBC Radio 6 (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in My Old Kentucky Blog (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Polychromic (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Beyond The Noize (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in aaamusic (June 2010)
Review of Music For The Fire (People Like Us & Wobbly) in Little Village Mag by Kembrew McLeod (May 2010)
Music For The Fire gets Radio 1 airplay (May 2010)

People Like Us & Wobbly – Music For The Fire

Release date 15 June 2010

The fruit of many years of work, this album began as People Like Us & Wobbly collected and collaged their way through various depictions of misfired communications and heartbreak sourced from popular culture for a series of live improvisations. Music For The Fire is a plunderphonic concept album depicting the lifespan of a relationship, as told through samples of hundreds of different songs and voices who had no idea they were all telling the same story until they were all spliced together.

Strangely direct and evocative for an album assembled entirely from a patchwork of disparate sources and music both obscure and over-familiar, Music For The Fire comes with an illustrated lyric sheet which reproduces the countless sampled voices as a single if utterly schizophrenic text — a bedtime story that is wildly inappropriate for actual children.  No reliable narrators, just the familiar and absurd, which on different spins of the disc might strike you as either maudlin, poignant or almost painfully hilarious. There is a way out of the maze, but it’s up to you to find it.

Update (2013) – now available for download at UbuWeb
http://www.ubu.com/sound/plu_fire.html

Update (2015) – this CD is now deleted

Since 1991 British artist Vicki Bennett (aka People Like Us) has been an influential figure in the field of audio visual collage, through her innovative sampling, appropriating and cutting up of found footage and archives. She has shown work at, amongst others, Tate Modern, the National Film Theatre, Purcell Room, Pompidou Center, Sonar in Barcelona, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the BBC and Channel 4, released albums of her work on labels such as Tigerbeat6, Soleilmoon and Touch, both solo and in collaboration with Matmos, Ergo Phizmiz, Christian Marclay and members of Negativland.  2010 will see the completion of a commission for the Edinburgh Art Festival as well as concert appearances at the AV Festival, MACBA, Liverpool Sound City, Copenhagen & Jerusalem.

Wobbly is the long-running collage project of Jon Leidecker (US), who improvises live with pre-recordings to coax the harmonies out of recorded sounds of individuals and animals from disparate cultures. Albums have been released on the labels Alku, Phthalo, Illegal Art, Tigerbeat6 and Vague Terrain.  Previous and ongoing projects include the bands Chopping Channel, Sagan, the Freddy McGuire Show and Amen Seat, as well as various collaborations with Negativland, Matmos, Thomas Dimuzio, Blevin Blectum, Lesser, Tim Perkis & Xopher Davidson, Otomo Yoshihide and MaryClare Bryztwa.  In 2009 he was commissioned by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona to produce “Variations”, a podcast and lecture series overview of the history of musical collage & sampling.

People Like Us & Wobbly have been collaborating since her first visit to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1998.  Early improvisations as a trio (with The Jet Black Hair People, aka Peter Conheim of Negativland) are documented by the online album What’s The Use, as well as archives of numerous radio and concert appearances recorded both in California and London, including on BBC Radio 3‘s “Mixing It”.  The present album for Illegal Art is composed from live recordings, carefully and obsessively edited over a great deal of time, and is their funniest, darkest and yet somehow strangely compassionate work, Music For The Fire tells a story which every listener will recognize in their own unique way.

With the release of People Like Us & Wobbly‘s Music For The Fire, Illegal Art continues to embrace a pay-what-you-want business model for high-quality downloads.  All label releases over the last four years have been issued (or reissued) under a the flexible payment system, and the entire Illegal Art back catalog should be subsumed by the end of 2010.  People Like Us & Wobbly also have a history of offering free downloads of entire projects, both new and old.  Vicki Bennett is such a firm endorser of the gift economy that she is the top downloaded audio artist on UbuWeb.  Her online-only album Abridged Too Far (2004) garnered over 25,000 downloads in its first month, and she adamantly defends such free offerings as beneficial to both the artist and consumer.

Press Quotes:

PEOPLE LIKE US
“… a freeform, unfolding imaginary landscape that is liberally peppered with slapstick.” – Phil England, The Wire

Bennett has continued to impress us with her technical ability and her wonderful sense of the ridiculous.” – Olli Siebelt, BBC

“… beautiful, compelling, funny, crazy stuff.  I listen to [People Like Us] while sitting at my drawing board.” – Matt Groening

“… it is that delirious adventure to tune in Disney cartoons while we administered a strong dose of amphetamines, LSD, and any other lysergic cocktail.” – J. Carlos Vellamueva, Rolling Stone (Mexico)

“… after prolonged exposure to the alchemical work of Vicki Bennett, we see and hear our own everyday world as one big joke which is already cut to pieces.  You’ll laugh, you’ll cry.” – Drew Daniel, Matmos

“… warped-out easy easy-listening goddess and sample abuser extraordinaire.” – Ben Willmott, NME

Bennett has taken Eisenstein’s montage collisions and refashioned them as bumper cars at a seaside carnival.” – Jim Supanick, Film Society of Lincoln Center

WOBBLY
“If only one album were to be timecapsuled for the turn of this century, Wild Why would be a worthy candidate” – Pataphysics Lab

“The head is dazzling of all the cut up and collage which go by in highspeed” – Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly

“It would be pointless to try and characterize any of the sessions because the range of material they draw on is so diverse that the tracks are constantly changing direction” – Ben Borthwick, The Wire

“An expert at sculpting cohesive harmonies out of seemingly disjointed fragment.” – George Zahora, Splendid

“… a hewn diamond that, although beautiful, cuts through the most impermeable of solid bullshit.” – Tobias C. Van Veen, Stylus

Wild Why is a staggering deconstruction of commercial urban radio, breaking down mainstream hip-hop and R&B into a sludge of guttural  samples and low-end goo…  the rules holding our own world together bend wildly under even the slightest pressure.” – Philip Sherburne, Needle Drops

Available now!!! A new album from People Like Us & Wobbly

Available for pre-order now! A new album from People Like Us & Wobbly. The release date is 15 June 2010 but you can buy it at our shop now.
http://www.peoplelikeus.org/shop/


People Like Us & Wobbly

Music For The Fire (CD)
Illegal Art

Release Date:
June 15, 2010

Bio:

The fruit of many years of work, this album began as People Like Us & Wobbly collected and collaged their way through various depictions of misfired communications and heartbreak sourced from popular culture for a series of live improvisations. Music For The Fire is a plunderphonic concept album depicting the lifespan of a relationship, as told through samples of hundreds of different songs and voices who had no idea they were all telling the same story until they were all spliced together.

[more]

Media Links & Downloads:

"Giant Love Ball" (MP3)

"Pick Up" (MP3)

People Like Us Films

Hi-Res Photos:

300 dpi JPG
L-R Vicki Bennett, Jon Leidecker. Photo credit: Courtesy of the John Cage Trust.

Hi-Res Cover Art:

300dpi JPG
4 x 4 in

On The Web:

www.peoplelikeus.org
www.detritus.net/wobbly
www.myspace.com/wobbbly
www.illegalart.net
www.facebook.com/illegalart
www.myspace.com/illegalart
www.twitter.com/illegalart
www.fanaticpromotion.com

Bio (Continued):

Strangely direct and evocative for an album assembled entirely from a patchwork of disparate sources and music both obscure and over-familiar, Music For The Fire comes with an illustrated lyric sheet which reproduces the countless sampled voices as a single if utterly schizophrenic text — a bedtime story that is wildly inappropriate for actual children.  No reliable narrators, just the familiar and absurd, which on different spins of the disc might strike you as either maudlin, poignant or almost painfully hilarious. There is a way out of the maze, but it’s up to you to find it.

Since 1991 British artist Vicki Bennett (aka People Like Us) has been an influential figure in the field of audio visual collage, through her innovative sampling, appropriating and cutting up of found footage and archives. She has shown work at, amongst others, Tate Modern, the National Film Theatre, Purcell Room, Pompidou Center, Sonar in Barcelona, the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis, the BBC and Channel 4, released albums of her work on labels such as Tigerbeat6, Soleilmoon and Touch, both solo and in collaboration with Matmos, Ergo Phizmiz, Christian Marclay and members of Negativland.  2010 will see the completion of a commission for the Edinburgh Art Festival as well as concert appearances at the AV Festival, MACBA, Liverpool Sound City, Copenhagen & Jerusalem.

Wobbly is the long-running collage project of Jon Leidecker (US), who improvises live with pre-recordings to coax the harmonies out of recorded sounds of individuals and animals from disparate cultures. Albums have been released on the labels Alku, Phthalo, Illegal Art, Tigerbeat6 and Vague Terrain.  Previous and ongoing projects include the bands Chopping Channel, Sagan, the Freddy McGuire Show and Amen Seat, as well as various collaborations with Negativland, Matmos, Thomas Dimuzio, Blevin Blectum, Lesser, Tim Perkis & Xopher Davidson, Otomo Yoshihide and MaryClare Bryztwa.  In 2009 he was commissioned by the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona to produce “Variations”, a podcast and lecture series overview of the history of musical collage & sampling.

People Like Us & Wobbly have been collaborating since her first visit to the San Francisco Bay Area in 1998.  Early improvisations as a trio (with The Jet Black Hair People, aka Peter Conheim of Negativland) are documented by the online album What’s The Use, as well as archives of numerous radio and concert appearances recorded both in California and London, including on BBC Radio 3‘s “Mixing It”.  The present album for Illegal Art is composed from live recordings, carefully and obsessively edited over a great deal of time, and is their funniest, darkest and yet somehow strangely compassionate work, Music For The Fire tells a story which every listener will recognize in their own unique way.

With the release of People Like Us & Wobbly‘s Music For The Fire, Illegal Art continues to embrace a pay-what-you-want business model for high-quality downloads.  All label releases over the last four years have been issued (or reissued) under a the flexible payment system, and the entire Illegal Art back catalog should be subsumed by the end of 2010.  People Like Us & Wobbly also have a history of offering free downloads of entire projects, both new and old.  Vicki Bennett is such a firm endorser of the gift economy that she is the top downloaded audio artist on UbuWeb.  Her online-only album Abridged Too Far (2004) garnered over 25,000 downloads in its first month, and she adamantly defends such free offerings as beneficial to both the artist and consumer.

Press Quotes:

PEOPLE LIKE US
“… a freeform, unfolding imaginary landscape that is liberally peppered with slapstick.” – Phil England, The Wire

Bennett has continued to impress us with her technical ability and her wonderful sense of the ridiculous.” – Olli Siebelt, BBC

“… beautiful, compelling, funny, crazy stuff.  I listen to [People Like Us] while sitting at my drawing board.” – Matt Groening

“… it is that delirious adventure to tune in Disney cartoons while we administered a strong dose of amphetamines, LSD, and any other lysergic cocktail.” – J. Carlos Vellamueva, Rolling Stone (Mexico)

“… after prolonged exposure to the alchemical work of Vicki Bennett, we see and hear our own everyday world as one big joke which is already cut to pieces.  You’ll laugh, you’ll cry.” – Drew Daniel, Matmos

“… warped-out easy easy-listening goddess and sample abuser extraordinaire.” – Ben Willmott, NME

Bennett has taken Eisenstein’s montage collisions and refashioned them as bumper cars at a seaside carnival.” – Jim Supanick, Film Society of Lincoln Center

WOBBLY
“If only one album were to be timecapsuled for the turn of this century, Wild Why would be a worthy candidate” – Pataphysics Lab

“The head is dazzling of all the cut up and collage which go
by in highspeed” – Frans de Waard, Vital Weekly

“It would be pointless to try and characterize any of the sessions because the range of material they draw on is so diverse that the tracks are constantly changing direction” – Ben Borthwick, The Wire

“An expert at sculpting cohesive harmonies out of seemingly disjointed fragment.” – George Zahora, Splendid

“… a hewn diamond that, although beautiful, cuts through the most impermeable of solid bullshit.” – Tobias C. Van Veen, Stylus

Wild Why is a staggering deconstruction of commercial urban radio, breaking down mainstream hip-hop and R&B into a sludge of guttural  samples and low-end goo…  the rules holding our own world together bend wildly under even the slightest pressure.” – Philip Sherburne, Needle Drops