November 29, 2006

museums are for the people (right?)

I have always loved the Tate Modern in London. I haven't had the opportunity to visit in a while, but back when I had a real job, one of the perks was occassional business travel to cool places. On each London trip, I would make sure I had time to at least spend a few hours wandering through the seemingly endless galleries and soaking in Turbine Hall. There was something about the combination of architecture and accompanying art which made me feel both inspired and filled with almost juvenile awe. The space would force me to sit down to simply observe and exist. Thankfully, one of the most favorable aspects of the design of the Tate Modern is that there are plenty of places to do this, a feature often overlooked in contemporary museums it seems.

Though I have not been to the newly expanded MoMA specifically, I have found that the vast majority of the other art museums I have been to leave me feeling more annoyed than fulfilled. There is an air of superiority and imposed control which does much more to increase the distance between curator and visitor, teacher and student, 'educated' from 'uneducated', than to actually help experience the art, which is, afterall, what should be the mission of an art museum.

Roberta Smiths' astute comments do a much better job than my rambles at diving into this topic a bit more:

Tate Modern's Rightness vs. MoMA's Wrongs

There shouldn't be anything wrong with simply hanging out with art. The formality of intentional observation can sometimes be a distraction.

Posted by halsey at 08:54 AM

November 15, 2006

Just Plain Results

A month or so ago, I was surprised to be nominated for two awards at the 2006 Just Plain Folks Music Awards.

And now I am not surprised to tell you that I did not do very well in the 'Best Experimental Song' category in which 'Predictable?' was nominated. However, I am pleased to tell you that my nomination for 'Best Experimental Album' for words and voices fared much better. I placed third in that category and though no one if going to be flung into stardom with this result, I'll take whatever I can get!

Check out all the winners here:

JPF Music Awards results

Posted by halsey at 06:10 PM

November 13, 2006

moving pictures

I just created a new page on for some live performance videos:

videos on

Help bump up my YouTube views and feel free to comment as well!

Posted by halsey at 06:25 PM

November 12, 2006

Forsyth photos

live still


from above

several miles, at least

from my perspective

Posted by halsey at 11:18 PM

November 08, 2006

finally it's November...

Well, October was a very busy month and I am still trying to catch up on everything I postponed in the name of pulling of the performance of One Hundred and Four Thousand at Forest Hills. I am very pleased to report that the show went well and I feel like it is a great starting point for many more live performances of my music.
There were six of us performing, if you don't include the two laptops, hundreds of sampled voices and miles of cables we snaked around the chapel. We did record the event with both audio and video, but there is some post production work to be done before we can share that with you all. And did I mention that I am still not caught up on things?!

I was on the phone with my credit card company at 7PM on the night of the date my payment was due trying to get them to not dock me with a late fee (I was successful!), and that was just one of the moments that I felt like my life was in need of some serious spreading out of attention. I think any project of this nature really does require a singularity of focus to pull off successfully, but I hope to get a bit better with all the logistics in the future. There were many firsts for me throughout the project and when those become seconds next time, I think things will be more manageable.

This project was a wonderful opportunity for me to not only perform my music for people in an incredibly beautiful location, but also to work with a great group of musicians. Sadly, I am not used to this degree of collaboration, but I am happy to say that I really enjoyed it and hope that there is much more to come. Of course, the relinquishing of a certain amount of control is somewhat nerve-wracking, but if you have assembled the right people to work with, it can be a great thing. The team (Peter Bailey, Javier Caballero, Bennett Miller, Bekka Shellenberg, and Michael O'Connor) was wonderful throughout and I owe them big time for their committment and dedication to this project.

I'll post some audio and video from the performance soon.

Posted by halsey at 09:58 AM