Thursday, November 26, 2015

Solo gig Automatic Pilot by Davey Williams

Pros and Cons of Automatic Pilot

In modern aircraft, the “Automatic Pilot” function allows a plane to fly a particular route without the human pilot´s constant control of the flight instruments. Improvisational “automatic pilot” allows the players to depart the cockpit, so to speak, while the music making continues, along any number of particular routes.

This is not a reference to leaving the stage to go to the restroom, but to the possibility for a simultaneous attention to the constantly moving moment of playing.

Here is where the autopilot part comes in. There can occur a suspension of conscious control over the outcome of the music, yet with the player still being integral to the music making. Then some other type of awareness temporarily supercedes to the abilities of more conscious types of playing. Sometimes the best developments come from beyond the abilities of conscious thought.

Unfortunately some of mankind´s worst developments can come from the same place, when combined with uncaring or evil hearts. Dictators and tyrants, and (even worse) their followers might operate by unthinking urges, but obedience to megalomania and slaughter on the scale of whole populations does not make for a lot of good cultural expression. 

For our purposes though, this “autopilot” idea suggest a certain function of intuitive expression in music making, which should have no connection with demagoguery and its varied zombie hordes.
Uh-oh;   I smell a pontification. That´s it;  I´m booking out of this topic.

Photo Michelangelo Antonioni
 Dave Williams


01.- Call it anything you want
02.- Concerning accidents
03.- Dislike of musical noise explained
04.- Choo-Choo
05.- Truth in music appretiation
06.- What is musical free improvisation
07.- Our Universe
08.- Working Jung's Riff
09.- Preferences
10.- When it's our of our hands
11.- Glad we didn't order the special
12.- Working Jung's Riff
13.- Know the enemy
14.- The mutable form
15.- Concerning Inmortality
16.- Mach Numbers
17.- Conditionalities of Quietude
18.- Then and now
19.- Why not Sneeze
20.- We Passed Jupiter and Then Headed North
21.- Product Placement
22.- Coming under Fire
23.- Longevity of the Unpredictable
24.- Signal Intelligence
25.- FUBAR to the Rescue
26.- What Was That?
27.- The Sonata Came much Later
31.- Solo gig - A token of Esteem
32.- Solo Gig Tough Corner

Based in a noted musician's decades of personal experiences, his book Solo Gig: Essential Curiosities in Musical Free Improvisation (CreateSpace  Independent Publishing Platform, 2011) examines some crucial and  far-reaching aspects of musical free  improvisation, with particular  regard to live performances.  In this  illustrated collection of  narrative essays, the author looks both into  and from inside this  uniquely paradoxical, challenging and rewarding way  of making music,  within the context of an inherently eccentric milieu. 

Available here. (U.S.A.) (Europe)