After the Harvest
- Featured: Michael Kent Smith
- Release Date: 2/19/2002
Composer, multi-instrumentalist, painter and printmaker Michael Kent Smith had a busy fall 2001. In addition to finishing 18 new canvases and delving heavily into the craft of printmaking, he finally completed his first solo album titled 'After the Harvest'. The music on 'After the Harvest' is built on ideas from his studies of medieval and traditional American folk music, but was constructed in a computer environment and electonic devices are frequently a part of the mix. The songs have a very pictoral quality that is no doubt due to the hours spent painting and making prints. On the disc Michael plays several different instrumets: 6 & 12 string guitars, mountain dulcimer, hammer dulcimer, bandurria, bowed psaltery, organ, synthesizer, recorder and percussion. Electonics and computers have long been an interest of Michael's and he integrates them regularly into what might seem, at first listening, to be purely acoustic music. As much as he loves music history, he believes that all tools available to an artist should be used when appropriate. Notes from the Composer about 'After the Harvest' I have long been interested in medieval music and the compositional processes of composers Guillaume Machaut, Perotin and Guillaume Dufay. I wanted to explore some ideas I have about those processes and their connection to the music of post-minimalist composers Steve Reich and Arvo Pärt. Another factor impacting this music is the information gathered by my mother's genealogical research. It shows both my deep American roots (since 1610) and the British Isles/Celtic ancestry still farther back. My study of traditional American music, especially the mountain dulcimer and it's Appalachian repertoire, has also planted a whole new collection of sounds and ideas into my mind's ear. A number of the works recorded here are built on specific medieval compositions. What we refer to today as Gregorian Chant was a single line musical style, with no harmony or multiple voice parts. During the 12th century, composers began to add a 2nd part to the single line of existing chants.This style was referred to as organum. By the 13th century a 3rd part was being added to existing 2-part organum to create what was called a motet. It is this idea of adding to existing works that inspired my working methods. I selected several medieval pieces and either sequenced them or created audio tracks from an existing recording. To these tracks I added 2 to 10 more tracks of overdubs. Next, the original sequences or audio tracks of the medieval work were removed. I then used the editing environment of the computer to craft the remaining tracks into the form you hear here.
|Title:||After the Harvest|
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