Did you have time to process The Long Now? If you missed our crazy 9 hour long 50th installment, go check it out and let it play while you get your Zs or while doing your chores. Now we’re back to normal and hoping to get mixes up every other week from now until the holidays, including a mix from yours truly sometime in the next month.
For this week, we’ve got a mix from Daryl Worthington aka Beachers presents ‘If you receive a gift from a boy,’ inspired by a Shangri-Las radio spot, contrasting the old fashioned dating advice off of strong women making innovative music, weaving into a narrative of free improv and electronics.
You can read more about Beachers in this recent review of his record Pretend.
Also check it out on Mixcloud
Introduce yourself, to begin. Who are you, what do you do, where are you from what’s your interest in experimental music.
I record and perform under the name Beachers. I am originally from London, but currently living in Riga, Latvia. I’ve recently released my debut recording on the Jehu and Chinaman label. I was a reasonably late starter to music (I didn’t get my first guitar until I was 17). In terms of my interest in experimental music, I guess it comes from punk. This was the music that first got me excited. My favourite band is and was Sonic Youth, which is probably where my interest in ‘unusual’ sounds comes from.
Tell us about the mix. Theme, thoughts, how was it assembled.
The mix started with the Shangri-Las radio spots that can be heard near the start. For me, the Shangri-Las created some of the most beautiful music ever – the perfect mix of strong vocals, incredible arrangements, but also underlying sadness and heartache. The radio spots are fascinating, throwaway pieces of radio noise that tell us so much about their world, and how their talents were ultimately used to sell a certain lifestyle and product. I’d started messing around with the sample with the idea I could use it live, but that never happened.
I then decided to use them as a starting point for the mix. I think there is an interesting contrast between them reeling off dating advice for young women, and music by Klara Lewis, Nina Simone, Pauline Oliveros and Jelena Glazova, four artists whose level of independence, personality and artistic expression seem a million miles away from the idea of a female’s concerns in society offered in the radio ad. The found sound and musique concrete stuff is included to fit in with the radio broadcast element. Then it was just a matter of adding other stuff to the mix, to try and link the whole thing together.
I’m also a big fan of noise and free jazz/improv, and discovered both around the same time in my late teens from following noise-rock and hard bop. Any thoughts on the connection between these genres?
I’m reluctant to talk too much about genres of music. Not because of some aloof disdain for genre tags, but because I usually feel like a dilettante when discussing them. This is certainly the case with free jazz and noise, two styles which I know I’m ignorant of- my knowledge extends to just a few examples that any connoisseur would probably dismiss as totally melvin.
I probably became interested in both a bit later than you did, but I understand the progression in your preferences that you describe, and I think it was the same for me. As I said, I know very little about these schools of music, but the thing that appeals to me is the freedom and energy they can both have.
In terms of the relationship between the two, I think the effortless collaboration between Anthony Braxton and Wolf Eyes says all there is to say. For me, the only difference is the materials that are used…
Also, I’m a huge fan of Nina Simone, happy to see her included. Any thoughts on the upcoming film? Zoe Saldana’s casting as Simone has been controversial.
I must confess I had no idea there was a Nina Simone biopic in production. Hers is certainly a story worth telling, so I can only hope the movie does her justice. I also have no idea what a Zoe Saldana is, and can’t be bothered to Google… was she in Ernest Goes to Jail?
In short, as covered pretty well in this recent New Yorker article, Simone became politicized in ’63, though she always had a strong sense of social justice, and a big part of that was wrapped up in her self-image and her discrimination for not only being black but for being very black, for having very African features. Zoe Saldana is a light skinned actress of Dominican descent, and so there has been a lot of discussion about this, basically dark women can’t even get roles playing dark women.
Oh I see! I was well aware of Nina’s activism and work on issues to do with ethnicity. In fact, the thing that really got me interested in her, what she stood for, and of course her music, was an article I read a few years ago about ‘Strange Fruit’. Which to this day is still one of the few songs that sends chills down my spine every time I hear it.
1). Beachers – Dictaphone archive, drunk guitar and broken synth
2). Wankelmut – Stotter Inst.
3). Pierre Henry – Prologue
4). Robert Turman and Aaron Dilloway – Blizzard 4
5). The Shangri-Las – Radio Spot #4 Good Taste Tip – Dating Courtesy
6). Vinyl Terror and Horror -Did She Mention My Name
7). The Shangri-Las – Radio Spot #3 Good Taste Tip – Gift Receiving
8). Nina Simone – He Needs Me
9). Pauline Oliveros – Solo Concert 2001 (Live)
10). Oren Ambarchi – Passage
11). Klara Lewis – Untilted
12). Voices From The Lake – Drop 2
13). Peter Brotzmann – Nothung Part 4
14). Circuit Breaker – Grey Materials
15). Jelena Glazova – Double sexed guide flying through time and space
16). Sandwell District – Immolare (Function Version)
17). Liberez – A Warning
18). Nate Young Regression – Only Fallen Heads
19). Beachers – Dictaphone archive, fucked drum machine, window seal and thunderstorm