episode four: music

Episode four is a conversation with musician and poet, Alabaster dePlume, recorded in the former venue and music hub, the Total Refreshment Centre. Known well for his wilful experimentation, Alabaster’s musical performances traverse across poetry, jazz and folk. He emphasises an honesty and playfulness in performance, co-founding a vibrant musical residency across London named PEACH and releasing his fourth album in 2018. In this episode we move into the world of musical spaces and improvisation, exploring ‘political music’, creativity, empathy, and the responsibility placed on the image of an artist. (Find his work here: http://www.alabasterdeplume.com/)

When I asked about the works that inspire Alabaster, he chose the poems and lyrics of Vladimir Vysotsky. Vladimir was a Russian songwriter, poet and actor whose songs were famous across the Soviet Union for their political commentary and lyrical wit. Some of Vysotsky’s writings are listed below.

When you say to someone, ‘Thanks for existing’, you are saying to yourself, ‘if someone is wonderful just for being a human, so am I’. I like to ask people, ‘Have you been looking after yourself?

Alabaster dePlume

reading list four: Alabaster dePlume

Music label ‘Lost Map’ on Alabaster dePlume: |link to website|

Be Nice To People’, Alabaster dePlume : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aQDzlpAbLfE

Interview with Alabaster dePlume: |link|

The songs of Vladamir Vysotsky: |link|

Performance of ‘Koni Priviredliviye’ by Vladamir Vysotsky: |link to video|

Volodya: Selected Works by Mayakovsky, (translated by Rosy Carrick)

Rediscovering the Russian poet Mayakovsky: |link|

Listening as Activism: The “Sonic Meditations” of Pauline Oliveros: |link|

The difference between hearing and listening, Pauline Oliveros, TED: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_QHfOuRrJB8

Make Some Space: Tuning into Total Refreshment Centre, Emma Warren

Musicking: The Meanings of Performing and Listening, Christopher Small

Listening to the Anthropocene, Anja Kanngieser: https://liquidarchitecture.org.au/events/listeningtotheanthropocene

Sonic affects and the production of space: ‘Music by handle’ and the politics of street music in Victorian London, Paul Simpson: |link|

Sound System: The Political Power of Music, Dave Randall


Outro: ‘Is it Enough?’ at Peach – Alabaster DePlume |link to video|

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