Monday, August 28, 2006

Outside Myself There is A World

Day Five
I set out with Alexis Bhagat and Sahra Walker to try the heart of Paterson once again. I seem to have many mistaken notions as to the nature of this heart. For instance, I have been avoiding the falls: touristy, too easy. After another long, hot day, however, we drive down Ryle Rd. past the old factory buildings and the animal shelter, park the Buick, and take the wooded path to the falls. I am thinking that I have failed to connect to the city. However, in a quiet corner where the falls eddy at the mouth of a mammoth open pipe, we meet Tony, for whom the falls is the true Paterson in contrast to the commercial, violent, and seductive forces of the street. Contrary to what I had been thinking, for Tony, the falls were a site of black power, the psychic center of the city's integrity. The rest was Babylon. The waters of the Passaic seemed to hold powers of self-actualization. You could also probably do drugs there. Tony was both doing drugs and self-actualizing, but using one to pry free from the other. And he was also writing poetry. Here's some of what he recited for us: "She turns over her life everyday, like a hamburger slaving over the heat. Constantly constantly all they want and eat and beat is beef and beef. Cow after cow after cow I ask now, when will they just want milk?" The prostitutes on Van Houten St. seem to be a continuity between Williams' world and Tony's. We leave Tony and end up at the library, where I find out that all the archival Williams materials are in Hackensack.

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Friday, August 11, 2006

"No Ideas But In Things" Or "Under the Concrete, the Ocean"?

"No ideas but in things." The famous line, right? Nice too, but it seems to express a modernist constipation, as if the thing could not extend itself through an ideational airspace, to mingle with the airwaves as does that impossible and consummately modernist object, the radio. When you bang the poem Paterson and the city, each and against each other to hear the sound, to create radiations, to make radio . . . how do you shape this space beyond things and between things that emerges? Hopefully it's not just through the rationalized entries of the blog format, not just a my-space, that filters the resonances. The watch faces seen and sounded here (watch the video) were raw material for the sound study (listen to the other file below); they are played and processed in a way indebted to the history of musique-concrete, but they also act as a microcosm of this experiment with Paterson. The city is an instrument, while the poem acts as the score. It's kind of nice that Blogger doesn't have diacritics, because if you wanted to call this Jersey-concrete, you could French up the pronounciation, or, if not, think of the sidewalks, and the mixers that spun them during the drive up from Alpha. With Alexis Bhagat, Clark Lunberry, and Tony (all of whom we'll hear from again in later entries). Completed as part of a free103point9 Wave Farm AIRtime residency.


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Tuesday, August 08, 2006

Live From Garret Mountain

this is an audio post - click to play

Monday, August 07, 2006

Anti-blog Audioblog Moment From Paterson No. 2

this is an audio post - click to play

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

Paterson: When You Know!

A true "cover" version of Paterson if there ever was one, this Patersong by Rama is in the spirit of the poem and she didn't even have to crack open the book! Call it overture, call it pre-epigram, call it hokey-pokey . . . that's what it's all about. "If you know that it has a name, you know that there's a name!" Knowledge rolling itself out, and on to Paterson (along with the rabbits.) An envoi from Book Zero. Recorded in NYC and the Wave Farm in Acra.

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