Thursday, July 19, 2007

Free-to-Air and Magic Arm

For once I didn't go to rehearsals as I had rushing around to do, and between picking up Tracy's trailer for our show and dropping it off at Let's Go Global for tonight's programme I was able to call in at Cornerhouse and listen to the day's 5 o'clock Free-to-Air live broadcast. This takes place in Gallery 2 (Gallery 1 houses the main radio station), and it's fitted out cosily for a live audience with red-cushioned benches and the walls papered with Free-to-Air's red twenties-style posters. As the audience gathered, the artists Eileen Simpson and Ben White (who run the Open Music Archive website) played tracks of out-of-copyright music including Jean Havez' hilarious and catchy Good Bye Booze.

Then the broadcast began and the day's musician, one-man-band Magic Arm, played his own versions of the same tracks. I was enthralled as he not only managed to play several instruments but operated a loop pedal to build up his own accompaniments.

There's no live music today, but a discussion with the two artists behind Free-to-Air. I understand that Saturday and Sunday there will be two sets of performers each day, and I'm told that Saturday's show, featuring two female musicians, promises to be very good.

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