we had a communal acoustic drone jam the other night at the halt bar in glasgow. james t. mckay of noise entrepreneurs the radiation line invited close friends and strangers to gather in the halt 2, equipped with instruments and an eagerness to submit to improvised sound. 'instruments' being used in the broadest sense of the term, ranging from saxophones to glasses of water in the key of d. amongst the rabble throughout the night were alistair crosbie of space weather, white against the sky and ac/ac; stewart smith and anne kastner of ug!; dougie of my elvis leg and fur hood; the two core members of the radiation line; bagpiper craig mcfarlane - who has played with hawkwind - and rob smith of my old blue terraplane and ten tracks.
once a haven for noise artists, unfortunately the halt has of recent been suffering from an error in its soundproofing, and thus harsh noise and brutal bass frequencies are a no-go. However, a serendipitous consequence of this has been the acoustic jams organised by james, of which this was the second.
it was a fantastic, time-tripping and psyche-jazz, afrobeat-flamenco experience. the night started small, but soon more were drawn to engage with the fertile floor and psychedelic womb fruit produced. instrument-swapping and mutual appreciation proceeded. come into the smoky dark and pick up someone else's guitar; you are welcome. suddenly bagpipes appeared, voices elevated, fragmented by the whirring of the fans. silhouettes of cats in candle light, jiving to the juice.
the night was free and free-style. we hope to do it again soon.
thanks to james t. mckay for organisational skills, to all the talented and/or amateur musicians for turning up, and to the staff of the halt bar.