Audio Mixes

I post these mixes and podcasts for educational purposes. Every one was created to accompany an essay. If you believe a file should be removed, let me know.


The Necks -- Drive By (remixed by Kudzoo)


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Created to accompany an essay titled, "Walden + Railroad + Sound," (a late draft headed to Textual Studies in Canada), this remix struggles to realize or, better, to version Thoreau’s requirements for imaging place, which combines the auralesque (nature as landscape) and choragraphy (nature as force or energy). I have remixed Drive By, a recording by the Necks, an Australian jazz-minimalist trio (keyboards, bass, and drums). Elemental stuff, my remix--a mash-up really--relies heavily on a field recording I made, while in British Columbia, riding Vancouver’s SkyTrain. I hear the loud hum (or, maybe, it's a pleasant roar) of “the world’s longest automated light rapid transit system” as a giant Buddha Machine, recalling a claim made by one of the members of Kraftwerk. He said, “As soon as you travel in a train, you’re in a musical instrument” (qtd. by Kodwo Eshun in Modulations).




Thriving on a Riff (Criss Cross Mix)


download (4:26 version) download (10:42 version)

These train tracks--audio collages of jazz, blues, gospel, and r&b--accompany an essay titled "Jumping Tracks: The Path of Conduction." It's included in Thriving on a Riff, edited by Graham Lock and David Murray. The tracks should remind readers that the railroad exerted a massive influence on African American music of all varieties. Or as Houston Baker puts it: “The dominant blues syntagm in America is an instrumental imitation of train-wheels-over-track-junctures.” While Little Richard takes full credit for inventing rock and roll, he is quick to credit the railroad, even more than the church, with influencing his piano sound. In the WGBH/BBC series Rock & Roll, Little Richard speaks of his childhood in Macon, Georgia. “The train would shake the house that was in front of the track,” he says. “Everybody would get out of the bed ‘cause the train shook the house, ‘cause they couldn’t sleep. And the train would say, ‘Chocka chocka chocka, chocka chocka, chocka chocka chocka, chocka chocka.’ To me it was a rhythm. To me it was just like a song, you know. It had this thing to it, to me.” I’d like to borrow the title of Kip Hanrahan’s record label and call “this thing,” this railroad thing, American clavé: one-two-three, one-two; one-two-three, one-two. “Chocka chocka chocka, if you get a notion.”




On Hip-Hop, A Rhapsody (Podcast)


download (2:10:01) It's huge--148mb--and explicit! playlist for the show

Here's a podcast--a radio show--to accompany an e-book. The e-book is called Illogic of Sense: The Gregory L. Ulmer Remix. It was edited by Darren Tofts and Lisa Gye. You can download it free, as a pdf file, at Alt-X Press. One of the editors described my contribution as follows: "'On Hip-Hop, a Rhapsody' revels in the possibilities of appropriation and sampling. Jarrett is interested in the creative potential of the ready-made, the inventive suturing of available culture. Rap and hip-hop are his ostensible subjects and he wants to take us on a journey to encounter their valences as a historical compsitional strategy. An appropriator himself, Jarrett does what he says, shows what he tells. Jarrett develops a stream of inspired consciousness that links the epic story-telling of the classical rhapsodists, the art of memory and its mnemonic devices and contemporary hip-hop freestyling. Out of this jagged wall of sound, Jonathan Swift, erstwhile Dean of St. Partick's Cathedral in Dublin, emerges as Grandmaster Rapp, the godfather of hip-hop."




You can contact Michael Jarrett at jmj3@psu.edu.