“Chicken Bits and Bits and Bobs” in concert

The “Partnerships” concert was a great success! The videos are slowly making their way to the YouTubes. Here Ensemble x.y does a fine job of my work, “Chicken Bits and Bits and Bobs”. (Here’s the score. Programme notes below.)

Like The Humours of Time Pigeon, I composed this piece from an output of folk-rnn with so many problems one might not give it a second look: the transcription is too long, has miscounted measures, uses too many grace notes, and has a poor structure. These problems are clear in the 26 of the 38 generated measures that I use in my piece (the letters denote the 7 phrases.) :


I found this output among 70,000+ others when I was looking for an example of how the system can fail. Since folk-rnn titled its work “Chicken”, I had to take a much closer look; and that closer look became this composition. It is in two parts. The “Chicken Bits” part is essentially an arrangement of what the system generated. I try to make sense of it, staying as true as I can to the system’s “voice”. In the second part, “Bits and Bobs”, I play around with the generated materials in different ways, but bring much more of my own voice to interpret them. The kind of co-creation exemplified by this piece is a rather one-way process of composition. The system generated material, and I curated from it. I didn’t return to ask questions, like, How would you continue from here? I felt I had enough material to get started, and just continued on in a natural way.


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