At a recent event, the Music Tech Fest in Boston, I took part in a 24-hour hackathon.
Ostensibly I was filming it for the show I present on, BBC Click. But as well as recording it for the programme, the experience and the people I met that weekend left a deep and lasting impression on me.
For the first time, I was surrounded by those who live comfortably in the centre of the Venn Diagram of Music and Technology – I found it to be an incredibly nourishing few days. I was able to talk openly about my synaesthesia and the very sensitive musical side of me that I don’t normally talk about during my day job. That’s since changed – this week’s show is all about Music Technology.
Plus I finally had the guts to do some live composition in front of people I hardly knew – and their response was incredibly positive, which led me down the path of putting live-composed piano music up on the web.
Each piece of music was recorded live, in just one take.
For years I spent a lot of time fixing every little thing in my compositions – a bit like proof-reading a book for spelling mistakes, but here I’ve deliberately left the mistakes in, this goes up completely untouched by anything – I don’t even record to a click track. And actually, it feels kind of exposed and fantastic all at once to send this out to the world.