For our exhibition What Are We Doing? at Gallery Kayafas in January of 2011, we showed the final version of our piece “Would Sol LeWitt Approve?” For that piece, we created a musical response to the work of Sol LeWitt by performing all permutations of four guitar chords.
For the opening reception of our exhibition, we invited the band Soccer Momto perform a new musical composition based on our project. This piece was titled “Rules For The Performance Of Guitar Chords: Would Harvey Loves Harvey Approve?”
For this piece, we gave the band one rule, that was similar (but not exactly the same) to the rule we used for our piece. The rule given to Soccer Mom was:Pick 4 distinct music elements and peform every possibility. The band went into their studio and came up with a series of sounds that met this rule. Will Scales of Soccer Mom described their final process to us this way:
“it will begin with me and dan on guitar, zack on keys. we will hold that formation for a while, and when i move to drums, the key will shift (D to Bm). once i return from drums, zack will move to them and the key will again shift (Bm to B major), ultimately moving into a new key (G#m) as dan moves to drums. the key will go to G# major while dan plays drums, and will move into Fm as dan goes back to guitar. I will move to drums again while dan and zack play in Fm, moving to Dm. I will return to guitar, and we will end in D (which is what we will open with). we are going to use 3-4 egg timers or alarm clocks and set them up so we can all tell how long each part has gone on for. we will most likely set them to 30-35 minutes at the beginning. hopefully there is a tasteful amount of variation as the entire piece ends with a ringing.”
During the performance, we handed out cards explaining the process of creating the song, and its relation to our piece “Would Sol LeWitt Approve?” The illustration on the card was done by Liz Prince, who also illustrated the album cover for our piece.
Watch the full performance, or a short excerpt, by clicking a video at the right.
Or, if you prefer, listen to an MP3 of the music.