Guigou Chenevier, Le batteur est le meilleur ami
« The drummer is the musician's best friend. »
« This hackneyed saying of musicians everywhere was my
declaration of intent, at least in the sense of my own contrary
interpretation : a droll way to convey what I consider the role
of a drummer, not only as " warden of rhythm ", but also
as tunesmith and composer.
I started thinking of the drummer in these terms long before now.
Back in Etron Fou Leloublan, I'd written several " songs for
drums ", very different in conception from the infamous drum
solos of the time, which drove audiences (by dint of sheer ennui)
en masse to the bar. Les Batteries, formed in 1984 with Rick Brown
and Charles Hayward, extended my thinking about drums, as here was
a trio of drummers writing " short pieces for drum kit ".
In taking this line of thought still further, the idea of inverting
the role of drummer vs. other musicians sounded promising : constructing
a piece of music by starting with a strict rhythmic ground plan,
as opposed to the customary approach of attaching a drum part last.
This is what I set out to do with The Drummer Is The Musician's
Best Friend. How each participant dealt with the " constraint
" I imposed to him made for the intringuing and happy listening,
and I have to say that the quality of results was everything and
more that I'd hoped for.
I recorded 14 items on drums and sent them around the world
to 14 musicians, who had total liberty to work with my rhythmic
blueprint in whatever way they chose. Each item was composed with
a particular musician in mind..... in order to be as immersed as
possible in each player's unique vision... and also to pay homage
to some musicians I very much admired.
For diverse reasons, 3 of the 14 musicians had to abandon the project,
unfortunately ! The remaining 11 pieces comprise musical post cards
from friends the world over. Thanks again to all those who lent
themselves to the game !
At the last minute, I decided to round off this CD with one of the
three " orphaned " tracks. Some listeners may enjoy speculating
as to who the original recipient had been... and I invite all musicians
to take up the challenge of this proposition in rhythm and send
me their " finished " item on CD-R (Guigou Chenevier,
Inouï Productions 26 rue des Teinturiers, 84000 Avignon, France).
Maybe someday I'll have the material for yet another CD, "
X " Variations on a Theme.
Dear friends of the drummer, the next move is yours ! »
Guigou Chenevier, April 17, 2003
(translation by Jonathan Thomas)
Co-production between Inouï Productions, Studio Centre Culturel
André Malraux-Musique Action, Scène nationale de Vanduvre-Les-Nancy
With the partnership of the region Provence-Alpes-Côte d'azur
(IPS 0603) out of print
Available for digital download, click on the links above (Itunes,
Amazon, Virginmega, Deezer, 7digital.com...).
1. A l'horizon
que du Bleu (Momo ROSSEL)
2. Too good too (Rick BROWN)
3. The first day (HACO)
s'est passé au Nunavut
5. Eggs, salt, vanilla (Sue GARNER)
6. Odd or even (Kenji ITOKEN)
7. Un jour, la nuit (Nick DIDKOVSKY)
8. Pluie de cendres (Kevin NORTON)
9. Moi, un oeil, roi des aveugles (Ik, éénog,
koning onder blinden) (Han BUHRS)
10. Le retour du Percuppsala (Lars HOLLMER)
11. Palimpset (Jonathan THOMAS)
12. Drones and drolls (Guigou CHENEVIER)
Guigou Chenevier : drums & percussions recorded by François
Dietz at CCAM-Musique Action studio, Vanduvre-Les-Nancy, september
With the friendly musicians :
1. Shirley Hoffman : tuba, voice, Momo Rossel : violin,
2. Rick Brown : keyboards, sequencer, rhythm box, percussions
3. Haco : voice, electronics, effects
4. Jean Derome : jeu de colliers, cowbells, ventilateur portatif,
3 jawharps, modified goose, piece of wood, appeau à grive,
trompinette basse, grelots de carriole, hochet, 2 piccolos, Gauthier
2002, Sh-3A and Casio VL-Tone
5. Sue Garner : bass, guitar, voix, electronics treatments
6.Kenji Itoken : cowbells, toy-glokenspiel, xylophone, melodica,
7. Nick Didkovsky : guitar and bass
8. Kevin Norton : vibraphone (Bice), marimba, cymbals, triangles
9. Han Buhrs : voice, effects
10. Lars Hollmer : accordion, keyboards, piano, melodica
11. Jonathan Thomas : casio and cans