Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Celestial Movements

Dear friends,

the year 2008 is almost over. Many important things have happened. I met not only many people from past days again, but also great new people with a lot of energy and ideas. Overall, it seems to me, as if “happens” something again. "Old hands" joined on stage again as well as interesting newcomers which went into the spotlight and caught attention with their beautiful music.
Even in the field of "organizers" interesting things have happened. With the "Electronic Circus" a series of new events seems to be established. This gives me hope for the future for electronic music. I think more than ever before that the scene is vital and alive. And this is not just in Germany. Electronic music has become a global theme. Because of the Internet now this perception is possible all around the world. Regarding this development I think more than ever before that the traditional media of radio and television have been pretty sleepy.

In this blog I gave you the opportunity to look back into my musical life and to tell you a few stories behind the stories. Of course from time to time I will be pleased to do this in the future too.
Nevertheless, it is now time to look ahead and take some decisive steps forward. Which date to report, would be better than this one?

Now, with publication of these lines it is official that I am currently producing a new album, which I will entitle "Celestial Movements". The production stands in conjunction to the upcoming "International Astronomical Year 2009". So more info soon here. A publication is planned for March 2009.

March 2009 is chosen with consideration because on that date an event will be reborn that seemed to be ended for ever. I mean the “Schwingungen-Preisverleihung”. "Schwingungen" had been THE forum for "electronic music" on German radio. Moderator was the famous Winfrid Trenkler. Listeners had the possibility to elect their favorite artists, tracks or newcomer of the year.

Now Winfrid Trenkler himself will be the centre point of this event, because he will be honoured for his work during a ceremony which is now called "Schallwelle-Preis" on march 21st, 2009. This event will be presented by host, co-organizer and musician "Stefan Erbe" (beside “Schallwende e.V.”). Stefan has invited me as laudator and it is really a challenge to me to hold a laudatory speech.
The whole event will be a meeting of the "Who is Who" of electronic music, but it is also open for public audience. So this event is something special for the fans. Venue is the city of
Dinslaken.

Speaking about events, please have also a look on
the september 12th, 2009. On this day "Electronic Circus II" will be held in Bielefeld again at the "Movie". Organizers are again Frank Gerber and Hans-Hermann Hess (plus their nice team).

You see, the things are in motion. Here again the dates:

1) Spring 2009: release of "Celestial Movements"

2) 21.03.2009: Laudatory at "Schallwelle-Preis"

3) 12.09.2009 "Electronic Circus II" (Movie;
Bielefeld)

I am sure that not even the recent events and news will be the only ones for 2009. For all who don’t want to wait until 2009: you can click to the homepage of "Cosmiccagibi”. My friends from
France did an interview with me where I talk about some general things as well as about my recent activities.

At this point I would like to thank all of you who accompanied me with their interest, their comments and their assistance in the past months and years. My special thanks to the "Cosmic Bermuda Triangle" Olivier, Christian et Michel!
I wish you all a merry Christmas and a happy new year.

See you next year (here or there ...).

In love

Bernd Kistenmacher

Friday, November 28, 2008

Electronic Circus Update

You had asked for the latest news? Here is a small one.
In the current edition of the German "Keyboards" magazine (06/08), you can find a gleanings of the first "Electronic-Circus" festival (see search item " Electronic-Circus " within this blog).

The article has been written by colleague Bernhard Woestheinrich aka "Redundand Rocker". Notably, the guests are also mentioned (of which I have been one).

But even more important: the next "Electronic-Circus" is at the same place in Bielefeld probably in September 2009...

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Dresden - august 1989

Today I will look some years back again to the year 1989.

Here are some comments written by myself for "The M.I.Rainbow Collection Vol.I":


".. in the following months Olaf Zimmermann (famous radio moderator) played my music on his radio show "Electronics" with increasing frequency. The series was accompanied by periodic "Electronics Live" festivals. Planning for the third one was underway; this time it was to be really big. Sponsored jointly by radio station DT 64 and the "Interessengemeinschaft Elektronische Musik - IGEM" ("Interest Group for Electronic Music"), it took place on the “Junge Garde" open-air stage in Dresden in East Germany. Of the four acts invited, two were the well-known East German groups Pond and Servi, and two were from West Germany, the main act Klaus Schulze and myself.

Sales and publicity were launched months in advance, and it was soon clear that the show would be a hit. In addition to the East German fans, many fans from Belgium, the Netherlands, and West Germany attended. Ultimately all 6800 seats of the Junge Garde were filled.

At this time such a festival in East Germany was somewhat of an adventure; still we had to admit that it was perfectly organized.

Finally the day arrived. I was accompanied by my current wife (eagerly taking photographs of the proceedings) and Mario Schoenwaelder. The border crossing into East Germany, the "German Democratic Republic", went very smoothly, particularly after the border guard checked things out over the telephone. The hotel and the reception were just perfect, only the weather was a bit recalcitrant: cool and cloudy.

I got to know Klaus Schulze personally for the first time. We had occasionally talked on the telephone, but the first personal contact was in Dresden. He turned out to be a very likable fellow, and we had a lot of fun.


...with Klaus Schulze photographed at the moment, where we looked into the same direction...

Set-up began early Saturday. The stage was gigantic, and we had plenty of room to spread out, which was useful considering the amount of equipment we had. Interviews were held after the rehearsals. I felt grateful and quite nervous, for I had never played before so many people. Klaus also seemed excited, as this was his first major performance in several years.


However, everything went perfectly. The audience was enthusiastic and the mood was fabulous. It was a one-of-a-kind experience.
In the evenings we sat in the hotel restaurant, talking and having fun. It was difficult to say goodbye..."

Please let me also add, that the situation had been of more historic importance, as we really could guess, but only a few months later, in november 1989, the Berlin Wall came down ...

Its time for "showdown"

The music of "Dresden 08/89" can now be listened at Last.Fm .

© Frits Couwenberg
© Sabine Kistenmacher

Sunday, November 16, 2008

The Cosmic Cagibi in Berlin !

Meeting friends. Thus I would describe what I was experiencing on november 10th in Berlin.
This was the day before Klaus Schulze performed a concert after many years again (together with the absolute perfect and sympathic Lisa Gerrard) and this was also the day were I was visited by three guys from France which have probably more done for keeping electronic music alive over all past years than anybody else.
Their names: Olivier Bégué, Christian Piednoir and Michel Le Stum and they call their base "Cosmiccagibi".

We know each other since approx. 15 years. Via fanzines, Olivier was writing for, via many letters or eMails. They followed my musical carrier as well as my life and so we were sitting in Berlin-Steglitz in a nice Pizzeria and talked about everything: past, present and ... future.
We had a lot of fun and joy this evening and yes I would describe it as a special moment when we seperated many hours later: we seperated as friends. I know that.
The following evening we met us again; at the Schiller-Theater were Klaus Schulze was playing. Also this moment was very special because I could say "Hello" to Klaus for the first time after 19 (!) years.
This was not the last time I have met Olivier, Christian and Michel. I am sure, that we will see us again. Soon ... and as friends.

...with Christian Piednoir




Michel Le Stum

... with Olivier Bégué

© Christian Piednoir

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Electronic-Circus

During my visit of the first "Electronic-Circus" festival in Bielefeld (Germany) in last september, Stefan Erbe did an interview with me for Lokalvision. The interview has now been published on the website of "Lokalvision" as well as on the "Electronic-Circus" website.
The interview is done in german language. So it may only be interesting for a part of you.
Anyway, many thanks again to Hans-Hermann Hess, Frank Gerber and of course Stefan Erbe.




Saturday, October 18, 2008

The Octopus Experience

Hello folks,

As I promised some month ago, I offer you now the translation of my report about the Octopus sequencer from German company “GenoQs”. The article will be published in issue no.11 of the “Synthesizer-Magazin”. As you maybe know, I write some little articles or reviews for this magazine from time to time. Writing about my first experiences with this fantastic sequencer was an “affair of the heart”. So I hope you will enjoy the following article and you are not too angry about my terrible English…


Introduction

Where should one begin when facing such a powerful and promising tool for sound creation? Leaving impressed by its exceptional design? Or from his aesthetic look? From the feeling, to own a Hardware-Sequencer which has far more "artificial" intelligence inherent as his "analogue" appearance suggests? Can something, that is so much expensive as the Octopus, really have weaknesses? Is it the perfect music machine? I just know that, after many years of abstinence, again I wanted to have a real Hardware-Sequencer. It should not be a machine that copies well-known Analogue-Sequencer concepts (of which there is really enough) but bring me to new ideas. A machine that awakes the child in me. A “toy”, that helps to explore new ways to go. I have long sought. When I had seen the GenoQs Octopus for the first time I knew that this one should it be.

Spring 2008 Frankfurt Music Fair
The “Synthesizer-Magazin” presents perhaps the most beautiful (in terms of interesting) stand of the whole fair. A synthesizer exhibition “par excellence”. I see many old “acquaintances" (Synthesizers) and ... the Octopus. Gabriel Seher - one head of “GenoQs” personally introduces me to the instrument. He shows me a few possibilities. Programmes “on the fly” and is unlikely versed (of course, he has it developed together with his companion Marcel Achim). His introduction impresses me very and I promise to stay in touch with him ...
Three months later I go to “SchneidersBuero” at Alexanderplatz in Berlin and acquire an Octopus. Finally!

Getting Started
Hardly unpacked, I concur with the Octopus to do the necessary wiring and connect MIDI In and Out with my JD-800. 10 „tracks“, each with a separate MIDI channel routable need enough resources to control. I decide for a multitimbral synthesizer. Then I understand "nothing" and must recognize that without studying the manual nothing happens. Sure, the start, stop and control buttons still speak for themselves, but for a deeper understanding of the instrument, I must first duly read much more, try out and invest more time. A display, as you know it from other devices, does the Octopus not have. But only a little time later I will have understood that the whole surface of this sequencer can be understood as a “display”. Incidentally I will nobody bore with endless tech-facts. The website of “GenoQs” (www.genoqs.com) provides enough information and images as well as you can watch enough videos about it on Youtube to get "hungry" for it.

The concept
"grid" - „pages“ - „tracks“ - "steps". These are the words that accompany me from now on.
The concept is quickly understood: 16 Steps form (initially) up a „track“. 10 „tracks“ build a „pages“ (the on the surface visible 10x16 matrix). Each "step" is a "container" for so-called attributes. More about this theme later. Following the logic, the “grid” is the "container" for 9 x 16 = 144 “pages”. The change between these "containers" respectively levels is easy possible, because you find in the right half of the user- interface enough explicit buttons for navigation. As already mentioned, the parameters which describes "steps" (and although each step separately), „tracks“ and „pages“ are named as attributes (entities). These are e.g. pitch, velocity, starting position, note length and more. All these parameters can be controlled in real time. Here I started to loose the overview again, but the “ESC”-button saved me many times. With this, you can jump back on the next upper level.
In “track”-mode, you can also determine how many "steps" a „track“ may be long (including skipping steps). Whom, who are 16 “steps” not enough, can also link more “tracks” together or directly choose to one of the following configurations: 5 “tracks” with 2 rows, 2 “tracks” with 4 rows plus 1 “track” with 2 rows or one “track” with 8 rows plus 1 “track” with 2 rows. Each “track” can be manipulated individually in walking distance, direction, starting points, etc. Muting, MIDI-data and MIDI cc are also adjustable for each track. Confused? I know that! The possibilities are incredibly diverse and if you have built together usable „pages“, the "control madness" still goes further on. I don’t want to go too much into details and put more attention to the musical aspects. There is at this point no universal recipe of doing the “right” thing. “Try it out” is the right motto. So, let's go.


The first tracks
Having the basic principles understood (at least I thought initially), I started with a few simple „tracks“ to try out everything. So, the „pages“-button is pressed and an empty „pages“ is selected. Here we must understand the next convention. Empty „tracks“ (and also empty "steps") resp. the LED of it, do not light first. Steps composite glow green, and programmed, playing „pages“ in the grid glow green too. Selected “pages”, although programmed, but not active to play, are shining in orange colour. You can see this in “grid”-mode. The first exercises, I must really understand as such. Basically one „pages“ with 10 „tracks“ is enough to test extensively the possibilities for sound manipulation. Whether “Electro” or “Berlin school”. Everything can be realized with this machine. I notice that I must say “good bye” to another known convention. It concerns the storage concept. The Octopus has no presets for individual “tracks”, “pages”, “songs” or whatever. It has only one single space! (for 144 „pages“). No more. This always safes the overall state of the device. So if you want to work with variations of a „pages“, you should copy and paste it to a free space to continue to work later with it. At the beginning I was a little bit confused about this, because I also missed the possibility of individual naming and identification. So it is better to save too much, as too little. (1) (At the end of the report you can read an opinion about this written by Gabriel Seher ...) Those, who will work with the Octopus on stage, will it have probably easier. “Track” manipulation does not necessarily require frequent switching between different „pages“ (only my personal view.) But anyone who plays other keyboards at the same time too, should better use the Octopus in slave mode. „pages“ exchange could be easily done with an external sequencer. But I must admit that the basic idea of the Octopus would lead into absurd. Live-sequencing with the Octopus requires the full attention. That should be taken into account. Speaking “Live”! Regarding the user-interface I have here a point of criticism. This concerns the extremely thin labelled controls. If the wrong light shines on stage, the scriptures turn into “invisible”. It is practically unreadable. Errors can only prevented by "knowledge" (or with a little USB port lamp at the appropriate jack).

3 weeks later
Meanwhile, I have more routine in dealing with the Octopus and get discovered, that the Octopus can be almost better used for the manipulation of synthesizer sounds, than solely for pure Arpeggios or simple sequences. I basically do use him now for more atonal, rhythmic structures as for "songs". But nevertheless, also „pages“ exchanges can be programmed. A great feature is the programming of chords for each single “step”! Yes, correct. Let this melt on your tongue. Chords can be programmed with other (hardware) sequencers only with several parallel running, but differently tuned tracks, which control the same multitimbral sound. The Octopus makes this in each “step” and with each “track”. For programming this, there are two possibilities. The first method works with explicit "chord" buttons. In "step" mode you can select one of seven (!) "chord" buttons. Each button adds the wished chord on your basic note. In maximum can this be a 7 note chord for each “step”. During one of these “chord”-buttons is pressed you can tune each note of your chord with the pitch control. Leaving the “chord”-switch off the chord is programmed for this step. Alternatively, you can also record chords via MIDI-in. Frankly, that sounds very orgiastic. Strumming chords works of course too. But I am soft “off topic” and actually wanted to tell something about the programmable „pages“ exchange. First you must go to the "grid" mode (the highest level of the Octopus). If you want to play several „pages“ one after the next, first you must “reorganize” your “pages” in this way, that they are all located together in one “track”. In other words spoken: you must organize them into "cluster". You can easily resort your “pages” with copy and paste function. The so prepared “grid”-track must now be selected with the "Sel" (Select) button. So a cluster can contain a maximum of 16 “pages”. As I mentioned earlier, you can also link the tracks of a „page“ and play them one after another. At least this means that you can play 2560 "steps" consecutively and at this point I did not consider that any „pages“ can even played 16 times…

Even a little bit “Berlin school”
Wouldn’t it be really nice if some „tracks“ of a „pages“ could be transposed with a MIDI-keyboard while others, for example drum tracks should not follow. The good news: basically it works, but not quite perfect. The idea to do this emerged only during the last weeks. Here I must say how fantastic, spontaneous and rapid the cooperation with Gabriel Seher and Marcel Achim (Genoqs) was. They followed very spontaneously to my proposals and supported me with their help and ideas. So, „track“ transposition works as follows. The "record" button must be pressed so that it flashes orange. Now the MIDI is input activated. By pressing the "select" button, you can now choose the “Tracks” you would like to transpose. Multiple selections are possible. And ready! To work in such way you must update your Octopus with the OS version 1.60. This version is available now via the GenoQs website.

Still not at the end

At this point I must finish my report. The only reason for is the limited number of pages in the “Synthesizer-Magazin”. I could report still much more. And to be honest, I scratched only on the surface of the Octopus (please do not take it literally). But these impressions should be already enough to guess which possibilities this machine has. As I said earlier, the Octopus is the right tool for adult children.
. Got lust? Then is just missing the necessary money...


September 2008 Gabriel Seher of "GenoQs"on the planned 1.60 OS:

"In OS 1.60 individual pages can be secured and recalled. This is a granular approach; in addition to the overall storage process. The identification of the individual pages has to be seen in the absolute position of the page in the grid. Furthermore, one could also compare pages with synth patches. And in every (major) synth there is only one space or slot for each patch, and the amount of all slots makes a "total state". Other possibilities of archiving by sysex are available even as you know it from synths (I would like to avoid that people get the wrong impression - I have been asked several times via e-mail why you can not save the Octopus but it was a function from day 1). "


Bernd Kistenmacher

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Electronic-Circus


That was once again a great weekend! Since longer time announced, the first "Electronic Circus" was now held on last Saturday (20th of september) in Bielefeld. To anticipate it: the event was a big success.
I have met "old" friends, fans and fellow artists after many years again and I also met some of them for the first time (the very sympathic Wolfram Spyra for example).

Frank Gerber - the manager of the event - and his team did a great job. Nice people and “helping hands” at all places. The musician Stefan Erbe was the moderator of the event and led (circumventing the breaks cleverly) sovereignly through the afternoon and evening.

All important companies of the e.m. scene (MellowJet Records, Manikin Records, Groove, Cue Records, Spheric music, David Wright, etc.) were represented there as well as the "Schallwende e.V", the "Synthesizer Magazin", "Music-Zirkus-Magazin"," Eldoradio" or the local television of Bielefeld.

All concerts were done with great enthusiasm and I am sure that next year an “Electronic Circus Part 2" will take place again.

Again in Bielefeld and again at the "Movie", a really nice venue.

...with Wolfram Spyra (Der Spyra) and Mike Niemann (one of the "helping hands")


...with Bernd Scholl (MellowJet-Records)


Hans-Hermann Heß and Frank Gerber- the organizers of the "Electronic-Circus"






Thursday, September 18, 2008

YouTube

Hello friends,

since yesterday, you can also watch to some of my older videos on my new YouTube page.

Actually you can find there 2 videos made in 1991 und 1994, which were part of the "M.I. Rainbow Collection " CD/CD-ROM set. The first one shows some minutes of a concert, which I had given with Harald Grosskopf (drums) in the cologne "Stadtgarten" venue. The second video was made 3 years later in german town "Bocholt".
Both were made by Franz-Wilhelm Huendchen, a good friend of mine. Thank you for your help!

Also the "Octopus-Experience" article for german "Synthesizer-Magazin"is in progress and ready soon. I will meet the guys from the mag on saturday in Bielefeld during the "Electronic-Circus" festival.

See you there...

Saturday, September 6, 2008

It is Video time!

I've just found some nice videos, which I definetely must show you.

This one here was a "dia show" as part of the CD-ROM project "The M.I. Rainbow Collection".

Some pictures for it where taken during the rehearsal in Dresden 1989 (some of you remember?). Others are from my concert in Annecy, from "Nachtklang und Trommel" in Berlin with Harald Grosskopf and from earlier times. The background music is really "cosmic"....

video

I also loaded another video on my MySpace profile up.

It shows some minutes of a concert, which I had given in german town Bocholt in 1994.

By the way: you can now listen to my album "Starting Again" at Last.FM .

Enjoyed it.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

MySpace

Hello friends,

finally I did it!

From now on you can find actual informations on my new official MySpace artist-page.

Klick on this link or search for my name and you are on the right way.

Of course "friends" are welcome:-)

Cheers

Bernd

Sunday, August 10, 2008

Back from holidays!

Hello dear friends,

after a few weeks I am back now (well recovered).


Autumn is coming and there is much work to do.
First, I will work on a new album. The musical direction is not yet clear but it is not planned as a pure "Berlin School" album. However, the compositions will be a mixture of analogue and digital sounds.



Recently, I have purchased a Yamaha YC-45D organ. The beast sounds "dirty and synthetic" at the same time. Connaisseurs like to discribe it as the “organ version” of the CS-80 synthesizer. I agree with it. The instrument is absolutely fantastic and sounds very versatile. The only problem is, that I must kill the noise from it… somehow!
Yamaha YC-45D

The "Octopus" sequencer, will participate on the album too (of course). Parallel to the recordings I will write the promised experience-report for the “Synthesizer-Magazin”. The English version of the text will I be placed in this blog then.


In September, I will travel to Bielefeld (Germany) to the "Electronic-Circus Festival” to meet some people from the scene there, as well as fellow artists and fans. Certainly I can tell you then more concrete details about the album publication. I look forward to this date.


To shorten the time until then you can from now on listen to my last album "Un viaggio attraverso l'Italia" at "Last.FM".


In April 2000 I had performed my last concert so far. By invitation of Tomat Giordano, a member of the Italian electronic music fan club "21st Century Music", I performed at the famous "Teatro Delle Celebrazioni”. The recordings were the basis for this album.
First, the CD was released at the "Merano Magic" record company (Volker Flottmann) in a small edition.
Then, in December 2000, I went to "BSC Music" (Christoph Bühring-Uhle). The album was published there a second time and it is still available.

Unfortunately there was a mistake with one title. "Cogni di B" must correctly called "Sogni di B.". To prevent errors I would rather prefer the English title "Dreaming of B.".


See you soon!

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Thoughts

For this album, there is also another little story to tell.

Originally, it should be released at the Berlin label "Picosso-Records" in 1995. The label had made in incredibly short time incredibly lot of money with so-called "Shape" CDs. This CDs were issued by a patented process and could be manufactured in any shape you can imagine (for example the shape of a heart or a continent etc.)
In 1995 this was absolutely fashion and – as I said - the company made much money that had to be invested. So they invested it in techno and electronic music projects. Some of them sold poorly. Rooms were rented in Berlin-Grunewald (maybe the most expensive place in Berlin) for more than 5.000 euros per month cost. Well, the company was faster bankrupt than they had become rich. Somewhere in between, I was up and signed for a small record contract for "Thoughts". But the album there was never published. With effort and hardship, I got my rights and my master tape back. That was it with "Pikosso-Records".


Unfortunately, the with "Pikosso-Records" related music-publisher has still the copyrights of this album, but they never acted for me. I have already some experiences with this kind of situation…

Just a short time later I met Guenther Kopschinski and his label "Green Tree Records" at a “record release party” for an album from Frank Klare (ex Synco). The label had made a name with CDs from the Progressive Rock genre.
He (Kopschinski) was then very interested into electronic music from Berlin. After the release of this CD, he then published my whole back catalogue and the 8 CD box "My Little Universe". So positive this cooperation had begun: After two years it was stopped by a lawyer. Unpleasant experiences seems to be a living part of a musicians life.

A comment I would like to make. The foreword to this album was written by Winfrid Trenkler; the man who had made “our” music popular by broadcasting it in german public radio. After this, the contact to him broke. He had left Germany.


Some albums from the "Green Tree period" are still in popular internet auction houses to find. Who does not want to look at it, might look to Last.FM. There is "Thoughts" now available for download.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Activities

I am currently experimenting with my new "Octopus" sequencer around and try to understand that device even better and better. Although I'm not a fan of instruction manuals, but I must say that you should read it if you will this machine not only understand but also dominate in a creative sense.
"Try and error” leads to often into the wrong direction and supplies frustrating results. But if the principles once understood, the Octopus makes really fun (beside its fantastic optic).

With Andreas Michel, editor of the German “
Synthesizer-Magazin”, I arranged to write a field report about the Octopus. The article will be explicitly no test report, because this would be too boring. The report is expected to be released in issue no.11 and I will put then a summary of the article in English language into this blog.


...too few hands for so much "Octopus"


Also I'm preparing a new studio-album which will hopefully be released at the end of this year. Details will follow soon. It is guaranteed, that Octopus will get his own role in this production...

Keep on rockin'

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Wake Up In The Sun

To all my fans from Greece (and of course to all of you from around the world):

Thank you for looking and asking so intensively for my second Album "Wake Up In The Sun" at the Tangerine Dream Forum . Yes, "Cassandra's Dance" was my answer to the classics from Tangerine Dream and Michael Hoenig and - of course - it was my intention to follow and develope the basic ideas of the "Berliner Schule" style.
Indeed this term does not come from me. It was invented in connection with the "Beat Studio", which was founded and directed by swiss composer Thomas Kessler in Berlin in1969.

Please read more about this in the englisch or german Wiki.

One info for the tech freaks: all sequences you can listen on this album where realised with the famous ARP Sequencer; a machine, which I really loved. The music was recorded on a Tascam 8-track machine.

You can still listen to the music at Last.FM .

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Live & Studio Tapes '92

Wow, time is running!

We have already mid-June and I had almost forgotten to upload the next album at Last.FM.

Live & Studio Tapes '92

In January 1992 I received a visit from two elderly, very friendly Belgian gentlemen: Flor Berckenbosch, a well-known radio presenter, and Jef Dupain, co-organizer of the "Festival van Vlaanderen", the Flander's Music Festival.
This renowned festival concentrated on classical and "new" serious music. My invitation represented a first step of this festival in the direction of electronic music. Berckenbosch and Dupain came to Berlin to discuss details, and my appearance was slated for June. For me it was a big chance, and I was quite happy.

The Festival in Flanders was being organized on a grand scale. I rented a P.A. and drove to Belgium in a large truck, accompanied by my wife, Erik (a friend) and Uwe Rogge, a fantastic guy, able to solve every technical problem. Uwe then worked for REVUE Berlin sound company, but I had known him previously from Sound & Drumland music shop in Berlin.

Belgium was fantastic. Beautiful summer weather greeted us upon our arrival in the small town of Tongeren. I was scheduled to play in a basilica, but was then relocated to an old theater, as the church was closed for reconstruction. The theater was quite old and musty, but that gave it a special charm. I would gladly play there again. The mood was good, and although I had a couple of technical problems, the concert went wonderfully.



I still remember a moment where I now laugh about when I think at that, but at this time I rather started to sweat. The stage floor of the theater was plenty unstable. The old floorboards were quite week and the whole area moved if something dynamic happened. That bothered me not really.
However, during the concert the bass frequencies of my monitor speakers where so intense that they removed a MIDI cable from my drum module, which was mounted in the huge rack that I had built up behind me. Suddenly the drums where off and I had a few “hot” minutes of pure improvisation to cope until I noticed what's going to be. Experiences you will never forget!

Nevertheless I will always be grateful to Jef Dupain and Flor Berkenbosch for the invitation.

Music from both - the "Festival van Vlaanderen" and another festival where I participated this year (the "Wellwnformen Festival") - appeared on my fifth solo CD entitled
Live and Studio Tapes '92.

Again, please enjoy it on
Last.FM.





Wednesday, June 4, 2008

SchneidersBuero

A visit to SchneidersBuero!

Many friends of electronic music are not only interested in the artists of this music genre, but also interested in the instruments required for this music.
The latest trend (in addition to the transmission of famous analogue hardware synthesizers into the software level) is certainly the connection of modern sound generation combined with from analogue synthesizers known user-friendly interface design. In short, compact synthesizer (also modular) with many knobs and switches to direct influence and control of the generated sounds.


In recent years, many small but ambitious companies began with the implementation of new synthesizer concepts. So today there are many new and interesting "machines" available.


If you are interested in this - and also incidentally want to visit a great city – don't hesitate to travel to Berlin and visit SchneidersBuero.



...with Andreas Schneider and Octopus

Andreas Schneider - the CEO of this company - has his showroom at Alexander Str. no. 7 (at Alexanderplatz) in the centre of Berlin (Mitte). He is constantly prepared to show you the latest synthesizers away from any mainstream. All instruments can be extensively tested and gladly Mr. Schneider takes also personally the time to demonstrate full of enthusiasm "his" instrument park.

„stecken, schrauben, spielen“ by Andreas Schneider

A visit there is all worth, but all who have no time or opportunity to do so, should obtain a little book that Mr. Schneider personally has written.
"stecken, schrauben, spielen" is a handbook that contains both, a historical overview of SchneidersBuero itself and gives also an overview over the synthesizers of today and its makers. Highly recommended!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Outlines

It is time for a new upload. Outlines!

We have the year 1990. "...in late summer 1990, an East German artist had asked me to compose music for a theatrical piece he had written. He called it "Niemandsland" ( "no-man's land"), an examination of problems relating to the Berlin Wall, East German history, and east-west conflicts. These weighty topics really did not interest anyone anymore, and consequently it flopped on opening night. My music, appropriately gloomy, was well-received, however. Selections appeared on my CD "Outlines" in 1991. "
That is a short excerb of my biography, which I wrote in 1996, when I started the preparations for my CD-ROM multimedia project "The M.I. Rainbow Collection".

Indeed after all euphoria in 1989, when the Berlin wall came down, the situation in our country became more realistic or sometimes more frustrating(?). Not all people, neither in East Germany nor in West Germany, where satisfied with the new situation.
So art was one way (eventually the best way?) to explain this problems and questions. But in that time, nobody wanted to hear too much about all this.

You can now listen to all four tracks of
Outlines in full length at Last.FM.

Enjoy it and don't become too much depressed ;-)

See you soon!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

iTunes

Good news for the fans of downloads!

I just received an info from BSC-Music, that my last album “Un viaggio attraverso L’italia” can be obtained and downloaded track for track at iTunes.

If you like to do this, please follow this link:

Kistenmacher/iTunes


Of course you can still buy the “hardware” version of this album at Amazon or BSC-Music directly.

Until soon.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Head-Visions

Ruecksturz - one of my favorite tracks from my first album "Head-Visions" - can now be listened at this blog (please use the "currently played" page element) and - of course - in full length!

Just press the little "Play"-button, turn your speakers on and enjoy another journey into past.

Greetings

Bernd

Monday, May 5, 2008

Nice people meeting


What a weekend! On the initiative by Bernd Scholl a few days ago Harald Grosskopf and I renewed our contact after 10 years! Unbelievable how fast the clock is ticking. The idea to meet us was born quickly and Harald and his nice family invited my family and me to visit him in his residence Solingen. We did have a lot of fun. Of course Harald showed us his beautiful house, his new Studio as well as the beautiful scenery of the Bergisches Land and the Ruhr area.
We visited some very interesting industrial monuments. Old blast furnaces, which we climbed, or the Gasometer in Oberhausen - a 110-metre high former gas storage, now used for cultural events (including concerts with electronic music) and with a very inspiring and unbelievable 20 seconds reverb. You think you are inside the mothership of "Close Encounters…"

Also Bernd Scholl was so kind to invite us all on may 3rd as guests at the 2nd "Ambient Experience" festival which was located in the city of Wuppertal. For better understanding, Bernd “Moonbooter” Scholl is not only a well-known and talented musician, but also the owner of “MellowJet Records”. For more than a year, we have contact, and I was pleased to meet him.


Several artists presented their music with (partly) very interesting animations and video snipp
ets.
I listened to newcomer Uwe Reckzeh, Moonbooter & Stefan Erbe, Wellenfeld and last but not least from Denmark Carboneids & Nattefrost feat. Robert Schroeder (on synthesizer and guitars).

Unfortunately, shortly before the festival Bernd (Scholl) had an accident and was taken to a hospital. He could not take part of the festival, but his friendly wife did a perfect job for him and kept the whole thing alive. Bernd I wish you all the best and I hope, that you will come to your legs again very quickly.


Finally Stefan Erbe (with white space suit) played without Bernd and did a perfect job too.

Between the shows I had the chance to meet a lot of people after a long time. Fans as well as artist collegues like Robert Schroeder and Stefan Erbe or committed supporters of electronic music from Germany like Sylvia Sommerfeld from "Schallwende e.V." or Frank Gerber, which presented his new "electronic circus" festival.

On Sunday I returned to Berlin with a lot of beautiful impressions in my mind.


Thank you to everyone who made this possible.

We'll see us again…




...with Harald Grosskopf




...with Stefan Erbe






...with Robert Schroeder

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Kaleidoscope


It is spring again and it is time for new music on Last.fm.
Kaleidoscope - my third album - has just been uploaded.

Enjoy the tracks and do not forget to look for Head-Visions.

Cheers

Bernd

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Wake Up In The Sun

Hi folks,

for this time I recommend you to change this side quickly to follow the inserted link to Last.fm internet radio.

There you'll find the "Upload of the month": Wake Up In The Sun as complete download.

Enjoyed the music from far days.

Until soon

Best regards

Bernd Kistenmacher

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Hello again,

today I updated the listing of my solo-albums on the right side of this page.
Please scroll down from recent to my first releases.

The listing isn't complete yet, but I will add more cover soon.

Cheers

Bernd Kistenmacher

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Annecy 1988


Hello together,
checking my picture-archives I had the idea to let you look into it too (from time to time).

For example this one above.

It was taken during a rehearsal-session in France 1988. The very warm and nice place were it happened was Annecy (near Lake d'Annecy). The festival was planned as the biggest event for electronic music in europe!

This was also the first time were I met Tim Blake. To be honest: he was much more relaxed than I. Of course I was the newcomer and he the professional. I learned a lot from him.
Also I still remember, that I was paid with a not covered cheque !

But who cares....

Cheers
Bernd Kistenmacher

Hello everybody,

please take notice of the updated link-list below.

Thank you

Until soon

Bernd Kistenmacher

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

A happy new year to all of you!

First a short look back again. I still receive some requests about the release of tracks or albums of my back-catalogue. Because of a very “uncomfortable” publishing situation, as result of wrong decisions I made many years ago and - more important - because of my future plans, I am not willing to invest time and energy to change this at the moment! I am sorry to disappoint you.

Generally my music is not “GEMA-free”. That means that everybody, who wants to obtain the right to publish my music, has to pay royalties to the GEMA or to his local collecting society (BIEM or BUMA/STEMRA for example). I cannot give you music for free. So please do not ask for.

But looking forward now I can tell you that my new studio is nearly finished and I will definitely start composing and recording new tracks. Ideas are there enough and I am very optimistic to announce a new album within this year. Talks about this are ongoing.

So please follow this blog. I will be back here with good news soon (maybe we will meet us at Frankfurt Music Fair in march 2008?).

So long
Bernd Kistenmacher