Thursday, February 12, 2015

Tim Cohen - Drums
Gary Prince - Guitar

Free Improvisation with tremolo 11.29.14

Monday, September 23, 2013

detuning/retuning the guitar

This next track might not be for those with perfect pitch.

Gary Prince: Guitar
Andrew Klein: Voice
Rehearsal 9.21.13

The guitar tuning on this track is (low-high)

6 = just sharp of Bb
5 = sharp of a D
4 = very sharp of E
3 = very sharp of D
2 = almost an Ab
1 = almost a Db

This piece comes towards the end of a session in which I returned the guitar before each piece - going off whatever intervals sounded cool, or crunchy, without using the tuner (hence not landing on exact notes). I wasn't really keeping track of which exact notes of any of the strings - just the intervals and the overall sound. I found out what tuning I was in by checking with the tuner afterwards.

Retuning the guitar this way makes for an interesting problem: not being able to rely on muscle or visual memory to know where the notes are, ie, not being able to use physical patterns, not being able to predict what note will sound when you hit a particular string.

But that said, the intervallic relationships on a single string are unchanged - after all, you're not moving the location of the frets. So by playing on one string you can kind of get around being retuned (that is, you can choose pitches deliberately). This gives you the option, to some degree, of being deliberately tonal. Then, having the relationships between the strings be wildly off (especially them not being sequential or standard, ie, string 4 is a higher note than string 3, string 6-5 is a maj 3; string 5-4 is a maj2) frees you up to play atonally while still playing familiar physical shapes. Familiar licks and shapes take on completely new and interesting sounds, allowing you to think more about melodic shape and form, free from the expectation of always knowing what notes will come out, almost taking pitches as they come. To me this is very freeing.

To me, this is almost a shortcut to getting something of the very out Eric Dolphy or Anthony Braxton sound. A less deliberate choice of notes, maybe, but that kind of atonal, angular shape playing that I associate with the sound of those players - something I have always found very difficult to do on guitar, especially at faster tempos, as it is so challenging to break the muscle memory of typical scales and arpeggios, and to play 'non guitaristically'.

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Nuages - from Session Concert, June 8 2013

Gary Prince: Elec Guitar
Sarah Foard: Violin
Vasily Popov: Cello
Adrian Erlinger: Bass
By Django Reindhart

 This is also from the Session Concert, June 8th 2013

Thursday, September 12, 2013

KleinPrince Featured in Espresso Ink V

I'm thrilled to say that one of my collaborations with Baltimore-based poet Andrew Sargus Klein will be featured in Espresso Ink V, "A collected CD of literary works complete with liner notes" from Ink Press Productions.

The featured song is our version of Andrew's poem, "You Wake Up and Walk", a poem about the streets in Ann Arbor, MI, where we both lived as students, from December 2nd, 2012. The music is improvised, and it is part of the collection of pieces we released on bandcamp under the name "Tragicosmic"

Gary Prince: Guitar/FX
Andrew Klein: Voice

You can pre-order Espresso Ink V, which features 16 additional artists, by clicking this link.

There will be a listening party at the EMP Collective in Baltimore on September 20th. Andrew and I are right now working on new recordings, hopefully to be finished this winter.

Monday, August 26, 2013

Tango Choc

Here are two versions of Tango Choc, a composition by Astor Piazzolla, arranged for guitar and violin by Ian Murphy. This first version is with violinist Sarah Foard, and comes from last April.
Sarah Foard: Violin
Gary Prince: Guitar

This second version is from the "Session" Concert, June 8th, and features our own arrangement for quartet, adapted from the guitar/violin arrangement: Sarah Foard: Violin
Vasily Popov: Cello
Adrian Erlinger: Bass
Gary Prince: Guitar

Sarah and I have been playing quite a few of these Piazzolla tangos, performing under the name Black Oranges. Hopefully you will hear more of these this fall as we record more - these recordings are relatively rough, but I wanted to share them in any case. You can hear a little more of us at

Monday, August 12, 2013

New Recordings with Matt Endahl - Time and Place

I'm very happy that my friend Matt Endhal has put together a new set of duo recordings culled from January & August of 2012, released as "Time and Place" on his label, Sound Mansion Recordings.

They can be downloaded for free at the following link:

To download for free just click download (or select "Buy Now" on the bandcamp page) and enter $0.

 As Matt mentions in his linear notes, the first two were recorded in the living room of my then-house, on Randolph St, and put together from a mixture of digital and analog recording devices (including one microphone that we stuck in my fish tank). The third track is from a performance we gave at Canterbury House.

The two recordings from January 2012 are effects pedal-free. It was in March 2012 that I bought a loop pedal and began to collect guitar effects pedals - which are heard in full force in track 3, the recording from August, which was also the first time Matt and I played together using full effects.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Black Oranges free improvisation 7.27.13

Gary Prince: Guitar
Sarah Foard: Violin

This is a free improvisation from a longer concert of tango, irish, and jazz music with Sarah Foard on violin. We will be playing much more this fall under the name Black Oranges - we have some more music online at