Topic: The possibility of drumming, a mix by Morten J. Olsen

New podcast: INTERRUPTIONS #19. The possibility of drumming, by Morten J. Olsen

One can easily compile a list of tags to describe a mix, but the real question is whether the list comes after the mix, or whether all those items in the list were already in the author’s practise/background to begin with. Or maybe it’s a bit of both? Innate music, innate rhythms, universal grammar, YouTube-anthropology, vestigiality, rudiments, Swiss mercenaries, acid techno and other elemental forms of expression. Norwegian drummer Morten J. Olsen (of N.M.O and MoHa! fame) delivers a true tour de force of a mix in which he manages to connect all those more or less distant dots, in order to share his very unique views on percussion music.

Listen: … en/capsula

Read: … ns_eng.pdf

If we look at it from an outside point of view, from the point of view of an alien, it seems there is no actual need for music at all. I’ve heard it being called cheesecake, Robin Hayward mentioned it, quoting someone I don’t know, maybe it means we like it but it doesn’t serve a clear purpose for survival? At first this may seem like it goes against an idea of a universal grammar of music, but, in fact it works quite well considering we are equipped with many traits and tools that we are not quite sure anymore what they are needed for, i.e. they have lost their original function (these include the tailbone and the appendix, Darwin’s tubercle – which is a piece on 10% of the populations ears, and also goosebumps) – and music? Or is it rather that we haven’t discovered its true function, yet? Anyway this phenomenon is called (human) vestigiality.11 Incidentally, the same phenomenon is called ‘rudiment’ in Germanic languages. And then we are right at the core of where my mix is going: ‘In percussion music, a rudiment is one of a number of relatively small patterns which form the foundation for more extended and complex drum patterns.’ 12 Wikipedia continues: ‘The term “rudiment” in this context means not only “basic”, but also fundamental. While any level of drumming may, in some sense, be broken down by analysis into a series of component rudiments, the term “drum rudiment” is most closely associated with various forms of field drumming, also known as rudimental drumming.’ Morten J. Olsen


You can find the complete INTERRUPTIONS mix series here (feat. mixes by Dave Phillips, Felix Kubin, Wobbly, Chris Brown, Terre Thaemlitz, Vicki Bennett, Carl Michael von Hausswolf, Ben Vida, Kenneth Goldsmith...)