Connect and Collaborate London: 3rd Commission

Following the success of Drake Music Connect and Collaborate London‘s music and video commissions In Motion and Ethnomusicality, we recently commissioned DM Associate Musician Gary Day to direct a re-interpretion/re-imagination of an existing song/piece of music, working with a small group of disabled musicians using assistive music technology (AMT).

Below is a blog post by Gary, and video of the final piece, made by Ivan Riches (DM Connect and Collaborate London Producer).

Chinatown My Chinatown

8. August 2014 – 9:43 by Gary Day

Image: 3 musicians and producer in recording studio‘I was recently commissioned by Drake Music’s ‘Connect and Collaborate’ strand to reinterpret an existing piece of music, working with 3 experienced disabled musicians to compose and record the new piece over 3 sessions, using assistive music technology (AMT).

Session 1 involved exploring the original composition (William Jerome/Jean Schwartz 1910), discussing instrumentation and creating scratch recordings that we then built on during session 2.

By the end of session 2, we had the basic structure of the composition down, and during session 3 we recorded overdubs and discussed the arrangement preferences. After some editing and mixing we had our final piece, a rework of ‘Chinatown My Chinatown’.

Images left to right: John Kelly, Mik Scarlet & Matthew Woodcock working on ‘Chinatown My Chinatown’


The finished composition sounds quite different from the original and demonstrates some great use of AMT.

It was a real pleasure to work with all of the musicians, and a really enjoyable 3 days. Thank you.’

Below is the music video by Ivan Riches (C&C London Producer, Drake Music).

Drake Music Connect & Collaborate London is funded by City Bridge Trust.

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