Organism (featuring WSB)

Voice and concepts by William S. Burroughs
sampled from the movie Commissioner of Sewers by Klaus Maeck (ShaKe Edizioni)
recorded and mixed at Ambaradan, Milan, in 2000

The first statement I made on the Internet is this page, written on aug. 26th 1997 to commemorate William Burroughs, passed away 3 weeks before. I remember aug. 3rd, 1997 very well: I got a call from Syd with the bad news, and he suggested we meet to go and make some noise at Breda, a former factory in Milan - then squat and performance space. That night the atmosphere was amazing: hundreds of people came to play and mourn WSB; the sadness and disbelief (despite his old age) were palpable. Few thinkers have had the impact he's had on my generation, and a few before and after mine. What's more, his voice was always sharp and full of meaning (and common sense) - a powerful antidote to the widespread stupidity that is one of the marks of the past century (and this one too, it seems).

2000: I was tinkering with an odd, jazzy bass sample (the first sound you hear), and watching Commissioner of Sewers (which is a great movie, for WSB fans and regular audiences alike) where he explains in detail one of his most famous intuitions: "Language is a virus" (also the title of a Laurie Anderson tune). I've always been fascinated by this idea, and found WSB elaboration extremely helpful and far-sighted (plus of course his voice, impeccable and charismatic like no one). So I put the two together and made Organism.

Then, in 2017, I made another, totally different piece, using the same sample, for Radio Radio, a piece I made for Kunstradio.

Once again, due to unresolved © issues this one is also for listening only.

Organism 2'53