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"Never touch a drowning woman...  her silver threads of spittle...

Spread across the water -- like cobwebs..."

From No Swimming Today


We never play the same thing once." So said Bill Krauss, an early member of These Are Not My Hands -- a semi-ever-shifting conglomeration of Actors, Musicians, Audio Engineers and Advertising Refugees who have gathered regularly at Sausalito's Studio "P" every Tuesday night for over five years to court the elusive Muse of Spontaneous Composition.

joe paulino

TANMH music could be considered a sonic metaphor for a painting by Jackson Pollack -- an abstract journey for both observer and participant. The players collaborate in real time to awaken in the listener emotional responses that could have come from a tender ballad, a gritty blues, or a Beat rant delivered against a soundtrack by John Cage.

TANMH compositions are often born out of silence -- spontaneously erupting into a chaotic mix of solos, duos and trios, conversations, and narratives rich with opaque allusions to the impulses of the subconscious.

amanda moody

james caraway

Other pieces are composed in the moment via individual lists of printed instructions that all begin with the word "When...",  or limiting the number of musicians that can play at any one time, or creating pitch-shifted duets between the performer and his or her sampled utterances.

 

"It's not just a line anymore. You can't just  go left or right.

You must take up and down into perspective.

And then there's the whole question of volume!"

From The Matrix

 

mike shea

Another creative technique TANMH often employs is the "45-second song cycle" - a series of songs created solely from audience suggestions and cued by the drop of a hat.  Some of the instant classics that have come from these collaborations are The Alarming Company of Retired Big Game Hunters, Asparagus Urine, and The Ballad of Joe DiMaggio's Carrots.

Recently, TANMH has brought in the occasional "cover" tune to their live performances, as well as recreations of works transcribed from previous sessions, however creatively they remain firmly committed to avoiding the safety net of what worked the last time.

peter scott

david cuetter

It is the Music of the Future
and
of the Pasture.

 

"This is our Archeology.  This is our Geography.  This Attic.  Hot 'n cobwebbed.
  This is the Dig."

From Define the Divine by These Are Not My Hands

 

These Are Not My Hands generally features:

Amanda Moody - vocals, text & noises
Peter Scott - synthesizers, piano, percussion, & vocals
James Carraway - flutes, reeds, percussion, & vocals
Joe Paulino - drums, piano, percussion, & vocals
Mike Shea - electric and acoustic bass, percussion
David Cuetter - theremin, guitar, vocals, noise & live engineering

These Are Not My Hands has occasionally been enhanced by the kind participation of:
Richard Weiss - Wrench Guitar, Vocals
Robin Yeager - Engineering and Live Mixing
John Rosenberg - Piano & Noises
Bill Krauss - Bass, Percussion, Noises
Steven Cowee - Acoustic Bass

and has enjoyed guest appearances by:
Tom Chantler - Guitar, Noises & Phone * Joe Shackel - Bass, Noises
Dan Reich - Piano, Bass * Michael Woods - Guitar * Kate Pepper - Flute
J Bond - Guitar, Percussion, Noises * Ed Bogas - Piano

Band photos by Shelley Norris

They play sporadically around the Bay Area, and every Tuesday night at Studio "P".