A set of twenty (unchanging) questions presented to recorded artists. We invite any recorded artist, of any genre of music, to send Cadence their responses to these twenty questions to; The Ouestionnaire, Cadence Magazine, Cadence Building, Redwood, NY 13679.
Subject A: John Wallace's (gtr) last work was reviewed in the 5/92 (p.20) Cadence.
Subject B: Steve Arguelles’ (dms) records have been covered in the 10/89 (p.83),10/91 (p.94) issues of Cadence.
Name; date & place of birth; completion date of questionnaire.
A. John Wallace; 2/6/50, Calais, ME; 5/21/92.
B. Steve Arguelles; 11/16/63, Crowborough, Great Britain; 6/25/92.
I). Your most pertinent biographical facts or points of reference.
A. Composer. Performer. Improvisational guitarist. Painter. I have released three recordings, had numerous exhibitions and am author of a monogram in philosophy. Formal education in Philosophy.
B. Born 1963 Spanish mother, English father. Grew up in Birmingham, England, I've had no in-depth formal music education but from 10 years of age began playing in school and youth orchestras. Studied painting in London after leaving school aged 18.
2). Your most pertinent artistic facts or points of reference.
A. I am self-taught. I perform improvised music.
B. I play drums, hopefully in an earthy way, intonation and spontaneity the most important aspects.
3). Your preferred venue for performance (clubs, concerts, recording studio, etc.).
A. I prefer performing in small concert halls or alternative-arts space venues, tours are enjoyable also.
B. Concert: Royal Northern College, Manchester; Studio: Angel, London.
4). Your Major Artistic Achievement.
A. Receiving recognition for the effort that are the music. Tour of Russia and Lithuania. Having my music considered for the ‘91 Bio-Annual [sic] in Sao Paulo (Brazil). Airplay and reviews in many countries. Exhibition in New York City.
B. Communicating with the audience.
5). Future artistic goals.
A. 1) Expand touring. I would like to expand my reach into Europe. 2) Expand the voices I compose for. 3) Help expand the concept of music.
B. To play as many good concerts as I want with the people I love to play with. To compose what I imagine.
6). Your major turning point(s), personal and/or professional.
A. Reaching the decision and following through on it to produce my own recordings. Relying on the counsel of the heart.
B. Played concerts with John Taylor (British pianist) aged 17, which was an important time in my musical development and very soon afterwards managed a tour with Kenny Wheeler, John Surman and Gordon Beck, becoming part of the British scene. I met Django Bates a little later and collaborated in many projects at this time with him, for example Human Chain, and with my contemporaries in Loose Tubes. Toured in duo with Steve Lacy and I became aware of many aspects of improvisation. In 1989 began seriously writing for and leading my own group.
7). How do you relax?
A. Music, painting, and jogging are among many interests.
B. Eating find food. In fresh air, shopping.
8). What Is the best way to communicate with you?
A. In person, through Waving Bye Records, by phone or letter.
B. Speaking with me or playing music with me.
9). Outside of music, what Is your major passion or Interest?
A. Painting. Discussion involving philosophy.
B. Visual arts, food.
10). What Is your musical Irritant?
A. Egos, and people who do not listen to themselves or others. Failure of the market system in America to readily expand to new musical ideas. Failure of established support system to embrace new or different ideas or approaches to music.
B. PA feedback is an irritant for everyone, isn't it? But musicians who don't listen is sometimes another.
11). Who are your heroes, or what are your major sources of strength or inspiration?
A. No heroes. My strength comes from my intransigent determination. My inspiration comes from the many who are willing to pursue their uniquely different visions, irrespective of opposition or challenge.
B. Marvin Gaye and Kenny Wheeler.
12). The artistic achievement you feel best about to date.
A. Having an individual come out of the audience after a concert in Russia and tell me my music had filled a void inside him that had been created upon the death of a close friend.
B. I feel good about almost everything l play, there are different considerations for each artistic achievement. If there was one that was the best I should proably stop there.
13). What is most relevant to your artistry?
A. A clear head/heart. The freedom to express the sounds of my soul.
B. Making music with others for an audience.
14). What is the most neglected area in your business?
A. Lack of distribution for small labels or alternative musical formats. Lack of access to venues for those who are introducing new approaches to an instrument or music.
B. Putting off work to be done to another day.
15). What sustains you personally and/or artistically?
A. Commitment to an idea and principle serve to sustain me personally. Artistically, I must create there is no alternative.
B. Enjoying what I do and finding something new in it.
16). What makes you feel good and/or successful?
A. That sense that what I am doing during a performance has a certain quality of authenticity and worth. Being aware of having made a difference is one hallmark of success.
B. Being appreciated and understood makes me feel good and successful.
17). Preferred geographical place to live.
A. New England. I currently live in ___________ Maryland.
B. Of the places I know Spain, Italy, France, Wales.
18). Do you feel you have power in your business? In what areas?
A. In some ways, power is a poor quantifier. I have control over artistic content. To the extent that the fruits of my musical labor are submitted to a wider audience, my influence is less because there exists the greater and somewhat nebulous values of the marketplace that I find myself up against. Feedback from radio stations indicates I get airplay, and my thanks to those stations. I believe my efforts require, in part, that the listener come to the music free of expectations.
B. I feel my power is limited because so many people are involved in working together to really make something happen that unless they are with you, it is a struggle. Often those that can do something are not interested in who you are. Areas include concert, record, press promotion. Thankfully there are a small group for people that are interested in what we are doing. I feel powerful in music making.
19). Where is the power in your business most centered? Can you, or do you, reach it?
A. Again, power is misleading. Who are the major arbiters of value? The major record labels and press, followed by concert and festival promoters and their sponsors. However there will always be those individuals who prefer to explore new and/or different ideas, these individuals also constitute a market even if somewhat smaller. I have reached out and contacted some of the members of this market. I hope to touch more.
B. The power is in the hands of a few. I've reached it a couple of times but it has not touched me.
20). What would you like the public to most understand about you?
A. That each improvisational performance is a presentation of a truthful event available for all to share.
B. This is a hard question. That I am there in the music, they can know me through the music.