Monthly Archives: January 2016

Auld Lag Sine

[play] Auld Lag Sine (2016)

If you enjoyed this piece of music, please consider donating to the Hackney Night Shelter. This shelter takes no government funding and thus is able to provide shelter to people ineligible for government benefits, including refugees and asylum seekers who do not have the correct status to receive taxpayer funded aid. It is one of few secular organisations in this funding situation. This is especially helpful for asylum seekers that feel uncomfortable with religious organisation (especially those fleeing religiously-motivated violence, such as members of minority religions or LGBT people).

My friend Dan, who volunteers with the Night Shelter suggested last night that I do a version of Auld Lang Syne. Our attempts to sing it at a party were, as always, somewhat shambolic. For this version, I thought of the puns before I started working on the music, but this is an attempt to create the idea of drunken, sentimental sine waves toasting the new year.

Each voice is three sine waves, all up to an 8th tone out of tune, which have some portamento from one note to the next. The target pitch in the slide gets closer to the correct pitch as each note goes on. The highest sine wave pauses between notes, but the lower ones carry on. The piece starts with some short bursts of Markov chains as the voices try to agree on the notes and where they are in the song. Eventually, they go through the whole song, each varying tempo as they go, falling behind or catching up with the others. Finally, they all end together.

This track is part of a larger project, ’12 days of Crimbo’, which solicits funds for homeless and/or LGBT charities.