Talking About The Weather
Eric Thielemans and Billy Hart
Talking About The Weather was released April 12th 2018. You can listen and order at my own Bandcamp page here.
The release is a vinyl album with a digital download code and a 64 page book containing conversations I did with Billy Hart. Here below you can scroll through the book.
Romance has got a lot to do with what we do. Yeah no that’s true.
I mean, especially you and me.
TALKING ABOUT THE WEATHER!
New York was suffering from a blizzard. The streets were covered in snow. Public transportation was troublesome. And both Billy and I were suffering from a serious cold. On top of that, Billy had just been able to push an important medical procedure to the day after our recordings.
A procedure that worried both him and me. Not the ideal conditions for such a heartfelt project for both of us. But we did it. Because we both felt it was important to do it ‘now.’ And not to delay.
I’ve met Billy twenty-five years ago, as his student at a Summer Jazz Camp in Belgium.
We clicked immediately and became friends. During those past twenty-five years we both continued doing what we do. I developed from a young man to the middle-aged man
I am now. I think I might even have the age now that Billy had when we met for the first time.
In those twenty-five years there were years we didn’t talk or meet. But somehow we kept on being in touch. Sometimes through our mutual friend Alexander Berne. Sometimes by bumping into each other in some small club or at a festival. Our relationship, although evolving over time, basically stayed the same. We always talked a lot about life and music and we always shared the same passion for drumming and a spiritual, almost religious vocation in music.
The idea for Talking About The Weather was born in August 2016 when I was offered a ‘carte blanche’ to present four different projects at the Jazz Middelheim festival in Antwerp, Belgium. One of those projects was a dream to come true. A duo with Billy! It would be our first concert together. Drummers don’t often play together the way saxophone players do. We usually are the one drummer in a band. Preparing for this concert, we talked about what we would do and how to go about it. We decided we would have a talk. On and off stage. Both on the drums and off the drums.
This publication (both book and album) is a trace of the talks and drumming recorded at
Figure 8 Recording in Brooklyn, NY, from January 7th to 9th, 2018. The real life conversations were transcribed verbatim (word for word), including repetitions and stutters, as well as the many
uhs, I means, you knows, etc. Hesitations and pauses were translated as space. When editing these raw transcriptions of our talks I blended two approaches on how to present or situate the work. Firstly I tried to think of the document mainly as a musical score, bringing the texts into
a musical format. Secondly both the audio on the album and the conversations as text are presented as scenes of a play or a documentary film. These two perspectives gave me enough room to play with the material and enough freedom to ‘intervene’ in the texts when the reading of it demanded more fluidity or clarity. So, although it started as a verbatim transcription, the text presented here is a construction, a re-creation, a fiction based upon the reality of our shared moments in the studio.
From the start of this project, I imagined us, Billy and me, like two chefs preparing a meal together, talking about their passion. This publication is not directed towards the specialists. Not for drummers only. It is for anyone with ears to hear, eyes to read and a heart and soul to connect it with.
Eric Thielemans, Antwerp, October 15th, 2018.
Article Le Soir Newspaper