Capone's Ghost (Disquiet Junto Project 0255)


#22

Yeah, it was one of his main aliases. He released quite a number of tracks under that name. I probably have most–if not all–of them, on vinyl. Most of those came out on the label Hardleaders. He also released a couple tracks on that label under the name Basic Influence, which produced one of the standout singles on that label, “Still Waters.”

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXRdLgCKcDk

I couldn’t get enough of this tune back then. 22 years old. Gah.

Other aliases: Trinity and Cybotron.

Sorry for thread drift. Back to original music.


#23

Disquiet Junto Project 0255: Capone’s Ghost
What does the banjo music of the fabled criminal sound like?

I went searching for banjo music. I wanted to avoid stereotypical bluegrass banjo sounds and found samattacott’s amazing track “tuningABanjo” on Freesound. Thirty minutes of vague, random banjo sounds.

I selected a few segments and processed them through Borderlands. Added some Alcatraz prison ambience at the opening. 85 was Capone’s number at Alcatraz.

Thanks also to: YleArkisto, squashy555, and haldigital97 for their Freesound sounds.

Banjo sounds processed with Borderlands. Recorded and edited with Audacity.

Creative Commons license granted.

More on this 255th weekly Disquiet Junto project — “Capone’s Ghost: What does the banjo music of the fabled criminal sound like?” — at:http://disquiet.com/0255/

More on the Disquiet Junto at:http://disquiet.com/junto/


#24

https://soundcloud.com/ethanhein/ghost-banjo-disquiet0255

I have no idea what Al Capone would have sounded like playing banjo, so instead I went to samples of Earl Scruggs, triggered using my QWERTYBeats prototype in Ableton, with a little filtering. This is unedited live improvisation.


#25

https://soundcloud.com/dizzybanjo/behind-the-eyes-disquiet0255

This project was too tempting for me not to do. After using the name Dizzy Banjo for various projects and my company for over 10 years - I have only actually played my banjo on two projects. This one gave me the chance to do so again. It also gave me an excuse to do a simple multisample instrument of the banjo so I can later do algorithmic compositions with it. So I made a Kontakt instrument of it. If you would like it you can get it here : www.dropbox.com/s/svfw29dznlid7us…masBanjo.zip?dl=0
( Im not sure how long I will leave it there )

My process :
I sampled the banjo, then sat and played some stuff with it on a keyboard just to see what you can actually do with a sampled banjo ( not that expressive ) but what was interesting was the lower downtuned notes. So I thought about a much darker piece which had elements of real banjo sound in it but was overtaken by a much darker tone.

I put this pic of Capone on one monitor and stared at it while making chord progressions. He always seemed like a funny looking guy to me, but as I stare at this particular picture it feels like I can see violence in his eyes. Or perhaps its just projection.

I was interested in making the piece as if it could be used in an extremely graphic documentary or movie about him.

Most of the instruments on this are NI - grandeur piano, monark, reaktor prism, kinetic metal, kontakt library. The lock at the end is a recording I made in the abandoned Shoreditch Police Station a few years ago - which has now been gentrified into luxury apartments. That set of sounds is on Freesound, but I can’t get the link because it seems to be down.


#26

Hey all!
I tell you what I learned with this weeks project, I knew nothing about banjo tuning, scales or playing technique! So I did the smart thing and used a midi file of “Deep Purple” for banjo and rearranged to fit my idea. Musically this would be a little dull, so I wanted to give a little more atmosphere of the island and chose a first person perspective of the haunting place and sounds. Started with the midi in Logic X and added some Space Designer reverb, humanization and swing, but still sounded too bare, so the band’s getting back together! This of course led to imagining the sounds of the band and inmate audience enjoying a rare opportunity to forget their troubles. The environmental bits used came from my old cd collection of sound effects and everything was treated with Logic effects, mixing and automation. While not strictly a ghost, more a ghost of the memories of the place :slight_smile:

https://soundcloud.com/user-651760074/if-walls-could-playdisquiet0255

More on this 255th weekly Disquiet Junto project — “Capone’s Ghost: What does the banjo music of the fabled criminal sound like?” — at:
http://disquiet.com/0255/
More on the Disquiet Junto at:
http://disquiet.com/junto/
Subscribe to project announcements here:
http://tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto/
There’s also on a Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet for Slack inclusion.


#27

https://soundcloud.com/yawha/a-visitation

Thought about what eeriness must reverberate thru the walls of Alcatraz island prison, what Al Capone might himself have heard as he plucked his instrument. Set the scene as a visit to the island, a sensory reliving of the experience.

Banjo from an Emulator X3 sampler patch, various foley parts from various sources, did my usual reverb drenching at the end!
Since I never got the opportunity last weekend to do up a track for Junto Project 0254, I cheekily snuck in the sample of the ferry leaving Kiel Harbour, one of the samples we were to use on that project, at the start…

Hope you enjoy…


#28

Thanks De De, appreciated :slight_smile:


#29

I imagined myself being in a cell next to Mr.Capone listening to him playing the banjo, after I scraped some mushrooms from the wall and consumed them.

I took the picture in a prison in Philadelphia and it’s supposed to be how Mr. Capone lived there.

https://soundcloud.com/user-242143924/mushroom-caponedisquiet0255


#30

Amazed at how quickly some of you completed this! I started out with four oscillators with four separate envelopes, to allow me to have four individual strings… however after playing with it for a while it wasn’t quite going where I wanted. After some suggestions in the Disquiet Slack, I instead turned to using Karplus Strong synthesis to emulate the string being plucked. This would only really let me do a ‘fingerpicking’ style rather than the ‘strummed’ style I had hoped to do, but the sound was closer to a banjo. To make it even closer, the pulse I used to trigger the delay was the output of the four oscillators (a Doepfer A-143-4 quad VCO) - which gives the faint impression of the strings resonating in sympathy. I ran the banjo through a little reverb and also though a reversed delay to give an other wordly feel. To this I added a ‘whistle’ sound that was entirely wet in reverb, to make it even more ‘ghostly’.

https://soundcloud.com/ikjoyce/capones-ghost-disquiet0255

This is a recording of the plain ‘banjo’ sound on its own:

https://soundcloud.com/ikjoyce/capones-banjo


#31

https://soundcloud.com/user-696185036/minute-like-somones-handsdisquiet-0255

This is based on this:

Yoshida Bros Shamisen (aka Japanese Banjo)

I took some parts of it and put them into sampler and then played them at different pitches (which sped them up and slowed them down). I guess harmonic intervals will give better coordinated rhythms.

The rhythm changes seem ok and to be consistent with Shamisen music.

I’m not sure about permissions. Since it is based on samples of others music seemed best to not allow downloads. On the other hand the music is freely available on youtube, so anyone and their dog can download it.

So in terms of credit I ask you to give it to the Yoshida Brothers, as this is their music (which has been mangled by me … ok so I mean the good parts are their music …).


#32

https://soundcloud.com/ohm-research/bangio-ataraxia-disquiet-0255

Glenn Branca time warps to the 1930’s, where he is a social worker at
Alcatraz. He meets Al Capone, who is losing his mind to neurosyphilis,
and starts a prison Banjo orchestra. This ghostly refrain is said to
echo through the haunted empty prison to this day…


#33

https://soundcloud.com/rpcollier/banjjio-disquiet0255

I like the idea of a ghost banjo. I used the banjo setting on a Roland GR-20 guitar synth that does not track very well.
It is next to the sitar setting and interesting that a sitar sounds like a smeared banjo.
I wanted a bit of old-fashoinedness to the shape and I added some reverb and noise for dimensionality plus added some drone texture from an ESX24 sampler in Logic for presence.
Wish I had a real banjo.


#34

Al Capone practices banjo

Searched online for a free banjo vsti instrument.
Created a virtual instrument track in Reaper.
Did a Bing search for 20’s and 30’s banjo music.
Did a Bing search for the history of the banjo for some ideas to use for the project.
Decided the project would be Al Capone practicing his banjo.
Found some sheet music for Yankee Doodle Dandy written for the banjo, so this is what Al is practicing. Both the melody and chords
Copied, pasted, rearranged and tweaked the banjo’s parameters in Spicy Guitar which is the vsti I used.
Mixed then mastered by Landr for Soundcloud.


#35

Searched online for a free banjo vsti instrument.
Created a virtual instrument track in Reaper.
Did a Bing search for 20’s and 30’s banjo music.
Did a Bing search for the history of the banjo for some ideas to use for the project.
Decided the project would be Al Capone practicing his banjo.
Found some sheet music for Yankee Doodle Dandy written for the banjo, so this is what Al is practicing. Both the melody and chords
Copied, pasted, rearranged and tweaked the banjo’s parameters in Spicy Guitar which is the vsti I used.
Mixed then mastered by Landr for Soundcloud.


#36

https://soundcloud.com/lionel-benancie/dd9-disquiet-junto-project-0255

Banjo Granule
Dérapages et fuites
Bris de bouteille


#37

Mae’s Lament

https://soundcloud.com/neurogami/maes-lament-disquiet0255

I don’t own a banjo, but I have a 3/4-sized acoustic guitar. Throw some paperclips on the strings and presto: Deliverance.

I wasn’t sure how to approach this. When I hear about ghostly music, music that lingers longer after it was created, I start hearing Gavin Bryars’ The Sinking of the Titanic. It was sort a reference point, both on what maybe to do, and what maybe to avoid.

How ghostly should this be? Do I go with a lot of reverb? Make it low volume? On the one hand I considered the different tropes used to indicate “ghostly” (or the like). “Let’s not do that!”, I thought. Too obvious. On the other hand, there are reasons certain things are used frequently. They’re understood. They work.

I improvised a few things, recorded with my phone. I had meant to set up a proper mic, but slth kicked in. And the recording quality of the phone would (I expected) impart a more remote sound.

From my improve I extracted a number of loops, which I adjusted to fit a common tempo.

From there I played around in Renoise, bringing different loops in and out.

I wanted some other sound in there besides the ersatz banjo. I opted for ring-modulated sine tones. The idea was to try to offset the looping somewhat, add a bit more atmosphere.


#38

https://soundcloud.com/mikedayton/built-on-fear-disquiet0255

I started my piece by finding a few banjo samples on freesound.org. One of them I used in the IOS app samplr and the other in the granular sampler IDensity. On both layers I used the effect Nebulizer, which is a rather chaotic delay. I recorded myself speaking the phase “I’ve built my organization on fear” and slowed it till it sounded suitably evil. There is also a thereminish sound poking through here and there because they make me think of old timey ghost movies.


#39

https://soundcloud.com/cloudveins/empty-halls-open-air-disquiet0255

Zoom H5n handheld recorder (with the X/Y capsule), pointed into the resonating cavity of my grandfather’s banjo. I improvised with a tuning fork, pressing it against the banjo’s membrane and the metal components around the rim and dragging it along the surface of the skin. I also made some recordings of the lowest string being resonated by an eBow while performing the same manipulations with the tuning fork.

I pulled various bits from this long recording and convolved each of them together to smear the source material. Once I had this second iteration of recordings, I imported them into Audacity and manually assembled the final collage. The resultant mix was then slowed down by 25%.


#40

I used Logic’s Banjo sample for this one. I played around until I found a few figures I liked. Added some guitar and bass to fill it out. Also added lots of verb and effect to make it more ghostly. I suppose I probably could have gone further down that road… Though I imagine one could play this while alone in a cell, trying to think of happier times.
Thanks for listening!

https://soundcloud.com/alt-formant/cap-one-disquiet0255


#41

AC’s Ghost Plays Banjo

https://soundcloud.com/davedorgan/acs-ghost-plays-banjo-disquiet0255

I wondered what kind of banjo player Al Capone was. Could he kill Foggy Mountain Breakdown, or did he just plink around on it? I went with the latter. I found a short banjo plinking type clip on freesound.org. You hear that four times in the piece. The spooky Alcatraz background came from distressing various industrial type sounds I had.