Disquiet Junto Project 0429: Solitary Ensembles

We’ve done projects along the lines of this one in the past, and it’s always worked out well, with surprising and wonderful results, new connections made, new partnerships forged, unexpected pairings created.

Current circumstances around the world bring new meaning to the project. The idea this week is that you will record the first third of what will eventually become a trio. Next week people will add to tracks from this week, and the week after people will, in effect, complete the trios. Some of this week’s projects will, inevitably, be used more than once, leading to interrelated branches of creativity — and more importantly, connecting musicians around the world.

It’s a foundational concept of the Disquiet Junto, since January 2012, that the participants all gain energy and inspiration from the knowledge that somewhere around the world, other people are cogitating on and acting on the same four-day project as they are. Projects such as this particular one build on that idea by bringing together various subsets of the far-flung Junto community into short-lived, ad-hoc, self-guided groupings — what we’re currently calling Solitary Ensembles.

The difference this time, of course, is there exists a larger set of factors we all have in common at the moment, and we have them in common not just with the 1,500 or so other subscribers to the Junto mailing list, but with the world’s populace. We aren’t just facing this creative challenge together. We are facing a new challenge in the form of the global pandemic and its ramifications — physical, emotional, economic. Which is to say: thanks, as always, for your generosity with your time and creativity, and all the more so during these strange times in which we find ourselves.

Oh, and one procedural note: It’s a rule in the Junto that musicians should only contribute one track per project. That remains the case this week. However, next week, in order for as many of this week’s tracks as possible being re-worked, that number will be increased. At the moment, I’m not certain by how much. I’ll sort that out and mention it next week.

Each Thursday in the Disquiet Junto group, a new compositional challenge is set before the group’s members, who then have just over four days to upload a track in response to the assignment. Membership in the Junto is open: just join and participate. (A SoundCloud account is helpful but not required.) There’s no pressure to do every project. It’s weekly so that you know it’s there, every Thursday through Monday, when you have the time.

Deadline: This project’s deadline is Monday, March 23, 2020, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, March 19, 2020.

These are the instructions that went out to the group’s email list (at tinyletter.com/disquiet-junto):

Disquiet Junto Project 0429: Solitary Ensembles
The Assignment: Record the first third of a trio that others will complete.

Step 1: This week’s Junto project is the first in a sequence intended to invite, encourage, and reward collaboration. You will be recording something with the understanding that it will remain unfinished for the time being.

Step 2: The plan is for you to record a short and original piece of music, on any instrumentation of your choice. Conceive it as something that leaves room for something else — other instruments, other people — to join in.

Step 3: Record a short piece of music, roughly two to three minutes in length, as described in Step 2. When done, if possible, pan the audio so that your piece is solely in the left side of the stereo spectrum.

Step 4: Also, and this is important, be sure, when done, to make your track downloadable, because it will be used by someone else in the next Disquiet Junto project.

Seven More Important Steps When Your Track Is Done:

Step 1: Include “disquiet0429” (no spaces or quotation marks) in the name of your track.

Step 2: If your audio-hosting platform allows for tags, be sure to also include the project tag “disquiet0429” (no spaces or quotation marks). If you’re posting on SoundCloud in particular, this is essential to subsequent location of tracks for the creation of a project playlist.

Step 3: Upload your track. It is helpful but not essential that you use SoundCloud to host your track.

Step 4: Post your track in the following discussion thread at llllllll.co:


Step 5: Annotate your track with a brief explanation of your approach and process.

Step 6: If posting on social media, please consider using the hashtag #disquietjunto so fellow participants are more likely to locate your communication.

Step 7: Then listen to and comment on tracks uploaded by your fellow Disquiet Junto participants.

Additional Details:

Deadline: This project’s deadline is Monday, March 23, 2020, at 11:59pm (that is, just before midnight) wherever you are. It was posted on Thursday, March 19, 2020.

Length: The length is up to you. Shorter is often better. Two to three minutes is probably about right for this project.

Title/Tag: When posting your track, please include “disquiet0429” in the title of the track, and where applicable (on SoundCloud, for example) as a tag.

Upload: When participating in this project, post one finished track with the project tag, and be sure to include a description of your process in planning, composing, and recording it. This description is an essential element of the communicative process inherent in the Disquiet Junto. Photos, video, and lists of equipment are always appreciated.

Download: Given the nature of this particular project sequence, it is best to set your track as downloadable and allowing for attributed remixing (i.e., a Creative Commons license permitting non-commercial sharing with attribution, allowing for derivatives).

For context, when posting the track online, please be sure to include this following information:

More on this 429th weekly Disquiet Junto project — The Assignment: Record the first third of a trio that others will complete — at:


More on the Disquiet Junto at:


Subscribe to project announcements here:


Project discussion takes place on llllllll.co:


There’s also a Disquiet Junto Slack. Send your email address to twitter.com/disquiet for Slack inclusion.

Image associated with this track is by Abby, used thanks to a Creative Commons license and Flickr:




Hi, all.

I’m currently working on a new podcast episode for self/noise, dedicated to field recordings and the general subject of “Soundscapes of the Pandemic” (no, this is not the title of a Christian Death bootleg).

In the process, I’m dedicating myself to intense listening, and field recording. Also, trying to work out ways to conduct soundwalks around the city (Burgos, in Northern Spain), under the conditions of confinement and curfews of all sorts.

What I can do is provide a selection of field recordings, in case anyone here finds them useful as something to sample or just something to listen to and think about.

I’ll wait for the official start of the project, so, no field recordings until Marc’s email arrives, but watch this space afterwords.

Stay safe, everyone.


*afterwards. Dammit.

(But an “afterword” is an interesting mispelling. Like an afterthought you say out loud.)

1 Like

The project is now live. Thanks, everyone.


I started writing a piece yesterday that will take a good while to complete. When I saw this I thought that it would be fun to knock some instruments out and offer about 2/3 of where I am so far. I would like to see what someone else will do with the fragment - I am sure that it will somewhere I had not considered.

Solitary Ensemble - Part 1 was written for Horn, Trombone, Violin, Viola, Cello, and String Bass.


Looking forward to this.
I used soft synths with an amp plug and a granular effect.
Hope you are all well


I love this kind of project. Great work, Marc. Great work, disquiet community.

I kept mine center instead of panning so that future collaborator(s) have free reign to pan as they please if they want to do fancy flutters or whatever. . . The goal here was just to get a simple set of dyads and triads that were open-ended enough to allow someone to go bananas with their pan flute or timbales. Cheers- RSM


I really dig the granular thing. You mention an effect, but what specifically are you using to create that feeling? It’s unnerving.

1 Like

Here are my drums.

They’re recorded at 84bpm and you can download:

Look forward to collaborating with you next week!


just the ‘amp plugs’ in logic and tyrell6 synth and some cello sample. nice guitar track !!!


The playlist is rolling:

Some organic sounds to set the mood. My thought when making this was to create something that could pass as the sound of cells in the body interacting, doing their thing. Interested to see how others interpret it.

Technical stuff.
A short synth sample manipulated and run through effects chains several times. Created a stretched version and melded them together. Filtered the higher frequencies off and panned to left.


hahaha I am playing my track with your drum and ryanscottmattingly’s guitar all together and it sounds nice :wink:


I’ve never even noticed the amp plugs and logic is my daw. Nice to know!


An improvisation on Islands


That’s the spirit!

(20 characters)

Solo harmonica improvisation, breathing in and out as slowly and uninterruptedly as possible. Seems appropriate to the present moment. Read the prose score for this piece of music: http://www.ethanhein.com/wp/2020/harmonica-meditation/


Hi all. I’m new here and this is my first post :slight_smile:

I’m still pretty new to DAW’s and all that, although I’ve played the guitar for 25 years.

My track has two instances of u-he Bazille played “live” into long tracks, and an electric guitar through an analog distortion pedal.


hello everyone, i hope you are all safe and well

to thank @disquiet for his tireless efforts in bringing us all together, i decided to incorporate his name and the title of his project into my first trio contribution.

i converted “marc weidenbaum disquiet junto 0429” into morse code and then spread the patterns across a jazz drum kit in ableton.

“marc” plays the kick drum. it starts in bar one and loops every one and a quarter bars.
“weidenbaum” plays randomly across the open hi hat / closed hi hat / snare. it starts in bar thirteen and loops every three bars.
“disquiet” plays the floor tom. it starts in bar five and loops every two and one sixteenth bars.
“junto” plays randomly across the mid and hi mounted toms. it starts in bar nine and loops every two and a quarter bars.
“0429” plays the 18 inch crash cymbal (with less than 50% probablilty). it starts in bar seventeen and loops every two and five eighths of a bar.

because of the random elements i built into ableton, i exported several takes because i wanted marc’s drum solo to finish brightly, with a little snare work. this is take #6. 90bpm. it peaks around -3.5dB. I never hard pan drums, and the individual pieces of the kit are spread across the stereo field, but if anyone wants to use this next week, feel free to pan, mangle, destroy in whatever way you see fit.

marc I don’t know if you’ve ever played the drums - but you kinda did today!!

with love from japan, htnc


Wow, this is something. We’ve done Morse Junto before, and based on this beat (which feels like Can to me, in a very good way) we may have to again.