Bird Song Alley - Dreamscape

Musical Audio Tour 'Highlights from the Groniger Museum collection'

Bird Song Alley is a two-man band from Groningen comprising John de Jong and Dick Rietveld. They’ve played together every week for 15 years. Their band’s name is inspired by the street name (a literal translation) where they practise: the Vogelzangsteeg in Noordlaren. The music brings many styles to mind: jazz, pop, rock, latin, but usually has a bluesy ring to it and can’t be filed under one denominator. What the songs actually are is a type of landscape/soundscape. Their instruments include keyboards (piano, synthesizer, Hammond organ), electric guitar and recorded sounds and rhythms. The music is inspired by improvisation and has a visual aspect as well. Their present project has to do with poetry, where poets are invited to write lyrics based on their music.

Hussein Chalayan
Blindscape, installation

One of us is visually impaired and that could very well be why are music is so visual in nature. We often work picturing a certain landscape or atmosphere. This all makes it rather unsurprising that we chose for the somewhat disconnected landscape by Hussein Chalayan. It breathes serenity yet at the same time is absurd and frivolous and it really makes us laugh. The whole thing is rather ambiguous: scantily clad women caring for something; a well-ordered landscape of pretty much sloppily dressed, plastic women.