Night People: Marnie Weber

Night People is a set of 5 nocturnes I composed that were inspired by and dedicated to musician friends of great originality. Each piece is performed by wind & string octet plus the solo instrument of each dedicatee, evoking their style and spirit. 

Nocturne #3 (Marnie) is for Marnie Weber, a multimedia artist who specializes in synthesizer and electric bass.

Marnie is primarily a visual artist, known for creating a mythology of ghostly apparitions in a variety of art forms – sculpture, photography, painting and film. She takes you on a tour of it all here.

She has also on occasion taken her vision into the realm of music, with album releases that seem to emerge like magic mushrooms randomly popping from the soil of a surreal forest glade in one of her bucolic art exhibits.

The erratic and abrupt appearances and exits of her music projects cause them to be relatively undiscovered. Which is a crime because her releases are as original as anything I have heard. The output of so many self-consciously edgy solo musicians active today looks plenty pale and withered to me when considered against the incandescent originality of Marnie’s Songs Hurt Me (1989), Woman With Bass (1994), and Cry For Happy (1997). And maybe I shouldn’t traffic in comparisons, but I see far too much fawning coverage in metro dailies about flavor-of-the-month pop artists offering the lamest affectations of gravitas in the service of their songwriting ‘craft’ that are really nothing but persona farming, and the notion that this kindergarten-level bullshit music gets pushed in the face of the public while Ms. Weber’s releases go unreported makes me want to toss grenades. 

In Nocturne #3 (Marnie) I wanted to pay homage to Marnie’s synthesizer playing. Listened to her releases closely in an effort to extract the secrets. If you had wandered into my studio while I was listening you would have mistaken me for Nipper, the RCA Victor dog – head close to the speakers, ears cocked, a mystified, entranced look on my face. 

Once I had channeled the spirit into my own synth, I took some of her motifs and spun them around and around in the electronic blender until I felt I had something cohesive and evocative of the world of Marnie.

Marnie Weber
Official Website