One Hour Minute (OHM) is an on-going project that began in 2021. The concept is simple: compose and fully produce one minute of music in exactly one hour of time, preferably using the first idea that comes to mind. Equal parts creative exercise and therapeutic practice, OHM has become the perfect vehicle to test fresh approaches to composing, generating ideas, and experimenting with various methods of recording and editing, all with a focus to remain in the moment- to just run with it.
Spanning the 100+ minutes of music created over the first year, certain idioms, sounds, and forms began to emerge as unintentional and subconscious developments of past material. Instructive and educational, to say the least. Oh well, just run with it!
One stylistic feature that presented itself over and over was the characteristic feeling of this music serving as a soundtrack to a scene in a film that does not yet exist. The sense of miniature storytelling was simply too strong and innate to dispel. Run with it!
One Hour Minute, volume one serves as a “best of” compilation of the musical minutes created throughout 2021. Only slightly cleaned up and dawning fresh, somewhat evocative titles, these twenty tracks pull from a wide variety of styles and sound sources, from driving garage rock, to post-minimalist contemporary chamber music, to musique concrète sourced from cell phone recordings of a lawn care crew, to EDM, to Spaghetti Western film music.
Each piece tells a bit of an untold story, and the listener is invited to mentally connect and construct any number of imaginary vignettes and scenes from the resulting flow of one minute to the next. Run with it!
Loose, ethereal, and meditative. Strings serve as a cognative dissonance that permeates the thoughts of many who might turn to or relate to this psalm. 1) There is a dark shadow of guilt, anger, shame, and confusion (all somewhat dark thoughts) that come with the realization or notion that God has forgotten about us. 2) There is a comforting resonance with the notion that many others share this same feeling, so our void of God (or any sense of loneliness) is temporarily, and underwhelmingly, filled with the warmth of shared experiences.
Julia Fox, soprano
Ingrid Capparelli Gerling, violin
Zelda Faith, viola
Engineered and mixed at SugarHill Studios by Matt Wilhelm and Hugo Martinez
This piece was composed for Duo scordatura, commemorating their 10th season. It was premiered at Carnegie Hall’s Weill Recital Hall on March 12th, 2016.
© Copyright 2015 George Heathco (ASCAP). All Rights Reserved.
Music from ReGifting Lions, a 2012 dance collaboration with Toni Valle, Lynn Lane, and Catalina Molnari.
©2012 GHeathco (all rights reserved)
ravens and radishes (2013) 25’00″: soprano, electric guitar, and cello: words by Misha Penton music by George Heathco ©2014 GHeathco (all rights reserved)
Misha Penton, soprano
George Heathco, electric guitar
Daniel Saenz, cello
“Ashes” is a single by Chris Telfer for which I both co-produced and supplied guitars. It was released in November of 2015. You can find out more information the story behind Chris’ song at his Bandcamp page.
Back in 2012, I had the opportunity to work with singer/songwriter Chris Telfer for his Mattoo E.P., for which I wrote all of the string arrangements. “Mattoo” is the title track, and has a cool story behind it. You can read more about it at Bandcamp page.
“Compassion is a verb.”
― Thích Nhất Hạnh
This is a piece that I wrote in 2014 to be premiered at Houston’s Rothko Chapel. It features the assembly and disassembly of an 8-tone chant, following the same construction/deconstruction of the bell tone drones.
“Whether you believe in God or not does not matter so much, whether you believe in Buddha or not does not matter so much; as a Buddhist, whether you believe in reincarnation or not does not matter so much. You must lead a good life. And a good life does not mean just good food, good clothes, good shelter. These are not sufficient. A good motivation is what is needed: compassion, without dogmatism, without complicated philosophy; just understanding that others are human brothers and sisters and respecting their rights and human dignity. That we humans can help each other is one of our unique human capacities. We must share in other peoples’ suffering; even if you cannot help with money, to show concern, to give moral support and express sympathy are themselves valuable. This is what should be the basis of activities; whether one calls it religion or not does not matter [so much].”
― Dalai Lama XIV
music: George Heathco
soprano: Misha Penton
artwork: “Dalai Lama” by Alex Grey