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Hi!  We're raising funds for the construction of custom-built instruments (guitar and vibraphone) capable of sounding quartertones.
Hi! We're raising funds for the construction of custom-built instruments (guitar and vibraphone) capable of sounding quartertones.
97 backers pledged $5,935 to help bring this project to life.

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Hi!  We're the Living Earth Show, and thanks for checking out our Kickstarter page.We play chamber music composed for guitar, percussion, and electronics written for us by some of the most interesting and exciting composers in the United States.  We are raising funds for the construction of a quartertone vibraphone and a quartertone guitar.  This request requires the answers to several very important questions.


What are quartertones?? 

Most western harmony is derived from tonality of a standard 12-note-to-an-octave scale.  A piano keyboard, for example, has exactly 12 keys to an octave (C, C#, D, D#, E, F, F#, G, G#, A, A#, B, C).  The chords built with these tones make up the foundation of the harmony used in most pop music and western classical music.  However, there could conceivably be an infinite number of keys between C and C on a keyboard. The quartertone system is one system that works to expand the traditional western conception of tonality, dividing the octave into 24 equal steps.  This system allows the musicians to sound the notes in between the notes of the standard scale. 

Who cares?? 

We play music because we want to change the way people hear the world around them.  We work to achieve this mission by allowing people to experience, interact with, and think about sound in new ways and contexts.  The quartertone system, in many ways, epitomizes our mission.  Western music, from Bach to Beethoven and from Lady Gaga to The Coldplays, is built on dodecaphony - music composed with the standard 12 note chromatic scale. Quartertones by themselves are somewhat unsettling and unfamiliar - they allow for the creation of a foreign and disquieting type of dissonance.   Scales and chords don’t resolve quite where they are expected to, and they offer untold possibilities for tonal expansion.  There is a tiny but rapidly expanding body of repertoire for quartertone instruments, the most immediately notable being Brian Ferneyhough’s Renvoi/Shards, composed in 2008 for the Norwegian group asamisimasa (the only other quartertone vibraphone in the world exists in Norway).  We will be performing that landmark work, as well as newly commissioned pieces by Luciano Chessa and many others, over the course of the next year.

What's in it for you?

In addition to the incentives, we will send new music to every person who donates anything at all on a regular basis.  Every week or so, we will give our backers a link to download new, never-before-heard music by composers including Max Stoffregen, Timo Andres and Damon Waitkus, as well as pieces from our album that won't be available anywhere else for several months.

By almost any standard, we play weird music.  We seek out music that otherwise wouldn't get played or heard, the things we find most interesting, and do our best to share them and share why we like them with as many people as possible.  We feel that it is important that this music exists and that there is someone who is willing to play it.  We believe in weird music.  Regardless of whether or not this kickstarter project is successful, we will do everything in our power to help better hear the world around them.

Thanks for letting us share our love for this stuff with you.

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  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    The Living Earth Show will give you a birthday shout-out on our youtube channel.

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    Pledge $30 or more About $30

    The Living Earth Show will give you a copy of our debut recording "The Living Earth Show: The Complete First Season" featuring the music of Samuel Adams, Max Stoffregen, Alden Jenks, Damon Waitkus, Brendon Randall-Myers, and others, coming out in early 2012.

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    Pledge $40 or more About $40

    The Living Earth Show will prank call one of your enemies. Is his refrigerator running? We'll find out!

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    Pledge $50 or more About $50

    The Living Earth Show will give you a "The Living Earth Show" shirt and our debut recording.

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    Pledge $75 or more About $75

    The Living Earth Show will give you a "The Living Earth Show" tank top and our debut recording.

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    Pledge $100 or more About $100

    The Living Earth Show will give you a shirt or tank top, our debut recording, and two tickets to our first show of the 2012 season on Friday, January 27, 2012 at Old First Church (a split bill with Sqwonk, America's favorite bass clarinet duo).

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    Pledge $125 or more About $125

    The Living Earth Show will give you a bad haircut.

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    Pledge $200 or more About $200

    The Living Earth Show will send you a hand-written valentine every Valentine's Day for the rest of The Living Earth Show's career.

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    Pledge $311 or more About $311

    The Living Earth Show will play an hour of 311 covers at the location of your choosing. You are responsible for travel expenses outside the Bay Area.

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    Pledge $400 or more About $400

    The Living Earth Show will give you a copy of our extremely limited-edition recording, "The Living Earth Show: The Complete First Season: The Dubstep Remixes," also coming out in early 2012.

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    Pledge $500 or more About $500

    The Living Earth Show will give you attendance to an intimate, hour-long preview concert of our 2012 season of chamber music at our SoMA studio.

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    Pledge $700 or more About $700

    The Living Earth Show will serenade the significant other of your choosing with acoustic ballads. You are responsible for travel expenses outside the Bay Area.

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    Pledge $800 or more About $800

    The Living Earth Show will play a private, hour long concert of chamber music at your house (or other location of your choosing). You are responsible for travel expenses outside the Bay Area.

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    Pledge $900 or more About $900

    The Living Earth Show will play at your wedding. For an extra $50, we will also officiate it.

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    Pledge $1,000 or more About $1,000

    The Living Earth Show will play Dangerous Toys' not-famous-enough 1989 rock and roll anthem "Sport'n A Woody" 50 times in a row at the intersection of Powell Street and Market Street in San Francisco. For those unfamiliar with the track, it is listenable here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BfCz7Hfxims

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    Pledge $2,000 or more About $2,000

    The Living Earth Show will be your iPod for a day. We will learn the top 25 most played songs on your iTunes and will follow you around for a day (24 hrs), playing the songs whenever you want. We will be dressed like giant iPod Shuffles.

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    Pledge $3,000 or more About $3,000

    The Living Earth Show will eat a worm. Eew!

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    Pledge $5,000 or more About $5,000

    If you fully fund this project, The Living Earth Show will let you design a 1" x 1" tattoo to be tattoo on either Andrew or Travis. The member getting tattooed decides where the tattoo goes, though.

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Funding period

- (46 days)