When Rachael Pazdan, curator of The Hum, first told me about the series years ago, she explained to me that despite it featuring all female lineups, she didn’t want that to be the only defining aspect of the showcase. Over the years The Hum has been spotlighted by media outlets, from The New York Times to Nylon to The Village Voice. Each one has focused heavily on the central aspect of The Hum as a female based residency. However, there are other unique aspects of The Hum that deserve to be highlighted.
While the artists for these events understand the importance of having an all-female space to perform in, there is a piece of the puzzle that gets overlooked when this becomes the only focus of the evening. The Hum is not merely a stage allotted for female artists – it is, down to its curation, a work of art. In each well crafted evening, Pazdan has complexly united a group of artists mined from her expansive work with the indie music scene. This is no hodgepodge of random artists, nor is it a night to go see your favorite musicians to hear their album tunes. The Hum is a stage for exploration and experimentation.
The feeling created on stage at The Hum is the closest audience members will get to experiencing the practice space of the musicians that inspire them. There is a vulnerability to this kind of space that pulls the imagination out of these performers and asks them to show the audience their unpolished selves.
In turn, the audience experiences a one-night-only evening of music which may only exist for the few minutes the musicians take the stage. A potent magic cumulates in the spontaneity and serendipity when a room full of people silently agree to participate in the unknown.
This Wednesday The Hum returns to The House of Yes with another incredible lineup of musicians. Lou Tides and L’Rain spent some time talking to Audiofemme about their previous experiences with The Hum, and what they are looking forward to this time around.
AudioFemme: This is your second time playing for The Hum. What was your first experience like?
L’Rain: It’s a little scary. It’s daunting to have all this time that you have to fill with new material with people that you haven’t played with before. But it’s the sort of thing that you want to do because of the people that are doing it. Building in an opportunity to work on new material is really important, and if you don’t have someone kick you in the butt it’s hard to do sometimes.
AF: Did you bring some of those experiences with you into the music that you created after The Hum?
LR: I will be. I wasn’t expecting to at all. I was kind of like, “Okay, these are some songs that we are gonna play once and that’s it,” but I’ve been thinking a lot about them lately. I’m hoping that I can find a way to build them into the next record that I make.
AF: You and Glasser will be collaborating at The Hum – I’m curious how you are bridging the difference between your slower and melodic style to Glasser’s more pop infused style for your performance?
LR: I feel like in the sessions that we’ve been having, we’ve been just improvising a little bit and seeing what comes out of it and it’s been sort of meditative in a way. Which I guess is half expected and half unexpected. We both are really into, I don’t want to say ambient music, but we both have an interest in Alice Coltrane, and textural electronic music, and I feel like that comes out in a lot of this. It could change in the next couple days, but at least right now, we both are playing synths and we’re singing and she’ll probably have some stuff in Ableton. Which I think is a totally new set up for both of us.
AF: How does having access to a showcase like The Hum impact your music individually, and your Brooklyn community of musicians?
LR: In my day job I program music and I often find that a lot of the other people I know who are booking music are usually not women. It’s been really nice to befriend someone