jon hassell | diorama 2

diorama 1981–1982

di-o-ra-ma: A three-dimensional miniature scene with painted modelled figures and background

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Verbatim notes in red

brisé le jeu tôt... You say, Voyons-nous de la prochaine fois... d'accord? and I say, D'accord. Two days later, I take four smooth stones, inscribe the letters of her name in charcoal and loss them into the Mediterranean. (THE CAMERA TILTS UP FROM THE SEA TO THE CLOUDLESS SKY. MUSIC ENTERS.)

Jun-July 82 A week later, I move into a great little ground floor apartment in Pigalle and spend the rest of the summer in Paris practicing, working on music for the upcoming WOMAD Festival performance in July, trying out stuff with the Senegalese drummer, Abdou Mboup, walking Beep around the neighborhood (happy that I discovered in time that all those flamboyantly sexy girls on the street were actually Brazilian "travestis"— boys in superb drag), and—best of all— meeting the adorable Vietnamese girl who was to become the Next Big Thing in my life.

July-Aug 82 So the band (me, Abdou, J.A. Deane, Michael Brook) fly to London for the WOMAD Festival in Bath, the USA guys fly back home.

I return to Paris and go into a studio to begin playing around with this marvelous new machine called the CMI (which—get this—records a bit of audio and then distributes that bit—ok, "sample"—all over the keyboard!) and start laying down same pre-production tracks with Abdou.

Sept-Oct 82 Paris to Toronto and into Grant Avenue Studio again with Daniel Lanois, Brian Eno and the magical (but oh-so-low-fi) CMI proto-sampler and giant long tape loops strung around the studio using mic stands as tape guides and, lo and behold, on Oct 20th, the first version of what I was calling "4W3" (Fourth World 3) was assembled and the next record, Aka-Darbari-Java was done. (All the time, spending any future royalties on transatlantic phone sex with my naughty Parisienne.)