What is a commission?

When you commission me to write a piece, of music, you essentially pay me to write one minute of noise music. After I write it, you get to come up with the title. You are then a patron of the arts, causing new art works to come into being!
Afterwards, you get a copy of the music, which you are free to share with friends (under the terms of a Share Music License). I retain copyright of the work.
This makes a great gift – you can title the work to honour the recipient, or have a dedication attached. Your friend gets a copy of the piece of music and has their name tied to the music. So If you title the piece, say, ‘Happy Birthday to Susan Jones’, that would be attached to the music as the title, whenever anybody listened to it. (If Susan Jones feels overwhelmed by this, it can be re-titled.)
And I will do my best to try to make sure that people do listen, by posting it to my website and eventually compiling all the commissions into an album and publishing it.
Let’s say you decide to do this, how would it work?

The Process

  1. If your delivery date is less than two weeks away, please contact me before ordering. Depending on my schedule, etc, I will probably be able to accommodate you, but it’s a good idea to make sure!
  2. You would then order the commission and I would get to work making it. Do you want a physical CD posted to you or not? When you order, check that you’ve picked the right item in the shop. One comes with a CD. The other doesn’t.
  3. Within a few days, I will send you via email a link to a high quality audio file.
  4. After you listen to the file and decide on a tile, you would send me back the title and dedication.
  5. If you ordered a physical CD, I would then post it to you via first or second class post.
  6. If you would like an MP3 with the correct metadata (including title, etc), I can send that to you via email.
  7. I normally would then post the MP3 online to my website. However, if this is a gift, I’m happy to hold off until after you give the person a file or disk. Or post it right away so you can link them to the site. Whichever works best for you!

Who might this make a good gift for?

Do people really like this?

All my customers have been happy so far!

Will it arrive in time for Christmas or Hanukkah?

Yes, if you order soon!

Music commissions make great gifts. Order now for this holiday season!

FAQ part 2

Ah, I am getting a clearer signal from you now, and thus I have more answers.

  1. What’s going on with Birmingham?
    I’m still not officially admitted. They never received my Wesleyan transcript, despite my having sent two separate requests to the Wesleyan registrar. I don’t know if it’s the mail or the registrar or the admissions office, but something is going wrong someplace and it’s kind of frustrating. I think I can come in on a tourist visa and spend a few days in the US if I have to, to change my status. But I’d rather get it right the first time. Also, lack of official admission has lead me to not try applying for aid and it’s already summer, so I think it might be too late now anyway. Which is suboptimal, but survivable.
  2. What’s going on with your commissioning project?
    Still working on it. It’s been really low traffic lately, which is ok, because I’ve been kind of busy doing other things.
  3. No, I mean, what’s going on with MY commission that I requested?
    If your request came with a paypal or via etsy, I’m working on it. Otherwise, please resend. Or, if it’s been longer than a week or so, er, please resend the info.
  4. No, I mean, what with that other project you promised to do? Or email you promised to send? Or name for contact you promised to give me? Or dog food you promised to buy?
    Arg! I’m sorry! I’m Sorry! um, soon. specifically: I’ll have the 65€ on monday. I’ll check out the equipment to do the CD transfer on Monday and get unedited CDs in the mail shortly thereafter with edited ones to follow. I need to email somebody to ask the guy’s name. I meant Birmingham ENGLAND, not Alabama. They didn’t have the right kind of dog food when I went by, but we still have a few days of the vegetarian kind left, so she’s ok for now.
    Er, yeah.
  5. What’s the blue box I now see in the sidebar of your blog?
    It’s Twitter, which is a(n ou-like) service that I can SMS or IM with my current status. I realized that while I was off biking around, nobody knew where I was, so I sent daily SMSes to a friend of mine with my location. Which is only useful to that one friend. So now I can SMS twitter instead.
    There’s some sort of RSS or something you could use to get updated on my status, but you’ll have to go there to find out about it, you feel all stalker-y. Otherwise, check the blog or twitter. My username is ‘celesteh’
  6. When will you next be stateside?
    Thanksgiving is the next date to count on. Might come sooner, depending on factors.
  7. Are you playing anything in the SuperCollider gathering next September in Amsterdam / Den Haag?
    Yes, I will absolutely be there. And play music. I need to let them know that, though.
  8. Do you have any technical requirements?
    I will need a place to plug in for electricity and I will be providing a line-level stereo out. I need a table big enough for a laptop and a small mixing board, and a chair to sit behind said table. I may require a mic stand, but I don’t know yet. Set up should take me about 15 minutes and sound check only about 5 or 10 after that. Also, I’ll be bringing my dog with me, so I’ll need to be able to get her into the venue when I’m playing and also on the other nights. (She’s very quiet, housebroken and free of fleas and, indeed, has experience performing and thus will cause no problems.)
  9. Ok, you’re kind of losing me.
    Hey, I’m reading a lot of people’s minds right now, through the internets. Some of you want to know about the suspicious package at the conservatory. Some want to invite me to play a gig (or have already) and want to know what I need. Not everybody needs every answer.
  10. Shouldn’t you just send those people email?
    Well, in an IDEAL world, where I wasn’t a total flake . . .


I read somebody complaining once that the term “FAQ” is a complete misnomer. It has nothing to do with any questions that any person is asking and instead has to do with information the corporation (or in this case, me) has chosen to provide. Except that’s not entirely true in this case. I once shared a hostel room (in 2001, in Prague) with a teacher at the Berkeley Psychic Institute. I asked her if she could give me the five minute version. Therefore, I’m not merely divulging whatever information I feel like sharing, I’m reading your mind to discover what you want to know and answering that!

  1. When are you going to Copenhagen (by bike)?
    Well, I don’t know. I don’t know when I’ll have a new wheel for the doggy ride and I have a gig coming up in Lintz that I have to get to and I need to figure out how to mount an N88 on my handlebars (ok the last bit might not be the most important consideration).
  2. Weren’t you going to bike to Friesland?
    On the way to Copenhagen.
  3. What’s the deal with this gig in Austria?
    At the /etc conference. I should get on the ball with that and write some some music and find out when and where I’m supposed to play, maybe get some train tickets, find a place to crash, that sort of thing.
  4. This N800 you keep talking about, have you beat it into submission yet?
    As far as I can tell, the best way to development on it with a mac is to use a virtual machine emulation, specifically, QEUMU, which is free. Or install linux on an intel mac, which ain’t going to happen. (maybe when I find very detailed docs and/or ubuntu comes out with a release specifically aimed at minimac users.) I’m getting some mysterious error about pixels. When I figure out what I’m doing, I’ll post a howto.
    There’s some cross-platform net application tool called Mono which looks promising. It has the write-once, run-everywhere thing that java had. I already know java, but it’s ‘everywhere’ doesn’t include my tablet (thanks for making that decision, nokia, really swell). Anyway, some sort of flickr uploader that works like a mail reader will soon be cobbled together form pre-existing components or, if some other more enterprising programmer has already written it, will be linked.
  5. Your mind reading really missed the mark with that last question . . .
    that’s not a question!
  6. Sorry. How’s your chin doing? All healed up?
    It’s been like 2 weeks since my chin had a sudden meeting with some asphalt. The stitches are out and Nicole no longer turns away in horror when she gets a glimpse of my chin. It has a scar, which is kind of nifty and the giant bump under it has mostly gone away. It’s still a bit numb around some of the stitches. I can barely open my mouth wide enough to eat a banana (often, there is scraping). I can hear sounds in one ear of my jaw clicking when I chew, which also kind of hurts, depending. I think it might be possible that there’s a crack in the bone in my jaw, but it’s not like they can put a cast on it, so it doesn’t really matter.
    On the plus side, my jaw looks more square and I have a hot new scar, so I can’t complain too much. I don’t believe in suffering for fashion, but when it’s an accidental side effect, I can find solace in my vanity. (The seven deadly sins are so much fun!)
  7. Um, that sucks
    Eh, c’est la vie. It’s not that big of a deal. I’m losing weight, though, so it’s sub-optimal, but whatever.
  8. Ok, since you’re a mind reader, what would I want to ask about if I knew to ask about it?
    That scary campground which I stayed at on my last day of the last trip had super ticks that resisted the dog’s anti-tick treatment. It wasn’t the kind of tick associated with lyme disease though (didn’t look like mine from last year), so she should be ok. Hopefully. Somebody told me a story about a dog getting some virus from a tick and not being able to walk with it’s back legs anymore. The stairs to my apartment would be pretty rough for a dog wheelchair. Anyway, dogs get ticks all the time, so yeah. I worry too much.
  9. You thought I wanted to know about your dog having a tick?
    My blog is a real source for excitement. No, I just felt like sharing. I went on a canoe trip last weekend. It was fun. It was near Rotterdam. There are some really green and lovely areas there. If you travel in Holland, don’t forget to check out Rotterdam. Make a side jaunt to Kinder Dijke, to see a huge concentration of windmills. Then, consider heading towards Lekker Kerk, where you can rent canoes and kyaks by the hour (you will need to find out information about this on the internets, since it’s just near lekker kerk and not in it). The canals there are insanely pretty.
    Then I went to a wedding reception in Eindhoven. I brought Xena with me. She’s been to three weddings now, which is a lot for a dog. I had a very confusing conversation with a Russian family. I think they wanted to buy Xena’s puppies? They were sneaking her food when I wasn’t looking. Alas, she will have no puppies.

I detect no further questions from you at this time, but, of course, you haven’t read this yet. Further questions can go in the comments. I detect that you find this so fascinating that, um, something about laundry needing doing? Desire for a Pop Tart? It’s all fuzzy.

New years eve party!

see below

More FAQ

  1. Do you miss Christi?
    Yes, terribly
  2. Can we have dinner?
    Absolutely, but I am on public transit only for a while, so this impacts my ability to get around. My scedule is pretty wide open as yet.
  3. Isn’t your truck here?
    Yes, but I tried to switch the registration from my dad to me before I left for school and there was a problem, so I need to go to the DMV to sort it out. Also, since it’s co-registered to Christi and I, if it turns out the CA domestic partnership laws go into effect Jan 1st, then there is an advantage to be gained by waiting till then.
  4. Am I invited to your new years eve party?
  5. Where is it?
    At my berkeley address
  6. Should I RSVP?
    It would be easier to figure out how many consumables to stockpile if you call or email ahead of time. Or if you don’t want to rsvp (just in case you’re waiting to see if Hugh Hefner calls at the last minute), you can come anyway and byob.
  7. Should I get you a Christmas gift?


  1. Are you in California now?
    Yes, I am staying in Berkeley. I will be here until January 18th
  2. How can I reach you?
    You can call me at my home phone number in Berkeley. You could also try calling my cell phone: 860-301-2508. My cell phone was broken and I grabbed it when I left to come here, with the idea that I might be able to disassmble it and repair it, or trade it in for a phone that takes pictures or something. the picture thing was causing gear lust. I didn’t even grab my charger.
    well, I was standing outside the Oakland airport waiting for my ride, when I suddenly became frustrated with my phone and started beating it savagely. It returned to life. So I have a working phone (that also acts as voicemail), but no way to charge it. so if you also have a Nokia and want to hang out with me, perhaps I could make some use of your charger while we hang out?
  3. Er… ok. so, how was your flight?
    United Airlines is charging for food on the airplane! If you want a sandwich, you better have a ten bucks. What’s more, all of the food options have meat in them. Contrast this with AirFrance, which serves good food (that would be good even off of an airplane) and wine. Plus the steward types on airfrance are much more polite and unlike United, do not give you the silent treatment. On the other hand, one of the people in my row (on United) started berating the steward about how crappy the inflight movie (Seabiscuit) was, as if he could do anything about it.
  4. Okaaaayyyy. So why aren’t you in France anyway?
    Christi has 60 hours of class per week + homework. apparently, she got somewhat behind when I was there before for just a few days. she called me up and said, “I love you dearly, but you can’t come for a month. I have a week off around Christmas, can you come then?”
    Alas, it was too late to do anything to my tickets, so, in order to avoid derailing christi’s educational experience, i have come home instead. also, I really wanted to see you.


  1. Ack, I don’t know what to do! Bring by candles. Or light some. We’ve got many leftovers and so are ok on the food front. Many people say, “let me know if there is anything i can do.” if you’re serious, repeat it a few times, maybe make some suggestions as to what sort of thing you have in mind. (“i can bring food.” “my uncle is a cascet wholesaler and he’s got the new eco-casket…”)
  2. I don’t know what I should say. Inquiries are good. (as in: “how are you doing? how’s your mom? how’s your family?”) “I’m sorry.” is a great standby. Say nice things. I dunno.
  3. I’m not in the southbay. Should I send email? I like email as long as it’s not spam. Don’t send spam. Christi likes email too.