Innovative Swiss drummer Jojo Mayer’s new project Me/Machine integrates human power with machine power, analog drumming with AI in an improvised duet where machine imitates man and man imitates machine.
Sergé “Jojo” Mayer’s career kick-started in the early 80s when, as an 18-year-old, he got a place in pianist Monty Alexander’s group. He continued with the jazz rock band Screaming Headless Torsos and the fusion band Intergalactic Maiden Ballet. In the early 90s, Mayer moved from Europe to New York City, worked as a sideman for a number of different artists before forming the electronica quartet Nerve, the band where Mayer developed the idea of reverse engineering, playing machine rhythms on an acoustic drum set.
Jojo Mayer is known for bringing together jazz, drum’n’bass and jungle, and electronic music has been a central influence in recent decades. Me/Machine is the next chapter in this love affair between man and machine, machine and man.
This is what the now 60-year-old drummer himself says:
“The initial impulse for ME/MACHINE came during an experimental recording session with Brian Eno shortly before the onset of the pandemic. I got struck by the ramifications generative, algorithmic technologies and AI will have on the future of music and thought: If only I had a year off, I would get down with this.”
Mayer had his year.
At Fasching you can hear the result.