One Chord and the Truth

Andy Othling plays a drone in B Major

This is the second one-chord piece of music this week on, the third and counting if you include the week’s Junto project. What’s going on in this orchestrally grand, yet intimately performed piece, is that guitarist Andy Othling is passing a single chord — as identified in the title, “Sketch #44 – Drone in B Major (05.05.16)” — through an array of effects and in the process producing a gorgeous, shimmery dawn-break flood of atmospheric splendor. What’s great about a performance video like this one is you can observe the thinking process, the gestures that lead to the exaggerated sound, the manner in which small touches yield vast expanses. In the video, long stretches pass during which Othling barely touches his guitar at all, and he probably touches the guitar and his effects in equal amounts. He is, in a manner, as much the audience for the work as he is the producer of the work.

Video originally published at It’s the latest piece I’ve added to my ongoing YouTube playlist of fine “Ambient Performances.” More from Othling, who is based in Albuquerque, New Mexico, at

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