Poetry and art aren’t exactly what come to mind when most people think of Twitter, but a Minnetonka native’s composition showcased the potential of the 140-character medium.
The #TwitterCommission from Seattle-based project ensemble whateverandeveramen. challenged artists to create a song in which musicians could only play in bursts of 140 notes at a time or lyricists could use only 140 characters of text.
Ryan Townsend Strand, a 2008 Hopkins High School grad, took up the challenge by using a stranger’s tweet to craft a song called “#Red.”
The video above shows whateverandeveramen. performing Strand's composition. Some people using mobile browsers may not be able to see
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The lyrics go:
All you ever wanted
was right there in front of you
realizing all you wanted
was right in front of you
You are everything I want
In an artist’s statement, Strand wrote:
“When I first found out about the Twitter Commission, I was immediately drawn to the idea of using social media as the basis for a work. In our day and age, information is exchanged rapidly and forgotten just as quickly. Taking a short "tweet" and expanding it into a musical work was quite a challenge, but surprisingly there was a lot of emotion revealed in 140 characters or less. The piece #Red uses the passion found in the color to evoke feelings of longing, sensuality, and love. I was drawn to the tweet for its simplicity and for the abstract hashtag that the music now hinges upon. I am so thankful that whateverandeveramen. invited me to participate in this project and could not be more excited to hear the outcome.”