The World’s Foremost Euphonious Prognosticatrix: Madame Pamita!
Enter into the Curious and Sublime World of Madame Pamita's
Parlor of Wonders, an old-time medicine show filled with mysticism, music and melodrama: an entrancing array of spectacles both quaint and queer.
Madame Pamita uses the powers of euphonious prognostication
to tell audience member fortunes and plays songs written both by herself and by those who have moved on to the great beyond - rural blues, old time, jug band and proto-jazz numbers about romance and revenge and mirth and mayhem on an assortment of odd and bizarre vintage instruments: Imperial Banjeaurine, Banjolele, Marxophone, Polka-Lay-Lee, Autoharp and Tiple; as well as a 115 year-old banjo and early 20th century ukuleles.
Fans of Harry Smith’s Anthology of American Folk Music, Alan Lomax’s field recordings or what Greil Marcus likes to call “the Old Weird America” will be transported to the birth of recorded music when an evening’s entertainment meant surprises, amusements and a singular experience like no other!
Madame Pamita has also had the pleasure of recording her songs using wax cylinder equipment from the 1890s and made these 13 tracks available to the public at large through the miracle of compact disc fabrication.
Before embarking on her mystical quest, Madame Pamita was a featured performer on the Dime Museum Circuit with The Neptunas, Cheap Chick, Dime Box Band, The Birdinumnums and as the Impresaria of The Grand Ole Echo.
In early September of the year 2008, Madame Pamita set out for Long Island, New York to record a series of songs she had been performing for "Madame Pamita’s Parlor of Wonders” on the Medicine Show circuit. Along with her esteemed colleague, Mister Patrick Weise, she ventured into the Victorian-era recording facilities of one Mister Peter Dilg, collector of antique recording devices, music
historian and, most importantly, the only man in the United States with a state-of-the-art 1898 wax cylinder recording machine.
Recorded without the use of electrical devices!
Over the course of two magical days, thirteen songs were performed and recorded. Using absolutely no electricity during the playing or recording process, Patrick and she projected their voices and instruments acoustically into antique metal cones (once owned by Thomas Edison himself) and onto 100-year-old wax cylinders. Everything was recorded live with no tracking and no post-recording fixes. What you hear is the recording exactly as it was performed, with the same vitality and exciting recklessness of the early days of reproduced sound.
The Ultimate in Low Fidelity!
The result is probably unlike anything you’ve ever heard. The 1898 version of hi-fi is the ultimate collection of lo-fi: thirteen songs that clock in at under two and a half minutes each (except for one number recorded at half-speed). Absolutely nothing has been added or subtracted. They come complete with the pops, scratches and scintillating surface noise of the recycled cylinders they were recorded on.