Recovery?

I recently performed a short streaming show with Anna Homler for the 18th St. Arts Center:

Sea Change/ Sound Kitchen from 18th Street Arts Center on Vimeo.

Coming up this weekend, The Present Quartet (Ellen Burr, Anne LeBaron, Charles Sharp, and I) are recording with guest vocalists Bonnie Barnett, Vetza (of LAFMS fame), and Will Salmon. Product TBD.

The Santa Monica Symphony and Vicente Chamber Orchestra are scheduling 2021-22 seasons. Stay tuned…

Also, RIP Guido Lamell, music director of the Santa Monica Symphony. It was an honor to perform with him.

Talking About C.T.

I recently joined Volkan Terzioglu and Robert Reigle for two episodes of their radio show/podcast “Noise and Smoke.” Apparently the people of Turkey want to hear musical and social analysis of free jazz bootlegs, and thanks to the internet you can enjoy it too. Shows 1.22 and 1.23 are the three of us exploring the recording of Cecil Taylor’s November 1969 Berlin concert. It was an honor to be asked, and really fun to work on this. There may be more.

2020 Wrap-Up

This is, predictably, the shortest year-end summary since I started doing them. I had ten in-person shows pre-COVID, and three online events and one socially-distanced outdoor one since. Here’s the tally:

Shows by Band:

Tie for 1st (two each): Collaborations with Ellen Burr, solo, The Present Quartet, Cal State Fullerton New Music Ensemble

Tie for 2nd (one each): Santa Monica Symphony, Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble, Vicente Chamber Orchestra, Opera Povera, Adam Snyder, Robert Reigle & Tim Feeney

Shows by Venue

Tie for 1st (two each): Industry Cafe & Jazz, California State University Fullerton, Facebook Live

Tie for 2nd (one each): SGI Auditorium, Vista Theater, First Presbyterian Church, Battery Books & Music, ArtShare-LA, Zoom, SunSpace, my neighbor’s front yard

Product

Two new releases: Architecture/Battery from Trio Various, with Tracy McMullen (soprano and tenor saxophones), Rich West (drumset), and myself. A live gig plus a studio track. There may be an album of studio stuff eventually. We did this band for a few months in 2012 while Tracy had a postdoc at USC, and we each wrote for it. This is a band camp pay-what-you-want release, because it’s a slightly scruffy Zoom recording. I did minimal editing and mastering; I’m no wizard. If the studio stuff resurfaces that might be a real release…
tvcover2b

The other thing is the video of the last show I did before the lockdown: March 6 at ArtShare-LA with The Present Quartet (Ellen Burr, Anne LeBaron, Charles Sharp, and myself). This was our first outing playing compositions. It’s short, because we were part of a sort-of Downtown arts revue. Hope you dig it…

Tacet

Everything for March and April is canceled. No performances, no Soundwaves, no Thirdsdays. In the words of the late great Jac Zinder, STAY HOME.

Meanwhile, you can watch videos from the last 5 years of Soundwaves on SoundwavesNewMusic.com. I just put up a wonderful Wayne Horvitz/Sara Schoenbeck duo show.

It’s probably also safe to order this new book I contributed to: cover_jazz_w_1000

I may be able to prepare an online release or two during this hiatus, and I’m trying to do some meaningful practice, to finally apply some of what Mark Helias tried to teach me here:

This is also an opportunity to relax and slow down for a month or two. Hope to see you all soon.

Birthmonth

Some of my friends have taken to claiming the entire month of their birth for festivities. I tend to load mine up with even more action than usual, because one source of creativity is resistance to our mortality. Good times. Anyway, here’s the schedule:

 

2020 Plans

Just the musical ones, for now…
I am continuing as a member of the Santa Monica Symphony and the Vicente Chamber Orchestra.

The “Thirdsday” third-Thursday residency I share with Ellen Burr at the Industry Cafe & Jazz is also ongoing. In January we will be joined by guitarist Cristian Amigo and drummer Brock Avery. In February we will have violinist Kathleen Kim, clarinetist Alicia Byer, and drummer Alex Cline. Both of those shows will be free improvisation. Ellen will be away in March, so I am bringing in my power trio Disclaimer, with Charles Sharp added on reeds. We will probably do one set of tunes and one of free improvisation.

Charles and I have a bunch of other projects coming up. I’ll be joining the Cal State Fullerton Improvisation Ensemble he leads at SunSpace Feb. 23 and he and I will be joining Lisa Mezzacappa and the Yves Charuest/Lisle Ellis/Peter Valsamis trio for an evening of mix & match improvising at the Industry Cafe Feb. 25. I’m also going to join the Fullerton Improvisation Ensemble for their set at the Fullerton New Music Festival Feb. 29.

We’re also both in the Jack Curtis Dubowsky Ensemble, playing live scores to silent films. Feb. 22, at the unlikely time of 10AM, we are doing Nosferatu at the famous Vista Theater.

The Present Quartet, which is Ellen, Charles, Anne LeBaron, and myself, is also playing at that festival. We are also doing a short set at ArtShare-LA Mar. 6, which will be the first time we play any sort of composed or pre-structured music.

I am also very excited about two events I’m organizing as part of Braxton75, marking the 75th birthday of Anthony Braxton, one of my biggest musical heroes. On May 3 The Decisive Instant, a large ensemble Charles and I co-lead, will play selections from the classic Creative Orchestra Music 1976 album at the Open Gate concert series in Eagle Rock. Then, on June 4, Braxton’s actual 75th birthday, The Present Quartet will play a set of his music on the Soundwaves series I run at the Santa Monica Public Library.

That series is starting its fifth year tonight, and I continue to be very proud about the performers I am able to present. If you are in West LA you really ought to come.

So, lots of action, and there’s more in development, including some writing and talking gigs. Hope to see you there!