“I Come and Stand at Every Door”
Recorded by The Byrds for ‘Fifth Dimension’ (released 1966)
Lyrics written by Nazim Hikmet, the revered Turkish poet
I come and stand at every door
But no one hears my silent tread
I knock and yet remain unseen
For I am dead, for I am dead
I'm only seven although I died
In Hiroshima long ago
I'm seven now as I was then
When children die they do not grow
My hair was scorched by swirling flame
My eyes grew dim my eyes grew blind
Death came and turned my bones to dust
And that was scattered by the wind
I need no fruit I need no rice
I need no sweets nor even bread
I ask for nothing for myself
For I am dead, for I am dead
All that I ask for is for peace
You fight today, you fight today
So that the children of this world
May live and grow and laugh and play
Today, August 6th, is the 75th anniversary of the bombing of Hiroshima in Japan, where 129,000 people were killed. Three days later the US dropped another atomic bomb on Nagasaki, where another 226,000 people perished. Think about this for a moment, that is quite a bit of humanity lost in just two days. We’ve been told that these bombings help bring an end to World War II, but I feel something also happened to many people’ faith in the Common Good. It has been four plus months since this pandemic started and many of us are feeling the toll. Anger, frustration, confusion, fear of getting the virus, fear of someone close to us getting the virus and eventually giving up the ghost. I have always had faith in humanity and believe most folks are good, decent, honest, humane and helpful to their family, friends and neighbors, realizing that all humans are part of our extended family. I watch the sunset every few nights from the train platform in Rahway, NJ and think about what we are all going through. I call my Mother most nights and talk about what is going on now and things that have happened in the distant past. My Mom is 92 and I am finally getting to know her story better… it brings me closer to understanding my own story. I am on a constant search to reach whatever roots are planted in our collective pasts that still connect us all to each other.
I caught my first concert in 4 months a couple of weeks ago and saw/heard Richard Thompson play solo in Woodbridge, NJ at their high school in a football field where everyone sat at a safe distance apart. It was an incredible concert, so glad to be there with 400 other folks, listening closely and being swept away by Mr. Thompson’s wonderful songs. For the past few weeks, I have been listing to a boxset of 100 Big Bands from the 1920’s thru 1940’s, the so-called Big Band Era. I am fascinated by this music, some of which is nearly 100 years old. In some ways, this is the beginning of modern jazz, with thoughtful arrangements and great solos all around. I still have 50 Big Bands left to hear and then search out for more. My favorites so far are Duke Ellington, Luis Russell, Cab Calloway, Charlie Barnet and George Handy Orchestras.
Music, Creative Music, helps keep me sane, inspired and often makes me want to dance and sing and rejoice for better times. The world is still waiting for the Sunrise, so remember to reach out and give a (virtual) hug to someone who needs it today! It will make both of you/us feel better! - BLG at DMG
NEW THINGS FOR THE WEEK OF AUGUST 7th Begin with Three Gems from CvsD:
The Incredible CORBETT VS DEMPSEY (CvsD) Label Keeps Dishing out the Finest in Historic and New Recordings from the Cream of Avant-Garde! Thanks to my good pal, Marc Andren, the word is out that there will be NINE new CvsD releases in the next month or so!!! Three every few weeks! The first three will drop shortly and they are listed below, we hope to get them in EARLY NEXT WEEK so please be patient. Future titles will include an unreleased FMP session from Peter Kowald, 2 CD set of early ICP Orchestra from 1966 to 1972 and much more!
FIRST THREE NEW TREASURES FROM THE FINE FOLKS AT CORBETT VS. DEMPSEY:
MILFORD GRAVES & DON PULLEN - The Complete Yale Concert, 1966 (CvsD; USA) “For a performance at Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut, in spring of 1966, percussionist Milford Graves invited pianist Don Pullen to play duets. The two musicians had worked together in a band fronted by saxophonist and clarinetist Giuseppi Logan, with whom they had recorded two LPs in 1965 for ESP Disk. Graves was already a daunting presence in free music. One step at a time, he was busy transforming the role of drumming in jazz, introducing a new way of dealing with unmetered time and accomplishing this task with technique that was almost inconceivable. His experience playing timbales in Latin bands had been formative, suggesting that the snare could be used as an accent rather than beat-keeper, but by the mid '60s he'd worked up a holistic approach to sound and energy that was the most radical of his improvising percussion contemporaries. And with a simpatico accomplice like Pullen, who would go on to have an illustrious career with Charles Mingus, co-fronting a band with George Adams, and as a soloist and bandleader. This early setting finds Pullen is at his most hard- hitting, and his piano concept as heard here lays to rest dubious claims of Cecil Taylorism. Inspired by their performance, Graves and Pullen issued an LP, In Concert at Yale University, Vol. 1 on their own Self-Reliance Program imprint. The vinyl is impossibly rare, especially its first copies, which sported hand-painted covers by the musicians. A second volume titled Nommo was subsequently issued, and it too is a highly prized platter. None of this music has ever been available digitally. The tapes were lost, so in putting this production together – in the works for 10 years – virgin copies of the LPs were used. One CD includes the two complete LPs together with original cover designs, a gallery of hand-painted LPs, and a photo of Graves and Pullen selling them at a Nation of Islam convention. An insert modeled after the original one presents an interview with Graves about the production of the records. This is beyond the holy grail of free music. It is as vital and challenging today as it was more than five decades ago. CvsD is honored to have collaborated with Milford Graves on this historic reissue.”
* JOE McPHEE with ERNEST BOSTIC / TYRONE CRABB / BRUCE THOMPSON - Black is the Color: Live in Poughkeepsie and New Windsor, 1969-70 (CvsD; USA) “Never-before-issued music from three very different settings in upstate New York, all recorded in the period running up to Poughkeepsie multi-instrumentalist Joe McPhee's Nation Time. From a year before that landmark LP, in the same hall at Vassar College, McPhee led a band with soulful vibraphonist Ernie Bostic and voluble rhythm section of Tyrone Crabb and Bruce Thompson, both of Nation Time fame, performing a John Coltrane-oriented set that included versions of Mongo Santamaria's "Afro Blue" and Coltrane's "Naima," as well as McPhee fave "God Bless The Child." Deeply emotional and fiery playing with this unusual instrumentation – rare to find McPhee playing with a harmonically based instrument like vibes. McPhee had organized a larger group also meant to feature Bostic and a French horn for a concert at a monastery in nearby New Windsor, but the band was pared down to a quartet with saxophonist Reggie Marks, playing a powerful combination of originals and the Patty Waters-associated traditional tune "Black Is The Color." (The concert also featured a cameo by David Nelson of the Last Poets, but technical issues in the recording scuttled that and several other tracks.) Finally, three cuts document a more rough-and-tumble gig taped outdoors in the park at Poughkeepsie's Lincoln Centre – the only surviving recordings of this funky, bluesy, lowdown, explosive configuration, they feature vocals by one Octavius Graham, great drumming by Chico Hawkins, and Tyrone Crabb on electric bass. This two-CD set has been lovingly transferred from the original tapes out of from McPhee's personal archives, and is augmented by newly discovered photographs of the concerts. A spectacular deep dive into the pure magic of Mr. McPhee.”
2 CD Set $20
* There is great interview with JOE McPHEE found here:
ALEXANDER VON SCHLIPPENBACH QUARTET with EVAN PARKER / PETER KOWALD / PAUL LOVENS - Three Nails Left (CvsD; USA) One of the all-time great records of improvised music from Europe. Period. Blisteringly hot. Uncompromisingly inventive. Staggeringly beautiful. And insanely rare. Originally issued in the mid '70s on FMP, at its core Three Nails Left features the legendary Schlippenbach Trio – British saxophonist Evan Parker, and German percussionist Paul Lovens joining the German pianist – the triangle squared by the addition of German bassist Peter Kowald. Just the first track, an incredible 20-plus minute burner called "Range," is worth the price of admission – as punk rock as free music gets, it shows Parker's spectacular capabilities at high-octane blowing. Kowald adds a chewy, molasses bottom to the group, offsetting Lovens' flinty metal, stick and skin and Schlippenbach's hyper-focused intensity. This flammable configuration performed and recorded together as a regular unit in the period, making another FMP LP, The Hidden Peak, and a recording later released on CD by Atavistic's Unheard Music Series. One side was reissued on a limited edition FMP box set, together with part of The Hidden Peak, but it's never been available intact on CD. Remastered from original tapes, packaged with the original cover design by Lovens, Three Nails Left is a stone cold classic of creative music.”
QUINSIN NACHOFF // MOLINARI STRING QUARTET / NATHANIE BONIN / MICHAEL DAVIDSON / MARK HELIAS * / SATOSHI TAKEISHI / et al - Pivotal Arc (Whirlwind Recordings 4761; USA) Featuring the Molinari String Quartet, Nathanie Bonin - violin soloist, Quinsin Nachoff - tenor sax & composer, Michael Davidson - vibes, Mark Helias - contrabass, Satoshi Takeishi - drums & percussion plus seven more brass & reeds players. Since the release of ‘Magic Numbers’ on Songlines (2006), I’ve watched former Toronto-based saxist & composer, Quinsin Nachoff, evolve, with each of his half-dozen discs growing in strength and ambition. Mr. Quinsin and Montreal-born. L.A.-based violinist, Nathalie Bonin met at the Banff Centre (in Canada) in 2001, moved to either side of the US but met up again in 2007 and decided to collaborate with Quinsin composing a work that featured Ms. Bonin on violin, Nachoff himself on tenor sax, the Molinari String Quartet along with Nachoff’s ongoing trio plus another seven reeds & brass players. Thus the results of this work, ‘Pivotal Arc’ are long and his most ambitious work yet.
This disc consists of three long piece, ‘Violin Concerto’ (45 minutes), ‘String Quartet’ (16 minutes) and the title track (15 minutes). Ms. Bonin is featuring throughout the ‘Violin Concerto’, both the playing of the rest of the 15-piece ensemble and Ms. Bonin work extremely well together as one force of nature or beauty, interweaving several connected lines. What I like about this is that it is most modest, not about dazzling virtuosic displays, but more about restrained yet compelling music that slowly develops over time. A number of musicians here get to solo, like vibes player, Michael Davidson, who again takes his time to weave his solo within the flow of the music around him. all of which is both loose flowing yet tightly integrated at the same time. The suite for the string quartet itself is strong, focused and well-composed. I can tell that Mr. Nachoff put a great of work into this piece, as several themes are thoughtfully placed together, layers of lines are again tightly woven together. The tital piece, “Pivoal Arc” features a long, powerful solo from Mr. Nachoff’s tenor rides on top of the swirling waves of orchestral harmonies below, keeping each member of the ensemble as part of the fortified winds, consistently moving together as one force. This piece is exciting and most intense, one of the best modern classical works I’ve heard in a long while. Bravo to Quinsin Nachoff and the rest of his great ensemble. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
Master bassist/composer/multi-bandleader, MARK HELIAS, recently released 4 unreleased recordings via bandcamp. They are currently available download only and here is the link: https://markhelias.bandcamp.com - all four are listed further on below in this newsletter
CARL STONE / ELLIOTT SHARP - Synkretika Live in Tokyo (zOaR 060; USA) Featuring Carl Stone on laptop & MAX/MSP and Elliott Sharp on Strandberg 8-string guitarbass, bass clarinet & electronics. Carl Stone and Elliott Sharp have shared concert stages and delicious meals for decades in Japan, Europe and North America. Circumstances conspired to have their latest concert in Tokyo to be recorded and presented here. Each brings personal compositional obsessions and improvisational strategies to a mix that may truly be described as syncretic. Sound and gestures are tossed back and forth between them to be manipulated and returned to the mix. Bay Area-based composer, Carl Stone, has been experimenting and composing his own electro-acoustic/electronic/collage music for nearly 50 years, dividing his time between San Francisco and Japan for many years. He has collaborated with many great Asian artists: Min Xiao-Fen, Kazue Sawai, Otomo Yoshihide and Kazuhisa Uchihashi.
This is the first recording made by Carl Stone with Downtown composer/multi-instrumentalist, Elliott Sharp. Although I do recognize the sound of E#’s custom-made GuitarBass, there are other odd sounds not so easy to place. Is that breath-like sound from a bass clarinet? Rubbed percussion or is that sound somehow manipulated? Often we hear just a few snips of sounds, which are then sliced & diced, expanded & contracted, fragments repeated and altered, the sound is constantly shifting into something else. As things evolve, we start to hear a couple of different layers, a bass clarinet sample is repeated and then slowly stretched as it goes. Certain sounds seem to evoke different images in our minds, something here sounds like the cutting of wood or a train running by. I like when the different layers expand, we hear several samples or sounds selectively stacked up, manipulated and moved around the sonic spectrum. Both musicians here do a fine job of weaving their collage-like sounds together. There are certain sounds like spoken word vocals that when we hear, we instantly recognize as vocals, but then certain sounds are carefully bent or stretched out, thus making what we think we are hearing into something else. Like messing with our (what we think is our) reality somehow. This disc emerges from the more restrained side of E# endeavors, yet it remains just as fascinating as anything else that Mr. Sharp or Mr. Stone has done. An essential listening experience. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
MERZBOW - EXD (Room40 4131; Australia) “Room40 continues its series of archival releases from Tokyo noise maestro Merzbow with an unreleased work originally recorded in 1997. EXD is like some kind of pulse driven industrial electronics experiment. It grinds with an uneasy sense of determination, rupturing outward into caustic waves of Merzbow's trademarked harsh noise. Across the middle years of the 1990s, Merzbow (Masami Akita) refined a stochastic language for harsh noise that had emerged from his studio experiments at the beginning of that decade. This technique, which involved a combination of self-made instruments, synthesizers, tabletop effects and, in the case of EXD, drum machines, often recorded at incredible levels to create a uniquely visceral distortion, has essentially become the benchmark for noise music in the 21st century. A devout archivist, Merzbow's unreleased works from this period are finally getting the attention they deserve. Editions like Noise Mass, issued by Room40 in 2019 (RM 4108CD), are amongst a growing number of releases that document the gradual unfolding of his signature approach to overabundance of frequency and ceaseless sonic chaos. Recorded at the end of 1997 and early 1998, EXD owes its title to the Bias Rockaku-kun EXD 5ch analog drum synthesizer. It is an exercise in maximal minimalism. Using repeated phrases, atmospheric, but reductive drum patterns, and tightly wound pulses, Merzbow calls up a vision proto-industrial technoscape. Bathed in white noise, it is a music in which the reassurance of the kick drum is largely torn away, sending the music into an uneasy orbital decay. It's the sound of warning systems onboard a satellite as it begins to burn up, falling back to earth. An exquisite sonic evisceration. What makes EXD quite unusual is it reveals, in part at least, some of the skeletal structures Merzbow deploys in the creation of his works. It's especially revealing, as this period is mostly recognized for its unending shower of brutalizing harsh noise. On the title track "EXD" a Roland TR-606 drum machine folds into and out of focus. Its grooves ruptured by, and then becomes gradually consumed in, a field of phasing noise and distortion. Includes a poster.
OMEI - The Island (Ninth Circle Music 11118; USA) Omei is Chris Goudreau, a Connecticut-based sonic explorer who records under the name Sickness. I just met Mr. Goudreau recently at the store and he left us with a few of his discs, a CD, a 7” and a few of his LP’s, including a collaboration with noise mutant, Wolf Eyes. For this project Mr. Goudreau plays modular synth, field recordings and bowed cymbal. Things begin with just a singular bent electronic sound, the title is “The Island: Foundling [Part 1]”. There is a soft sinister thick drone humming in the background. Slowly, Goudreau adds several layers of dark, pulsating, electronic, static, odd samples and other more disorienting sounds. The layers slowly evolve, some of the lower sounds humming, expanding as they go. It sounds as if my speakers are starting to complain since some of those low notes are too much for them to handle, too deep, too disturbing. I can hear what sounds like the bowed cymbal at the center, slowly changing as it vibrates. I you listen closely, you start to notice that each of several layers expands in different ways, at different tempos or pulse rates. When things finally calm down, it feels better but less exhilarating. I get the feeling that the title of this disc and song titles, “The Island”, refers to the fact that this music sounds like an island of sound that is carefully placed on an ocean of silence. On the second piece, “Pulling from the Shore”, things slow down even more to near silence with just a couple of drones floating quietly in space. The sound at the bottom could be an organ note/drone plus a layer of static like a scratchy album. Once again the different layers slowly expand, with more somber foghorn-like drones in the distance. Since there are less things going on, we must listen closer to what is left. The third piece is called, “Epilogue” and it begins more densely and intensely, quickly erupting and sounding like several machines or electronic sounds are exploding together. the bowed cymbal at the center of the storm. The overall sound would be overwhelming if it were played too loud but at this volume it is easier to swallow no matter how intense it sounds. The music gets more dense as it goes, the center pulsating more powerfully until it starts to calm down a bit yet it moves in organic sounding waves. It does feel better when it finally oozes down yet it soon builds to another dark layer, building up again and then coasting down again in a series of waves. Great music to be washed over each of us, just bring a life-preserver so you don’t drown. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
LARRY OCHS / ARAM SHELTON QUARTET with MARK DRESSER / SCOTT WALTON / KJELL NORDESON - Continental Drift (Clean Feed 555; Portugal) Featuring Larry Ochs on tenor & sopranino saxes, Aram Shelton on alto sax, Mark Dresser or Scott Walton on basses and Kjell Nordeson on drums. This is an interesting blend of musicians from alternating scenes working together, a double sax-led quartet with one or two different bassists on each date, the sessions recorded five years apart. The older session (recorded in July of 2013) featured Mark Dresser (from San Diego) on bass while the other session (from July of 2018) has Scott Walton (from L.A.) on bass. Both frontline saxists contributed four pieces each. Although originally from Florida, alto saxist, Aram Shelton, moved to Chicago, becoming an integral part of that scene before moving to Oakland, CA, where he still resides. Larry Ochs, who is a longtime member of the Rova Sax Quartet, has had several of his own bands through the many, always choosing his collaborators wisely. Commencing with Shelton’s “Another Night”, the quartet lays back and simmers while both saxists take dreamy, laid back solos on alto and then sopranino saxes, building nicely but not erupting too intensely until the last section. I love Shelton’s piece, “Switch”, which has one of those sort-of South African-like melodies which I find most invigorating plus inspired solos from both saxists. Both rhythm teams here, no matter which musician is playing the bass, sounds great at playing this material. On the title track, things slow down for some great, suspense-filled sections, sublime flute and sax softly intertwine and brings us quietly back down to Mother Earth. The secret weapon here is the distinctive & powerful bass-work on Mark Dresser, throbbing at the center of the storm on several pieces. The final piece, “The Others Dream” is long (nearly 20 minutes) and covers alot of ground. L.A. bassist Scott Walton gets a chance to stretch out here and also sounds great during his solo. This piece is episodic with different connected sections and several strong sax solos at different points. This disc is one of the best efforts we’ve heard from Clean Feed recently. There is a box of another bunch of discs soon to arrive from Clean Feed any day now. - Bruce Lee Gallanter, DMG
EUGENE UGHETTI - Agglomeration Of Measurement (Room 40 4126; Australia) “Australian master percussionist Eugene Ughetti teams up with composers Anthony Pateras, Liza Lim, Robin Fox, and others to create a series of deeply textured and intensely executed solo percussion works. Exploding out the ideas of his chosen instruments, Ughetti's work is relentless in its search for new articulations and extended readings, seeking entirely new methods of approaching percussion.
From Eugene: "This album is a distillation of the many long-term relationships I've had with Australian composers. The music forms a body of work, spanning fifteen years, that provides a glimpse into my percussive language and a 21st century Australian percussion sound. In many instances the pieces on this album were the germ for larger scale compositions and collaborations, forming some of the major works for Speak Percussion, the organisation I currently direct. Sitting around these solo works are other percussion solos, trios, quartets, sextets, twelve-tets, mixed ensemble works and an opera. Each of these projects have cumulatively deepened my creative rapport with the represented artists. Major works of note include Liza Lim's 'Atlas of the Sky' (opera for solo soprano, 3 percussion soloists and 20-person crowd), Alex Garsden's 'tolle lege, tolle lege...' (spatialized percussion quartet with electronics), a co-composition with Robin Fox entitled 'TRANSDUCER' (quartet, live electronics and eight channel speaker system), James Rushford's 'Whorl Would Equal Reaches' (percussion sextet with electronics), Thomas Meadowcroft's 'So Long Country' (mixed ensemble and electronics), and Anthony Pateras' 'Flesh and Ghost' (percussion twelve-tet), among others. I am attracted to sound that speaks more to concept than to musical convention and in performance more than concert. In Agglomeration Of Measurement my artistic practice is articulated through experimental techniques exploring feedback, microtonality, micro-percussion, post instrumental practice and an investigation into broader non-musical concepts. I am indebted to these composers for their exceptional artistry and collaboration and to Speak Percussion for providing the extraordinary platform for these works to flourish."
MOUSE AND SEQUENCERS (LAY LLAMAS) - Didactic Music (Backwards 006; Italy) Experimentation and Italian library music are the coordinates in which Didactic Music is written, the second work of the solo project Mouse and Sequencers by Nicola Giunta (The Lay Llamas), published by Backwards. The Sicilian multi-instrumentalist makes a "catalog" of genres that range among a melancholic bucolic-folk, documentary field recordings, fleeting expeditions in space and small experiments. From the sidereal ambient music of "Ancient Chants" to the late-summer suggestions of "Unmapped Islands", passing through the abstract blues of "Giant Squids" and the analog '70s electronic perfumes in "New Socialism", Giunta gives us a precious prism with 17 faces that shines with its own light, spreading absolutely colorful emotions on the walls of your soul. There's nothing left to do but listen to it and let yourself be carried away. The original artworks are made by Nicola Giunta, in handcrafted xerography. Digipack; edition of 300.”
ORGONE - Mos/Fet (Heavy Psych Sounds 132; Italy) “Mos/Fet is the first studio album by the French band Orgöne. Fully self-produced, this first opus is a double-album composed of four twenty-minutes tracks, delivering a complete immersion from which you won't escape unscathed. With Mos/Fet, Orgöne reveals a SF mythology mixing '70s pop culture, ancient Egypt, pan-Africanism, spatial and paranormal exploration against the backdrop of the Cold War and USSR. This first album is an inter-dimensional music journey in which the guide would have left you alone in a dead-end world. Sometimes immersed in the thickness of a burning and hostile desert, sometimes in the depths of space, floating in weightlessness or crossing the Milky Way faster than light, atmospheres succeed one after another and tell you incredible, uchronial, dystopian, exhilarating, and bewitching stories.”
IMPLOSION - Implosion (Trading Places 55001; UK) Trading Places present a reissue of Implosion's self-titled album, originally released in 1988. Obscure yet outstanding '80s Italian outfit that combined, space rock, psychedelia, and proto-electronics. The epitome of a "cult" album whose original copies sell for over 300 euros on the internet. Consisting of long, spacey, dreamy, mostly-instrumental tracks made of killer, acid-leaking electronics, and released in a mere 500 copies in 1988, this monster-rare album is now on CD for the first time ever. Limited edition including three bonus tracks and a 16-page booklet featuring lyrics and liner notes.
HENK BADINGS/DICK RAAIJMAKERS - Evolutions, Contrasts & Electronic Music (Fantome Phonographique 1029; Italy) “One of the most prolific composers of contemporary music in The Netherlands, Henk Badings was born in Indonesia in 1907, the son of an East Indies Company army officer, and orphaned at an early age. Back in Holland, Badings worked as a mining engineer and paleontologist, but abandoned this career to devote his life to music, making an impact in 1930 with the performance of his first cello concerto. The composer of various symphonies that made use of unusual music scales and uncommon harmonic structures, Badings began experimenting with electronic music in the 1950s, composing the first side of the Electronic Music LP in 1952 for a performance at the Gravesano Music Festival, using 12 oscillators and a violin, the second side in 1958 for a ballet performed by the Hannover Opera Ballet; recorded at Philips's studio in Eindhoven, it utilizes various sound generators, the final track featuring Dick Raaijmakers, a composer and electronic music specialist then employed by Philips in the field of electro-acoustics.”
ROZA ESKENAZI - Rembetissa (Fantome Phonographique 1026; Italy) “Roza Eskenazi was a giant of rembetika, the urban Greek music of Ottoman origin associated with the poor underclass. Eskenazi's life was extraordinary: born Sarah Spinazi to a poor Sephardic Jewish family in Constantinople, probably in the mid-1890s, after an itinerant childhood, she began dancing at the Grand Hotel Theatre in Thessaloniki. She eloped with the wealthy Yiannis Zardinidis around 1913, with whom she bore a son, but after his untimely death in 1917, she placed the son in the care of an orphanage and moved to Athens, where she danced with Armenian cabaret artists. Eventually, the composer Panagiotis Toundas discovered her singing and arranged her first recordings for Columbia Records in 1929, which catapulted her to fame. Cutting over 500 songs in the 1930s, she became the leading exponent of the Smyrna school of rembetika. Running a nightclub in Athens during the German occupation of World War II, she hid resistance fighters and British spies and helped many Jewish families flee the country. She finally toured the USA in the 1950s, and though her career subsequently waned, a 1970s revival led to further work. The longevity of her output is such that her song "Misirlu" was included on the soundtrack of Pulp Fiction; the 21 gems collected here were recorded between 1931 and 1947.”
JON COLLIN - Water & Rock Music Volumes 3-4 (Feeding Tube Records 534; USA) "A single LP compiles another two installments in the Water & Rock Music series by Jon Collin, UK ex-pat guitarist currently based in Sweden. Once again, Collin has put together a riveting set of acoustic guitar pieces, these recorded around Stockholm between April and October, 2018. There is a wistful, bluesy quality to the playing and inventions here. John Fahey once told me that blues was 'about anger.' But this work seems suffused with delicately scrambling melancholia, like a tangle of vines trying to reach for a breath of sunlight. Sometimes this attempt is rewarded, other times it just turns back on itself for further rumination. Which I guess is really just another kind of reward. Interestingly, while the playing here is nothing like Loren Connors's, Collin begins to vocalize along with his guitar lines in places. He also employs a good bit of rough string sliding, both of which were features of Connors's very early work. This suggests they two share parallels in terms of thinking that are deeper than mere style. Jon's melodic inventions remain as open-ended as they have ever been, but he has begun to add an extra chiming element ay the end of some lines. It almost sounds like he's using a small harp, but I'm guessing it is not. Just another stone in the path Jon Collin is following, ever deeper into the forest of his imagination. His most gorgeous album yet." --Byron Coley, 202
EMBRUJO - Embrujo (Survival Research SVVRCH 016; Italy) “Survival Research presents a reissue of Embrujo's self-titled album, originally released in 1971. Chilean prog band Embrujo began as El Embrujo Ques Besa or Kissing Spell, formed by the guitarist, singer, and drummer Carlos Fernandez with chief songwriter Juan Carlos "Tato" Gomez on bass and vocals and Ernesto "Kiko" Murillo on lead guitar, with organist/flautist Ernesto Aracena and pianist/flautist Guillermo Olivares joining later. Signing to Camilo Fernandez's Arena Producciones in 1970, debut LP Los Pajaros was issued under the Kissing Spell moniker, but Chile's unstable political climate, subject to CIA meddling, saw them renamed Embrujo for their coveted second album, the self-titled disc mixing subtle Latin elements within their beautifully-delivered songs of quietly contemplative psychedelic rock. A must-have for all South American psych fans out there. Edition of 500.
MARK HELIAS, Master bassist/composer/multi-bandleader, recently released 4 unreleased recordings via bandcamp. Here’s the list with descriptions and the links:
MARK HELIAS - Available Light (Radiolegs; USA) Solo contrabass from a longtime master bassist! I just listened to this DL last night and remained convinced that Mark Helias is one of the best bassists alive! Outstanding on all counts!
Download only at: https://markhelias.bandcamp.com/album/available-light
OPEN LOOSE with MARK HELIAS / TONY MALABY / TOM RAINEY - The Third Proposition (Radiolegs; USA) This recording is from a live performance by my trio Open Loose in February of 2000. It was a rare instance where the group got to perform for three intense weeks throughout France night after night. I say it was a rare instance because we constantly lamented the paucity of sustained touring not just from a financial standpoint, but because we imagined the level of development we could have possibly achieved if we could work in a sustained fashion as did previous generations of musicians. In the midst of the grind of such work a subtle and profound musical change occurs. We noticed it in the musicians of the 30's and 40's who played virtuosically and creatively as if it was like breathing. I saw videos of Louis Armstrong and Jack Teagarden in the middle of some eight week tour of Europe playing with a heart breaking intensity that wound me up like no other experience.
In the case of the early 2000 tour of Open Loose we got to work through the early part of the tour, hit our stride and then begin to go deeper as an ensemble. This recording is a document of the results of that process and I am proud and excited to share it with you. We are playing pieces that we had been inhabiting for some time and finding new sources of exploration in all of them. This performance took place at La Maison de la Radio in Paris and the recording happened to capture the music and the feeling. Tom Rainey and Tony Malaby played sublimely without overt effort... they were simply expressing eloquently what was happening at that time for them and us as a group. I happened upon these tracks recently after having not heard them for perhaps fifteen years and was stunned at the freedom and precision that I heard. The band was functioning at a high and effortless level and I hope that you benefit from hearing this recording.” - Mark Helias, May 2020
Download only at https://markhelias.bandcamp.com
MARK HELIAS with TONY MALABY / DAVID ADES / JAMES GREENING / SCOTT TINKLER / GERALD CLEAVER - Roof Rights (Radiolegs; USA) “This concert was recorded in November, 2000 at the Wangaratta Jazz Festival in Wangaratta Australia. I visited Australia for the first time in January, 1996 with Trio Three, subbing for Reggie Workman. I had a great time and met and played with a number of Australian musicians including Sandy Evans and Tony Gorman, Alistair Spence and others. I also hung out with Mike Nock whom I had met and played with in New York in the late 70's.
In 1999 Adrian Jackson, the artistic director of the festival contacted me about coming to perform at the 2000 Wangaratta Jazz Festival with my trio Open Loose and we discussed strategies to maximize my time there. Apparently I initiated the idea of adding three Australian musicians to my trio and doing some sextet concerts. The trip is so long that I was of the mind to maximize my time there by booking more gigs. The fact that I was able to do that in the same location was a bonus. In this case I trusted Adrian to choose three horn players from down under so that I could compose sextet music for the ensemble. I sent the music in advance, as it was somewhat challenging, and hoped for the best, technically and spiritually. In this case, serendipity was on my side. Open Loose had a busy schedule at Wangaratta as did James, Scott and David, none of whom I had ever met. They were performing in their own groups and other cooperatives at the same festival so there wasn't really a lot of time for us to get together. We had one rehearsal for about two hours; for me, the ensemble spirit, conviction and accuracy achieved by the sextet is astounding. It confirms my belief that bringing talent, attitude, fearlessness and generosity of spirit together in music is a winning combination. We seem to all immediately feel comfortable with one another and had a lot of shared musical ideas and humor.
They as a group understood what I was after and the concert was a pleasure and a powerful experience. I have since had a ongoing relationships with numerous musicians in Australia, continuing to work with Scott Tinkler and playing on and producing albums by the late David Ades. David and I became quite close over the years and we always visited and played together when either of us were in each others countries. Scott told me that he and David worked on the music together knowing there wouldn't be much time to rehearse, and their dedication was an enormous boost in making this concert happen with one rehearsal. It turned out that James, who was a very busy trombone player, had not had much time with the music and pretty much sight read it at the rehearsal. Needless to say I was very impressed and felt fairly confident about the ensemble after the session. Notwithstanding, it was the musical sense and group consciousness that made the music happen, not practice or rehearsal. I think it was Tony Malaby's first trip to Oze and maybe Gerald as well. They both played with a strength and grace that is very moving to me to this day. It felt like everyone brought all of their musical experiences with them on this rather varied and complex program.
I have always counted this concert and meeting as a highlight in my career and a seminal moment moving forward. In addition to all this wonderful stuff that happened at Wangaratta, Adrian Jackson arranged for me to have dinner with Joe Zawinul who was also playing at the festival with his group Zawinul Syndicate. I also got to hang out with my late pal Victor Bailey who was playing bass with Joe's band. This concert was twenty years ago but it does not seem like a distant memory at all; rather a harbinger of great things to come.” - Mark Helias
Download only at https://markhelias.bandcamp.com
RALPH ALESSI / JEROME HARRIS / MARK HELIAS / BOBBY PREVITE - Sequestered (Radiolegs; USA) This is the first remote piece that I have released in response to the new paradigm that has been levied on us by the Covid – 19 virus. I composed the piece years ago so it is not a topical response to the pandemic; it just happened to be the piece that I thought might work remotely. I did guide tracks in the computer which were sent to the participants, along with the score and parts, to let them negotiate the piece as they saw fit. All first takes, all good. In the context of these strange times it was really enlivening to interact with some friends and colleagues at distance. In fact, it was much more fun and fulfilling than I would have imagined. I hope you enjoy our efforts.” - Mark Helias
Download only at https://markhelias.bandcamp.com
ATTENTION ALL CREATIVE MUSICIANS OUT THERE, Around the world.
If you have a link, for some music that you are working on and want to share it with the folks who read the DMG Newsletter, please send the link to DMG at DMG@Downtownmusicgallery.com. Many of us are going stir crazy staying at home so if you want to inspire us and help us get through these difficult times, please show us what you got. I listed some these last week but have also a few more.
MORE THINGS TO DO WHILE YOU ARE WAITING AROUND FOR THE WORLD TO END OR GET BETTER:
STILL STIR CRAZY AFTER ALL THESE YEARS!
This is the section where I usually recommend upcoming concerts in the NYC area. As far as I can tell there are no upcoming shows anywhere around here, except perhaps on-line. All places I usually frequent are now closed for the foreseeable future. And everyone is worried about the near future, their health and their sanity for their friends and family. I am trying to come up with something inspirational to put out there but I am also very worried about myself, the store, all of the creative musicians that we need and support, as well as everyone else who has lost their jobs.
I have been at home at my old apartment in New Jersey, cleaning, reorganizing my collection, finding lots of doubles, listening to dozens of records, CD’s,cassettes and DVD’s. And working on my ongoing series of discographies and assorted music lists.
Over the past month a number of musicians have been putting up some music on-line for anyone to check out. I know that many of us are going a bit stir crazy so it is time to do some soul searching and serious listening. Here is a list of some music links to check out:
THIS IS FROM MY GOOD FRIEND JESSICA HALLOCK,
who runs the New York Noise website and helps to promote creative music from hundreds of different musicians! At the beginning of April, Jessica convinced me not to go to the store and stay at home & work from there/here. Thanks to Jessica, Frank Meadows and Charmaine Lee, I have taken their advice seriously and I remain safe and alive (at home) while the store continues to do mail-order. Thanks Jessica, I do appreciate your tough love, this is what it takes sometimes to get the elder folks to break with their usual routine or habits and think more clearly about life.
This is from Jessica Hallock, please do check it out, there is so much to explore here and I know some of you are bored and need some inspiration/distraction:
Livestreams are obviously no replacement for live shows, but they're all the community we have right now––so experimental music calendar NYC-Noise.comnow provides links to livestreams (with artist / curator donation info); a roundup of local musicians' releases; COVID-19-related resources, including links to grants, petitions, & a local venue donation list; & an Instagram account (@NYC_Noise) promoting artists and releases. Please let me know about your livestreams &/or new records at www.nyc-noise.com/submit.
ARTS FOR ARTS Presents:
FREEJAZZ WORKS IN A TIME OF CRISIS
Tony Malaby / John Hébert / Billy Mintz On_Line Salon
The Under the Turnpike Trio
TONIGHT August 6 - 8pm ET
Upcoming On_Line Salons
Thursday August 13 Matt Lavelle - trumpet Daniel Carter - reeds, trumpet Mara Rosenbloom - piano Warren Smith - percussion
Thursday August 20 Matthew Shipp - piano Bobby Kapp - drums William Parker - bass
Thursday August 27
Melanie Dyer - viola
Gwen Laster - violin
Charles Burnham - violin
Ken Filiano - bass
The Steve Circuit by Yuko Otomo & Matt Mottel:
Anthology Film Archives with Andrew Lampert
This Summer, 2020, ISSUE and the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council present The Steve Circuit, an episodic series of videos and digital artwork dedicated to the late beloved poet Steve Dalachinsky developed by his wife, painter and poet Yuko Otomo, and interdisciplinary artist Matt Mottel. Born in Brooklyn in 1946, Dalachinsky was an unforgettable fixture within particular strains of experimental music, poetry, and art—and at cultural happenings and gatherings of all kinds in Lower Manhattan and beyond. Dalachinsky was an important figure to many. He passed away September 16th, 2019.
Steve’s art was created in tandem with the public life he lived. The places he inhabited—arts venues, community gardens, the New York Public Library neighborhood branch, his Spring Street sidewalk store—were all part of his daily routine. He was influenced by the culture he witnessed. He created his art both in public and at home. Late at night, in his apartment, after returning from film screenings, art openings, and multiple concerts, he returned to his collage artwork and to type up the poems he had written by hand during the day out in the world.
Over the course of six events throughout the Summer, 2020, these historical sites will be revealed in a weekly online presentation. Each week, videos made by Otomo & Mottel will be streamed pairing Dalachinsky text, recordings, and artwork, with additional artistic collaborators who were part of the Dalachinsky orbit. The online cultural map and presentation will provide a “virtual polaroid snapshot” of Downtown New York’s cultural history.
In addition to Otomo and Mottel, the series will feature contributions from Vito Ricci & Lise Vachon, Andrew Lampert, Jean Carla Rodea & Gerald Cleaver, Tom Surgal & Lin Culbertson, William Parker & Matthew Shipp, Lee Ranaldo & Leah Singer, and Loren Connors & Suzanne Langille.
HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO TERRY RILEY - June 24th!
Here is a new version of Terry’s “In C” (Covid Version)
Organized by Benjamin Miller in Detroit
COVID ENSEMBLE: John D Morton electric Guitar Pulse, Ben Miller acoustic-electric-bass guitars, Mike Khoury violin, Molly Jones flute, Kevin Gosa alto-soprano saxophones, Roger Clark Miller jaymar toy piano, Mike List marimba, Thom Monks vibraphone, John Keith wurlitzer and Clem Fortuna accordion.
1 hour long and truly transcendent! - BLG
THIS IS FROM GUITAR MASTER HENRY KAISER:
I have been recording video performances weekly and they get posted on Thursdays on the Cuneiform Records Youtube page.
once in a while they are historical old thangs from my video archive
and I will be doing more collaborations with other improvisors.
I plan to keep this up until there are live gigs again
so there will likely be a lot more of these
From INGRID LAUBROCK & TOM RAINEY:
Every Week for the entirety of this pandemic/lockdown INGRID LAUBROCK & TOM RAINEY have been posting a new duo offering. I have listened to every one of these as they were sent out and am much impressed by the way this duo continues to evolve and work their way through many ideas. You can check out each one here:
This comes from electric bassist, GIACOMO MEREGA:
My series is called ‘Solipsism Digest’. More vids to come!
This is from good friend DON WHITE from Texas and who goes to the FIMAV Fest every year:
Two Live Sets with Experimental Guitarist SANDY EWEN:
They Who Sound Special Delivery - Sandy Ewen, Houston, TX, 5/30/20:
Etched In The Eye with Sandy Ewen - Guitar, Objects, Danny Kamins - Alto and Baritone Saxes & Robert Pearson - Keyboards
Space HL, Houston, TX, 12/19/19: https://youtu.be/zO19zhPrQhI
This is from Kevin Reilly at Relative Pitch Records:
JAMES BRANDON LEWIS Live at The Spectrum, In Brooklyn:
Support your favorite artists on Friday through bandcamp.
They are waiving their revenue share.
THOMAS SAYERS ELLIS is the leader of the great Poetry/Music/Confrontation Band HEROES ARE GANG LEADERS a/k/a HAGL.
HAGL has a website that you should check out at: www.heroesaregangleaders.com
for the latest intersection of music-minded words and word-minded music and while you are there also check out The Lokotown Reverb where classic overlooked Oral Literature, Studio Recordings and Live Performances are given a fresh look!
GIANTHOLOGY is a forum for writing not whining, aesthetics not agenda, ideas not issues, vision not victimhood, GIANTHOLOGY is edited by the members of Heroes Are Gang Leaders.
Send 2 to 4 unpublished works to HeroesAreGangLeaders@gmail.com.
ROULETTE AT HOME:
Roulette TV: Nick Dunston
In early 2019, Roulette TV sat down with bassist and composer Nick Dunston ahead of the first concert of his year-long Van Lier Fellowship. In addition to the interview, this episode features live performance footage of Dunston's quintet Atlantic Extraction and the world premiere of The Floor is Lava! written for five double basses. Dunston also premiered La Operación—a multi-movement composition written for soprano voice, two alto saxophones, two double basses, and two percussionists—as part of his fellowship in the same year. Check out:
https://vimeo.com/342125717?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
Playlist: Excerpts from the Black Avant-Garde - Tracks by Tomeka Reid, Reggie Workman, Diedre Murray, Anthony Davis, Amiri Baraka, Henry Threadgill, William Parker, Matana Roberts from the Roulette concert archive. - https://soundcloud.com/roulette_intermedium/sets/blackavantgarde?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
The weekly stream on WFMU features concert recordings by Roscoe Mitchell & Francesco Filidei, John Oswald/Miguel Frasconi/Marvin Green, and Wadada Leo Smith’s Nyabinghi Arkeztra from 1991 at Roulette. Tune in: 1. https://wfmu.org/playlists/shows/93933?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
2. https://roulette.org/event/wadada-selasie-leo-smith-2/?utm_source=Roulette Master List&utm_campaign=34384bb216-EMAIL_CAMPAIGN_2018_08_15_09_07_COPY_01&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_c36db137d7-34384bb216-302668229
ARTS FOR ART Presents:
Oliver Lake Big Band:
Vincent Chancey Trio:
My good friend & guitar master GARY LUCAS is playing half hour sets at his apartment in the West village every Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday at 3pm EST on Facebook. Different songs on each episode. Here is the link: https://www.facebook.com/gary.lucas.5836
Hi, we're Downtown Music Gallery and in addition to the retailing and
mail-order of an amazing assortment of jazz, improv, and progressive
we also do all the mail-order for the Tzadik and Avant labels!!!