The Saxophone’s Unlikely Journey Out of Meme Hell 

Source: Noisey.

In the three years since his sprawling 3-hour debut album The Epic, jazz saxophonist Kamasi Washington has achieved a level of crossover and mainstream appeal that straight-ahead jazz artists of the last generation can only dream of. While the largest platform other jazz artists have might be the Newport Jazz Festival, Washington shares a stage with the biggest music acts in the world at festivals like Coachella and Bonnaroo. His tours don’t book a string of aging tiny jazz clubs filled with Baby Boomers. Instead, Kamasi plays the same venues that host pop artists, metal bands, and rappers.

July Releases from NoBusiness Records 

Source: NoBusiness Records.

New CDs

Bobby Naughton / Wadada Leo Smith / Perry Robinson – THE HAUNT – NBCD 105
Alexander von Schlippenbach / Aki Takase – LIVE AT CAFE AMORES – NBCD 106
Kaoru Abe / Sabu Toyozumi – MANNYOKA – NBCD 107
Choi Sun Bae / Junji Hirose / Motoharu Yoshizawa / Kim Dae Hwan – ARIRANG FANTASY – NBCD 108

New LPs

Alexander von Schlippenbach / Aki Takase – LIVE AT CAFE AMORES – NBLP 115
Kaoru Abe / Sabu Toyozumi – BANKA – NBLP 116
Choi Sun Bae / Junji Hirose / Motoharu Yoshizawa / Kim Dae Hwan – ARIRANG FANTASY – NBLP 117
Shay Hazan / Albert Beger / Eyal Netzer / Nadav Masel / Haim E. Peskoff / Ofer Bymel – GOOD MORNING UNIVERSE – NBEP 4

The Free Jazz Collective Reviews

Source: The Free Jazz Collective.

Satoko Fujii’s Orchestra Berlin – Ninety-Nine Years (Libra, 2018) ****½

Kaze – Atody Man (Libra, 2018) ****

Satoko Fujii – Solo (Libra, 2018) *****

Dell Brecht Lillinger Westergaard (DBLW) – Boulez Materialism (Plaist/Soulfood, 2018) ****½

Plan B (Joe McPhee / James Keepnews / David Berger) – From Outer Space (Roaratorio, 2018) ****

Ruokangas/Hako-Rita – Mono and Dialogues (Eclipse, 2018) ****

The St. Paul Chamber Orchestra’s Liquid Music 2018/19 Season Announced

Source: Liquid Music.


Hanna Benn and Deantoni Parks: Procession (World Premiere)
New duo collaboration between composer/vocalist Hanna Benn and percussionist Deantoni Parks with SPCO quintet
Sun, Sept 23, 2018
Music at 7:00pm
Machine Shop, Minneapolis

This luminous collaboration between Atlanta-based duo vocalist/composer Hanna Benn (Son Lux, Boots) and percussionist/composer/producer Deantoni Parks (John Cale, Sade, T Bone Burnett, Flying Lotus) delivers a pan-global, posthumanist sound — a combination of ethereal vocal textures with electronic flourishes, anchored by a percussion setup that is evenly split between analog and digital. A “sanctuary of sound” (Pitchfork), Procession explores the motion of ceremonial music in the form of a song cycle with new arrangements by Benn incorporating an SPCO string quintet.

Philip Glass and Dev Hynes for Third Coast Percussion
Co-commissioned by the SPCO’s Liquid Music Series
Sponsored in part by Locus Architecture
Sun, Dec 9, 2018
Music at 7:00pm
Ordway Concert Hall, Saint Paul

Recent Grammy® Award-winners Third Coast Percussion return to Liquid Music with new works by two incredible musical minds: the iconic American composer Philip Glass and the pop polymath Devonté Hynes, a.k.a. Blood Orange. Glass’s new work, written for Third Coast Percussion and co-commissioned by Liquid Music, is his first ever for percussion ensemble. Hynes, who has also become a Glass collaborator in recent years, brings his “dense modern pop with roots in hip-hop, R&B and NYC culture” (The Guardian) to an entirely new sound world in his piece for Third Coast Percussion. More concert details to be announced.

Jennifer Koh: Limitless with Tyshawn Sorey and Vijay Iyer
New duo works by composer-performers Sorey and Iyer for Koh, alongside solo and improvised work from all three
Wed, Jan 9, 2019
Music at 7:30pm
Amsterdam Bar & Hall, Saint Paul

The “thoughtful and intense” (The New York Times) violinist Jennifer Koh, “a prodigious builder of musical bridges” (Los Angeles Times), brings her most recent commissioning project to Saint Paul. Limitless celebrates the collaborative relationship between composer and performer, while also exploring the historical role of the composer as performer. This spirit of collaboration contrasts with the conventional notion that composition and performance are discrete and detached parts of the musical process. In an intimate set, Koh will be joined by the “radical and seemingly boundless” (Wall Street Journal) composer and multi-instrumentalist Tyshawn Sorey and “extravagantly gifted” (The New Yorker) composer and jazz pianist Vijay Iyer to perform the works they premiered in March of 2018 at National Sawdust in Brooklyn, New York. This Liquid Music presentation will see an expanded program of improvisations, duos and solos using Iyer’s The Diamond and Sorey’s In Memoriam Muhal Richard Abrams as concert centerpieces.

Pekka Kuusisto: Tuning Meditation
Copresented with Walker Art Center, a bonus Out There Music event
Sat, Jan 19, 2019
Walker Art Center Gallery 3, Minneapolis

“Supple, lyrical, virtuosic and intensely personal” (The Globe and Mail) SPCO Artistic Partner and violinist Pekka Kuusisto brings his craft to the Walker Art Center galleries for a rare solo performance inspired by themes of I am you, you are too, an exhibit that explores contemporary life through themes of citizenship, belonging, borders and barriers. Kuusisto will lead the audience in Pauline Oliveros’ Tuning Meditation, part of a series of works written to provide healing in response to the political chaos of the late 1960s. This interactive performance invites participants to engage in listening as an act of peaceful activism in our own tumultuous political climate. Further exploration of the exhibit’s themes will be presented through a set of virtual duos in which Kuusisto will be joined via video projections and sound recordings by international artist-collaborators who collaborate across time and space in the face of new U.S. immigration restrictions.

Kim Gordon & Dimitri Chamblas
Copresented with American Swedish Institute
Mon – Tues, Mar 4 – 5, 2019
Turnblad Mansion, American Swedish Institute
6:30 – 7:30pm: Patrons arrive, grab a drink, explore the Turnblad Mansion and current exhibits
7:30pm: Performance
Post-performance – 10:00pm: Mansion and bar remain open

French choreographer/dancer/curator and newly-appointed CalArts Dean Dimitri Chamblas joins forces with “one of the boldest women in rock” (The New Yorker) musician/songwriter/visual artist Kim Gordon for an intimate and highly experimental evening of improvisatory music and movement. Specially tailored to the unique setting of American Swedish Institute’s Turnblad Mansion, the performance invites audiences to explore the new ASI exhibits and engage in an immersive, open-ended journey. The evening features ASI’s signature hospitality and developing collaborative work by the masterminds, both of which have flooded their fields with distinct innovation and originality.

ModernMedieval: The Living World (World Premieres)
Copresented with Walker Art Center
Ecstatic chants of Hildegard of Bingen, new music by Julianna Barwick, and world premieres by Ben Frost and Angélica Negrón co-commissioned by The SPCO’s Liquid Music Series and Walker Art Center
Fri – Sat, Mar 22 – 23, 2019
Music at 8:00pm
Summit Center for Arts & Innovation, Saint Paul

ModernMedieval, founded by Anonymous 4 member Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, brings together singer-experts in the fields of early and new music to create programs that combine the two in compelling ways. In The Living Word, chants by 12th century mystic Hildegard of Bingen are interwoven with newly commissioned pieces by visionary composer-producers Ben Frost, Angélica Negrón and Julianna Barwick. ModernMedieval (Horner-Kwiatek with Roomful of Teeth’s Eliza Bagg and Abigail Lennox) will be joined by Barwick on Adder for four voices and electronics, and by Frost and Negrón for their world premieres.

Dustin O’Halloran & Fukiko Takase: 1001

Award winning composer and pianist Dustin O’Halloran (Marie Antoinette, Lion, Transparent) whose “sublime” and “enveloping” (DIS) music creates “altered states” (Mojo) teams with choreographer and Company Wayne McGregor member Fukiko Takase to explore ideas of technology, humanity and mind-body dualism in a new electronics-forward existentialist performance 1 0 0 1. As we approach the age of AI, the collaborators ask: how will a new form of consciousness manifest inside a body? What will happen to our soul?

Mike Lewis & Eva Mohn
With light and sound designer Søren Knud Christiansen and performer Sarah Baumert

Minneapolis-based composer, saxophone player and multi-instrumentalist savant Mike Lewis (Andrew Bird, Bon Iver, Happy Apple) and internationally acclaimed performer, locally awarded Sage Artist and City Pages’ “best dancer” 2012 Eva Mohn (Cullberg Ballet, Johannes Wieland Dance, TU Dance) come together to explore the alchemy of their crafts in a new composition about chance, daily mystery and meaning. Joined by sound and light designer Søren Knud Christiansen (Royal Danish Theatre, Edhem Jesenkovic, Recoil Performance Group) and performer Sarah Baumert (Body Cartography Project, Xavier LeRoy, ARENA Dances), this courageous Minneapolis-Stockholm exchange promises audiences a singular experience of intimate gesture and analogue connectivity.

James McVinnie and Darkstar (World Premiere)
Commissioned by the SPCO’s Liquid Music Series
Sat, May 4, 2019
Music at 8:00pm
Northrop, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis

One of the world’s most sought-after organists, James McVinnie’s boundless approach to music has led him to collaborations with a wide variety of artists across musical genres such as Nico Muhly, Squarepusher, Shara Nova (My Brightest Diamond), Oneohtrix Point Never and Bryce Dessner. McVinnie will be joined by London-based electronics duo Darkstar for a full evening of new music for electronics and organ performed on Northrop’s spectacular refurbished Aeolian-Skinner organ. McVinnie and Darkstar will explore how synthesis techniques from electronic music can be applied to the organ, using functionality, subtlety, automation and performance to create new music that evolves through Darkstar’s electronic experimentation and McVinnie’s rare versatility on the organ.

The October Revolution of Jazz & Contemporary Music Initial Acts Announced

Source: The October Revolution of Jazz & Contemporary Music.

Ars Nova Workshop, in collaboration with FringeArts, present The October Revolution of Jazz & Contemporary Music, a four-day multi-venue experimental music festival in Philadelphia, October 4-7, 2018.

Annette Peacock
A true original who rarely performs in public, Annette Peacock’s compositions are among the most enduring in modern jazz, while she is also considered a formative influence on electronica, rap, and synth-pop. Over the course of her stunningly diverse career Peacock has worked with such wide-ranging musical innovators as Paul Bley, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Albert Ayler, and Mick Ronson and crossed paths with such original thinkers as Timothy Leary, Ram Dass, Salvador Dalí, Robert Moog, and Michio Kushi.

Idris Ackamoor & The Pyramids
A Philadelphia premiere nearly 50 years in the making! Chicago-based alto saxophonist Ackamoor co-founded The Pyramids in 1972 while a student at Antioch College, where his teachers included iconic pianist Cecil Taylor. The sextet, which absorbs influences from avant-garde jazz and African music traditions, recently released the acclaimed album An Angel Fell (Strut), evoking such forebearers as Sun Ra, Pharoah Sanders, and Fela Kuti.

Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda: The Ashram Experience
When Alice Coltrane, widow and pianist of the iconic saxophonist John Coltrane, founded the Sai Anantam Ashram in the mountains of Santa Monica, the move was perceived by many as a move away from music and into spiritual pursuits. The release last year of the remarkable collection World Spirituality Classics 1: The Ecstatic Music of Alice Coltrane Turiyasangitananda (Luaka Bop) proved otherwise: Coltrane continued to create music as transcendent and profound as ever as part of her religious practice. That music remained largely unheard by the general public during Coltrane’s lifetime, but now the Sai Anantam Singers are sharing her astounding devotional music in live performance.

Tiger Trio with Myra Melford, Joëlle Léandre & Nicole Mitchell
The inspired union of pianist and Guggenheim fellow Myra Melford, French bassist Joëlle Léandre (who has worked with Merce Cunningham, John Cage, and Anthony Braxton), and AACM flutist Nicole Mitchell, Tiger Trio brings an uncommon lucidity to the art of spontaneous composition.

OGJB Quartet with Joe Fonda, Oliver Lake, Graham Haynes & Barry Altschul
Four boundary-pushing innovators converge in this collective quartet: saxophonist Oliver Lake, cornetist Graham Haynes, bassist Joe Fonda, and drummer Barry Altschul. All four are ground-breaking musicians in their own rights and can boast collaborations with many of the most acclaimed voices in the history of jazz.

Dave Burrell Full-Blown Trio with Darius Jones & Chad Taylor
The lifetime achievement honoree at this year’s Vision Festival, Philadelphia piano great Dave Burrell returns home at the helm of his explosive, era-spanning trio. Burrell’s expansive pianism ranges from the stride era through bop to the harshest of avant-garde angles, all blended seamlessly through his restless imagination. The latest incarnation of the group includes the ferocious saxophonist Darius Jones and the inventive drummer Chad Taylor, a recent transplant to the city.

Nels Cline Upcoming Performances

Source: Nels Cline.

The Nels Cline 4 // Higher Ground
South Burlington, VT, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Port City Music Hall
Portland, ME, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Helsinki Hudson
Hudson, NY, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Concerts in the Barn (Marsh Gibbon Farm)
Solebury, PA, United States

Newport Folk Festival
Twain Jon Batiste Glen Hansard Nicole Atkins Brandi Carlile Bermuda Triangle The Dap-Kings Jen Cloher The Lone Bellow Langhorne Slim The War and Treaty Preservation Hall Jazz Band
Newport, RI, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Vieux Carre (Early Show)
Saint Paul, MN, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Vieux Carre (Late Show)
Saint Paul, MN, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // The Back Room at Colectivo Coffee
Milwaukee, WI, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Headliners
Louisville, KY, United States

The Nels Cline 4 // Delmar Hall
St. Louis, MO, United States