Big Ears Festival 2019 to Feature 50 Years of ECM

Source: Big Ears Festival. Most (all?) of these acts have been previously announced, but the official celebration of 50 years of ECM has not.

Big Ears Festival focuses on 50 years of ECM…since 1969

Program of 20 concerts – largest in US – spans ECM’s jazz, classical and new music roster – past, present, and future

During the last decade, Big Ears has emerged as the United States’ preeminent festival for exploratory music. This year, the festival honors a visionary international institution that has always operated with the same outlook—ECM Records, the border-erasing label launched by producer Manfred Eicher that has now spent half a century tirelessly pursuing new frontiers and standards of excellence in jazz and classical music.

At Big Ears 2019, some 20 concerts featuring legendary artists such as The Art Ensemble of Chicago, Meredith Monk, Carla Bley and Jack DeJohnette and a new generation of torch-bearing talents like Vijay Iyer, Craig Taborn, Avishai Cohen, and Shai Maestro form the largest group of ECM acts under one banner in the United States (and one of the largest in the world) during this auspicious 50th year.

ECM performances at Big Ears 2019 include, in alphabetical order:

The Art Ensemble of Chicago
Arvo Pärt’s Passio performed by St. John’s Choir
Avishai Cohen Quartet
Bill Frisell & Thomas Morgan
Carla Bley TRIOS with Andy Sheppard and Steve Swallow
David Torn
DeJohnette Coltrane Garrison
Larry Grenadier
Kim Kashkashian
Kim Kashkashian & Robert Levin
Meredith Monk & Vocal Ensemble Cellular Songs Concert
Mathias Eick Quintet
Nik Bärtsch’s RONIN
Ralph Towner
Shai Maestro
Sun of Goldfinger (David Torn, Tim Berne, Ches Smith)
Tim Berne’s Snakeoil
Vijay Iyer & Craig Taborn
Wadada Leo Smith’s Nda, performing Divine Love with Bobby Naughton and Dwight Andrews

Tickets for Big Ears Festival 2019—March 21-24 in Knoxville, Tenn

AMN Picks of the Week: Eliana Rosales / Ashtoreth / Michael Zerang

Here is where I post, at a frequency of about once a week, a list of the new music that has caught my attention that week. All of the releases listed below I’ve heard for the first time this week and come recommended.

Eliana Rosales – Trazar Líneas Rectas, Curvas (2019)
Ashtoreth – Rites I & II (2019)
Silt Ensemble / Michael Zerang – Follow the Light (2019)
Michael Zerang – The Shuddering Cherub (2019)

Ugly Beauty’s Month In Jazz 

Source: Stereogum.

The first, Anthony Braxton’s GTM (Syntax) 2017, is one of those things that’s gonna be a hard slog even for existing fans. It’s a collection of a dozen hour-long works — so yes, each disc is a single track — featuring a group of 12 vocalists, and no instrumentalists. The pieces are virtuosic displays of compositional, organizational, and vocal talent; the singers do all sorts of things, from chanting sequences of numbers to reciting strings of seemingly disconnected words chosen strictly for their phonic beauty to cooing and whooping along.