Artist Profile

Sound American: The Anthony Braxton Issue

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Source: Sound American.

Anthony Braxton: A Constant Presence by SA Editor Nate Wooley

An Anthony Braxton Overview by Taylor Ho Bynum

An Introduction to Language Music by Nate Wooley featuring a very special set of solo recordings of each of the Language Types by past and current collaborators including Ingrid Laubrock, Kyoko Kitamura, Anne Rhodes, Joe Morris, Adam Matlock, Matt Welch, James Fei, Tomeka Reid, Jason Kao Hwang, Carl Testa, Chris McIntyre, Aaron Siegel, and Katie Young.

Ghost Trance Music by Erica Dicker

The Trillium Cycle by Katherine Young

Echo Echo Mirror House Music by Carl Testa

Syntactical Ghost Trance Music: A Conversation with Kyoko Kitamura and Anne Rhodes

A never before published interview between Anthony Braxton and the author of Forces in Motion, Graham Lock, made during the early transition to Ghost Trance Music and the Trillium opera cycle.

Pianist, Composer Dana Reason to Perform in Santa Monica 

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Source: Surf Santa Monica.

Pianist and composer Dana Reason, a student of legendary avant-garde composers Pauline Oliveros and Alvin Curran, will perform in Santa Monica next Wednesday.

Known for her free-flowing but contoured improvisations, Reason will perform new works, improvisations and compositions as part of the “Soundwaves” concert series at 7:30 p.m. in the Main Library’s Martin Luther King Jr. Auditorium, 601 Santa Monica Boulevard.

Catching up with Henry Kaiser

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Source: Peg Head Nation.

Still, keeping up with Kaiser could be a full-time job. He’s been on more than 270 albums since 1977 (about seven records per year). And it’s not just a matter of numbers: the sheer variety of sounds and collaborators is staggering. His 2015 releases included Megasonic Chapel, with percussionist William Winant, cellist Danielle DeGruttola, pianist Tania Chen, and haegum player Soo-Yeon Lyuh; Echoes for Sonny, a Sonny Sharrock homage with guitarists Robert Musso and Nick Didkovsky, bassist Jesse Krakow, and drummer Weasel Walter; At CNMAT, a 2007 electronic trio with Chris Muir on the Buchla 200E and the late David Wessel on SLABS; You Can’t Get There from Here, a 2010 studio session with cellist DeGrutolla, bassist Michael Manring, guqin (zither) player Wu Na, mridangam (barrel drum) and kanjira (frame drum) player Anantha R. Krishnan, and vocalist Gautam Tejas Ganeshan; The Celestial Squid, with guitarist Ray Russell, saxophonists Steve Adams, Joshua Allen, Phillip Greenlief, and Aram Shelton, bassists Manring and Damon Smith, and drummers Winant and Walter; and Garden of Memory, a box set of Kaiser’s live electric guitar solos from the annual walk-through concerts in Oakland’s Chapel of the Chimes columbarium.

John Cage’s Historical Niche, a Legacy in Letters 

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English: Farah Diba greets John Cage and Merce...

Source: The New York Times.

While the radical composer John Cage (1912-92) was alive, it seemed easier to dismiss him as an irritating crackpot than it does now. In death, Cage has only grown. His paintings, his philosophy, his anarchism are better known; it’s far easier to find recordings of his music; he’s much watched on YouTube. We can now see — witness his recurrent appearances in Alex Ross’s superb history “The Rest Is Noise” (2007) — that no study of 20th-century music is complete without Cage. He’s most famous for his all-silent three-part 1952 composition “4’33” (a reference to its duration in minutes and seconds): An end to conventional music, it became a beginning for Cage, opening up the possibilities of sound and noise.

Brooklyn Blowhards Profiled

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Source: The New York Times.

On Saturday afternoon Jeff Lederer could be found caterwauling with his tenor saxophone in an unlikely but meaningful setting: the grave of Herman Melville, in Woodlawn Cemetery in the Bronx. What brought Mr. Lederer there was the same confluence of interests that had created Brooklyn Blowhards, his newest band.

Performing near Melville’s granite headstone, he and the band put those interests front and center, tearing through a handful of rugged old sea chanteys, like “Haul in the Bowline,” and a few turbulent anthems by the 1960s free-jazz saxophonist Albert Ayler. If there’s a thread that ties all of that material together — while also roping in the great sweeping froth of “Moby-Dick” — it’s the byproduct of Mr. Lederer’s artistic temperament, which runs both frolicsome and determined.

Ethan Iverson on Albert Ayler at 80 

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Source: DO THE M@TH.

The definite Ayler performance may be the medley at Coltrane’s funeral with Don Ayler, Richard Davis, and Milford Graves. There isn’t even any blowing, except that near the end Ayler repeatedly screams to profoundly eerie effect as his brother sounds the last trump. I first heard a bootleg of this many years ago, then it came out on the deluxe Revenant set, now it’s just up on YouTube. On Albert Ayler’s 80th birthday there is no better use of six minutes of your time than dialing this up, closing your eyes, and mourning our humanity.

The Tranquility of Miles Davis’s Electric Period

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Source: The Atlantic.

We are currently fascinated—and Cheadle’s film is part of this—by Miles’s electric period, 1968 to 1975. Last year, two books were published about Bitches Brew, the churning, chthonically powerful double album of Afro-rock improvisations that Davis released in 1970: George Grella Jr.’s Bitches Brew, and Victor Svorinich’s Listen to This: Miles Davis and Bitches Brew. This year’s contribution to Miles studies is Bob Gluck’s The Miles Davis Lost Quintet and Other Revolutionary Ensembles, which locates the music of his electric epoch within a historic continuum of exploratory jazz.