Sound American 26 is Out

Source: Sound American.

SOUND AMERICAN is pleased to announce the release of THE OCCAM OCEAN ISSUE. Our twenty-sixth issue is dedicated to Éliane Radigue’s and her radical musical ecosystem—OCCAM Ocean—and features exclusive interviews with Radigue’s collaborators and interpreters, including: Charles Curtis, Carol Robinson, Rhodri Davies, Catherine Lamb, Julia Eckhardt, Silvia Tarozzi, Dafne Vicente-Sandoval, Laetitia Sonami, and Frédéric Blondy. inti figgis-vizueta contributes a composition to our ongoing Exquisite Corpse series.

Carla Bley at 85

Source: WBGO.

When Carla Bley hitchhiked from Oakland, Calif. to New York City at age 17, it was one in a series of renegade actions that have defined an irrefutably original career. She found her way to Birdland, landing a job as a cigarette girl — and a perfect perch to absorb musical lessons from the likes of Count Basie, Miles Davis and Horace Silver.

Largely self-taught as a pianist (having learned the basics from her father), Carla was first and foremost a composer. She began to earn a reputation when her pieces turned up on albums by equally free-thinking artists like George Russell, Gary Burton and Jimmy Giuffre, along with her first husband, pianist Paul Bley. She then helped organize an avant-garde collective called the Jazz Composers Guild with another partner, Michael Mantler.

Anthony Davis Curates a Playlist

Source: ListN Up.

Opera News has called Anthony Davis “A National Treasure” for his pioneering work in opera. His most recent opera, The Central Park Five, with a libretto by Richard Wesley was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in Music in 2020. He has also been on the cutting edge of improvised music and jazz for over four decades. A graduate of Yale University in 1975, Mr. Davis is currently a Distinguished Professor of Music at the University of California, San Diego.

Remembering the Work and Wit of Experimental Innovator Ghédalia Tazartès 

Source: Bandcamp Daily.

His music often sounds as if it was assembled rather than composed, due to his makeshift strategies for working with tape loops (he would string them around his apartment, over furniture and around the microphone stand) and what he did with his voice. When he made use of lyrics in his work, it was always material that could be bent, dissolved, or destroyed entirely. Often, he preferred wordless chants and strange incantations. That’s maybe what makes his sound so otherworldly, suggests Quentin Rollet, a close friend and a veteran improviser who’s played saxophone for Nurse With Wound and The Red Krayola. “You think you’re somewhere else. But you can’t find anything to hold onto, because it doesn’t look like anything you know.”

Excerpt from Steve Lacy Essays

Source: The Wire.

Nantes based Éditions Lenka Lente are about to publish a new series of essays dedicated to the late US soprano saxophonist Steve Lacy. Writer Guillaume Tarche asks 41 contributors – including Lacy’s collaborator and wife Irene Aebi, Alvin Curran, Jorrit Dijkstra, Seymour Wright, and many more – to share their individual experiences of Lacy, reflecting on his sound and legacy.

Robert Wyatt Profiled

Source: LIVING LIFE FEARLESS.

Sometime in 2014, Robert Wyatt, with more than 40 years in music decided to officially retire from creating it. Maybe he just got tired. Maybe it was his poor health. Maybe both. He himself said that it was his age and greater interest in politics. “There is a pride in stopping, I don’t want the music to go off.”

But, whatever the reason is, he leaves behind a musical legacy that seems to have the strongest impression on musicians themselves — particularly in his native Britain. Even considering that he didn’t have a lot of singles breaking onto the British charts. Maybe it was exactly his left-oriented politics and his very direct presentation of political views, through music or otherwise.

Sonny Simmons Profiled

Source: The Wire.

Here was an apparent paradox of the man. He had lived nearly his entire life in big cities, beginning with Monroe, northern Louisiana, and Oakland, California. As a youngster, he had been eager to fully embrace the potentialities and temptations offered within and outside the limits of the “black ghetto”. But he was carrying the backwoods all along, as both an emotional compass and a source of inner strength.

It could be argued that this paradox extended to a large share of the music known as free jazz. Generally thought of within a conceptual framework designed to account for various Western avant garde art movements, free jazz had, from Ornette Coleman on, always been a distant offshoot of the life and culture originating in what clarinetist John Carter has termed “The Fields period in American history”. It was at least as much so as it was a product of the urban, sophisticated settings with which previous stages of jazz modernity are commonly associated and where it itself blossomed.

Brian Eno’s Ambient Music Profiled

Source: Daily Maverick.

In 1978, Brian Eno released Ambient Music 1: Music for Airports, the first in his series of four albums titled Ambient Music. Eno had already achieved stature as a musician (Roxy Music), producer (of U2, Talking Heads) and theorist of music. And he had made a startlingly innovative album, No Pussyfooting, with guitarist Robert Fripp of King Crimson, as well as Discreet Music, both of which can be seen as instances of ambient music before the genre received its name.

Hawkind in the late 1970s

Source: Louder.

If you thought all Hawkwind’s freaky stuff belonged to the early 70s – that astro time-trip of Silver Machine, space rock and ‘exotic dancer’ Stacia – then think again. Likewise, if you thought, casual listener, that Hawkwind were a spent force once Lemmy had been slung in the clink for a spot of drugs bother on the Canadian border in 1975, or when founder member Nik Turner was dumped 18 months later, then you’re wrong.

Punk-era Hawkwind, which also budged aside for noteworthy offshoot The Hawklords, coughed up a trove of unusual and unexpected goodies. And some very real madness. It was a time of upheaval, of sackings and counter-sackings, of strangeness, quark and gun-raids. Of bust-ups, bitterness and Ginger Baker.