Saturday, November 30, 2013

Favorite Drum Records

My list of favorite drum records (as of 2013)
--no particular order

Ringo is my favorite drummer of all time. He knows just what to add to make each song work, and he is full of clever ideas, is tasteful without being showy, and rocks hard. These are some of my favorite Ringo moments with the Beatles:

I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Cry (Over You) (BBC)
It Won't Be Long
Tell Me Why
Any Time at All
You Can't Do That
Slow Down
What You're Doing
Ticket to Ride
The Word
She Said She Said
Tomorrow Never Knows
Strawberry Fields Forever
I Am the Walrus
Only a Northern Song
Glass Onion
Happiness Is a Warm Gun
Cry Baby Cry
Sexy Sadie
Come Together
She Came in through the Bathroom Window
Old Brown Shoe

John Coltrane: Complete 1961 Village Vanguard Recordings
John Coltrane: First Impressions

Cecil Taylor: The Eighth

Hatfield and the North: Hatfield and the North
Hatfield and the North: The Rotters' Club

XTC: English Settlement
Yes: Close to the Edge
King Crimson:  Larks' Tongues in Aspic
King Crimson: Starless and Bible Black
King Crimson: Red

King Crimson: Lizard

Mahavishnu Orchestra: Inner Mounting Flame

Cecil Taylor: One Too Many Salty Swift and Not Goodbye
Ornette Coleman: Body Meta
Last Exit: Last Exit
Ronald Shannon Jackson & the Decoding Society: Mandance

Soft Machine: Volume Two
Soft Machine: Third
Soft Machine: Fourth
Matching Mole: Little Red Record
Matching Mole: Smoke Signals

Henry Cow: Leg End
Henry Cow: Unrest
Henry Cow: Western Culture

Genesis: The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway

James Brown: Star Time

James Brown: Live at the Apollo Vol. 2

James Brown: Sex Machine [Live] (especially "Bewildered")

OOIOO: Taiga

Boredoms: Vision Creation Newsun

Santana: Santana III
Santana: Caravanserai

Tower of Power: Tower of Power
Tower of Power: Back to Oakland

some great tracks:
Jumpin' Jack Flash
Paint It Black
My Obsession
All Sold Out
2000 Light Years from Home
Rocks Off
Rip This Joint

Tom Rainey Trio: Camino Cielo Echo

Jimi Hendrix Experience: Are You Experienced?
Jimi Hendrix Experience: Axis Bold as Love
Jimi Hendrix Experience: Electric Ladyland

James Blood Ulmer: Tales of Captain Black

STEVIE WONDER  I have a soft spot for musicians for whom drums aren't their main instrument: folks like Paul McCartney, Todd Rundgren, Jan Hammer, Prince. The best of these is Stevie, whose world-class drumming helped solidify the stature of his '70s masterworks.
Stevie Wonder: Music of My Mind
Stevie Wonder: Talking Book
Stevie Wonder: Innervisions
Stevie Wonder: Fulfillingness' First Finale
Stevie Wonder: Songs in the Key of Life

Booker T. & the MG's: Time Is Tight (box set)
Various artists: The Complete Stax/Volt Singles: 1959-1968
Al Green: Let's Stay Together
Al Green: I'm Still in Love with You
Al Green: Call Me

Nazz: Nazz Nazz

Dave Holland: Conference of the Birds
Anthony Braxton: Five Pieces 1975
Anthony Braxton: The Montreux/Berlin Concerts

Cecil Taylor: Nefertiti the Beautiful One Has Come
Albert Ayler: Spiritual Unity

Peter Brotzmann: Nipples

The Baptized Traveller
Cecil taylor: Leaf Palm hand

John Coltrane: Live in Japan
John Coltrane: Interstellar Space
John Coltrane: Stellar Regions

Eric Dolphy: Out to Lunch
Miles Davis: Sorcerer
Miles Davis: Miles in the Sky
Miles Davis: Live in Europe 1967: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 1

Tom Bruno/Sabir Mateen: Getting Away with Murder

Charles Mingus: Mingus Dynasty
Charles Mingus: Charles Mingus Presents Charles Mingus
Charles Mingus: anything from 1964 European tour

Grateful Dead:  any version of "Dark Star," "Playing in the Band," or "The Other One" from 1972 or 1973

Minutemen: Double Nickels on the Dime

Mars Volta: Frances the Mute


Thurman Barker
Gregg Bendian
Ed Blackwell
John Bonham
Joe Chambers
Andrew Cyrille
Dino Danelli
Jack DeJohnette
Whit Dickey
Marc Edwards
Al Foster
Michael Giles
Milford Graves
Sonny Greer
Roy Haynes
Gerry Hemingway
Billy Higgins
Zach Hill
Clifford Jarvis
Philly Joe Jones
Paul Lovens
Paul Lytton
Steve McCall
Louis Moholo
Paul Motian
Don Moye
Max Roach
Greg Saunier
Gunter Sommer
John Stevens

Friday, November 29, 2013

Elizabeth Hardwick:
“Perhaps,” she once observed, “the love of, or the intense need for, reading is psychological, an eccentricity, even something like a neurosis, that is, a pattern of behavior that persists beyond its usefulness, which is controlled by inner forces and which in turn controls.” (quoted in Steve Wasserman, "Steve Wasserman on the Fate of Books After the Age of Print")

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Young at Heart

Image result for phineas newborn

I haven't listened to much Phineas Newborn Jr., but I love this quote:
Before we went to Europe in 1979, I'd asked Phineas what he considered the most important thing for a young musician to keep in mind.
 'Stay young at heart. That's the right idea as far as I'm concerned. Play young at heart. Play the way you feel. A thing of value outlasts a thing that has no value. Attempt to produce things of value as you go along. If it's worthless, it won't last; if it has value, it generally does--an eternity, almost, in minds and hearts.' (Phineas Newborn, Jr., quoted in Stanley Booth, Rhythm Oil)

Monday, November 25, 2013

Bonus Playlist from the Magic Jukebox

When Rodger started his NuVoid, he would post lists of what he'd been listening to each week. I like seeing his playlists; it constantly reminds me of how much I don't know.  I've always liked keeping lists of various things going. Back in 1965, I began keeping a list of every book I read and every movie I watched. I still keep both of those lists, handwritten in a big green ledger book.  So I began submitting my own playlists as comments on Rodger's blog, since I had never been in the habit of actually making note of all that I listened to. For my weekly playlists, I only list full albums that I get through, but that's not the whole story. I also get in at least an hour or two of listening to individual songs on my iPod (affectionately dubbed "The Magic Jukebox," after an old 45 EP I had of Howdy Doody). I tend to play shuffle, so I cover a lot of ground. I don't have the time or inclination to record every single song I listen to there, but every so often I'll stick in a random run from the Magic Jukebox to convey an idea of what else I'm listening to.  So here's a bonus playlist, from earlier this month.

Magic Jukebox Playlist, 1st couple of weeks of November 2013:

1. Anthony Braxton Quartet: No. 23N (Willisau)
2. Boston Spaceships: Inspiration Points
3. Circulatory System: Diary of Wood
4. Touch: Miss Teach
5. Impressions: Little Young Lover
6. Funkadelic: Butt-to-Butt Resuscitation
7. Charlie Parker: Ah-Leu-Cha
8. Louis Armstrong & Clarence Williams: Coal Cart Blues
9. Sun Ra: Early Autumn
10. Beach Boys: Won’t You Tell Me
11. Billie Holiday: Your Mother’s Son-in-Law
12. Marvelettes: Danger Heartbreak Ahead
13. XTC: Washaway
14. Olivia Tremor Control: Green Typewriters
15. Pavement: Grave Architecture
16. Circulatory System: Forever
17. Collegians: Zoom Zoom Zoom
18. Rolling Stones: Out of Time
19. Negro Problem: Peter Jennings
20. Sun Ra: Somebody Else’s Idea (Nightstage, 1989)
21. Sun Ra: El Viktor
22. Beach Boys: Good Good Good Vibrations (1st version w/overdubs)
23. Husker Du: 59 Times the Pain
24. Billy J. Kramer & the Dakotas: I’ll Be on My Way
25. Sun Ra: Bygones
26. Charles Mingus: Pipe Dream
27. Beatles: Shimmy SHake (Star Club)
28. Duke Ellington: The Mystery Song
29. Marvelettes: Twistin’ Postman
30. Robert Wyatt: Life Is Sheep
31. Raymond Scott: The Paperwork Explosion
32. Beatles: Only a Northern Song (ant mix)
33. Tad Thaddock: Clunky Funky
34. Beatles: While My Guitar Gently Weeps
35. Howlin’ Wolf: Baby Ride with Me
36. Robert Pollard: The Original Heart
37. Bettye Swann: Time to Say Goodbye
38. Breeders: Lime House
39. Robert Pollard: How Many Stations
40. Beatles: You Can’t Do That (live Philadelphia)
41. Marvelettes: Beechwood 4-5789
42. Beatles: Lady Madonna
43. OOIOO: [Japanese title]
44. Carla Thomas: Little Boy
45. Billie Holiday: That’s Life I Guess
46. Funkadelic: She Loves You
47. Bud Powell: Somebody Loves Me
48. Weather Report: Man in the Green Shirt
49. Freddie Scott: He Ain’t Give You None
50. Miles Davis Quintet: This (live ‘69)
51. Beatles: Mean Mr. Mustard (demo)
52. Rodger Coleman/Sam Byrd: Number 1 (from “Eras”)
53. Beatles: Think for Yourself
54. Patsy Montana: Cowboy’s Sweetheart
55. Jerry Lee Lewis: What’d I Say
56. Anthony Braxton: Comp. 8 A/B Blues/8E
57. Mike Ladd: Untitled
58. Quiet Elegance: I Need Love
59. Parliament: Peek-a-Groove
60. Bettye Swann: Today I Started Loving You Again
61. Art Tatum: Tiger Rag
62. Wilson Pickett: You Can’t Stand Alone
63. John Lennon: Oh Yoko
64. Bubble Puppy: Hot Smoke and Sassafras
65. Beatles: She’s a Woman (take 4)
66. Jimi Hendrix Experience: Can You See Me
67. Kim Weston: Take Me in Your Arms
68. Jackie Wilson: Open the Door to Your Heart
69. Mothers of Invention: You Didn’t Try to Call Me
70. Fela: Eko
71. Lata Mangeshkar: Sari Sari Raat
72. Beach Boys: caroline No (stereo, original speed)
73. Duke Ellington: Ko-Ko
74. Lesley Gore: I Just Don’t Know If I Can
75. Steely Dan: Peg
76. Stephen Malkmus & the Jicks: Real Emotional Trash
77. Premiers: Farmer John
78. Dubs: Don’t Ask Me to Be Lonely
79. Louis Armstrong: Oriental Strut
80. Bootsy Collins: Munchies for Your Love
81. Frank Zappa: Lather
82. Duke Ellington: Hayfoot Strawfoot
83. Beatles: Strawberry Fields Forever (“Let It Be” sessions)
84. Beatles: 8 Days a Week (take 2, partial)
85. Jimi Hendrix: I Don’t Live Today (live Berkeley)
86. Zach Hill: Memo to the Man
87. Sir Mack Rice: Love Sickness
88. Deerhoof: Heart Failure
89. John Coltrane: Configuration
90. Steely Dan: This All Too Mobile Home (live)
91. Louis Armstrong: Muskrat Ramble
92. Deerhoof: Kidz Are So Small
93. Maurice Williams & the Zodiacs: Stay
94. Beatles: Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds (takes 6-8)
95. Hatfield and the North: Rifferama
96. Southern Serenaders: I Miss My Swiss
97. High Llamas: Nomads (live)
98. Soft Machine: Dedicated to Hugh (But You Weren’t Listening)
99. UYA: Void Dancing
100. Miles Davis Quintet: The Theme (take 1)
101. Lou Johnson: Always Something There to Remind Me
102. Grateful Dead: “Live/Dead” radio ad
103. Surfaris: Wipe Out
104. Billie Holiday: Good Morning Heartache
105. Beatles: With a Little Help from My Friends (backing track)
106. XTC: You’re the Wish You Are I Had
107. Andy Partidge: I Defy You Gravity
108. Dennis Wilson: Are You Real
109. Anthony Braxton: Comp. 69K
110. Neil Young: When You Dance You Can Really Love
111. Tad Thaddock: Toasted Baby
112. Duke Ellington: Sonnet in Search of a Moor
113. Kingpins: It Won’t Be This Way (Always)
114. Louis Armstrong: Jazz Lips
115. Harvey Scales & the Seven Sounds: It’s Too Good to Be True
116. Bee Gees: Birdie Told Me
117. Bob Dylan: Outlaw Blues
118. Guided By Voices: Sot
119. Dr. Dog: The Girl
120. Anthony Braxton: Comp. 40O

Playlist, Week of 2013-11-24

Playlist 2013-11-25:

*Bach: Goldberg Variations (Glenn Gould, 1955)
*Chilingirian String Quartet: Ravel String Quartet in F Major/Debussy String Quartet in G Minor
*Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No. 3 (Vladimir Ashenazy/London Symphony Orchestra, Previn, cond.)
*Rashied Ali/Charles Gayle/Sirone: 2008-03-08 Burghausen, Germany (CDR)
*AMM: 2001-04-15 Chicago (CDR)
*Daniel Barbiero/Steve Hilmy: Take a Sound
*Taylor Ho Bynum Sextet & 7-tette: Navigation (The Complete Firehouse 12 Recordings)
*Miles Davis: The Complete Live at the Plugged Nickel 1965 (discs 4-7)
*Mahavishnu Orchestra: Between Nothingness & Eternity
*Tom Rainey Trio: 2013-10-19 Brooklyn NY (CDR)
*Wayne Shorter: Native Dancer
*Stark Reality: Acting, Thinking, Feeling (disc 1)
*Sun Ra & His Solar-Myth Arkestra: The Solar-Myth Approach (Vol. 1)
*Acid Mothers Temple: Born To Be Wild in the USA 2000
*Lily Allen: It’s Not Me, It’s You
*Michael Bass: Parchesi Pie
*Cognition: The Road (side 1)
*Dark Carpet: Dark Carpet (Bandcamp)
*Dr. Dog: B-Room
*Bob Dylan/Grateful Dead: Dylan & the Dead
*Mike Elder/Harry Forrest/Sam Byrd: 2013-11-15 (wav)
*Faust: Faust IV (disc 1)
*Flaming Lips: The Flaming Lips and Heady Fwends
*Grateful Dead: Sunshine Daydream (selections)
*Grateful Dead: 1989-10-26 Miami (CDR) “Dark Star”
*Jimi Hendrix: Lifelines: The Jimi Hendrix Story (selections)
*Pere Ubu: Lady from Shanghai
*Various artists: Mojo Presents: We’re with the Beatles
*Various artists: Pomegranates: Persian Pop, Funk, Folk, and Psych of the 60s and 70s
*Various artists: That Devilin' Tune (Vol. 2, disc 6)

Reading List, Week of 2013-11-24


Reading List 2013-11-25:

*Eggers, Dave. The Circle (started/finished)
*Hyde, Lewis. Common as Air (in progress)
*Moore, Steven. The Novel: An Alternative History, 1600-1800 (in progress)
*Weldon, Michael J. Psychotronic Video Guide (in progress)

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

The Turn Signal Test

There’s a wonderful book about drumming called Life in Double Time: Confessions of an American Drummer, by Mike Lankford.  I read it years ago and don’t own it, so my memory is hazy, but I recall it really resonating with me in terms of how he learned to play, his experiences playing drums in bands, and his overall drumming philosophy.  One thing I haven’t forgotten is the Turn Signal Test, which I think about every time I’m in the car.  I found the relevant passage on google books:

There's a simple test one can apply to ex-drummers to see if any residual rhythm remains in their system. I call this the "Turn Signal Test." Watch any ex-drummer while he waits at a traffic light in a quiet car, his turn signal clicking away like a metronome. If he is alive to his calling, that steady begin filling up for him and getting complicated. A person can play any rhythm imaginable between the clicks of a turn signal. His fingers will fall in with the pulse and he will begin to keep time and cut time and rearrange time and jazz up that turn signal until it sounds like a Brazilian orchestra. There is so much potential rhythm in a turn signal you can exhaust yourself finding it, or be called awake by the driver behind you. (p. 252)
The only time I’ve been an ex-drummer was when I stopped playing in college (and even then, I sat in with some guys one time...I sucked, but that’s another story), but I invariably find myself playing along every time I’m turning at an intersection and there’s no music playing in the car. And I always think of this passage. I need to read that book again.

Monday, November 18, 2013

Playlist, Week of 2013-11-17

Playlist 2013-11-18:

*Miles Davis: The Complete Live at the Plugged Nickel 1965 (discs 2a, 2b, 3)
*Jack DeJohnette’s Directions: New Rags
*Duke Ellington: The Private Collection “Studio Sessions NY, 1963”
*Coleman Hawkins: Classic Coleman Hawkins Sessions 1922-1947 (disc 1)
*Thelonious Monk with John Coltrane: The Complete 1957 Riverside Recordings
*Stark Reality: Acting, Thinking, Feeling (disc 3)
*Sun Ra: Continuation (Saturn/Corbett vs. Dempsey 2CD)
*Various artists: That Devilin' Tune (Vol. 2, disc 6)
*John Zorn: Ipsissimus
*Michael Bass and His Moderately Sized Orchestra: Painting by Numbers
*Beatles: Mono Masters (2009 mono remaster) disc 1
*Beatles: Hard Day's Night (2009 mono remaster)
*Beatles: Rubber Soul (Capitol CD stereo)
*Bob Dylan: Another Self Portrait (1969-1971): The Bootleg Series, Vol. 10 (disc 2)
*Mike Elder/Harry Forrest/Sam Byrd: 2013-11-15 (wav)
*Nine Inch Nails: Hesitation Marks
*XTC: Transistor Blast: The Best of the BBC Sessions (disc 4)
*Various artists: OHM+: The Early Gurus of Electronic Music, 1948-1980 (disc 2)
*Various artists: The Complete Stax/Volt Singles 1959-1968 (disc 3)

Reading List, Week of 2013-11-17

Reading List 2013-11-18:

*Moore, Steven. The Novel: An Alternative History, 1600-1800 (started)
*Euripides. Iphigeneia at Aulis (trans. W.S. Merwin & George E. Dimock, Jr.) (started/finished)
*Shakespeare, William [attr.] Shakespeare’s Edward III (ed. Eric Sams) (started/finished)
*Spoerri, Daniel. An Anecdoted Topography of Chance (transl. Emmett Williams) (finished)
*Tanner, Tony. “The Tempest,” in Prefaces to Shakespeare (finished)
*Hyde, Lewis. Common as Air (in progress)
*Weldon, Michael J. Psychotronic Video Guide (in progress)

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Some Recent Activities

Here are some videos of some of my recent activities.

First up is the most recent New Loft gig, at Gallery5 for RVA Noise Night. I had a simple set-up: floor tom and cymbals. Jimmy Ghaphery sticks to clarinet and Tim Harding sticks to guitar. High energy!

Part 4/11 - The New Loft - 2013 Sept. 24 - Noise Night #14 @ Gallery5 - Richmond, Virginia from Silver Persinger on Vimeo.

Next up is the Subtle Body Transmission Orchestra, playing “Swept Through (Framed),” a composition by Daniel Barbiero, at the Atlas Theater for the Sonic Circuits Festival in DC. Dan is on bass, Rich O'Meara is on vibes and percussion, and Tim and Jimmy on saxes (plus Jimmy on flute). I am playing a reduced kit. The composition dictated duration and approach. Members of Nancy Havlik’s Dance Performance Group supply the visual component. This is a 4-minute excerpt of the half-hour piece.

Audio for the entire performance is here:

...and there's plenty more of Daniel Barbiero's work here.

From last year, I was privileged to join a super-improv lineup of 21 musicians from DC and Richmond at the Atlas Theater for the Sonic Circuits Festival in DC for a performance of Jimmy Ghaphery’s composition “Boris Bobby,” a structured improvisation based on the Fischer Spassky 1972 World Chess Championships.

Also from earlier last year, Jimmy formed an octet (all of who also appeared in the big group) for “Boris Bobby Jr.” at the Ghostprint Gallery in Richmond.

Boris Bobby Jr. - 2012 June 12 - Live at Ghostprint Gallery - Richmond, Virginia from Silver Persinger on Vimeo.
Rodger Coleman & Sam Byrd | Indeterminate (Improvisations for Piano and Drums)
Finally, I want to throw in another plug for Indeterminate, the recording of the piano/drums improv gig Rodger Coleman and I did last year in Nashville. There was some video of this, but I haven’t seen it yet. Rodger has totally redone his home studio and I’m looking forward to more recording over the holidays!

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Reading Plan

My current reading plan is based on three things: piles, recurring titles, and rereads.  Like many active readers, I always have several books lined up (mentally or physically) to read next when I finish my current books.  I also maintain a book list, a document of books I want to read at some point. This list doesn’t include everything I want to read, but it does include titles I’m worried about forgetting.  So it doesn’t, for example, include all the Dickens novels I haven’t read yet but plan to (Dombey & Son, Martin Chuzzlewit).  It also for the most part doesn’t include books we own, since those are physically present, taunting me to read them or shaming me for not having done so.  The list only shames me when I consult it. Currently this list is (in Google docs) 22 pages long, with about 1,000 titles--enough to keep me busy for a while.

So, in addition to that list I have three piles of books-to-read on my dresser.  These include books we own and books I’ve checked out of libraries.  I try not to check out books unless or until I actively plan to read them, but sometimes I get carried away.  At any rate, the first phase of my reading plan is to get through at least some of the books in those piles, which includes these library books: The Collected Works of Joe Brainard, Steven Moore’s The Novel: An Alternative History, 1600-1800, Shakespeare’s Edward III, Iphigenia at Aulis, by Euripides, and a book of short stories by Mary Caponegro, The Complexities of Intimacy.  The pile also includes some books we own, including William Gaddis, A Frolic of His Own, and Glen Cook’s Chronicles of the Black Company.

After I get through this selection, or during the getting through, I will next/also turn to a list of what I think of as “recurring titles:” books that keep showing up in lists of great novels, that keep getting mentioned in random articles on the web, etc., books I know I want to have already read but have just never gotten around to:

Achebe, Chinua. Things Fall Apart
Atwood, Margaret. Handmaid’s Tale
Dostoyevsky, Fyodor. Crime and Punishment
Lessing, Doris. Golden Notebook
Morrison, Toni. Beloved

After that, and/or concurrent with that, I have a list of books I want to reread. Rereading is always a particular joy of mine.  I have certain favorite novels I reread every few years, including Ulysses, Gravity’s Rainbow, and Lolita.  But this rereading list is one for rereads of books that will be my first return to them after a number of years:

Barth, John. Tidewater Tales
Ellroy, James. Older books before LA Quartet, and then Cold 6000 trilogy
Faulkner, William. Absalom, Absalom
Gaddis, William. Recognitions, JR
Joyce, James. Finnegans Wake
King, Stephen. Dark Tower
Melville, Herman. Moby-Dick
Milton, John. Paradise Lost
Nabokov: Gift, Enchanter, Sebastian Knight, etc.
Pynchon, Thomas. Against the Day
Wallace, David Foster. Infinite Jest

I also have an ongoing rereading project of Shakespeare.  About ten years ago I discovered the wonderful Arden editions (for some reason they’d never been assigned when I was taking Shakespeare classes in school), so I’m playing catch-up and trying to read through both the Second and Third Series.  Hopefully I’ll get through them all before they start a Fourth!  I am also interested in some of the apocrypha, and I want to read more Beaumont & Fletcher, Webster, Marlowe, etc.

THEN, after all that, or at the point when I can’t wait any longer (because if I’m honest with myself, I admit that I’ll do this long before I get to rereading the Wake), I plan to re-read the marvelous Malazan Book of the Fallen by Steven Erikson. This ten-volume series (along with the companion books by Ian C. Esslemont) was one of the major reading highlights of the last five years for me, and I can’t wait to delve into them again.  Both Erikson and Esslemont are still writing Malazan novels, and I will certainly read them as they come out, but it’s the Big Ten Erikson novels I really want to focus on.   When I do that, I will also pay attention to the Tor Books Malazan reread project, which has been going on for a few years.

So that’s my reading plan for the next couple of years.  As always, it’s subject to change and whim.  We’ll see how it goes!

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

Reading List, Week of 2013-11-10

File:Miranda - The Tempest JWW.jpg
"Miranda," John William Waterhouse, 1916

Reading List 2013-11-11:

*Spoerri, Daniel. An Anecdoted Topography of Chance (transl. Emmett Williams) (started)
*Tanner, Tony. “The Tempest,” in Prefaces to Shakespeare (started)
*Bloom, Harold. “The Tempest,” in Shakespeare: Invention of the Human (started/finished)
*Euripides. Helen (transl. James Michie and Colin Leach) (started/finished)
*Garber, Marjorie.  “The Tempest,” in Shakespeare After All (reread/started/finished)
*July, Miranda. No One Belongs Here More Than You: Stories  (started/finished)
*Perec, Georges. Life: A User’s Manual (transl. David Bellos) (finished)
*Hyde, Lewis. Common as Air (in progress)
*Weldon, Michael J. Psychotronic Video Guide (in progress)

Playlist, Week of 2013-11-10

take a sound
I want to draw special attention to Daniel Barbiero's new release, a duo with Steve Hilmy: Take a sound. Do something to it. Do something else to it.  Sounds like fun to me!  Wonderfully ethereal music here; do check it out!

Playlist 2013-11-11:

*Beethoven: The “Middle Period” String Quartets (Alban Berg Quartet) disc 2
*Xenakis: Complete String Quartets (JACK Quartet)
*AMM: 1990-03-31 Zurich (CDR)
*Daniel Barbiero/Steve Hilmy: Take a Sound
*Clifford Brown & Max Roach: The Clifford Brown/Max Roach Emarcy Albums (records 2, 3)
*Miles Davis Quintet: 1964-10-11 Milan (CDR)
*Miles Davis: The Complete Columbia Studio Recordings of the Miles Davis Quintet 1965 to 1968 (disc 1)
*Miles Davis: The Complete Live at the Plugged Nickel 1965 (disc 1)
*Mary Halvorson Quintet: 2012-12-12 Washington DC (CDR)
*George Lewis: Shadowgraph, 5 (Sextet)
*Music Improvisation Company: Music Improvisation Company
*Evan Parker/Derek Bailey/Han Bennink: The Topography of the Lungs
*John Zorn: The Gift
*Mike Elder/Harry Forrest/Greg Jordan/Sam Byrd: 2013-11-01 (wav)
*Explosions in the Sky: All of a Sudden I Miss Everyone
*Flaming Lips: At War with the Mystics
*Ilaiyaraaja: Solla Solla: Maestro Ilaiyaraaja and the Electronic Pop Sound of Kollywood 1977-1983
*Nine Inch Nails: Hesitation Marks
*UYA:  Selections 22: Close Bone
*UYA:  Selections 23: Urban Void
*Various artists: WSAM: Psychofamtasmagoric Sixties (CDR compilation)
*Various artists: OHM: The Early Gurus of Electronic Music, 1948-1980 (disc 1)

Friday, November 8, 2013

My Musical Life, part 2

In 1988 I joined a group of renegade New England Conservatory students in Boston to form UYA. We played a mix of jazz, free improv, hard rock, funk, fusion, rock-and-roll, punk, go-go, turntablism, and noise. We released three cassettes, as well as a CD in 1990, “Upstanding Young Americans.” We played from 1988 to 1996, including several gigs at the old Knitting Factory in NYC.

Another Boston band I played in was Happyfinger, a group of MIT Libraries employees created exclusively to play at the annual staff concerts given at Killian Hall.

In 1996 I moved back to Richmond and started playing with Jimmy Ghaphery, and later with old Office Ladies bandmates Jon Mela and Tim Harding as the New Loft Quartet, which has evolved into the still-going strong all-improv unit New Loft. When augmented by the members of Ting Ting Jahe, we perform as New Ting Ting Loft. You can find over 130 of our improvisations, freely available for streaming or high-quality downloading, at the Internet Archive.  

I have also been fortunate enough to continue playing with UYA bandmate Rodger Coleman.  After the disbanding of UYA and my departure south, Rodger moved to Nashville, a place I travel to once or twice a year to see family. Last year, we played our first gig as a duo in Nashville. Rodger recorded it and released it on his NuVoid Jazz label. You can stream “Indeterminate” or purchase it here.

With New Loft, and with Rodger, I tend to play more abstract, non-linear free stuff, where I try to explore textures and sounds (and sometimes try to emulate Sunny Murray or Tony Oxley). I also get together periodically with friends out in Varina, and there I tend to play beats.

Finally, for the last couple of years it’s been my privilege to play with composer/double bassist extraordinaire Daniel Barbiero, most recently with the Subtle Body Transmission Orchestra at the Sonic Circuits Festival in DC. Dan is music director for Nancy Havlik’s Dance Performance Group, and for that show the Orchestra performed with them. In a future post I’ll include some video of these various activities.

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Les Garçons de la Plage


My daughter and I share a deep love for the Beach Boys. For her 21st birthday, I put together this list of:
...the top 21 Beach Boys songs
(in alphabetical order):

1. California Goobers
2. Catch a Cold
3. Do You Wanna Drive?
4. Don’t Hurt My Little Deuce Coupe
5. Don’t Worry, Wendy
6. Drive, Drive, Drive
7. Funk Funk Funk
8. Garçons de la Patio
9. Girl Don’t Smell Me
10. God’s Only Nose
11. Help Me Fonda
12. Heroes and Williams
13. I Got Around
14. Little Dude Scoop
15. Pet Smells
16. Serf’s Up
17. Shoot the Surfer Moon
18. Sloop Dog B
19. Smurfin’ USA
20. Warmth of My Gum
21. Wouldn’t It be Nice-er-ly

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Playlist, Week of 2013-10-27

Playlist 2013-11-04:

*Anthology of Noise and Electronic Music vol. 3: Third a-chronology 1952-2004 (disc 1)
*AMM: 1988-01 BBC Maida Vale Studios (CDR)
*Armstrong, Louis. The Complete Louis Armstrong Decca Sessions (1935-1946) (discs 1-7)
*Daniel Barbiero: Haiku 08 (wav)
*Clifford Brown & Max Roach: The Clifford Brown/Max Roach Emarcy Albums (record 1)
*Miles Davis: Seven Steps: The Complete Columbia Recordings Of Miles Davis 1963-1964 (discs 6, 7)
*Miles Davis: 1964-07-12 Tokyo (CDR)
*Miles Davis: 1964-07-15 Kyoto (CDR)
*Mike Elder/Harry Forrest/Greg Jordan/Sam Byrd: 2013-10-25 (wav)
*Mahavishnu Orchestra: Between Nothingness & Eternity
*Roscoe Mitchell New Chamber Ensemble: Pilgrimage
*New Loft: 2013-10-14 “Hand Me the Low Light” (wav)
*New Loft: 2013-10-21 “Recorded with Door Open” (wav)
*Herbie Nichols: The Complete Blue Note Recordings (disc 3)
*Evan Parker Electro-Acoustic Ensemble: The Eleventh Hour
*Subtle Body Transmission Orchestra: 2013-10-05 Sonic Circuits Festival, Washington DC (wav)
*Sun Ra: The Eternal Myth Revealed, Vol. 1 Highlights Disc 2 (CDR compilation)
*Gordon Thomas & Sam Byrd: 1992-04-11 Jamaica Plain, MA (CDR)
*Various artists: That Devilin' Tune (Vol. 2, disc 7)
*John Zorn: Taboo and Exile
*Lily Allen: Alright, Still
*Lily Allen: It’s Not Me, It’s You
*Ash Ra Tempel: Ash Ra Tempel
*Dark Carpet: Dark Carpet (Bandcamp)
*Dr. Dog: B-Room
*Bob Dylan: Another Self Portrait (1969-1971): The Bootleg Series, Vol. 10 (disc 1)
*Happy the Man: Live
*Happyfinger: 1991 Killian Hall, MIT (CDR)
*Happyfinger: 1992 Killian Hall, MIT (CDR)
*Happyfinger: 1994 Killian Hall, MIT (CDR)
*Various artists: Pioneers of Electronic Music

Reading List, Week of 2013-10-27

Reading List 2013-11-04:

*Bushmiller, Ernie. Nancy’s Pets (finished)
*Shakespeare, William. The Tempest (Arden ed., 3rd series, ed. Vaughan & Vaughan) (reread/finished)
*The Wire Primers: A Guide to Modern Music, ed. Rob Young (finished)
*Hyde, Lewis. Common as Air (in progress)
*Perec, Georges. Life: A User’s Manual (in progress)
*Weldon, Michael J. Psychotronic Video Guide (in progress)