Once again pleased to be present with artist Naama Tsabar for this one-day-only set of performances at the opening of her Paul Kasmin NYC Gallery solo show. This experience was transformative & invigorating, a reimagining (for me) of the possibilities of collaboration, support, respect & artistry. In the very best company, with fellow performers Fielded, Jeanann Dara, Rose Blanshei, Sarah Strauss, & Tsabar herself.
Tsabar’s details slyly nod to formalism. Work on Felt (Variation 18) Burgundy (all works 2017) features diagonal slashes, à la Lucio Fontana. Work on Felt (Variation 16 and 17) Dark Blue and Burgundy, a diptych, feels like an Ellsworth Kelly, but groovier. When activated, Tsabar’s sculptures have a unifying, transfixing effect. During the opening, several female musicians (including Tsabar, who used to be in a punk band) played a set composed especially for the sculptures, accompanied by Lindsay Powell (aka Fielded) on vocals. The felts stood up to Powell’s full-throated voice, with a surprising range of dynamics and emotions. The pieces were stroked, struck, or played with a bow, and had the capacity to respond and resonate with movement—as vivid and alive as the people playing them.
Composition 18: Performances 11/29 & 11/30/16, Art Basel Miami Beach - Bass
Joined up again with curator Naama Tsabar for this special 2016 Art Basel performance as part of the opening celebration for the festival, in Collins Park. Arone Dyer's composition was back, with band Christina Files (drums), Sally Gates (guitar), Emily Shelia (guitar) & me (bass). Our band teamed up again with Fielded's Lindsay Powell (composition, vox) performing with Alana Higgins (guitar), Katie Lau (guitar), Ale Campos (bass), Emile Milgrim (drums), plus more terrific Miami musicians.
A rich programme of public intervention and performances animated the park during the night of Art Basel Miami’s opening. The performance by Israeli artist Naama Tsabar, Composition 18 (2016), turned part of the park into a keyboard of sorts with three different bands of musicians, each atop their amplifiers, performing three separate pieces. Sharing a similar musical structure, the three pieces at some point blended together to produce hypnotic dreamy, drone-like sounds.
Composition 20: Performances 6/7-9 & 9/21/16, the High Line Park (NY) - Bass
Artist & curator Naama Tsabar's piece "Composition 20" was originally installed & performed 6/7, 6/8, & 6/9/16. The High Line graciously asked us to come back for a reunion/finale performance on 9/21/16. Physically located in NYC's High Line park near the w14th Street entrance, live music met spacial experience as night fell, with three curated songs sharing the same bpm & key signature. The three pieces (two composed for the event, one cover) perpetually interwove into a new of-the-moment creation, as artists performed elevated on their amplifiers a few feet above the park. I played bass in Arone Dyer's composition group, with Arone (voice), Christina Files (drums), Eve Alpert/Eva Mendoza (guitar September, guitar June), & Lola Johnson (guitar).
From High Line Art:
For her performance on the High Line, Tsabar presents the third iteration of Composition 20, inviting a group of 20 musicians to utilize their amps—which are scattered across the park’s pathway—both as a sound-amplifying source and as a pedestal to stand on. For the work, Tsabar commissions three composers to craft unique musical scores, all to be performed simultaneously by different sets of the musicians. As the musicians step up onto their amps, their collective shifting silhouette forms a sculptural composition that complements the accompanying sonic one.
Assemble XIII: STRINGS at Trans Pecos (NY) 3/28/15 - Guitar
From Pat Noecker:
We'll be operating with STRINGS as our guiding medium.
Six 10-minute solo STRING pieces (no voice or beats) on Cello, Guitar, Bass, Violin and Midi Guitar from RAFT, Sarah Register, Max Zuckerman, Leila Bordreuil, Jeanann Dara, and Nick Demopoulos. At the end of the night we'll come together for a group piece. 3 sets. See ya there!!!!!!
Lee Ranaldo & HiFiKlub studio recording + film TBA - Guitar
Pleasure to be invited by Lee & the endlessly inventive French creators HiFiKlub to collaborate on a song performed/composed w/the above plus Bob Bert. Music and accompanying Lee Ranaldo documentary release expected late 2015.
Frankie Rose "Herein Wild" tour November '14 - Bass, Backing Vox
With Christina Files (drums) & Jessica Espeleta (guitar, keys & backing vox). From previews:
For the first time since Frankie Rose‘s third album Herein Wild was released on Fat Possum Records, the reverb-drenched indie pop goddess will be touring the West Coast. It will be easy to recognize some of the bands she’s been a part of: Vivian Girls, Crystal Stilts, Dum Dum Girls, and most recently she released Careers on July 1 through duo-act Beverly.
Frankie Rose’s solo project is a slicked-back version of her previous jingly-jangly endeavors, instead focusing on moodier atmospheric effects and enigmatic vocals. In an interview with Stereogum about Herein Wild, she admits “because I’m an on-the-fly lyric writer, I don’t sit around and write poetry. I’m not that person at all. On this record, they actually mean something as opposed to trying to not mean something, which has never happened before and was totally on accident. It’s way more personal than I’ve ever been.” All dates with Cold Beat.
11/01 San Diego CA - THE CASBAH 11/02 Los Angeles CA - BOOTLEG 11/3 Santa Cruz CA- THE CREPE PLACE 11/04 San Francisco CA - THE BOTTOM OF THE HILL 11/06 Portland OR - BUNK BAR 11/07 Vancouver WA- THE FOX CABARET 11/08 Seattle WA -BARBOZA 11/10Oakland CA - THE NEW PARISH
- Live photos taken by Jen Emmert @ Barboza in Seattle 11/8/14
Assemble XII: Transmissions in A and E at the Ace Hotel (NY) - Guitar
Pat Noecker, also known as RAFT, former member of NYC outfits Liars and These Are Powers, now curates one of the coolest things we've ever seen (or heard): Assemble: Transmissions in A & E. RAFT gathers performers from the city's underground + experimental music scenes, scatters them around a room, and sets them (somewhat) loose - creating a personalized, fully immersive music experience that alters depending on where you're standing, and all together is larger than the sum of its parts.
In 2013 Paper Magazine listed Assemble in their recap of events to "cure your CMJ fatigue", previewing the event as "immersive, brainy, dark around the edges". 2014 brings back a similar vibe, and features musicians Shelly Burgon, Alexandra Drewchin Jr., Kate Henderson, Sto Len, Laura Ortman, RAFT, Sarah Register, Mike Sherba, Pat Spadine and Austin Vaughn.
The Kitchen, Dance & Process 2014 in Alan Calpe's "Untitled" - Dancer
Alan & the other performers in our piece became my heroes over the 8 weeks of rehearsals this past April/May 2014. Total delight to work out the kinks together, and an unexpected injection of 'just what i needed' at the time.
EMA Summer 2012 touring - Guitar, Bass, Backing Vox
Coachella, Bonnaroo, a month of European dates & a handful of west coast US shows. This was incredibly fun, with talented people that I'm very fond of - Erika Anderson, Leif Shackelford & Billy Sandness. And music I deeply support. Was intended as a stop-gap when Erika's sister Nicki left the band, but grew into everlasting love. PDX-local Becky Miller has joined them now - you should go see EMA live! And anytime they need a 5th, I'm there.
Most photos taken by Leif (which explains his near-absence below).
Rolex Mentor & Protégé Arts Initiative - Brian Eno & Ben Frost - Ben Frost's U.S Premier of Music For 6 Guitars in the New York Pubic Library's Rose Reading Room - Guitar
In the improbable and theatrical setting of the Rose Reading Room in the New York Public Library, Ben Frost masterfully manipulated the sounds of six guitarists and a brass sextet performing his 40-minute work Music for 6 Guitars. Creating a dramatic closing for the Rolex Arts Weekend, Frost says of his composition: "It's like the last minute of a basketball game, when everyone finds this extra energy, and everything becomes manic and overtly physical and desperate." Music for 6 Guitars was performed by Frost, along with Tim Hecker, Shahzad Ismaily, Paul Corley, Sarah Lipstate, Sarah Register, Daniel Rejmer and a brass sextet. Featurette video available here.
Danspace Presents: "Another Performance" - Sound Design/Editing
Through Danspace Project Presents, choreographer Moriah Evans helmed these February 2013 dates of "Another Performance" at St. Mark's Church, in collaboration with visual artist Alan Calpe. I worked with the chosen pre-recorded songs and created an atmospheric sonic collage to flow with their inspiring, interdisciplinary show.
Dan Friel Big Band ("Total Folklore" album release) - Acoustic guitar
One-night-only good times... Dan asked a swath of us to be an acoustic version of two tracks from his album that you should definitely purchase because it's terrific. Here's a link with some earlier clips from the same night, but official big band video is below.
Matt Marlin made this live video of the unplugged versions of Thumper and Ghost Town, featuring Jesse DeRosa (Grasshopper), Bernard Gann (Guardian Alien/Liturgy), Greg Fox (Guardian Alien), Travis Johnson (Grooms), Noah Kardos-Fein (Yvette), Amy Klein (Hilly Eye), Sam Kulik (Starring), Shahin Motia (Oneida), Sarah Register (Talk Normal), Harry Rosenblum (Mushroom Cloud), Joel Roston (Beautiful Weekend), Patrick Stickles (Titus Andronicus), Jeff Tobias (Nymph), Karen Waltuch (1000 projects including my album), and BJ Warshaw (Parts & Labor/Shooting Spires). -- danfriel.com
Marnie Stern NYC shows late aughts - Guitar
We'd just ended a U.S. tour together and Marnie had the amazing Mark Shippy on guitar but he couldn't make it back for two big NYC shows, both at the Leonard St Knitting Factory, so I stepped in. Loved this.