jampact is the smu faculty jazz quintet, trumpet, trombone, piano, bass and drums. sounds pretty straight ahead till you take a closer look. it's neither purely jazz or smu. however, it IS a quintet, playing improv based on original tunes. I love playing in bands full of composers. it makes the free improv so much more flavorful.
so, there's Akira Sato, trumpet, who conducts the smu jazz ensemble while teaching jazz arranging at the University of North Texas.
the pianist is SMU Meadows Art Dept Dean, Jose Bowen, who plays what I think of as NYC jazz piano. lots of chops and ears. not to box him in or onto one box. he can do anything he likes...he's the freakin dean, man.
bass and drums are the fabulously famous Mohammed Brothers, Jamal and Buddy, legendary for their longtime middle eastern jazz group, Beledi. in recent years, Buddy's been involved in Cirque du Soliel and Jamal has been trotting about the planet doing conference and pro show work.
I play trombone and synth primarily, with melodica, various percussion and toys at the ready.
so, what we have here is a japanese trumpeter from vancouver, 2 lebanese americans from chicago, a jewish hispanic pianist from the english outback and a cracker trombonist from arkansas.
see the calendar for whatever's coming up.
a jewish academy in north dallas. in the spring of 2005, tim cloward asked me to help him start a music program there. comprised of high school students, we have a very different approach...letting the students create small groups of their own choosing,
working on music they like and performing for the school at various functions throughout the year. we're not there to play pep rallies or learn to read music from music stands. we learn about music and performance and play a mix of covers, originals and a heavy dose of improvisation. it's cool.
Our next concert is december something. seriously.
The trailer dog TIDBITS is a trio with jazz drummer Gerard Bendiks and the guitarist formerly known as Kenny Withrow, of New Bohemian fame. I bring out any and all toys for this one. keyboards, 3 loopers, whammy bone, fripp bass. colors and layers, vast clouds of sound and rhythms from our collective inner sanctums. all's fair that ends together.
the TIDBITS from HELL began with a fun night at the Red Blood Club in Dallas in 2000, had one gig a year till 2003, then made up for lost time.
we play in spurts and have a few things coming up including a festival in bonham this fall.
see the calendar for our next disturbing gig in the name of musical freedom and crowd control. if asked, we could clean up social unrest around the world, either through sheer confusion or at least enough distraction to allow the put upon to find a back door..
at the turn of the century, director Liz Ware asked me to help her do sound design for her core performance manufactory theatre troupe. I was thrilled.
theatre and film are the top of the heap in terms of ultimate potential, combining all art forms into one micro macro look at humanity. from simple story telling to elaborate dives into the subconscious.
luckily for me, Liz loves balancing the two and it's a joy to work with her whenever wherever.
the process is easy enough. I improvise during rehearsals, playing the words and characters...constantly shifting between the right and left brain...when it works, there's nothing more liberating. it's the most sensuous musical activity I do. thanks, liz.
home studio always ready to supply audio needs, large and small, from samples and loops for live performance to film scores. the studio loves xmas and summer breaks when projects can stretch into cd length flurries of activity.
Vent Eleven is available at $10 each. request through the eddress below.
established in 1996, comatheatre began as a collaborative residency at the McKinney Avenue Contemporary (the MAC). 7 musicians, dancers, videographers and stage crafters came together to break down the barriers between art forms in a saturday night series finding critical success and some truly satisfying art. the series had 2 cool seasons and, in 1997, we moth balled the project.
where are they now? the dancers, michele hanlon and amy seltzer, went on to form elle danceworks, a very active troop who perform in various series around town.
projection artist david darnell is still very much around, contributing to the fall of western civiility and civilizaition wherever whenever.
lighting designer Deb Reitman, at last report, was in Houston doing what she does.
the musicians are all still around here somewhere. they included Bruce Richardson on keyboards and trumpet as well as Chad Evans on electronic percussion. I generally played synths and processed trombone, told a few stories, drank beer.
tex, stymie, zippy, wailin dave and me, I'm uncle butt. texas swamp music. we take the blues and turn it into rock and roll, just for the drunkin helluvit. leave your thinkin shoes at the door and let it go.
my sole role in this ship wreck is what I call whammy bone, a trombone through various processors and loops. the whammy part is a digitech whammy II pedal, a pitch shifting/harmonizing device that allows me to be a trumpet, trombone, tuba or horn section. add chorus, delay and a boomerang looper and the sound is fat and lively.
improvising new parts to each song everytime keeps the music fresh and evolving, especially the duet backgrounds and fills with guitarist Mikee "Tin Itch" Nelson, aka mr. zippy pong. what's your blues name?
after, I dont know, has to be 2+ years of monthly gigs at Lota's Goat, we're finally taking a rest. watch the calendar for the next adventure awaiting these Trinity River pirates, much like the treasure hidden inside the fifty foot catfish who plies the river bottoms just west of Dallas.
THE CHEESE was a comet that blew through dallas in the early 1990s, but left a long tail. though most of the group has scattered to distant star systems, 3 members, andy dean, brad young and myself, reunited to "compete" in the 1st Annual Video Association of Dallas "24 Hour Video Race" in the spring of 2002. teams were challenged to produce a five minute video in one day, from midnight to midnight. our piece, Daddy's Dead, was a helluva ride and continues to circle the planet as andy has relocated in new zealand.
brad, andy and I are also percolating on a 3D video inspired by Art Bell, the once and future king of overnight conspiracy theories, ufology and the ghosts who live among us. stay tuned.
as for the rest of the court annointed blown clear cubes...sara hickman, amy seltzer, chuckie cheese, sir steveaux and larry, the hairy hairless bastard who couldnt leave his privates well enough alone.
and so, to the cheese, forever forsaken in the anals of history...a one gun salute from the mother ship and it's over the side with ye. avast, mates. see ya in hell. dont be late.
where's all this pirate crap coming from? arrr...