Tyshawn Sorey is a remarkably talented and internationally acclaimed composer and performer who has been fiercely dedicated to his craft since an early age. A native of Newark NJ, Tyshawn has premiered work at Roulette, Walt Disney Hall and the Ojai Festival. As a drummer, he has collaborated with Steve Coleman, John Zorn, Butch Morris, Vijay Iyer and many many more. Tyshawn is a rare talent and for this candid and often hilarious conversation, Tyshawn and I get to know each other for the first time.
For episode 123 it is my great honor to welcome poet, archivist and radical thinker, Kenneth Goldsmith onto the show. Active since the late 80s, Kenneth Goldsmith is a true original. He started Ubuweb in 1996, one of the internet's richest resources for the Avant-Garde, a website that one can get lost in and come out much richer for it. He's published several books, most recently "Capital", an unrivaled work that pays tribute to New York of the 20th century entirely through quotations. Kenneth is a true mage and this conversation was an utter delight.
Originally from Carbondale, IL, clarinetist John McCowen who has been living and working in the Bay Area for the past few years. A student of Roscoe Mitchell, he has honing an extremely unique approach to the clarinet that is based in extended techniques, personal language, electroacoustic strategies and hard work. He plays in the band Wei Zhongle and has collaborated with many notable improvisers including Fred Frith, Tom Djll and Kyle Bruckman. John is a remarkable musician, from whom you will be hearing much more from in the coming years.
Tyondai Braxton has been living and working in Brooklyn NY since 2001, forging a most singular path as a composer/performer in a wide variety of creative contexts. In 2002 he started the band Battles, which he left in 2010. Since that time he has focused on electronic music as well as large scale explorations of compositions for classical instruments. Ty is a most sincere individual who brings a strong sense of self to every project. For this talk, we explore electronic music strategies, the Brooklyn DIY scene of the early the 2000s, growing up Braxton and a whole lot more. A great talk!
Matt Nelson plays tenor sax and has been living in Brooklyn since 2010. Raised in the Bay Area, he has worked with tUNEyARDS, Peter Evans, Travis Laplante and his newest project, GRID. He attended Oberlin College and Conservatory to study with Gary Bartz and Paul Cohen, among others. For this talk we cover a lot of ground, from sax/electronics aesthetics to wearing a suit to a jazz gig. Good shit.
And after an extremely frustrating week of technical problems, we are back. Born in Brooklyn and raised in Framingham, MA by Joe and Sonja Maneri, Mat Maneri has been performing improvised music since he was a teenager. A prodigious violin and violist, he has worked with many of contemporary music's most engaging and iconoclastic artists: Craig Taborn, Joe McPhee, Tanya Kalmanovitch, Cecil Taylor, Joe Morris, Kris Davis and many more. As a teenager he began playing with his father, Joe Maneri, and over several years, albums and concerts, developed a hyper specific language that is utterly unique and completely transcendent. This conversation took place on June 2, 2017 and is one of my favorite in this entire series.
Jason Stein is an exceptional bass clarinetist based in Chicago since 2005. He is originally from Long Island and has followed a most interesting and individual creative path. This interview took place at Jason's home in Chicago this past May and covers a lot of ground, from his time living off the grid in Montana, to his early days in Chicago to his most recent run of shows, playing for 20,000 people at a time, opening for his young sister, comedian Amy Schumer.
Missy Mazzoli is an incredibly gifted and prolific composer/performer who has been living in New York since 2006. A Pennsylvania native, her music has been performed all over the world by the Kronos Quartet, eighth blackbird, pianist Emanuel Ax, Opera Philadelphia, LA Opera, New York City Opera, the LA Philharmonic, JACK Quartet, cellist Maya Beiser, and others. She is a deeply thoughtful and inventive composer whose work is marked by clarity of vision and depth of experience. For this talk we go way back, starting with her early days at the piano, her introduction to riot grrrl all the way up to the present. This is a good talk.
Andrew Barker is a true original. Originally from Georgia, he has been living and working in New York City since 1997. In 1994 he co-founded the Gold Sparkle Band with Charles Waters and has been pursuing a life of creative music ever since. For this talk we go back to Georgia, his first days in New York and the work he's been doing with his most recent project, Barker Trio. Good shit.
Luke Stewart is a Washington DC based bass player who is quickly making a name for himself as a remarkable multi-tasking multi-instrumentalist. Originally from Mississippi, Luke keeps busy with a wide variety of activity from solo electronic music to collaborations with Brandon James Lewis and Heroes Are Gang Leaders, as well as writing about jazz for the website that he helped establish, CapitalBop. He also hosts “Jam Session: The Vibes Edition” on WPFW-FM every Wednesday at midnight. Luke is a thoughtful and dynamic musician from whom you will be hearing a lot in the coming years.
Based in Brooklyn, Shayna Dulberger is a bass player who has been collaborating with many of NYC's most prominent free jazz musicians since she moved here in 2005. Her early records include bands with Darius Jones, Ras Moshe, Jonathan Moritz and William Parker. Most recently she has been preforming with Chaser, a band that features Ava Mendoza & Oran Canfield as well a collaboration with her husband Chris Welcome, Hot Date. Aside from performing she currently teaches music in a private school in queens and is a trained Suzuki bass teacher.
Cooper-Moore is a legend of free music. Originally from Virginia, He has been living in New York City, on and off, since the 1970, working closely with artists such as David S. Ware, William Parker, Susie Ibarra and Chad Taylor. A true innovator, in addition to piano, he plays a variety of self invented and built instruments. Cooper-Moore is also an educator and has been a mentor to many of creative music's most daring instrumentalists. This conversation took place this past March on a bitter cold day and I am delighted to be able to share it with you all.
Chuck Bettis has been living and working in New York City since 2002. Originally from the DC, he grew up going to hardcore shows, integrating himself into the underground world of DIY shows and home recordings. His primary instruments are electronics and throat and he has a long history of collaboration with artists like Mick Barr, Matmos, Ikue Mori and Mike Pride. On today's show we go back to Chuck's early days in DC to how he became a member of NYC's downtown scene to how he began making music with laptops to his newest project with Brandon Seabrook. This is a great talk with one of the sweetest musicians around.
For episode 111, it is a tremendous honor and pleasure to welcome one of the greatest musicians of the past fifty years, Bill Frisell. In addition to being one of the most important and vital guitarists of his generation, Bill Frisell is also one of the kindest and most humble people that we've ever had on the podcast. For this episode Bill takes me back to his childhood studies of the clarinet in Denver to becoming the house guitarist of ECM Records, to his days in Naked City, to his recent return to New York City. Bill is an absolute genius and mensch and this is a wonderful conversation that I am beyond psyched to present.
Brian Chase is one of the greatest musicians that I know and he is also one of my best friends. I love this sweet cat. He is perhaps best known for his work with the band the Yeah Yeah Yeahs and for the past several years, has been interacting deeply with many of New York's greatest improvisers, from Zeena Parkins to Anthony Coleman, Susie Ibarra to Alan Licht. For this talk, we go back to Long Island to Brian's first encounters with the drums, listening to his grandfather play the concertina and his very Long Island Bar Mitzvah. As a special treat, we preview a track from our upcoming duo record "Sutures" at the end of the episode. BRIAN CHASE!!!!
Eli Keszler is a wonderful and utterly unique composer, percussionist and visual artist. He studied music at the New England Conservatory and has performed with Joe McPhee, Anthony Coleman and Oren Ambarchi and many others. For this conversation we discuss Eli's early days as a jazz head, his immersion into the world of visual art, improvisation and much much more. This is a great conversation, the kind of talk that was the impetus for this podcast. Enjoy.
MV Carbon is a cellist/multi-media artist who has been active in broad range of creative activity since the mid 90s, including film, sound art, installations and clothing design. She has toured frequently with her band Metalux in addition to collaborating with some of the greatest musical thinkers of the last fifty years, including Tony Conrad and Charlemagne Palestine. For this conversation we talk veganism, Chicago, Tony Conrad, what happens after you die and a whole lot more. This is a good one.
For episode 107, it is my great honor to speak with trumpeter, bandleader and composer Frank London. Since the 80s Frank has been at the forefront of the klezmer revival, a stalwart of the downtown scene of improvisers and a scholar of Jewish history. For this talk Frank takes me back to his early days in Long Island, his hippy days in Boston to his work with his seminal band, the Klezmatics. This is a conversation that I have wanted to happen for a long time and I am delighted to finally be able to share it.
Lester St. Louis is a young cellist & composer who you will be hearing a lot from in the coming years. Born in Queens, he has been living in Brooklyn since he was seventeen, immersing himself in the city's music scene. He has performed with Joe Morris, Dre Hocevar, Chris Pitsiokos and others, has presented several solo concerts, programs a music series in Brooklyn and for the past several years has managed the Lower East Side venue Spectrum.
Since the early 90s, Susie Ibarra has been one of the most exciting and compelling composer/performers to come through the world of New York experimental music. As a drummer, there is really no one like her, a top notch improviser who turns her kit into a fine tuned orchestra. She's worked closely with Ikue Mori, John Zorn, Sylvie Courviosier, David S. Ware and many more and continues to inspire drummers all over the world. For this talk, Susie takes me back to her upbringing in Texas, where as a teenager she opened for the Flaming Lips, her early days in New York, and much much more.