- Justin Rothberg “Bad Apple” from Hurricane Mouse (Self Released) 00:00
- Santiago Leibson, Stephen Gauci “#4” from Pandemic Duets (gaucimusic) 04:44
- Tony Malaby “Slap Happy” from Turnpike Diaries Volume 1 (Bandcamp) 12:58
- Playfield “Sonar (Excerpt)” from Playfield Vol. 1 (Orbit 577) 41:20
- Mara Rosenbloom, Stephen Gauci “#6” from Pandemic Duets (gaucimusic) 52:10
- Justin Rothberg “Beach on Christmas” from Hurricane Mouse (Self Released) 1:01:15
- Jeff Davis, Stephen Gauci “#1” from Pandemic Duets (gaucimusic) 1:03:57
- Roses & Roaches “Where is Home, Locust Flowers, Locusts and Roaches” from And Yet We Ain’t Alone (Orbit 577) 1:11:05
- Justin Rothberg “G Sus Band” from Hurricane Mouse (Self Released) 1:27:29
- Jonathan Goldberger, Stephen Gauci “#3” from Pandemic Duets (gaucimusic) 1:33:06
- Playfield “The Middle (Excerpt)” from Playfield Vol. 2 (Orbit 577) 1:45:26
- Daniel Carter, Matthew Shipp, William Parker, Gerald Cleaver “Majestic Travel Agency” from Welcome Adventure! Vol. 1 (577 Records) 1:56:02
On this show I explore the current sounds of New York City with more of the Pandemic Duets from Stephen Gauci. There’s also new music from Tony Malaby, Rose Tang and Justin Rothberg plus the exciting new Playfield project lead by Daniel Carter. I conclude the show of the stellar quartet of Carter with Matthew Shipp, William Parker, and Gerald Cleaver.
Justin Rothberg -guitar
Todd Groves-saxophones, flute and melodica
Hiroyuki Matsuura -drums
John Price -bass
Andy O’Niell-percussion and drums
“I started playing sessions on July 6, 2020 with Billy Mintz and John Hebert under a turnpike bridge not far from my home. We would play 3 to 4 times a week, slowly more friends began to come to play with me in addition to the trio with Mintz and Hebert. I want to share some of these field recordings with you and want to begin with this session that took place on October 19. My walk to the spot with both horns on my back was so full of joy and anticipation because I was going to throw sound with some of my favorite improvisors and mentors – my “ Jefes”. I hope you enjoy this as much as I did . I can’t begin to thank Randy Thaler and Kevin Reilly for their commitment to documenting these sessions – it still keeps me looking forward and positive during these trying times . Thank you for listening” . Tony Malaby
released February 5, 2021
Tony Malaby – Tenor and Soprano saxophones
Tim Berne – Alto Saxophone
Mark Helias – Acoustic Bass
Michael Formanek – Acoustic Bass
Ches Smith – Drums
Recorded by Randy Thaler
Cover art – Tim Berne
Mastered by Eivind Opsvik
Recorded on October 19 2020
The first volume from the debut three-album trilogy PLAYFIELD, offers the musical equivalent of a walk through New York, meandering through the city’s conflicts, unparalleled diversity and mutual harmony.
After years of playing improvised shows in small clubs and smaller apartments from Brooklyn to Harlem, the pandemic brought spontaneous collaboration between diverse musicians to an abrupt, necessary halt. But as people ventured outside, joining up for street protests and live sidewalk concerts, the eight-part group that created these volumes emerged organically. Instigated by 577 Records’ founder Daniel Carter, whose poetry is featured in each volume, PLAYFIELD Vol.1 glances at the music of possibility, from the shadows of systemic injustice and pandemic, to a city and an art form that remain electrifyingly resilient. PLAYFIELD’s three volumes will be offered as an exclusive, limited-edition CD, in an edition of 50.
The first release is a 29 minute piece called Sonar which delivers an eclectic journey through a series of styles, genres and impressions. A remarkable tour de force which leads to eager anticipation for the next two volumes.
The Middle embodies its name in every way on Volume 2 of the series. Described by the musicians behind it as a center of conflict, of a collective dynamic, of rising tension and different voices, or in their words, as they “agree to disagree…to discover and resolve or abandon [the project].” Throughout the extended track, Carter’s clarinet engages with Ishito’s saxophone, sharing the soprano section with Luisa Muhr’s indecipherable vocals. Bassist Zach Swanson sets a steady electric structure, complemented by Panikkar’s sparse drumming, and Plak’s weighted keys. Guitarists Namenwirth and Takahashi perform assuredly, and playfully around the other structures. The album’s arc, after slowing in the middle, crescendos at the end towards an unknown conclusion, ending as it began. PLAYFIELD’s three albums will be offered online and in an exclusive, limited-edition CD pressing of 50.
Daniel Carter: Horns and Reeds
Luisa Muhr: Voice
Ayumi Ishito: Sax
Eric Plaks: Nord piano
Aron Namenwirth: Guitar
Yutaka Takahashi: Guitar
Zach Swanson: Bass
Jon Panikkar: Drums
Volume 1 is released on March 20th via Orbit 577
Volume 2 is released on April 17th also via Orbit 577
Roses & Roaches
April 10th release
And Yet We Ain’t Alone, Rose Tang’s debut album, includes veteran musicians and social change agents in their own right, NYC-based musicians Evan Strauss, Rose Tang and Jarvis Earnshaw performed alongside Diana Zinn and JP Lenon in Seattle to record an improvised album of music and poetry. The songs revolve around Tang’s electrifying poetry—her original pieces as well as Sichuan folk music and classical poems from the 12th century Song Dynasty—delivered in English, Mandarin, Sichuanese and Cantonese. A universally understood emotionality that rumbles through each track.
Tang, a Mongol who was raised in Southwestern China, recounts that her first public music gig was conducting protest songs in Beijing in the 1989 Tiananmen Movement. She now performs regularly in New York where she has lived and worked since 2005. This album is the product of the first meeting between Tang and the other Seattle-based musicians, all united by an experimental, avant-punk approach to music. While Tang has been pursuing experimental music since 2014, when she began collaborating with 577 Record’s Daniel Carter, she had long been involved in the art world as a visual artist, award-winning journalist, radio documentary maker, public speaker, activist and journalism teaching fellow at Princeton University.
This album, and the lyrical protests throughout, were inspired by a traditional vocalization method called “hou shange” (吼山歌), or “hollering among mountains,” to amplify the voice by roaring in natural settings. The practice is culturally significant, passed down by generations of nomads, laborers and peasants in Sichuan and neighboring Tibet, who used it to communicate messages in times of joy and despair. The whole album fittingly draws its sound from traditional Sichuanese folk music, punk rock, free jazz and Tang’s preeminently poetic, unmistakable voice. The project is migratory: uniquely suspended in cross-cultural, cross-temporal collaboration, speaking to larger themes of conflict and struggle. Dedicated to Hong Kong, and to the millions of protesters who demand democracy and independence, these tracks speak to the roots of their deep social unrest.
Tang’s work has long revolved around the pursuit of justice, an orientation that pervades the album’s charged lyrics and sometimes cacophonous tsunamis of sound. Every musician on the album played multiple instruments. None had discussions before the recording, and every track was improvised and recorded in a single take. And Yet We Ain’t Alone is a testament to the spontaneous and dynamic nature of a social movement, people joining forces to achieve a brighter future. The tracks are complex, difficult and lyrical. Layered amidst the somber tones and complicated harmonies are moments of possibility and unity. Tang shouts over the crescendo of sound a prescient, rebellious message of hope.
Rose Tang: Vocals, Guitar, Keyboard
Evan Strauss: Bass, Tenor Saxophone, Alto Saxophone
Rajsiv Washnaer: Sitar, Tapes
Diana Zinn: Guitar, Bass
Produced by Evan Strauss and Rose Tang.
All lyrics by Rose Tang except for Boxwood Shoulder Pole and Locust Flowers (both Sichuan traditional), Night Trip On Yellow Sand Road (Song Dynasty classical poem).
Recorded by Mike J. at Houndsous Studios in Ballard, Seattle, Washington; August 2019.
Mixed and Mastered by Evan Strauss in Brooklyn, New York; March 2020.
Daniel Carter, Matthew Shipp, William Parker, Gerald Cleaver
released June 5, 2020
Daniel Carter – Tenor Saxophone, Trumpet, Flute
Matthew Shipp – Piano
William Parker – Bass
Gerald Cleaver – Drums
Recorded on October 29th, 2019
Recorded, mixed and mastered by Jeremy Loucas at Sear Sound, New York City