A review of the Anna Webber’s record SIMPLE (2014) on Skirl records is now available.
Alto saxophonist and storyteller Matana Roberts played the latest installment of Coin Coin last night at 61 Local. This one, a solo set, is intended as one of the bookends to an ambitious 12-part project that weaves together stories, history, and myths passed down in Roberts’ own family. This is an artist with a rare aesthetic vision, able to draw together ideas, melodies, phrases, stories, and images together in a kaleidoscopic work of sight and sound.
Roberts’ selections for the evening were vivid and provocative and she managed to build one layer upon another as she returned to the phrase, “I like to tell stories …” between short and often tender turns on alto overlaid upon a series of looped video and audio clips. The hour-long piece was improvised throughout as she led the audience through a story about the character “Papa Joe,” a man born free in Tennessee in 1870 and how he fell in love with an orphaned woman of possible mixed-race background. The tale is one filled with both tragedy and triumph–and as Roberts claimed at the start of the performance, she had elected to do this on the thirteenth anniversary of 9/11 because she “wanted to do some healing.”
As this part of the project makes clear, Coin Coin continues to be one of the most exciting works of creative music going on right now in New York City. The music is at the same time personal as well as readily accessible, startling in its sincerity and captivating in its clarity. Roberts possesses such keen abilities of observation and appreciation for the myriad people who came before her. The tales she spins offer us a profound and original view of the United States as she deals with topics including slavery, rape, race-related violence, and post-slave American society. Roberts immediately connects with her audiences, often engaging them to take part in the music, or to discuss aspects of it publicly afterwards.
Last night’s performance gives followers of Roberts’ work and fans of creative music something to look forward to once it is committed to record.
Roberts performance was the first in Snugs concert series at 61 Local (Brooklyn) this Fall. Many exciting performances will follow in September and October. Please click here for a complete listing.
–Cisco Bradley, Sep 12, 2014
- Matt Mitchell – Fiction (Pi Recordings, 2013)
- Eric Dolphy – Stockholm Sessions (Enja, 1979; 2007)
- Stephen Gauci, Kirk Knuffke, and Ken Filiano – Chasing Tales (Relative Pitch, 2014)
- Exposed Blues Duo – Bare (Greene Avenue Music, 2010)
- Rodrigo Amado Motion Trio + Peter Evans – Live in Lisbon (LP CDR copy obtained from artist)
- Rodrigo Amado – Wire Quartet (Clean Feed, 2014)
- Nicole Mitchell’s Sonic Projections – The Secret Escapades of Velvet Anderson (Rogue Art, 2014)
Thursday, September 4 at Union Pool (484 Union Avenue, Brooklyn):
Matana Roberts, Meshell Ndegeocello, Ches Smith, Henry Grimes, Fay Victor, Matt Lavelle, Ras Moshe, Amirtha Kidambi, Daro Beeroozi, Peter Evans, Claire Fornorola, Jeff Tobias and his band Sunwatchers, Dana Scheter, Connie Crothers, Enuma Messam, Jompii del Phineus at Union Pool 7-11 pm $10
ALL PROCEEDS GO TO THE MICHAEL BROWN MEMORIAL FUND
If you cannot attend the concert and still want to donate, you may do so here.
Battle Trace, features four fearless tenor saxophonists: Travis Laplante, Matt Nelson, Jeremy Viner, and Patrick Breiner.
Sept. 1st- Kittery, ME @ the Buoy
Sept. 2nd- Burlington, VT @ Jenke Arts
Sept. 3rd- Montreal, Quebec @ Casa Del Popolo
Sept. 4th- Ottawa, Ontario @ Mugshots
Sept. 5th- Toronto, Ontario @ Array Space
Sept. 6th- Cleveland, OH @ Now That’s Class
Sept. 7th- Chicago, IL @ Constellation
Sept. 8th- Detroit, MI @ Trinosophes
Sept. 9th- Kalamazoo, MI @ Satellite Records
Sept. 10th- Oberlin, OH @ Oberlin College
Sept. 11th- Buffalo, NY @ Silo Sessions
Sept. 24th- Brooklyn, NY @ Roulette
Sept. 26th- Balitmore, MD @ Red Room
Sept. 28th- Boston, MA @ Lilypad
Oct. 30th- Vancouver, BC @ The Emerald
Nov. 1st- Seattle, WA @ Earshot Jazz Festival
Nov. 2nd- Portland, OR @ Habesha
Nov. 4th- Sacramento, CA @ TBA
Nov. 5th- San Franciso, CA @ Center For New Music
Nov. 6th- Los Angeles, CA @ Equitable Vitrines
Nov. 7th- Oakland, CA @ TBA
Nov. 20th- Philadelphia, PA @ The Rotunda
More dates may be added.
- Ava Mendoza and Max Johnson Live at Ibeam Brooklyn
- Sadhana Live at the Dissident Arts Festival
- Harmolodic Monk Live at the Dissident Arts Festival
- Upsurge Live at the Dissident Arts Festival
- Ava Mendoza’s Unnatural Ways Live at the Knitting Factory
- Jim Hobbs, Nate Wooley, Ava Mendoza, and Chad Taylor Live at Douglass Street Music Collective
- Jim Hobbs, Tanya Kalmanovitch, Daniel Levin, and Joe Morris Live at Douglass Street Music Collective
- Jim Hobbs, Ingrid Laubrock, Taylor Ho Bynum, Josh Sinton, Brandon Seabrook, Ken Filiano, and Tomas Fujiwara Live at the Douglass Street Music Collective
- Jim Hobbs and Tatsuya Natakani Live at Douglass Street Music Collective
- Jim Hobbs, Tatsuya Nakatani, and Reona Otsuka Live at Douglass Street Music Collective
- Jim Hobbs, Brandon Seabrook, Tatsuya Nakatani, and Reona Otsuka Live at Douglass Street Music Collective
- Andrew Smiley Solo Live at Trans-Pecos
- Chris Pitsiokos Solo Live at Trans-Pecos
- Kirk Knuffke on Butch Morris’ Conductions at the Creative Music Studio Workshop (Big Indian, NY)
The exciting and fiery alto saxophonist Jim Hobbs is playing four nights at Douglass Street Music Collective starting Wednesday, August 20. Having developed a take-no-prisoners reputation with his playing and composing among numerous groups in Boston, this groundbreaking artist remains under-appreciated on the New York scene. Having led the Fully Celebrated for a number of years, Hobbs has orchestrated a number of exciting releases with that band and in other contexts. His four nights of performances this week are a great chance for New Yorkers and Brooklynites to get out and hear his latest music.
- Wed, Aug 20: Jim Hobbs, Nate Wooley, Ava Mendoza, and Chad Taylor, 8 pm $10
- Thu, Aug 21: Jim Hobbs, Mat Maneri, Tanya Kalmanovitch, Daniel Levin, and Joe Morris, 8 pm $10
- Fri, Aug 22: Jim Hobbs, Taylor Ho Bynum, Ingrid Laubrock, Josh Sinton, Ken Filiano, Brandon Seabrook, and Tomas Fujiwara, 8 pm $10
- Sat, Aug 23: Jim Hobbs and Tatsuya Nakatani, 8 pm $10
CB: Have you formed any new groups recently that you would like to talk about?
CB: Do you have any upcoming releases to highlight?