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June 5, 2007

Welcome to Downbeast.com

Hey there, welcome to Downbeast. Check in for the latest in avant-garde, improvisational jazz music rants, musings, reviews, and more. From Cryptogramophone Records, Downbeast.com is a new music blog concept we hope you enjoy.

April 3, 2009

Tonight at MONA

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EARTHA AUSTRIA
Robert Anderson - 5 string violin
Jacob Szekely - 5 string cello
Christopher Garcia - drums/percussion

GARCIA/SCORZO/VLATKOVICH TRIO
Harry Scorzo - violin
Michael Vlatkovitch - trombone
Christopher Garcia - drums/percussion

Cryptonight and MONA present two trios led by Christopher Garcia, a musician/composer who specializes in drumset, marimba, and percussion of India and ancient Mexico. His drumming is unusual in that it incorporates various styles, rhythms and their permutations, and reflects a fluency with odd time signatures and sonic textures which he seamlessly incorporates into his performances.

Opening the concert will be Eartha Austria. EA members Robert Anderson (5 string violin) and Jacob Szekely (5 string cello) have been pushing the boundaries of bowed string improvisation since their time as members of the widely acclaimed SuperNova String Quartet. Not satisfied with trying to just amplify acoustic instruments and play them in an electric setting, they turned to new instruments and have developed a new musical voice with bowed strings.

They stumbled upon Christopher Garcia, (best known for his work with Continuum, DeMania, Frank Zappa alumni -The Grande Mothers Re:Invented, and Michael Vlatkovich) at a performance of Harry Scorzo's Vio-Fonik in 2007, and they have been rehearsing/recording and performing ever since.

The repertoire currently consists of original music and original interpretations of compositions by Jimi Hendrix, Charlie Hunter, Led Zeppelin, Pat Metheny, Frank Zappa, and "tweaked" jazz standards, where anything can -- and does -- happen.

The second half of the concert will be a dynamic trio led by violinist Harry Scorzo, trombonist Michael Vlatkovich, and drummer/percussionist Christopher Garcia. All three musician/composers write for the ensemble, and will harness their zany improvisational talents to interact with the neon sculptures at MONA.

The concert will take place at the Museum of Neon Art, 136 W. 4th St., in Downtown LA's burgeoning arts district. Parking is available on the street, and in adjacent parking lots. Tickets are $10 at the door. Free parking is available on the street, or in two paid lots 1/2 block away.

Friday Night April 3rd - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art
136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918

April 28, 2009

Friday at the Museum of Neon Art

Friday Night May 1st - 8PM
MONA and Cryptonight Present
MANY AXES
Susan Rawcliffe, Scott Wilkinson, Brad Dutz

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Friday Night May 1st - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art
136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918
Tickets are $10 at the Door

Susan Rawcliffe - clay flutes, trumpets, & sound sculptures
Scott Wilkinson - ethnic wind instruments
Brad Dutz - percussion

The primary focus of Many Axes is the creation of music by exploring the potential of unusual instruments and instrumental combinations. Sonic structures emerge from spontaneous musical communication among the members of the group; very little is written down or
predetermined. Many of the instruments were designed and made by ceramic artist Susan Rawcliffe, who will be playing the Plasma Didgeridoo pcitured below. Don't miss hearing and seeing this amazing instrument surrounded by the fabulous neon art at MONA!

The concert will take place at the Museum of Neon Art, 136 W. 4th St., in Downtown LA's burgeoning arts district. Parking is available on the street, and in adjacent parking lots. Tickets are $10 at the door. Free parking is available on the street, or in two paid lots 1/2 block away.

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June 3, 2009

Friday at MONA

MONA and Cryptonight Present
"THE GENTLEMEN"

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Friday Night June 5th - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art
136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918
Tickets are $10 at the door
Free parking is available on the street, or in two paid lots 1/2 block away.

Jeff Gauthier - violin, effects
Joel Hamilton - bass
David Witham - piano, keyboards, effects
Andrew Pask - woodwinds, effects

Cryptonight and the Museum of Neon Art present an evening of electric and acoustic improvisation featuring violinist Jeff Gauthier, bassist Joel Hamilton, saxophonist Andrew Pask and pianist David Witham. These musicians have collaborated in a variety of contexts over the years, but on Friday night they will create musical soundscapes on the spot, drawing inspiration from each other and MONA's unique collection of neon art. Cryptonights are curated by Cryptogramophone Records, which was voted #4 Jazz Label in the 2007 Downbeat Critics Poll.

July 1, 2009

This Friday at MONA

MONA and CRYPTONIGHT Present

Dorothea Grossman & Michael Vlatkovich: "Call and Response"

Dorothea Grossman - poetry
Michael Vlatkovich - trombone

Tom McNalley Group

Tom McNalley - guitar
Michael Vlatkovich - trombone
Steuart Liebig - contrabassguitars
Joe Barardi - drums

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Friday Night July 3rd - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art
136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918
Tickets are $10 at the Door
Parking available on the street and in two adjacent parking lots 1/2 block away

Dorothea Grossman - The late Allen Ginsberg called Dorothea (Dottie) Grossman's poetry, "clear, odd, personal, funny or wild-weird, curious and lucid." The award-winning poet lives, works and writes in Los Angeles. Her work has appeared in numerous poetry journals and magazines. In 1988, Tango Press published her book, "Cuttings: Selected Poetry 1978-1988." "Poems From Cave 17" was published in 1996, and "Museum of Rain" was published by Take Out Publications in 2001. Her latest chapbook, The First Time I Ate Sushi, was published by Zerx Press in January, 2008. The CD, "Call And Response," on the pfMentum label, features her in live performance mode with Vlatkovich. Her poems were featured in a live performance at Wichita State University in 2006, in a piece commissioned by the school for theater arts majors, singers and musicians under the direction of flutist Ellen Burr. In August, 2006, she was invited to exhibit poems at Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions Galleries as part of a FLUXUS salute called "Broom Events: Sweepings."

Michael Vlatkovich - trombonist, composer and arranger, is based in Los Angeles, CA, and also tours extensively in the United States, Canada, and Europe. In addition to leading his own ensembles, Vlatkovich has performed and recorded with a variety of singers and instrumentalists, including ROVA Saxophone Quartet, Bryan Adams, Bobby Bradford, Gerry Hemingway, and Rob Blakeslee. The "call and response" format in which the two will perform was born about seven years ago in Albuquerque, NM, on a jazz radio program. This format solves the problem of one medium overshadowing the other, plus, says Grossman, " it avoids the old 'jazz and poetry' trap, with its cliché-ridden stereotype of angry, beret-wearing, bongo-playing bohemians." The CD, "Call And Response," on the pfMentum label, represents Grossman and Vlatkovich in live performance mode.

Tom McNalley - the guitarist presents his new group featuring longstanding cohort Michael Vlatkovich on trombone performing all new music. The past year saw McNalley playing with Ornette Coleman and studying music in Haiti, and it all comes out somehow. Guitarist Tom McNalley has been recognized as a major force on the creative music scene, working as both a sideman and a leader. He has performed (and can be seen) with a wide variety of musicians, including Rob Blakeslee, Michael Vlatkovich, Rich Halley, Nels Cline, Bert Turetzky, Mark Dresser, Jeff Kaiser, Alex Cline, Bert Wilson, Adam Diller, Tad Weed, John Stowell, John Gross, Jason Mears and John Zorn, as well as with his own groups.

August 7, 2009

Tonight at the Museum of Neon Art

CRYPTONIGHTS and THE MUSEUM OF NEON ART Present

Jeff Gauthier - violin, electric violin, electronics
David Witham - piano, keyboards, electronics

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Friday August 7th - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art

136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918
Tickets are $10 at the Door
Parking is available on the street, and in adjacent parking lots.
For more information and a map, please go to: www.neonmona.org

Cryptonight and the Museum of Neon Art present pianist/keyboardist David Witham and violinist Jeff Gauthier in an evening of electronic and acoustic composed and improvised music. On Friday, August 7th at 8PM, Jeff and Dave will play their own compositions, as well as music by J.S. Bach, Eric von Essen, Nels Cline and free duo improvisations based on MONA's extensive collection of rare and unusual neon art.

November 5, 2009

Friday at the Museum of Neon Art

CRYPTONIGHT and MONA present ONIBABA

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Daren Burns - fretless bass/compositions
Ulrich Krieger - saxes/woodwinds
George McMullen - trombone
Eric Klerks - guitar
Craig Bunch - drumset

Live Video by: Kio Griffith

Daren Burns, fretted and fretless electric bass player, composer, and improviser has been playing and composing music for over twenty years. Much of his musical interest lies in the area of improvisation and how to make new systems for developing improvisation in new ways. In the last few years he has also become interested in Indian rhythmic and melodic systems.

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His ensemble, Onibaba exists between composition and improvisation and is described as being somewhere between the light and the dark, the ethereal and the earthly - Creative Music. Created by Daren Burns in 2006, the band synthesizes its sound by using elements of the Chicago avant-garde, jazz, rock, world, techno, noise, and classical, to create a new type of fusion that is definitely not the smooth, funky jazz of the 80's and 90's, but a new living music.

In live performance, the band is also committed to the use of live video images to expand the ensemble from sound to sight. The video doesn't act as a narrative or as a background, but as a sixth element and contributor to the performance.

Friday November 6th - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art
136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918
Tickets are $10 at the Door
Parking available on the street or in two ADJACENT paid lots 1/2 block away.
For more information and a map, please go to: www.neonmona.org

ANNOUNCEMENT: Friday's segment of World Stage Stories [see last blog entry], featuring Louis Van Taylor on November 6th, has been CANCELLED! He is currently in Russia and will not return in time for the interview. Louis will be booked again, soon. Meanwhile, don't forget that Rose Gales will appear on November 20th at 8:00 p.m.

February 2, 2010

Go: Organic Orchestra Returns to Venice

ADAM RUDOPLH'S GO: ORGANIC ORCHESTRA
FIRST L.A. APPEARANCE IN FOUR YEARS!

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Unique in the realm of approaches to improvisational conducting, Go: Organic Orchestra utilizes a composed non-linear score consisting of sound and motion elements. These include tone rows, synthetic scales, melodies, linguistic shapes, intervallic patterns, textural gestures, modes, ragas, maqams, and plainchant. The score serves to provide material for both the improvisations and the orchestrations. Motion and forms and are generated through the application of the composer's rhythm concept Cyclic Verticalism whereby polymeters are combined with additive rhythm cycles.

Continue reading "Go: Organic Orchestra Returns to Venice" »

February 5, 2010

This Weekend: Tom McNalley, Motoko Honda, Ken Rosser

Cryptonight & MONA Present
TOM MCNALLEY TRIO
Friday, February 5th - 8PM
Museum of Neon Art
136 W. 4th St., LA 90013
Tel. (213) 489-9918
Tickets are $10 at the Door; Free parking is available on the street, and cheap parking in a lot right behind the Museum

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Tom McNalley - guitars
Michael Vlatkovich - trombones
Rich West - drums, percussion

Cryptonight and MONA present Tom McNalley's Trio featuring longstanding cohorts Michael Vlatkovich on trombone and Rich West on drums performing all new music. The past year saw Tom playing with Ornette Coleman and studying music in Haiti. Recently relocated to Los Angeles, guitarist Tom McNalley has been recognized as a major force on the creative music scene, working as a sideman and a leader. He has performed with a wide variety of musicians, including Rob Blakeslee, Rich Halley, Nels Cline, Bert Turetzky, Mark Dresser, Jeff Kaiser, Alex Cline, Bert Wilson, Adam Diller, Tad Weed, John Stowell, John Gross, Jason Mears and John Zorn.

Open Gate Theatre Presents
MOTOKO HONDA BAND / KEN ROSSER'S SHADOW LANGUAGE
Sunday February 7 - 7PM
Eagle Rock Center for the Arts
2225 Colorado Blvd., Eagle Rock, CA 90041
$10 General / Students, Seniors, and Series Performers $5
For more info contact Artistic Director Will Salmon
at ogtwills@hotmail.com or 626.795.4989

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MOTOKO HONDA BAND
Motoko Honda - Keyboards
Jeff Gauthier - violin
Maggie Parkins - cello

Originally from Yokohama, Japan, keyboardist Motoko Honda has emerged as one of the most distinctive voices on the Los Angeles area’s new music scene. After graduating from CalArts after studying extensively with such notables as Wadada Leo Smith, Honda immediately made her presence known, bringing a refined classical touch, a broad and sophisticated musical vocabulary (which often includes prepared piano and electronics), and a sensitive and collaborative sensibility to a decidedly improvisatory approach to music-making. Along with Smith, Honda has been involved in notable collaborations with such artists as Vinny Golia, Nels Cline, Oguri, Emily Hay, Kris Tiner, Steuart Liebig, Carole Kim, Sara Schoenbeck, and many others. For this concert, Honda will appear with a frequent collaborator, violinist Jeff Gauthier (who at this point needs no introduction), and cellist Maggie Parkins (an outstandingly gifted musician heard with the likes of the Eclipse Quartet, the Zeena Parkins Group, Guy Klusevsek, Alex Cline’s Continuation Quintet, Elliott Sharp, and countless major figures in the classical music world) for a set of adventurous, multidirectional chamber-prov. (Please note that due to schedule conflicts the originally stated billing of Honda with Steuart Liebig and Joseph Berardi will not appear.)

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KEN ROSSER'S SHADOW LANGUAGE GUITAR QUARTET
Ken Rosser - electric guitar
Ken Lasaine - electric guitar
Andre LaFosse - electric guitar
Kevin Tieman - electric guitar

Opening the evening will be the debut performance by Ken Rosser’s Shadow Language Guitar Quartet. Rosser himself, a supremely accomplished guitarist best known for his involvement with such artists as Bobby Bradford, Wayne Peet, Brad Dutz, and the Grandmothers, assembled, leads, and plays with this unique ensemble comprised of four electric guitars, the other guitarists being Ken Lasaine, Andre LaFosse, and Kevin Tieman. Drawing on a wide and varied repertoire of modern compositions Rosser selected and arranged for the group, the sound alone is sure to be spectacular. It’s another first in Eagle Rock!

Don Heckman's Live Picks of the Week (Feb. 2-7)
Brick Wahl's Live Picks of the Week (Feb. 3-10)
L.A. New Music Events (Feb. 5-June 3)

February 24, 2010

Accordion Crimes

Mark your March calendar, peeps: Famed new music accordionist Guy Klucevsek will perform a solo concert of his own compositions in his first L.A. appearance in 7 years.

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Guy has created a unique repertoire for accordion through his own composing and by commissioning over 50 works from composers including John Zorn, Fred Frith, Lois V. Vierk, Alvin Lucier and many others. Solo performances include Serious Fun! at Lincoln Center, Bang on a Can, Spoleto Festival/USA, and children's TV show Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood.


Guy Klucevsek & Alan Bern: Live in Philadelphia, PA (2/22/08)

He has performed at festivals throughout Europe, and has worked with such artists as Laurie Anderson, Anthony Braxton, Anthony Coleman, Bill Frisell, Fred Frith, Robin Holcomb, the Kronos Quartet, Natalie Merchant, Pauline Oliveros, Present Music, Bobby Previte, Relâche, Jubilant Sykes and John Zorn. He was an original member of Dave Douglas’s band, Charms of the Night Sky, with whom he recorded three albums and toured throughout North America and Europe. You can also hear him on John Williams's scores for the Steven Spielberg films The Terminal, Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull and Munich. He has performed on Broadway in Fiddler on the Roof, Victor/Victoria and Piaf.


Guy Klucevsek & Carl Finch: Live in Fort Worth, TX (11/08/08)

The concert will take place at 8pm (doors open at 7:30pm) on Thursday, March 18, 2010 at the Royal T Cafe in Culver City. Admission is $12 at the door ($8 for students).
For more info call (310) 559-6300.

Greg Burk's Live Picks of the Week (Feb. 26-28)
Don Heckman's Live Picks of the Week (Feb. 23-28)
Los Angeles New Music Live Events (Feb. 26-June 3)
Brick Wahl's Live Picks of the Week (Feb. 25-Mar. 3)

March 4, 2010

Crypto Artists: Oot & Aboot in March

Decompressing from Vancouver 2010 overload (a.k.a. "Vancouverload" ), our artists are tirelessly engaging in Olympic-sized roadwork.

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Continue reading "Crypto Artists: Oot & Aboot in March" »

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