Glen Whitehead Trio: The Living Daylights (PFMCD125)

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[playlist ids="1553"]

Glen Whitehead Trio

The Living Daylights

Britton Ciampa Drums • Scott Walton Bass • Glen Whitehead Trumpet

Improvisational structures inspired by natural phenomena that play with our perceptions of space, time, and place

The Living Daylights Suite (1-3)
1. Living Daylights Suite 1—at Time’s Place 05:02
2. Living Daylights Suite 2—Zenosyne 08:23
3. Living Daylights Suite 3—Apophenia 08:30
4. Heliopause 04:01
5. 42 Degrees 04:31
6. Bow Shock 05:49
7. Shedding Vortices 03:38
8. Involution Engine 06:22
9. Fissure Syndrome 03:54
10. Pearl of Swirl 05:50
11. Punktuation 07:44

Recorded at the Banquet Studios February 6, 2016
and July 21, 2016, Guerneville, CA
Engineered by Darryl Webb
Mixed and Mastered by Wayne Peet at Killzone,
Newzone Studio, Los Angeles, February, 2018
Photo Credit—Glen Whitehead
Graphic Design—Ted Killian
© 2018 Glen Whitehead (ASCAP)
pfMENTUM
PFMCD125

The Living Daylights
Composition Notes

The Living Daylights is based on concepts extracted from natural phenomena (most chosen, some imagined) that play with our perceptions of space, time and place, and rendered with improvisational frameworks constructed to enable many possibilities within the natural restraints of a conscious system.

These ideas were generated from my experiences exploring a range of natural environments over the last several years through my engagement with ecoacoustics and other research pursuits in immersive acoustic explorations across many different environments. These experiences are part of a broad interdisciplinary leap (on my part) as an attempt to find more passage between creative music practices and fields of acoustic ecology and ecoacoustics.  I see these fields as intimately intertwined. There are a host of people and organizations building new canons and research areas such as the Deep Listening Institute, the EcoSono Institute, and other related movements and organizations.  As my time in the field clocked more hours and locations – including many sites across Colorado and the great southwest, Alaska, Cape Cod, the Pacific southwest, Mexico, Australia, Tasmania, New Zealand, Korea and more, I have become increasingly aware of the similarities between immersive activities surrounding intensive environmental participation, usually involving field recording scenarios and improvised music-making. The more one invests energy, time and intention to such immersive experiences in the world– the more phenomenal events occur – the world opens up to you. As in improvisation in theatre – the world says “yes.”  Connections come alive, mysterious interactions occur.

These works, and the two incredible musicians whom I have been so honored to work with on this project reflect such phenomenological experiences.  Scott Walton (acoustic bass) has been a key collaborator in my musical life, as equal a pianist as a bassist, he is a long-time colleague and simply one of the best musicians – as an inventive improviser, listener and performer – that I have had the privilege to learn from. Britt, to me, represents a younger, up and coming generation of insanely informed musicians.  His skill as a drummer and knowledge as musician is well beyond his years.  He possesses an uncanny ability to connect obscure subjects and histories within a deep understanding of the creative music world.  The magic of his playing is his ability to wield musical and sonic information into its the fullest possible context.  He’s also an “ex-student” of mine from UCCS – one of our very best.
An ensemble is an ecosystem with each member defining the community. In this “conscious system” individuals are free to roam and explore, while also being responsible for the whole – empathy is essential to create both meaning and form.  Self-reflection between the rewards of individuality and seeking shared common good creates prime musical real estate.  The thoughts and intentions of one person are internalized (and externalized) by the other members.

I view the wide world of sonic and musical languages in this work as idiomatic – a respectful departure of what is usually commonly understood in contexts of free improvisation as “non-idiomatic” (from Derek Bailey’s definition).  To me, this is a resolvable contradiction.  Our language is saturated within the idioms of our instrumental backgrounds – acquired ear, technical and historic knowledge along with both innate and environmental influences.  How we wield our musical instruments is a fundamental part of our cultural “taskscapes,” a term used by Tim Ingold, originally “to bring the perspectives of archaeology and anthropology into unison” (The Temporality of the Landscape, 1993), “the constitutive tasks of the dwelling” that applies perfectly to instrumental and vocal play

 

Notes on the Tracks

The first three tracks make up a suite.  They were the first pieces recorded on this project, conceived and recorded as one unit, and in one take.  At Time’s Place is a play on words – we only ever really sense the presence.  In this open-ended tradition of improvised music, the phenomenological act of real-time musical creation gives us a unique way to access the past and the future, simultaneously.

Zenosyne, from the unique “Dictionary of Obscure Sorrows” by John Greene pinpoints a fundamental experience that had no clear term (in English, anyway) – the sense that time keeps going faster.  Such an example is at the very core of improvisational experience, and I like to imagine would be part of a future established aspect of music theory for improvisation.  I am reminded of many times when an improvisation seemed to take ten minutes, and forty-five minutes had passed.

Apophenia, the perception of patterns, meanings, or connections where none exists, is also a relatively new word although the well explored phenomenon itself is not. Its first use is credited to the psychiatrist Klaus Conrad back in 1958 in his catchy-titled Die beginnende Schizophrenie: Versuch einer Gestaltanalyse des Wahns, which translates to the equally scintillating The origins of schizophrenia: A Gestalt analysis of paranoia.  It is fascinating that this word should appear to be so recent when the actual phenomenon is so old and important enough to have been a lynch-pin for philosophical study through the ages.  In Natural History of Religion (1757), philosopher David Hume (1711-1776) wrote the following:

There is a universal tendency among mankind to conceive all beings like themselves, and to transfer to every object those qualities with which they are familiarly acquainted, and of which they are intimately conscious.  We find human faces in the moon, armies in the clouds; and by a natural propensity, if not corrected by experience and reflection, ascribe malice and good will to everything that hurts or pleases us.

There is one major qualification and difference of how this idea is utilized in this work.  This is a play on the imagination – the “random” discoveries that appear to have no connections, actually uncover true, previously unseen connections and relationships.  I cannot think of a better context for the illusively connective experience of improvised music.

The Heliopause (with its syntactic musical resonance) is the boundary where the sun’s solar wind meets the faint radiation of interstellar space and is no longer strong enough to push back the stellar winds of the surrounding stars.  This is the boundary where the interstellar medium and solar wind pressures meet and balance – physics working on a grand scale. Imagine, even with this distance impossible for us to quantify in scale in our imagination, that this line is definitive and slender where the distant finger of our incubator solar cocoon touches the rest of the universe– what a musical thought.

42 degrees references the connection of people and light reflected in the observations of – rainbows.  When we see a rainbow and its band of colors we are looking at light refracted and reflected from different raindrops at an angle of between 40 and 42 degrees at all points of view – whether one person is high on a hilltop and another hundreds of feet below.  Light orients to our visual lenses, our lenses orient the angle of light.

Bow Shock, also called a detached shock or normal shock, is a curved, stationary shock wave that is found in a supersonic flow past a finite body.  Shedding vortices (vortex shedding) is an oscillating flow that takes place when a fluid such as air or water flows past a bluff (as opposed to streamlined) body at certain velocities, depending on the size and shape of the body. Both of these phenomena, for me, connect with the wind “shock” that occurs inside and across a fast material with wind and brass sound production, and illuminate the use of creating sound vortexes in so many different ways in improvised music.

Involution Engine is a function, transformation, or operator that is equal to its inverse, only applies to itself and is a function of its own inverse. for instance, in medicine, this applies to the shrinking of an organ (such as the uterus after pregnancy) or philosophy and psychology a “turning in” on one’s self.  Musical phenomena in time also have similar phenomena but have been limited in concept, I believe, because of the hard-cast association with printed, scored notation – retrograde inversion, for example. The idea of a sonic involution works exquisitely in an aural, perceived identity, much like a physically created moveable object and is far more complex and four dimensional that can be adequately represented on a typical score (mostly).

 I came up with Fissure Syndrome through pure free association upon listening to the results of this piece several times.  As it turns out, it is a kind of an Apophenia in of itself, as this term lives in the medical world as, superior orbital fissure syndrome (also known as Rochen-Duvigneaud syndrome) is a collection of symptoms caused by compression of structures just anterior to the orbital apex.

For Pearl of Swirl, am fascinated by the perception of sound as physical moving substance or phenomena. To me, this conceptual mega-world is in its infancy and a signification of the music theory and creative methodologies of the future of music.  Pearl of Swirl, here, references Pearl Swirl, a rheoscopic fluid created specifically to see the movement or currents in liquids. Its purpose is scientific in nature, yet, it carries commercial tendrils with trademark statuses and “secret ingredient” branding. It is at once a vital substance category for the science of fluid dynamics and other related fields in order to visualize currents, aerodynamics, turbulence, convection and other phenomena (a not so subtle nod to my father, an award winning physical oceanographer, fluid dynamicist and a very creative one, at that).  On the other side of the coin, pearl swirl is also a novel commercial ingredient added to shampoos and other liquids for the purpose of a non-functional aesthetical “swirl” effect. This duality embodies the inescapable, almost satirical relationship between science and commerce in our culture today.

Punktuation – ‘Nuff said and done

—Glen Whitehead

Jeff Denson and Joshua White: I’ll Fly Away (PFMCD081)

Jeff Kaiser 1 Comment

[playlist ids="547"]
I’ll Fly Away

Jeff Denson: Double Bass
Joshua White: Piano

1. I’ll Fly Away (Version One) (Albert E. Brumley) 4:34
2. Lord, I Want to be a Christian (African American Spiritual) 5:19
3. Down at the Cross (Elisha A. Hoffman/John H. Stockton) 5:22
4. Amazing Grace (Anonymous) 5:47
5. I’ll Fly Away (Version Two) (Albert E. Brumley) 3:53
6. What a Friend We Have in Jesus (Charles Crozat Converse) 6:11
7. When the Saints Go Marching In (Anonymous) 4:12
8. Just As I Am (Charlotte Elliot/William B. Bradbury) 3:57
9. Crying in the Chapel (Artie Glenn) 3:10
10. In the Garden (C. Austin Miles) 5:04
11. I’ll Fly Away (Version Three) (Albert E. Brumley) 2:41

Recorded and Mixed by Adam Munoz at Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, CA March 4-5, 2013
Mastered by Myles Boisen at Headless Buddha Studios in Oakland, CA on December 28, 2013

Art and Layout by Ted Killian

“I’ll Fly Away” Copyright 1960 by Albert E. Brumley & Sons. Used by permission.
“Crying in the Chapel” Copyright 1953 by Unichappell Music Inc. Used by permission.

This recording is dedicated to my grandmother, Bonnie Denson whose unwavering faith and joyous spirit have been an inspiration to all whom have had the pleasure to know her and my to mother, Gwen Denson for her love, support and friendship. Without family we are lost.

pfMENTUM CD081

PFMCD081

New Director of Development, THREE new recordings, and an intern

Lot’s of news! ———————————————————— In this issue: * New Director of Development: Andrew Pask! * New recordings by: + The Glen Whitehead Trio + Andrew Raffo Dewar / John Hughes / Chad Popple + Guerino Mazzola and Heinz Geisser * AND…introducing our first ever intern: Nick Welch! ———————————————————— We are thrilled to announce that Andrew Pask is coming on board …

Dave Ballou: Quadrants (PFMCD113)

Jeff Kaiser Leave a Comment

Quadrants
for solo trumpet

[playlist ids="1113"]

Dave Ballou

1. North 15:16
2. East 14:54
3. South 15:10
4. West 15:02

Dave Ballou—Bb trumpet, flugelhorn, piccolo trumpet and mutes
Each piece was performed in sequence with no overdubs or edits

Parameters: An hourglass with a 15 minute sand flow
Focal pitches: Bb, B, E, F (concert)

Recorded March 13, 2015 and mixed June 3, 2015
Ed Tetrault, engineer—Peabody Recording Studios
Peabody Conservatory, Baltimore, MD

Mastering October 10, 2016 by Wayne Peet Newzone Studio, Los Angeles, CA

Thanks to Jeff Kaiser, Tony Malaby, Danny Gouker, Adam Hopkins, Mike Kuhl, Jeff Reed, Ralph Alessi, Ellery Eskelin, Jim McFalls, John Dierker, Michael Formanek, Kevin Whitehead, Jonathan Finlayson and Leise Ballou.

Graphic Design by Ted Killian

This recording is made possible with the support of a grant from the Towson University Faculty Research and Development Center.

© 2017 Dave Ballou Music BMI

pfMENTUM CD113
PFMCD113

John Blevins: Matterhorn (PFMCD092)

Jeff Kaiser 1 Comment

[playlist ids="765"]

John Blevins: Matterhorn

(Please note: this is for the CD version, the vinyl version is available here.)

1. Identity Theft
2. Unaware
3. Brink
4. Nascent
5. Little Dickens
6. See
7. Breathe
8. Hear
9. See (alternate take)

John Blevins – Trumpet
Drew Williams – Tenor Saxophone
Brad Mulholland – Alto Saxophone/Flute/Clarinet
Nick Grinder – Trombone
Marta Sanchez – Fender Rhodes
Jeff Mclaughlin – Guitar
Marty Kenney – Bass
Nathan Ellman-Bell – Drums/Percussion
John Doing – Congas

Produced by John Blevins and Shane Endsley

Recorded at Grand Street Recording in Williamsburg, Brooklyn by Jake Lummus on July 21 and 22, 2014

Edited and mixed by Jake Lummus and John Blevins, Autumn 2014

Mastered by Liberty Ellman on December 12, 2014

All compositions © and& ℗ 2015 John Blevins Music (ASCAP)

Original artwork and design by Sam Gezari

THANK YOU to Nathan, Marty, Jeff, Nick, Drew, Brad, Marta, and John for their dedication to this music. It’s an honor to play with you.

Special thanks to Shane Endsley, Jake Lummus, Liberty Ellman, Leah Jubara, Matt Hurley, Simon Yu, Sam Gezari, Daniel Stessen, and to Bill Jubara and everyone who supported this project on Kickstarter. Special thanks to my loving, supportive family and especially to Amanda.

For Ray and Howell.

pfMENTUM CD092

PFMCD092

I’ll Fly Away (Version One)

Jeff Kaiser Leave a Comment

“I’ll Fly Away (Version One)” from I’ll Fly Away by Jeff Denson and Joshua White. Released: 2014. Genre: Improvisation, Creative, Composition.

Bubbeleh (PFMCD082)

Jeff Kaiser 1 Comment

[playlist ids="549"]
Andrew Conrad: Clarinet, Tenor Sax
Greg Zilboorg: Trumpet
Lauren Baba: Violin, Viola
Max Kutner: Guitar
Philip Rankin: Wurlitzer, Synthesizer, Melodica, Pump Organ, Tack Piano, Clave, Guiro
Rusty Kennedy: Bass
Colin Woodford: Drums, Congas, Shakers, Rattles, and Ankle Bells

1. Dybbuk Square Dance 3:29
2. Fear of Heights 5:07
3. Schmutzy Glasses 5:26
4. Woulda…Coulda…MESHUGGAH!!! 3:44
5. (An Honest) Living 2:19
6. Choots-Pah 3:55
7. Grepse 4:17
8. Simcha Boytchik Hintele (Puppy Party) 3:35
9. Mosesque 6:56
10. Bubberella 4:30
11. Czytzfachykz 4:54

1, 2, 5, 9, 10 composed by Max Kutner, © 2014 Maladept Music, ASCAP

4, 6, 7, 8 composed by Philip Rankin, © 2014 Jewish Shark Attack, ASCAP

3 composed by Greg Zilboorg, © 2014 Shouting Dog, ASCAP

11 composed by Rusty Kennedy, © 2014 Jewish Shark Attack, ASCAP

Recorded by Samur Khouja at Seahorse Sound Studios, Los Angeles, August 20-22, 2013
Assistant Engineer: Alex DeGroot
Mixed by Brian Saia, October-December 2013
Mastered by John Baffa at TVTray Studios, Simi Valley, CA, December 2013
Produced by Maxwell Ryan דוד Kutner and Philip Jason שַׂמֵחַ Rankin
Executive Producer: William Ross Gibson
Associate Producer: Debra Fredericks, Tamasaurus Rex
Logo by Dawn Chan * Layout and design by J. Carver

Max and Phil would like to thank the band: Greg, Rusty, Lauren, Andrew and Colin. Everyone who helped record this album: Samur, John and especially Brian. KT Pierce for photography and building our website. Phil would like to thank his Mother, Jill; his Father, David; his sister Michele; and his dog, Max. Max would like to thank his family: Leslie, Samantha, Stephanie, Art and Michael for their tireless, inexhaustible support and encouragement. Most importantly we would like to thank everybody who donated to our Indiegogo Campaign. This album would not have been made possible without your generous donations.

pfMENTUM CD082

PFMCD082