In Which I Call in Reinforcements

My pledge to update my website news every month is a harsh mistress, it turns out…last day of the month and another short and semi-sweet entry.

Item no. 1:

May 23rd, my Group is playing a double bill with Ian Carey’s Quintet +1 at Oakland’s Sound Room (see the Gigs page for complete info)! Ian is a local composer for whom I have the highest respect…he’s one of those people who pushes every composer who hears his music to try harder, dig deeper, and get serious, already. He also has great taste in musicians (in a perhaps related bit of news, we share several band members). I’m incredibly excited about this gig. We’ll be playing an unusually long set with 3 brand new tunes and a lot of recent music. Ian and his band will be amazing — trust me. Please don’t miss this night!

Item no. 2:

“A life confined to what is personal is likely, sooner or later, to become unbearably painful; it is only by windows into a larger and less fretful cosmos that the more tragic parts of life become endurable.” – Bertrand Russell, In Praise of Idleness

Item no. 3:

I recently released — sort of — an album of music I created for a podcast a couple years ago. The album — Stern Birds — is a one-man-band affair and is insanely low-fi. Every bit of it was recorded in my apartment. While my normal music matches elaborately conceived and neurotically detailed written material with some of the finest improvisers alive, this music was created off-the-cuff and performed by a man with minimal command over many of the instruments involved. Soooo, if you’re still curious, you can download the album from my bandcamp page. It’s free, but you can also elect to pay me for it!

Item no. 4:

 “River”, by Frank O’Hara (from Meditations in an Emergency):

Whole days would go by, and later their years,
while I thought of nothing but its darkness
drifting like a bridge against the sky.
Day after day I dreamily sought its melancholy,
its searchings, its soft banks enfolded me,
and upon my lengthening neck its kiss
was murmuring like a wound. My very life
became the inhalation of its weedy ponderings
and sometimes in the sunlight my eyes,
walled in water, would glimpse the pathway
to the green sea. For it was there I was being borne.
Then for a moment my strengthening arms
would cry out upon the leafy crest of air
like whitecaps, and lightning, swift as pain,
would go through me on its way to the forest,
and I’d sink back upon the brutal tenderness
that bore me on, that held me like a slave
in its liquid distances of eyes, and one day,
though weeping for my caresses, would abandon me,
moment of infinitely salty air! Sun fluttering
like a signal! Upon the open flesh of the world.