The Universal Instrument: New Music for Voice

The Universal Instrument

The Austin New Music Co-op is presenting a concert of new music for voice on Saturday, April 12 in Austin TX. The concert will feature music by Chris Cuellar, Brent Fariss, Holland Hopson, Keith Manlove, Josh Ronsen and Travis Weller performed by vocalists Ashley Gaar, Kathy Hatch, Deena Hyatt, Wendi Olinger, Anton Boyd, Brandon Young and Kevin Adickes.

The ensemble will be premiering my vocal quartet, Nine Tas (Download the score). I unfortunately won’t be in attendance.

NMC is presenting a number of related events beginning with an open rehearsal tonight, a radio broadcast tomorrow and a pre-concert talk on the 12th. More information about the concert and all the extras.

ASAC Presents Yeh Eubanks Lafkas Clixby

The Albany Sonic Arts Collective has announced their latest show: Saturday March 22, at the UAG Gallery. The lineup features

C. SPENCER YEH (solo violin, electronics)

BRYAN EUBANKS (saxophone) & ANDREW LAFKAS (bass)

MEG CLIXBY (bass, electronics)

The Upstate Artists Guild 247 Lark St.
Albany, NY: Saturday March 22, 2008
Doors at 7:30 pm: show at 8:00
$5 suggested donation at the door

C. Spencer Yeh Flyer

More on the musicians:

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Gates Ensemble on Austinnitus Audio Series

I’ve posted previously about Josh Ronsen’s newly launched Austinnitus Audio Series. He’s recently added some great new audio including sounds from Alex Keller, Doug Ferguson, Thomas Fang and an incarnation of E.C.F.A sans myself. I’m particularly fond of the Gates Ensemble recording from a 2003 appearance at the Church of the Friendly Ghost that’s now online. Listen to it below.

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A.I.N.T. it Sweet

Josh Ronsen has launched the Austinnitus Audio Series to showcase artists featured on the Austinnitus list. There are already plenty of good recordings to check out and Josh continues to add more. I’ve especially enjoy hearing documentation of some one-off performances, otherwise lost to the ether, such as A.I.N.T. #4. A.I.N.T. stands for Austinnitus Improv NighT, as good an excuse as any for Josh to create ad-hoc ensembles and let them loose on the world. The fourth (and final?) of this short-lived series featured Sharon Crutcher (vocals), David DeMaris (keyboards, trumpet), Holland Hopson (saxophone, banjo, electronics), Genevieve Walsh (flute), Brandon Young (vocals).

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Part 1

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Part 2

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Part 3

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Part 4

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Part 5

Year-end round-up let-down

I always enjoy reading best-of-the-year lists and thought I’d add to the glut. But looking through my music collection I realized how few new releases I bought this year. I simply can’t make a best-music-of-the-year list because I hardly heard anything released this year! A strange statement for a musician to make, but here’s why.

My music buying habits usually follow two, possibly contradictory patterns which I’ll call direct-from-the-source and bottom-feeding. Direct-from-the-source is from the artist herself. Go to the show, listen to the music, talk the artist, buy the CD. Or when I’m on the bill, I’ll often get another artist’s CD by trading one of mine. With the birth of my son at the end of 2006, I’ve attended and played far fewer shows than usual in 2007. Hence, fewer 2007 CDs to hear.

Bottom-feeding is my tendency to scour the used CD racks. Since moving from Austin to Albany, though, my selection of decent used CDs has plummeted. Luckily, there’s lala.com, my single biggest source of CDs for 2007. Of course, bottom-feeding results in far fewer new releases, though I picked up a handful at Amoeba Music in Berkeley.

So, I’m a cheap-skate and a shut-in. But I’m a music loving cheap-skate shut-in. A glance back at those iTunes stats shows I added over 9 days of music to my collection during 2007, and that doesn’t include some of the CDs I acquired but plan to trade away. I listened to more music than ever this year–apparently most of it was “The Song of the Long Tail.”

Those iTunes stats revealed another trend for 2007. If 2006 was the year of the music blog (keep ’em comin’ destination: OUT, Music for Robots, fluxblog, End(-)Of(-)World Music, UBUweb) then 2007 was the year of the free album. Radiohead’s In Rainbows was the most visible here, though I have yet to download it. I did enjoy albums from eDogm and insubordinations and free music standbys such as Steve Coleman and Bob Ostertag. Amiestreet was another reliable source for free or almost free music. And the great aggregator remains Free Albums Galore.

One of my New Year’s resolutions is to make more of my own albums available online for free. You’ll hear about it at the Field Guide when I do. And another resolution? How about I get out a little more in 2008?

3 of 2: Helton and Hopson

Here’s a duet with Thomas Helton, bass + electronics and Holland Hopson, saxophone + electronics from the 2003 No Idea Festival in Austin TX.

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2 of 2: Ewen and Hopson

Here’s the second duet with guitarist Sandy Ewen from the 2003 No Idea Festival in Austin TX.

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1 of 2: Ewen and Hopson

Going through some old recordings I ran across these duets with guitarist Sandy Ewen from the 2003 No Idea Festival in Austin TX. Sandy is playing her distinctive chalk-guitar and I’m on squeaky sneakers, soprano saxophone and live electronics. Sandy is now with the Weird Weeds and also plays with Tom Carter as Spiderwebs.

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