October 11: Aram Shelton’s Marches, duo B., Chris Duncan

Aram Shelton’s Marches
Aram Shelton, alto saxophone; Cory Wright, tenor & baritone saxophone; Steve Blum, keyboard; Doug Stuart, bass; Geneva Harrison & Jordan Glenn, drums.

Formed Marches in 2009, the music of Marches is inspired by Albert Ayler & Sun Ra, and is guided by an aesthetic centered on simple tonal melodies and performers that bring energy to the music. It utilizes the instrumentation of the ensemble to create a distinct sound: combining the timbres of the saxophones and organ to make a lush and thick textured sound with intertwining parts propelled by the two drummer one bass rhythm section. The music allows the performers to represent their individuality through extended sections of improvisation that are framed by compositional structures. http://www.aramshelton.com/projects/marches/

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duo B., the San Francisco Bay Area improvising and composing ensemble of percussionist Jason Levis and bassist Lisa Mezzacappa, is a musical think tank of grand schemes and impossible scenarios. For more than ten years, the ensemble has developed and refined its singular approach to improvisation and composition, through cross-disciplinary projects with film, collaborations with improvising instrumentalists at home and abroad, study of repertoire by like-minded composer-improvisers, and immersion in the improvised-composed musical worlds of masters Wadada Leo Smith, Anthony Braxton, Cecil Taylor, Henry Threadgill, and others.
http://www.lisamezzacappa.com/duo_band.html

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CHRIS DUNCAN is an Oakland-based artist who employs repetition and accumulation as a basis for experiments in visual and sound based media. Often in flux between maximal and minimal, Duncan’s work is a constant balancing act of positive or negative, loud or quite, solitary or participatory and tends to lead towards questions regarding perception, experience and transcendence. Sonically, Duncan creates open ended atmospheric pieces rooted in the accumulation of simple tones made from tuning forks and harmonicas combined with field recordings of natural phenomena. Duncan earned his BFA from the California College of Arts and Crafts and his Masters Degree in Art Practice from Stanford University. He has performed at Berkeley Art Museum, Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, Gray Area and Pasadena Art Center, as well, he has participated in the RE:Sound series and Soundwave. Chris is currently a resident at Headlands Center for the Arts.

http://christopherrobinduncan.virb.com/

Active Music Series
The Uptown Nightclub
1928 Telegraph, Oakland
9:00 PM doors. 9:30 PM music.
Suggested donation $5-15
activemusic.wordpress.com

June 14th: Antimatter // Hamir Atwal + Dahveed Behroozi // Jon Arkin

ANTIMATTER is the sound work of Xopher Davidson – an ongoing exploration into the material of sound. Xopher builds his experiments in electronic sound from a basis in painting, photography, and film, and through an interest in electronic circuits going back to building radios and homemade circuits as a kid.

In 1992, Davidson rode the train to Oakland, California, where he founded the seminal Exhibit space. . He explores a multiverse of of sound worlds from the subatomic to the subharmonic with in this laboratory comprised of various oscillators , pulse generators, modulators, frequency shifters, and an ‘analog computer. ‘ He has released 4 albums as ANTIMATTER : Transfixion, Antimatter Vs. Antimatter, Our Lady of the Skies, and Reset.

Hamir Atwal – Drums/Electronics
Dahveed Behroozi – Keyboards/Synths

Hamir Atwal is an up-and-coming American drummer/composer based near Berkeley, CA. Drummer/Percussionist Hamir Atwal is a Berklee College of Music graduate. He has performed with the Glimpse Trio, tUneyArDs, Bill Laswell, Joe Lovano, and Ben Goldberg. He was also a guest clinician/teacher at schools which include: Oberlin College, Peabody Conservatory, Stanford University, CalArts, and the California Jazz Conservatory.

Dahveed Behroozi is a Brooklyn based Pianist and Composer primarily devoted to the independent jazz, classical and rock scenes. Dahveed’s playing has been described as highly expressive, lyrical and colorful by numerous publications nationwide. Dahveed recently recorded his first record entitled,Games with the bassist Thomas Morgan and the drummer Tim Bulkley. The record is comprised of all original material and was released in fall, 2012. In addition to performing and recording as a leader and soloist, Dahveed has regularly performed and recorded with groups led by Thomas Morgan, Billy Mintz, Dayna Stephens, Ed Neumeister, Todd Neufeld and Aaron Lington.

Jon Arkin – Drums/Electronics
Jon Arkin is a drummer/percussionist who is commonly found performing with a wide variety of artists, and has been a longtime fixture of the Bay Area music scene. He plays drums/laptop in the Schimscheimer Family Trio (with Kasey Knudsen and Michael Coleman), which has just released an album of original experimental-yet-tuneful songs entitled “Broken Home”.

Arkin’s newest work for solo drum set & laptop explores many aspects of the interaction between acoustic & electronic media: organic sounds versus synthesized sounds, human control versus computer control, free improvisation versus rigid composition. His self-designed, hybrid setup allows for both unpredictable performances and highly structured sequences—sometimes predetermined, other times left to the whims of artificial intelligence.

Active Music Series
Doors at 7:00 PM
Music at 7:30 PM
$5-15 sliding scale.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Omni Commons
BASEMENT
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland

May 10, 2016: Room 47, Pedro Lopes, & The Norman Conquest

ROOM 47 (John McCowen – clarinets / gabby fluke-mogul – violin / Adam Hirsch – saxophone)

Pedro Lopes – [turntable percussion, cymbals and modified needles]
Pedro Lopes is a turntablist metamorphosed into a percussionist.
When playing live he deconstructs his instrument, the turntable
s, into a vehicle of a rapid, post-scratch and post-jazz, musical dialog of analog intonation and acoustic overtones. In Pedro’s music the needles do not merely amplify the vibrations stored in the grooves of the vinyl records. For him, the needles are microscopes that enable us to hear otherwise
unheard micro-realities, such as the sound of a fingernail scratching
a membrane, a coin revolving as it falls, a brush dragged across a plastic surface. Pedro has been collaborating with artists such as Carlos Zíngaro, Reinhold Friedl, DJ Sniff, Imre Thormann, amongst many others, in a life entangled deeply with his research on interfaces and performance arts. This extra-musical investigations have led him to produce pieces for Transmediale, a Fundação de Serralves, Fylkingen, Ausland, and Goethe Institut.
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Website: plopesmusic.org
Most recent work: deadact.bandcamp.com
Video:

Active Music Series
Doors at 7:00 PM
Music at 7:30 PM
$5-15 sliding scale.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Omni Commons
BASEMENT
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland

March 8: Tonal Masher, Fred Frith/Nava Dunkelman Duo, & See Saw Quartet

Tonal Masher is the solo electroacoustic project of Aram Shelton. To find a new application for the use of his 1937 Conn alto saxophone, Shelton has chosen to remove the reed and mouthpiece, and work with the tones that are a result of feedback via microphone and amplification, and the percussive elements of keys and pads. Using a Max patcher that he has developed over several years, Shelton creates music that uses the unique harmonic palette of the instrument to create patient polyphony from a monophonic instrument, while highlighting the rhythmic side of the saxophone via key clicks and pad thumps.

Aram Shelton is a saxophonist, improviser and electronic musician from Oakland, California, where the projects Tonal Masher, Gold Age, and the Broken Trap Ensemble represent his music. He is connected to Chicago (where he lived from 1999 to 2005) through his Quartet, the cooperative sextet Fast Citizens and Jason Adasiewicz’ Rolldown. His playing and music are available through Delmark, Clean Feed, Cuneiform, 482 Music, Locust Music, MultiKulti, Edgetone, and his own Singlespeed Music.

Fred Frith/Nava Dunkelman Duo
Fred Frith is a songwriter, composer, improviser, and multi-instrumentalist best known for the reinvention of the electric guitar that began with Guitar Solos in 1974.
He learned his craft as both improviser and composer playing in rock bands, notably Henry Cow, and creating music in the recording studio. Much of his compositional output has been commissioned by choreographers and filmmakers, but his work has also been performed by Ensemble Modern, Hieronymus Firebrain, Arditti Quartet, Robert Wyatt, Bang on a Can All Stars, Concerto Köln, and Rova Sax Quartet, among quite a few others.

Nava Dunkelman is a Bay Area based percussionist and improviser. Born in Tokyo, Japan and raised in a multi-cultural environment by an American father and Indonesian mother, her musical interests span the globe from Japanese taiko to Indonesian gamelan to American marching band, and from classical to contemporary to the avant-garde. Nava studied percussion under Eugene Novotney at Humboldt State University before attending Mills College, where she studied with William Winant, Fred Frith, Maggi Payne, Zeena Parkins, and David Bernstein.
Since graduating with a degree in music performance in 2013, she has performed and collaborated with William Winant, Fred Frith, John Zorn, Ikue Mori, George Lewis and many others. She has performed classical and contemporary pieces with the William Winant Percussion Group, inkBoat, The Luna Ensemble, San Francisco Girls Chorus, among others.
She also formed the improvisational trio Dapplegray, as well as electro-percussion experimental noise duo IMA, and improvisational duo DunkelpeK.
Nava enjoys discovering her own musical language by exploring experimental approaches to communication, progression and space.

Mark Clifford’s See-Saw Quartet
A much sought after performer and improviser, Clifford is equally involved in free improvisation, new music, jazz, and rock; he is involved in multiple projects in the Bay Area and around the Country. His performance experience spans worldwide; he has had the honor of playing alongside an array of esteemed contemporaries, including: Jeff Parker, Kjell Nordeson, Ches Smith, Joan La Barbara, Aram Shelton, Colin Stranahan, Ron Miles, Scott Amendola, Tatsuya Nakatani, Danny Meyer, Lisa Mezzacappa, So Percussion, Oakland Active Orchestra, and has served as a percussionist with the Colorado Symphony Orchestra.

As a composer, Clifford keeps busy writing music for a wide range of projects, ensembles, and commissions. He is the leader of The Dirty Snacks Ensemble, an eclectic post jazz ensemble in which he serves as the composer, vibraphonist and vocalist.

Clifford’s recent writing employs strong conceptual parameters for long form works, such as basing compositional interval structures on the ratio of vertebrae in human spines in Fair Slope (2014). After improvising with his established parameters, he transcribes and orchestrates the results for the working ensemble. Throughout the composition process, Clifford works closely with the performers to emphasize each individual player’s strengths and interests.

Tue, March 8th, 2016 at Omni Commons, Oakland

Active Music Series
Doors at 7:00 PM
Music at 7:30 PM
$5-15 sliding scale.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Omni Commons
BASEMENT
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland

Feb 9: Gamelan X, Sult, & Collision Stories

Gamelan X draws inspiration from the clove and incense scented air of Bali, Indonesia, Gamelan X, “The Bay Area’s own Funkadelic of ethnomusicology” (SF Guardian), will be premiering my new piece entitled “Division,” written for the Balinese instruments of Gamelan X and inspired by the Sundanese gamelan music that Ed Garcia studied in West Java last year. The piece is an accompaniment to an original dance, choreographed and performed by Cia Garcia and Maurissa Dorn.
This will be a unique Gamelan X-perience, featuring several original Indonesian-inspired dances accompanied by original music composed by members of Gamelan X. Plus this will be our first performance using the instruments from our Reflective Resonance project from Burning Man 2015: an array of aluminum gongs hung vertically on 7-foot frames!!

SULT is an acoustic noise trio with members from Oslo and Oakland. Their music reflects the noise genre’s concern with layers of sonic texture, though completely performed on acoustic instruments. Individual sounds run precariously aside one another as independent streams, and alternately blur into a unified mass.
“They combine to create a scrap-heap collage of dry, brittle, abstract sounds, which they control with exquisite patience in slowly developing cycles of tension and release.” — Peter Margasak, Chicago Reader
http://sult.bandcamp.com/

COLLISION STORIES is a four-piece abstract sound brigade based in San Francisco, CA.
Members: Jorge Bachmann, Bryan Day, Michael Gendreau, and Mason Jones.
Instruments may include: analog and digital synthesizers, guitar, bass, turntables, percussion, theremin, and handmade sound machines.
https://collisionstories.bandcamp.com/
http://www.collisionstories.com/

Active Music Series
Doors at 7:00 PM
Music at 7:30 PM
$5-15 sliding scale.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Omni Commons
BASEMENT
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland

Jan 12: Fistortion (Gorlen/Kim/Korber/Pedersen), ready box (Dimuzio/Greenlief), & OMMO (Moon/Otte)

Fistortion is an American coming of age drama that tells the story of four boys and a mild mannered monster who go on a hike across the countryside to view the dead body of a missing child.

OMMO is an electro-acoustic duo comprised of Julie Moon and Adria Otte. Launched in 2014 with collaborative projects inspired by shared interests in Korean diasporic identity, ritual and impressionistic harmonies, the duo seeks opportunities to explore past traditions through a contemporary and conscious framework, employing varying configurations of piano, voice, violin and electronics in original compositions.

ready box
Thomas Dimuzio – live electronics, sampling
Phillip Greenlief – tenor saxophone

Pairing extended technique, multi phonics, and circular breathing of saxophone virtuoso Philip Greenlief with, live sampling and processing pioneer, Thomas Dimuzio, ready box transforms the power of reeds and real-time musique concrete into soaring to new realms. Two masters of their instruments forming an elemental core where air meets electronics. A paradoxical and no boundaries aesthetic fuse nuance, bombast, consonance, noise, density and space into an approach rapt in musicality and the moment.

Active Music Series
Doors at 7pm
Music promptly at 7:30pm
$5-15 sliding scale.
activemusic.wordpress.com

Omni Commons
BASEMENT
4799 Shattuck Ave, Oakland