Friday, July 09, 2010

valley sessions January—May

I've not really been blogging much about this for some reason, but for almost the whole of this year (minus the time I was in the States this spring) I've been playing music once or twice a week at a nearby cottage with friends Miriam (violin, voice) and Tom (bass). It's pretty free modal jamming, quite similar to the way Children of the Drone tend to play (but without me having consciously tried to make it that way). Although we're a very mellow, unambitious little ensemble, never having even discussed the possibility of 'getting a set together' or seeking opportunities to perform, the music is definitely going somewhere, after tenuous beginnings.

Tom's got incredibly broad musical tastes, always switching me on to new stuff, as well as a shared enthusiasm for Phil Lesh's bass playing. Miriam's the daughter of the celebrated late bebop saxophonist Sal Nistico and jazz vocalist Rachel Gould, so there's a strong jazz current in her singing and playing (but she also played orchestral violin while growing up in Holland). We've had a couple of guests join us — Phil from Madame Molotof once (melodion, chalameau, tenor sax), and Adam from the Veg Box Cafe (various percussion) more recently.

Not surprisingly, I've been recording all of these sessions. I managed to find some time recently to distill the Jan—March and May sessions down to the best bits, and uploaded them.

Listen Here (Jan—March)
Listen Here (May)

Listeners will notice various peripheral sounds (Miriam cooking while just Tom and I play saz/bass jams, nightingales singing in the garden, etc.) Most recently, but not included in these collections, we jammed over the audio commentary of the last few minutes of the Uruguay v. Netherlands World Cup semifinal.


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