Mini-Curations - July 27, 2014

This evening will feature presentations from Anna White, Chris Icasiano, Ray Larsen, Inge Chiles, Austin Larkin, Aaron Otheim, Evan Woodle, and Christian Pincock, followed by the jam session as usual.

Joanne de Mars - July 20, 2014

San Francisco Bay area cellist Joanne de Mars is a graduate of the San Francisco Conservatory of Music, where she studied with Jennifer Culp. Originally from Seattle, Joanne graduated from the University of Washington with her BA, BM, and BS. She has been a member of contemporary ensemble Wild Rumpus since 2012, and an active solo and chamber music performer since moving to the bay area. Joanne has a wide variety of interest in all styles of music, and has performed with jazz, pop, classical, and contemporary groups, including Butch Morris’s conduction ensemble, Kanye West, Vertigo Quartet, and Maestro Shajarian, Iranian singer and icon.

Dio Jean-Baptiste - July 13, 2014

I will be having some original compositions performed by the DJBE (Dio Jean-Baptiste Ensemble) featuring James Porter and Luke Bergman, both on electric bass. The themes and concepts of these particular compositions are:
  • Simplicity
  • Focus
  • Repetition
  • Intensity
These are the aims and goals in which I am constantly trying to further develop in myself, and in my music. 

Gus Carns - July 6, 2014

Gus presented four pieces for solo keyboard:

Piece 1 - Sonic exploration of few notes

Piece 2 - Collage of several contrasting textures

Piece 3 - Free harmonic progression of few voices 

Piece 4 - Completely free

Improv 1: Geoff Traeger (voice and effects), Austin Larkin (violin), Evan Woodle (drums)

Improv 2: Bill Kautz (euphonium), Rachel Nesvig (violin), Dio-Jean-Baptiste (drums), Luke Bergman (bass), Andrew Olmstead (keyboard)

Improv 3: Tai Taitano (drums), Carol Weber (voice), Willem De Koch (trombone), James Porter (bass)

Improv 4: Riley Mulherkar (trumpet), Tommy Whiteside (drums), Luke Bergman (bass), Rachel Nesvig (violin)

Improv 5: Adrian Noteboom (tenor sax), Matt Setzler (alto sax), Michelle Hutchinson (drums), Andrew Olmstead (keyboard), Austin Larkin (voice)

Improv 6: Christian Pincock (trombone), Dio-Jean-Baptiste (drums), James Porter (bass), Gus Carns (keyboard)

Improv 7: Geoff Traeger (voice and effects), Bill Kautz (euphonium)

Improv 8: Carol Weber (voice), Adrian Noteboom (tenor sax), Luke Bergman (bass), Dio-Jean-Baptiste (keyboard), Greg Campbell (drums)

Improv 9: Evan Woodle (drums), Matt Setzler (alto sax), Andrew Olmstead (keyboard), James Porter (bass), Christian Pincock (trombone)

Gus Carns - July 6th, 2014


I will improvise several pieces for “piano” (aka the piano patch on my Kurzweil) based on pre-conceived sets of parameters.

The first piece utilizes a narrow dynamic and sonic range in order to make changes in details of sound structural and expressive. Pitch material is minimal, and inconsequential in terms of pitch structures, as it is primarily the carrier of sound structures, and as a result the sounds of the notes dictate the progression of pitch.

The second piece is what I hope to be an intuitive unraveling of ideas through a web of several drastically different pianistic textures. My aim is not to form a collage of disparate ideas or sections, but rather to let the contrasting elements interact with and influence each other’s trajectory, to varying levels of drama, hopefully in a way that feels organic and natural.

The third piece will be a free harmonic exploration. I will try to limit myself to four voices and move at a slow and steady pace, in order to ensure that I make spontaneous decisions dictated by the natural progression of the music. Any quality of chord may reveal itself in the progression, as long as the voice leading is intentional.

I will then freely improvise one final piece, and my only priority is to not make it too long!

I don’t have much of an agenda for the jam session, but I encourage those of you who play to attempt to eliminate all “fluff” in your playing and search for the notes, ideas, gestures, and sounds that intuitively resonate the most, with you and with the collective evolving musical organism, to trust your intuition, and to embrace silence, viewing it as equal in compositional value and just as essential to the musical experience as sound.

Thanks so much for reading and to those of you who come, and I look forward to the music! And I hope everyone had a happy and safe 4th :)