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Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra: SCHWEBEN Ay - but can ye ? (Maya)

The Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra commissioned bassist and composer Barry Guy to create this mostly graphic work that unifies composed and improvised passages focusing on small units within the larger structure.

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product information:

UPC: 7640120198701

Label: Maya
Catalog ID: MCD1201
Squidco Product Code: 17347

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2012
Country: Ireland
Packaging: Jewel Tray
Recorded live at Stringfest double bass Festival, Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama on March 19th, 2009 by Alistair MacDonald.


Gerry Rossi-prepared piano

Peter Nicholson-cello

Matthew Studdert-Kennedy-flute

Chris Barclay-trombone

George Burt-guitar

Aileen Campbell-voice

John Burgess-bass clarinet, tenor saxophone

Catriona McKay-harp

Emma Roche-flute

George Murray-trombone

Frances Direen-violin

Una MacGlone-doublebass

Raymond MacDonald-soprano saxophone, alto saxophone

Nick Fells-laptop

Neil Davidson-guitar

Armin Sturm-doublebass

Nicola MacDonald-voice

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track listing:

1. Edwin Morgan Reads "Ay, But Can Ye?" 0:25

2. Schweben - Ay, But Can Ye? 48:08

3. Edwin Morgan Speaks About Vladimir Mayakovsky 6:47

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Compositional Forms
European Improv, Free Jazz & Related

sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Important for this composition commissioned by the Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra from Barry Guy, is the unity of composed and improvised passages, the concern for the capabilities and strengths of individual players, the way in which small groups are part of the larger structures. Based on "Ay, but can ye?" a Russian poem translated into Scots by Edwin Morgan and using images of Wassily Kandinsky, this mostly graphically notated score is a musical adventure for the players as well as the listeners.

Other than providing the text for the vocalist(s) "Ay, but can ye ?" it proposed an interesting play on words with the German "Schweben" (To Float). The graphic controls the overall musical movement, but also asks some players to float inside and outside the boundaries and begs the question "but can ye?" - a question we often ask ourselves in daily life."-Maya

Artist Biographies:

"George Murray began playing the piano and trombone aged 9. He played in Bodmin School Band and Cornwall Youth Orchestra and Jazz Orchestra before going on to study and Trinity College of Music in London.

George has performed and recorded in wide variety of contexts, in a number of innovative ensembles.

In contemporary music he has appeared as a guest soloist with Scottish Clarinet Quartet and performed regularly with the Glasgow based contemporary music group Symposia.

George was a member of Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra through which he has had the opportunity of working and recording with George Lewis, Maggie Nichols, Barry Guy and Evan Parker in a variety of different contexts. He has also recorded in Germany with Saxophonist John Tchicai and Joachim Irmler.

George has also been working as a Music Therapist and teacher for the last 12 years. He is passionate about music, and its benefits, people respond to music in a fantastic way. He is interested in person-centred learning and working with his pupils to help them to identify and fulfill their goals."

-Music Teachers UK (

"Raymond MacDonald co-leads The Burt/MacDonald Quartet and is a founder member and key player in The Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra. He also performs with The Scottish Jazz Composers Ensemble and the saxophone quartet Rich in Knuckles. He has recently collaborated Lol Coxhill, Keith Tippett, Harry Beckett, Evan Parker, Gunter Baby Sommer, Fred Frith, Keith Rowe, George Lewis, Maggie Nicols, Satoko Fujii, Ken Hyder, Natsuki Tamura, Steve Beresford, Mike Zerang, and Fred Longberg-holm.

Other work includes composing and performing for film, television, theatre and collaborations with visual artists, including commissioned work for Martin Boyce, Simon Starling and Christine Borland. He collaborated with David Byrne on David McKenzie's film Young Adam.

In December 2005 he made a solo tour of Japan and in July 2006 performed with Josh Abrams and Miguel Carvalhais at The Glasgow International Jazz festival."

-Creative Sources (

Other Releases With These Artists:
Recommended & Related Releases:
London & Glasgow Improvisers Orchestras
Separately & Together (Freedom of the City 2007)
Rich In Knuckles (Heinze / Reiserer / MacDonald, Wilson)
Light in Dark Corners
(Creative Sources)
MacDonald, Raymond / Sommer, Gunter Baby
Delphinius & Lyra
(Clean Feed)
Other Recommended Releases:
Orchestra Of The Upper Atmosphere
Shetland Improvisers Orchestra
First Steps
Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra & George Lewis
Artificial Life 2007
Stevens / Rutherford / Parker / Guy
One Four and Two Twos (1978/79/92)
Parker / Schlippenbach / Guy / Lovens / Lytton
Homburger, Maya
Lysandra + Sonata In C-dur + Partita In E-dur

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