On the Winter Solstice of 2014 Adam Rudolph convened 11 of New York City's finest and most adventurous guitarists: Rez Abbasi, Nels Cline, Liberty Ellman, David Gilmore, Miles Okazaki, Marvin Sewell, Damon Banks, Marco Capelli, Jerome Harris, Joel Harrison and Kenny Wessel.
Rudolph, Adam / GO:Organic Guitar Orchestra
Turning Towards The Light
Released in: USA
"On the Winter Solstice of 2014 - the Northern Hemisphere's longest night of the year - composer, bandleader & percussionist Adam Rudolph convened 11 of New York City's finest and most adventurous guitarists in a New Jersey studio for a most auspicious event: the debut of Go: Organic Guitar Orchestra, his all-guitar orchestra. In attendance were guitarists Rez Abbasi, Nels Cline, Liberty Ellman, David Gilmore, Miles Okazaki, and Marvin Sewell, all on electric guitars and effects; Damon Banks on bass guitar; Marco Capelli on acoustic guitar, effects; Jerome Harris on electric guitar, electric bass guitar, and lap steel guitar; Joel Harrison on electric guitar and national steel guitar; and Kenny Wessel on electric guitar and banjo. With Rudolph at the helm, conducting musical charts and creative improvisational energy, the orchestra began to play. The result is this extraordinary release, Turning Towards the Light.
"Turning Towards the Light is the 10th release in Rudolph's series of recordings for Go: Organic Orchestra. His previous recordings for Go: Organic Orchestra featured an array of instrumentation to bring to life his rhythmically unique creative music. But for Turning Towards the Light, Rudolph envisioned a new kind of orchestral sound conveyed by a single instrument: guitars, whose strings, coaxed by the right hands, are capable of unleashing an orchestra of different musical sounds. He says: "I try to do something new with each performance and recording. This time I wanted to experiment with a new kind of orchestration. I felt that with their range of sound and rhythm, these 11 electric guitars could generate a sonic palate that had never been heard before. I was looking for a new kind of "Future Orchestra" - and I think we found it.
Rudolph grew up and began playing music on the South Side of Chicago, performing with artists like Fred Anderson. By 1978 he was touring Europe with Don Cherry. Hailed by the New York Times as "a pioneer in world music", in 1977 Rudolph began his collaborations with kora player Foday Musa Suso, followed by his work with the Gnawa musician Hassan Hakmoun, L. Shankar and other musicians from around the globe. His longest and most significant collaboration was with the great Yusef Lateef; from 1988 until Yusef's passing in 2013 they performed as a duet and collaborated as composers on many large ensemble projects. "Even when I started focusing more on my own music projects in the early 1990's, I would always make the time to tour and record with Yusef. I learned so much from him not only about music, but how to live a deeper more spiritual life."
Since 1992, Rudolph's primary outlet for his unique compositional vision has been his Moving Pictures ensemble. But in 2001, he founded Go: Organic Orchestra to expand his instrumentation. "I had always been interested in the idea of an orchestral concept of world music, and fascinated not only with the sounds but also with the organizing concepts that structure orchestrations from around the world. ...the colotomic structure of Javanese Gamelan or the thematic fibers of a Bantu drum and trumpet orchestra are all valid ways of organizing orchestra. At the same time my approach to orchestra comes out of my work since 1974 in electronic music. With Go: Organic Orchestra, I feel the resonance of iconic electronic music composers such as Pierre Schafer, Stockhausen or Subotnick. And of course I am, like many creative musicians today, a student of the great 20th Century composers of the European tradition - Messian, Carter, Ligeti, Bartok and my personal favorite, Toru Takemitsu."
Rudolph has integrated and transformed these influences into a highly personalized language, a language whose rhythmic component, which he calls "Cyclic Verticalism," combines polyrhythms (from African music) and rhythm cycles (from Indian music). Rudolph's Go: Organic Orchestra has performed worldwide at music festivals and served residencies in such countries as USA, Turkey, Mexico, Italy, Finland, Denmark and Norway."-Cuneiform
• Show Bio for Nels Cline
"Nels Courtney Cline (born January 4, 1956 in Los Angeles) is an American guitarist and composer. He has been the guitarist for the band Wilco since 2004.
He first came to prominence in the 1980s playing jazz, often in collaboration with his twin brother Alex Cline, a drummer. Since then, he has worked with a wide range of musicians in punk and alternative rock, notably Mike Watt and Thurston Moore. He also leads the groups the Nels Cline Singers and Nels Cline Trio.
Cline was named the 82nd greatest guitarist of all time by Rolling Stone magazine in November 2011."-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nels_Cline)
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• Show Bio for Liberty Ellman
"Based in Brooklyn New York, guitarist / composer Liberty Ellman has performed and or recorded with a host of stand out creative artists including: Joe Lovano, Myra Melford, Wadada Leo Smith, Butch Morris, Vijay Iyer, Steve Lehman, Greg Osby, Rudresh Mahanthappa, Nels Cline, Somi, Matana Roberts, Ledisi, Michele Rosewoman, Adam Rudolph, Josh Roseman, Barney McAll, Okkyung Lee, Steven Bernstein, Ben Goldberg and John Zorn. In 2014 Ellman worked with Jason Moran on Luanda Kinshasa, a video installation by visionary filmmaker Stan Douglas.
Mr. Ellman is perhaps best known for his long tenure in Henry Threadgill's groundbreaking ensemble, Zooid. The group has recorded several critically lauded albums. Their most recent recording "In For A Penny, In For A Pound" earned a Pulitzer prize for Mr. Threadgill. In addition to playing guitar, Mr. Ellman is credited as producer and mixing engineer on that recording. He has mixed and mastered many other recordings as well, including Gregory Porter's "Be Good," which was nominated for a Grammy.
Ellman has released 4 of his own critically acclaimed albums: Orthodoxy, Tactiles, Ophiuchus Butterfly, and 2015's Radiate on Pi Recordings. His compositional style has been described as "At once highly controlled and recklessly inventive," and the Wall Street Journal said: "Ellman, along with his peers, is helping to define post millennial jazz." Voted #1 Rising Star Guitarist in the 2016 Downbeat Critics Poll, he was also honored in the 2015 Jazz Times expanded critics poll, as one of the four guitarists of the year alongside Bill Frisell, John Scofield and Julian Lage.
Liberty Ellman has also worked beyond the jazz world: hip hop artists Midnight Voices, and The Coup, dance producer DJ Joe Claussell, and worked on remixes of N'Dea Davenport, Chico Freeman, Ann Dyer, Ayo and others. He also made an appearance on the Grammy nominated Groove Collective record, People People Music Music."-Liberty Ellman Website (http://www.libertyellman.com/bio/)
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• Show Bio for Miles Okazaki
"Miles Okazaki is an American musician based in New York City. He is known for his technical command of the guitar, his rhythmic approach to improvisation and composition, and his work in contemporary music theory. Okazaki grew up in Port Townsend, Washington, a small town near the Olympic Mountains in the Pacific Northwest. He got his first classical guitar at age 6, and began playing regular gigs on electric guitar by age 14, after studying for several years at the Centrum Jazz Workshop. He received many awards as a guitarist throughout his early years, and eventually placed 2nd in the Thelonious Monk International Guitar Competition.
Okazaki moved to New York City in 1997 to pursue a career in music and begin writing his own material. His teacher on guitar at this time was Rodney Jones, who recommended him for his first gig, with Stanley Turrentine. Okazaki spent four years on the road with vocalist Jane Monheit, while also writing and rehearsing the music for his first album, Mirror, which was released independently. The album received a "Critics Pick" in the New York Times, calling it "a work of sustained collectivity as well as deep intricacy." He expanded to a septet for his second album, Generations, described by pianist Vijay Iyer "the sonic equivalent of Escher or Borges, but with real emotional heft,". His third album, Figurations, was recorded live with a quartet, and was selected as one of the New York Times top ten albums of 2012, described by Ben Ratliff as "slowly evolving puzzles of brilliant jazz logic." In January of 2016 Okazaki recorded a new album, Trickster, that will be released later this year. Okazaki wrote, produced, and illustrated these albums.
As a sideman, Okazaki works in many areas, ranging from Standard repertoire to experimental music. Recently he has been seen most frequently as the guitarist for Steve Coleman and Five Elements. In the last few years, he has worked with a wide variety of artists including Kenny Barron, Jonathan Finlayson, Amir El Saffar, Adam Rudolph, Dan Weiss, Linda Oh, Darcy James Argue, Jane Monheit, Vijay Iyer, Francois Moutin, Doug Hammond, Carl Allen, Ohad Talmor, Mary Halvorson, John Zorn, Jen Shyu, Mark Giuliana, Patrick Cornelius, Rajna Swaminatham, Matt Mitchell, Craig Taborn, Tony Moreno, Ben Wendel, Donny McCaslin, and many others.
Okazaki currently teaches guitar at the University of Michigan. His first book, Fundamentals of Guitar, was released in 2015. He has also taught at the Banff Institute, The New School, Queens College, The Juilliard School, Amsterdam Conservatory, and many other institutions. Outside of guitar, his past teachers include Anthony Davis (composition), Ganesh Kumar (Carnatic percussion), and Kendall Briggs (counterpoint). His awards and grants include Chamber Music America's "New Works" (2007), Chamber Music America's "French-American Jazz Exchange" (2009), the Jazz Gallery and Jerome Foundations Residency Commission (2010), the American Music Center's Composer Assistance Program (2011), the Mid-Atlantic Arts Foundation's US Artists International grant (2012), the Rockefeller Brother's Fund Artist Residency (2012), and the Jazz Gallery Mentorship program (2015). He holds degrees from Harvard University, Manhattan School of Music, and The Juilliard School, and lives in Brooklyn, NY."-Miles Okazaki Website (http://www.milesokazaki.com/biography/)
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Catalog ID: CUN-CD-406
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Recorded live at Orange Sound Studio in New Jersey on December 21st, 2014 by James Dellatacoma.
Adam Rudolph-composer, conductor
Rez Abbasi-electric guitar, effects
Nels Cline-electric guitar, effects
Liberty Ellman-electric guitar, effects
David Gilmore-electric guitar, effects
Miles Okazaki-electric guitar, effects
Marvin Sewell-electric guitar, effects
Damon Banks-bass guitar
Marco Capelli-acoustic guitar, effects
Jerome Harris-electric guitar, electric bass guitar, lap steel guitar
Joel Harrison-electric guitar, national steel guitar
Kenny Wessel-electric guitar, banjo
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