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Houle, Francois / Alexander Hawkins / Harris Eisenstadt: You Have Options (Songlines)

"This new international chamber-jazz trio with classical and avant leanings features beautiful tunes and tasty improvisation. Canadian clarinetist Francois Houle, British pianist Alexander Hawkins, and NY-based Canadian drummer Harris E...
 

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product information:


UPC: 774355162828

Label: Songlines
Catalog ID: SGL1628-2
Squidco Product Code: 26527

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2018
Country: Canada
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at Afterlife Studios, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, on July 5th, 2016, by John Raham.


Personnel:

Francois Houle-clarinet

Alexander Hawkins-piano

Harris Eisenstadt-drums

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Artist Biographies:

Francois Houle (born August 17, 1961, Lachine): "I am a Canadian clarinetist who embraces pretty much any music where the clarinet is present, or has a bit of profile or history. Although I am classically trained, I have not followed the traditional career path associated with the kind of classical training I came out of.

I studied at McGill University with Emilio Iacurto (the legendary, long-time principal clarinetist of the Montreal Symphony Orchestra) and at Yale University with Keith Wilson (whose contribution to the clarinet world is unparalleled). I've had the privilege of participating in masterclasses with some of the world's finest clarinet players, including David Shifrin, Richard Stoltzman and Alan Hacker.

It was Alan Hacker who actually opened the door for me to explore new technical and musical possibilities on the clarinet. Having been part of Fires of London and a close collaborator with composers such as Peter Maxwell-Davies, Alan's insatiable curiosity and deep scholarship inspired me to look for my own personal approach. Following a brief visit to his home in the UK in the late 80's I spent some time in Paris practicing and researching clarinet new music repertoire. At that time I still didn't know what I was going to do with my life, except that I had a deep desire to "make it" in the music scene. It was during this period that I discovered the music of Steve Lacy.

Steve Lacy's career actually began as a dixieland clarinetist, eventually shifting to the soprano saxophone, an instrument very few jazz musicians had investigated since the great Sydney Bechet due to its range, smaller embouchure and faulty intonation. Steve dedicated his life to bringing this instrument at the forefront of creative music (legend has it that he turned John Coltrane on to the soprano's expressive qualities).

At the time I had one occasion of hearing him play live at the New Morning jazz club, and bought a newly released duo recording called "Paris Blues" (Owl Records, 1987) with the great Gil Evans on piano. Heading back to Canada, that was the only music I could listen to for quite a while, being transfixed by Lacy's and Evan's telepathic playing. It was the first time that I had found a jazz performance that rivalled with the finest chamber music making I was then more familiar with. It was a game changer as far as I was concerned. It opened the door for further exploration and discoveries; Anthony Braxton, John Carter, Jimmy Giuffre, all important figures in the development of creative music on the clarinet. It is interesting and deplorable to note that not once were these names ever mentioned in all my years of university clarinet seminars and lessons. It was only a few years later that he agreed to meet with me for one on one lessons at his Paris apartment. His main advice to me was to stick with the clarinet, and forge ahead with my musical thoughts and ideas, no matter how difficult the road ahead may be.

After a stint at the Banff Centre, where I worked on my technique and practiced improvisation (the centre has a great library with an extensive jazz and creative music collection), I relocated to Vancouver in the winter of 1989, where I began playing on the creative music scene and met many musicians who eventually became fantastic collaborators; Claude Ranger, Roger Baird, Tony Wilson, amongst many others. At the time, the New Orchestra Workshop Society was approaching its golden years, with the founding of the legendary Glass Slipper, the "go to" venue for creative music on the West Coast. The Vancouver Jazz Festival was well on its way to establishing itself as one of the most innovative international music happening, not only programming some of the biggest names in the business, such as Miles Davis and Wynton Marsalis, but also the most creative musicians on the planet; Cecil Taylor, Evan Parker, John Zorn, Dave Douglas, Anthony Braxton, William Parker, and a whole sleuth of European 1st generation of improvisors such as Misha Mengelberg, Han Benning, ICP, AMM, and the Italian Instabile Orchestra. It was at the 1992 Jazz Festival that I had my first high profile gig, my first band "Et Cetera" sharing the bill with the Steve Lacy Sextet!

As I was making my first steps in the improvised community, I also became involved with the contemporary music scene, collaborating with composers such as John Oliver and Paul Dolden, as well as freelancing with established organizations; Vancouver New Music, Vancouver Pro Musica. In 1992 I became a founding member of the Standing Wave ensemble. My activities in both creative music and new music allowed me to forge a strong profile, eventually expanding to collaborations with international musicians, and getting international touring opportunities. Some long standing collaborations were forged during that fruitful period, with luminaries such as Benoît Delbecq and Joëlle Léandre among others.

I have since been constantly involved in the advancement of creative music, pursuing collaborative projects with composers and musicians of all persuasions. My work continues to test the boundaries, looking for new vistas and connections with listeners everywhere."

-Francois Houle Website (https://www.francoishoule.ca/about)
12/5/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Alexander Hawkins is a composer, pianist, organist, and bandleader who is 'unlike anything else in modern creative music' (Ni Kantu) and whose recent work has reached a 'dazzling new apex' (Downbeat). A largely self-taught improviser, he works in a vast array of creative contexts. His own highly distinctive soundworld is forged through the search to reconcile both his love of free improvisation and profound fascination with composition and structure. In 2012, he was chosen as a member of the first edition of the London Symphony Orchestra's 'Soundhub' scheme for young composers. He also received a major BBC commission in late 2012 for a fifty minute composition: One Tree Found was first performed and broadcast in March 2013, and was subsequently performed and broadcast for the WDR in Cologne (2014). He has also twice been commissioned by the London Jazz Festival (once as composer, once as an arranger), and by the Cheltenham Jazz Festival (2016).

An in-demand sideman, Hawkins continues to be heard live and on record with vast array of contemporary leaders of all generations, including the likes of Evan Parker, John Surman, Joe McPhee, Mulatu Astatke, Wadada Leo Smith, Anthony Braxton, Marshall Allen, Rob Mazurek, Taylor Ho Bynum, and Harris Eisenstadt, amongst many others. He has also been noted in recent years for his performances in the bands of legendary South African drummer, Louis Moholo-Moholo. Concert appearances have taken him to club, concert and festival stages worldwide."

-Alexander Hawkins Website (http://www.alexanderhawkinsmusic.com/biographyimages.html)
12/5/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"One of only a handful of drummers equally well known for his work as a composer, Brooklyn-based Harris Eisenstadt (b. Toronto, 1975) is among the most individual and prolific musicians of his generation. His resume includes studies with some of the most respected names in jazz and improvised music, West African and Afro-Cuban drumming, and performance credits in jazz, film, theater, poetry, dance, contemporary concert music and opera.

Eisenstadt has performed all over the globe, received grants from organizations such as Meet The Composer, American Composers Forum, Canada Council for the Arts, and appeared on more than 60 recordings since 2000, including twenty as a leader. Recordings of his compositions often appear on the Songlines, Clean Feed, No Business, and 482 Music labels, and are consistently included on critics' best-of lists. Recent honors: Rising Star Percussion Percussion, Arranger, and Composer categories of the Downbeat international critics poll; Best Album, Drummer, Composer categories of the El Intruso international critics poll.

His first work for orchestra, Palimpsest, was premiered by the American Composers Orchestra, as part of the Jazz Composers Orchestra Institute at Miller Theater, Columbia University (2011). Eisenstadt's second orchestral work, Four Songs, commissioned by the Brooklyn Conservatory Community Orchestra, was premiered at the Brooklyn Museum (2013). His first string quartet, Whatever Will Happen, That Will Also Be, was premiered as part of Eisenstadt's twelve-set residency at The Stone in NYC (2015). As a writer and radio producer, he has contributed to National Public Radio and AfroPop Worldwide. Eisenstadt is also an active AfroCuban batá drummer in New York and a longtime researcher in African and diaspora vernacular traditions. He has travelled to West Africa twice (Gambia, Senegal) to research Mandinka and Wolof music, and to Cuba twice (Matanzas, Havana) to research Afro-Cuban music."

-Harris Eisenstadt Website (http://www.harriseisenstadt.com/bio/)
12/5/2018

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.
track listing:


1. Clue 5:19

2. Art 7:16

3. Run Riot 3:21

4. The Pitts 6:18

5. Prayer 6:19

6. Advice 4:21

7. Largo 5:34

8. You Have Options, I Have A Lawyer 6:46

9. Le Concombre De Chicoutimi 6:14

10. Dusk 7:19
sample the album:








descriptions, reviews, &c.

"This new international chamber-jazz trio with classical and avant leanings features beautiful tunes and tasty improvisation. Canadian clarinetist Francois Houle, British pianist Alexander Hawkins, and NY-based Canadian drummer Harris Eisenstadt are highly regarded leaders and genuinely sympatico. The program features original compositions by all three plus pieces by Steve Lacy, Andrew Hill and Charles Ives. The group first came together for the 2014 Vancouver jazz festival and played some wild improvisational music but the record is mostly on the more lyrical and contemplative side. Houle and Eisenstadt and Hawkins and Eisenstadt have long histories of performing together, but Alex and Francois had not met previously. Their performing blend is different from previous Houle projects on Songlines with European pianists Benoit Delbecq and Havard Wiik - perhaps more classically poised and spacious, but warm rather than cool, and with an edge when needed. Harris's fastidious, highly textured drumming is the perfect percussive complement. Both Houle and Eisenstadt have extensive back catalogue on Songlines."-Songlines

Related Categories of Interest:

In Stock, Not Yet Cataloged

Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
Canadian Composition & Improvisation
Vancouver and Western Canada
Trio Recordings


Other Releases With These Artists:
Eisenstadt, Harris / Mivos Quartet
Whatever Will Happen That Will Also Be [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)
Konstrukt & Alexander Hawkins
Live at Cafe OTO [VINYL 2 LPs]
(Holidays Records)
Eisenstadt, Harris Canada Day (w/ Wooley / Bauder / Niggenkemper)
On Parade in Parede
(Clean Feed)
Eisenstadt, Harris
Recent Developments
(Songlines)
Hawkins, Alexander / Evan Parker
Leaps in Leicester
(Clean Feed)
Eisenstadt, Harris
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(Clean Feed)
Wooley, Nate Quintet (Wooley / Sinton / Moran / Opsvik / Eisenstadt)
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(Clean Feed)
Eisenstadt, Harris
September, Canada Day IV
(Songlines)
Convergence Quartet (Taylor Ho Bynum / Alexander Hawkins / Dominic Lash / Harris Eisenstadt)
Owl Jacket [VINYL]
(NoBusiness)
Eisenstadt, Harris (w/ Moore, Schoenbeck, Dresser)
Golden State II
(Songlines)
Moholo-Moholo, Louis Quartet (Hawkins / Edwards / Yarde)
4 Blokes
(Ogun)
Decoy with Joe Mcphee
Spontaneous Combustion [2 CDs]
(Otoroku)
Moholo-Moholo, Louis Unit
For the Blue Notes
(Ogun)
Gregorio, Guillermo
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(Hat [now] ART)
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Houle, Francois Trio
Schizosphere
(Red Toucan)
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(Red Toucan)
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(Clean Feed)
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(Clean Feed)
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Live In Oxford
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Oto
(Bo Weavil Recordings)
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Live at Sons D'Hiver
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New Rules for Noise
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Wilson, Tony Sextet
Lowest Note
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CHANGES TO blind + Blue Sausage Infant

(Intangible Arts)
Kaufmann / Dresser / Eisenstadt
Starmelodics
(Nuscope)
Eisenstadt, Harris
Guewel
(Clean Feed)
Houle, Francois
Aerials
(Drip Audio)
Recommended & Related Releases:
Other Recommended Releases:
Konstrukt & Alexander Hawkins
Live at Cafe OTO [VINYL 2 LPs]
(Holidays Records)
Hawkins, Alexander / Evan Parker
Leaps in Leicester
(Clean Feed)
Decoy with Joe Mcphee
Spontaneous Combustion [2 CDs]
(Otoroku)
Gregorio, Guillermo
Faktura
(Hat [now] ART)
Houle, Francois Trio
Schizosphere
(Red Toucan)
Houle, Francois
Au Coeur du Litige [2 CDs]
(Spool)
Convergence Quartet (Bynum / Einsenstadt / Hawkins / Lash)
Song / Dance
(Clean Feed)
Leandre / Houle / Strid
Live at Sons D'Hiver
(Ayler)
Lee, Peggy Band
Sounds from the Big House
(Spool)
Grdina's Box Cutter
New Rules for Noise
(Spool)
Box Cutter (Grdina / Houle / Silins / Leowen)
Unlearn
(Spool)
Wilson, Tony Sextet
Lowest Note
(Spool)
Houle, Francois
Aerials
(Drip Audio)



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