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Fullman, Ellen / David Gamper w/ Stuart Dempster: Pink Sea Thrift [VINYL] (fo'c'sle)

Six works by iconic composer Ellen Fullman in a duo with David Gamper, an original member of Pauline Oliveros' Deep Listening Band — ecstatic and mesmerizing improvisations recorded in the resonant space of the Headlands Center for the Arts in Marin, CA — plus 2 tracks of a duo between Ellen Fullman and Deep Listening Band founding member Stuart Dempster on trombone & didjeridu.

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product information:

Label: fo'c'sle
Catalog ID: FSCL-001
Squidco Product Code: 29729

Format: LP
Condition: New
Released: 2018
Country: USA
Packaging: LP
Recorded at the Headlands Center for the Arts, in Marin, California, in February, 2009, by The Norman Conquest.


Ellen Fullman-long string instrument

David Gamper-natural flutes, bells, conch, melodica, electronics

Stuart Dempster-didjeridu, trombone

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Artist Biographies:

"Ellen Fullman has been developing the Long String Instrument, an installation of dozens of wires fifty feet or more in length since the early 1980s. This project encompasses the study of Just Intonation tuning theory, a compositional practice centered on string harmonics, experiments with various wire alloys and gauges, the development of a tablature graphic notation system, and wooden resonator design and fabrication. The enveloping nature of the rich acoustic tones produced by The Long String Instrument evokes a sensation of being inside of a musical instrument. Awards include: Guggenheim Fellowship, Music Composition; Foundation for Contemporary Arts "Grants to Artists" Award; DAAD "Artists-In-Berlin Program" residency; and Japan-US Friendship Commission/NEA "Creative Artist Exchange Fellowship for Japan". In 2016, Fullman was the Distinguished Alumni Speaker and Guest Critic at the Kansas City Art Institute. Her recordings include: The Long String Instrument (Superior Viaduct, 2015) first issued on Apollo Records in 1985 and selected as the number one reissue for 2015 by the Wire; Ort (Choose Records, 2004) produced by Berlin based collaborator Konrad Sprenger; and Fluctuations (Deep Listening Institute, 2007) a collaboration with trombonist Monique Buzzarté that garnered an Aaron Copland Fund grant."

-Ellen Fullman Website (

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"Sonic artist David Gamper (1945-2011) moved freely among the worlds of composition, improvisation and electronic instrument design and construction. He believed electronic sound processing technologies constituted an extension of the acoustic musical instrument. Unlike more single-minded proponents of musical technology, Gamper's music was a marriage of traditional instrumental performance with the sound transformations introduced by new and emerging technologies. He named his performance technology "The Sound Shifter" and with it he captured the live sounds of his instruments (piano, winds, and others) and electronically shifted them into other musical realms. As a member of Deep Listening Band, Gamper developed a major redesign of the Expanded Instrument System (EIS). Gamper was also half of See Hear Now, (with photographer Gisela Gamper) a visible music sound and video projection duo. "

-fo'c'sle 5/16/2022

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"Stuart Dempster, born in Berkeley, California in 1936, studied performance and composition at San Francisco State College. From 1962-66 he was principal trombone in the Oakland Symphony under Gerhard Samuel and, since 1968, he has been on the faculty of University of Washington. Grants include: Creative Associate at SUNYAB (1967-68); Fellow in the Center for Advanced Study, University of Illinois (1971-72); Fulbright Scholar in Australia (1973) where he studied aboriginal didjeridu; a NEA Composer Grant (1978); US/UK Fellowship (1979); Guggenheim Fellowship (1981). His book The Modern Trombone: A Definition of Its Idioms was first published in 1979 and he has recorded on several labels including Columbia, Deep Listening, Nonesuch, and New Albion, the latter having produced his "Abbey" recording (NA 013) which has become, in the words of one reviewer: "...a cult classic."

Dempster tours regularly as a solo recitalist performing his own works as well as his commissioned works by Berio, Erb, Erickson, and others, and also with the Deep Listening Band. His work exemplified by Sound Massage Parlor, and environmental/site specific works such as SWAMI (State of Washington As a Musical Instrument) have earned him a reputation as a composer/performer whose work is at once deep, meditative, and amusing. Deep Listening Band recordings include: award winning Deep Listening, with Pauline Oliveros and Panaiotis, recorded in the old Fort Worden (Port Townsend, WA) cistern with a 45" reverberation, released in May 1989 on New Albion Records (NA 022); Troglodyte's Delight, recorded in an old limestone quary in upstate New York, released in September 1990 on ¿What Next? Records (WN 0003); and The Ready Made Boomerang, recorded in the above mentioned "Cistern Chapel" and released in January 1992 by New Albion Records (NA 044).

Dempster was the producer for all three of these CD's. In 1993-94 he was composer-in-residence in Minneapolis with Seattle's New Performance Group as part of the Music in Motion* project. Also in 1993 Dempster was commissioned by Meet The Composer's Composer/Choreographer Projectª for a collaboration with Merce Cunningham for what has turned out to be highly acclaimed performances in the US and Europe. The music for that project was recently released entitled Underground Overlays from the Cistern Chapel on New Albion Records (NA 076)."

-University of Washington (

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track listing:


1. Hawk Hill 04:05

2. Monterey Cypress 05:04

3. Salt Spray 05:01

4. Cobweb Thistle 05:00

5. Pink Sea Thrift 03:25


1. Coastal Scrub 05:27

2. Ribbon Chert 07:21

3. Tidepool 03:40

4. Bioluminescence 04:42
sample the album:

descriptions, reviews, &c.

"Under a name deriving from the idioms of seafarers hides a recently launched label curated by cellist Theresa Wong. Its first release is an enchanting LP gathering three major names connected in various ways to the concepts of sound-related awareness originally theorized by the late Pauline Oliveros. With a palette including Fullman's world-famous long string instrument and a handful of wind and percussion instruments processed to the point of a veritable identity loss by Gamper (who left this planet in 2011, two years after this recording), we're in for a classic program of extended droning passages and unhurried improvisations imbued with a considerable degree of sinlessness.

Vast resonant spaces are a must for this type of performance; the same is valid for the listeners, who will definitely benefit from a large room to let the waves diffuse and refract. Psychological dimensions are crossed through textural stratifications that mix ever-shifting shapes and fluctuating electronic mantras rather uniquely. Dempster's trombone and didgeridoo - twice appearing in a duet with Fullman's rubbed strings - inevitably push our memory back to the times of masterpieces such as Underground Overlays From The Cistern Chapel. The luminescent micro-universes generated by all these interactions project the consciousness of potential alternatives to the current state of things. An acoustic self-government, at once informed by inner tranquillity and healthy realism."-Massimo Ricci, Touching Extremes

Get additional information at Touching Extremes
Related Categories of Interest:

Vinyl Recordings
Improvised Music
Electro-Acoustic Improv
Recordings Utilizing the Natural Resonance of a Space
Trio Recordings
West Coast/Pacific US Jazz
New in Improvised Music
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