The Squid's Ear Magazine


JeJaWeDa (Bishop / Blonk / Walter / Smith): Pioneer Works Vol. 1 [CD + BOOKLET] (Balance Point Acoustics)

The 1st of two volumes from the quartet of Jeb Bishop on trombone & electronics, Jaap Blonk on voice & electronics, Weasel Walter on percussion, and Damon Smith on double bass, each player an innovator and leader on their own, together bringing unique elements of virtuoso quirk and passionate mastery, merging voice, electronics and acoustics in profoundly unusual ways.
 

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product information:

Personnel:



Jeb Bishop-trombone, electronics

Jaap Blonk-voice, electronics

Weasel Walter-percussion

Damon Smith-double bass


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Label: Balance Point Acoustics
Catalog ID: BPA 19
Squidco Product Code: 28418

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: USA
Packaging: Jewel Case
Recorded at Pioneer Works, in Brooklyn, New York, on March 25th, 2019, by Stephen Cooper.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"This new quartet, JaJeWeDa, debuted in the spring of 2019 with a series of concerts in the Northeast. The band features the great Dutch sound poet and improvisor Jaap Blonk, trombone virtuoso Jeb Bishop, and the versatile and powerful "rhythm section" of Damon Smith and Weasel Walter. Jaap Blonk is unique for his powerful stage presence and playful freedom in improvisation, combined with a keen grasp of structure. The frenetically prolific bandleader/composer/multi-instrumentalist Weasel Walter summons myriad timbres from a (mostly) conventional drum kit, while also bringing a strong performative element to the proceedings. Jeb Bishop is an extraordinary improviser, composer, and simply one of the finest living trombonists, and has been a major voice in improvised music for more than 20 years. Tireless organizer and Balance Point Acoustics label head Damon Smith expands both the sound world of the double bass and the roles it can play in an ensemble.

The sonic result of this alchemical gamble is a wide-open, unruly field of play where anything can and will happen. The New York City session and performance documented on these releases run the gamut from delicate chamber textures to Xenakis-meets-cracked-video-game burbling to all-out electronic meltdowns."-Balance Point Acoustics


Artist Biographies

"Jeb Bishop was born in Raleigh, North Carolina during the Cuban missile crisis. He began playing the trombone at the age of 10, under the tutelage of Cora Grasser. Other influential teachers during junior high and high school included Jeanne Nelson, Eric Carlson, Richard Fecteau, Greg Cox, and James Cozart.

He majored in classical trombone performance at Northwestern University from 1980-82, studying with Frank Crisafulli. Deciding he did not want to pursue a career as an orchestral musician, he returned to Raleigh in 1982 and took up engineering studies at NC State University. Raleigh's developing underground rock scene attracted him, and from 1982-84 he played bass guitar in rock bands in the Raleigh area.

At the same time, he developed an interest in philosophy, eventually majoring in the subject, and spent 1984-85 studying philosophy at the Higher Institute of Philosophy of the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium.

Returing to Raleigh in 1985, he spent the next few years working at menial jobs and playing guitar, bass, cheap keyboards, drums, etc., in rock bands including and/or, the Angels of Epistemology, Egg, and Metal Pitcher.

In 1989 he left Raleigh to pursue graduate studies in philosophy, first at the University of Arizona, then at Loyola University of Chicago (where he was awarded the Crown Fellowship in the Humanities). During 1991-92 he returned to Europe, spending the summer of 1991 studying German at the Goethe-Institut Iserlohn (now closed), and then pursuing independent studies in philosophy at the French-language division of the University of Louvain.

Returning to Chicago in 1992, he completed his M.A. at Loyola in 1993. By this time he had already begun to make connections with improvising musicians in Chicago, having joined the Flying Luttenbachers as bassist (later adding trombone) in late 1992, and playing guitar occasionally in a quartet with Weasel Walter, Ken Vandermark, and Kevin Drumm. Other bands during this period included the Unheard Music Quartet (with Vandermark, Mike Hagedorn on trombone, and Otto Huber on drums) and the Rev Trio (with Walter and saxophonist Joe Vajarsky). Bishop played electric bass in both these bands.

In late 1995, Bishop joined the Vandermark 5 as one of its founding members, and remained with the band through the end of 2004. During this period he also became associated with many other groups, including the Peter Brötzmann Chicago Tentet, School Days, Ken Vandermark's Territory Band, and his own Jeb Bishop Trio, and became a very frequent participant in ad hoc and free-improvised concerts in Chicago. Bishop performed in the inaugural concerts of two of the longest-running free-music concert series in Chicago: the Myopic Books weekly concerts (originally at Czar Bar; with Rev Trio) and the Empty Bottle Wednesday night concert series (with a quartet of Terri Kapsalis, Kevin Drumm, and Jim O'Rourke). He curated the monthly Chicago Improvisers Group concerts at the Green Mill from 1999-2002, and co-curated the weekly Eight Million Heroes concert series at Sylvie's in 2005-6.

Bishop has made dozens of recordings with many different groups, has toured North America and Europe many times, and maintains a busy performing schedule."

-Jeb Bishop Website (http://www.jebbishop.com/jebbio.html)
2/26/2024

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

"Jaap Blonk (born 1953 in Woerden, Holland) is a self-taught composer, performer and poet.He went to university for mathematics and musicology but did not finish those studies.In the late 1970s he took up saxophone and started to compose music.A few years later he discovered his potential as a vocal performer, at first in reciting poetry and later on in improvisations and his own compositions. For almost two decades the voice was his main means for the discovery and development of new sounds.From around the year 2000 on Blonk started work with electronics, at first using samples of his own voice, then extending the field to include pure sound synthesis as well.He took a year off of performing in 2006. As a result, his renewed interest in mathematics made him start a research of the possibilities of algorithmic composition for the creation of music, visual work and poetry.

As a vocalist, Jaap Blonk is unique for his powerful stage presence and almost childlike freedom in improvisation, combined with a keen grasp of structure. He has performed around the world, on all continents. With the use of live electronics the scope and range of his concerts has acquired a considerable extension.

Besides working as a soloist, he collaborated with many musicians and ensembles in the field of contemporary and improvised music, like Maja Ratkje, Mats Gustafsson, Joan La Barbara, The Ex, the Netherlands Wind Ensemble and the Ebony Band. He premiered several compositions by the German composer Carola Bauckholt, including a piece for voice and orchestra. A solo voice piece was commissioned by the Donaueschinger Musiktage. On several occasions he collaborated with visual computer artist Golan Levin, for the Ars Electronica Festival.

Blonk's work for radio and television includes several commissioned radio plays.He also makes larger-scale drawings of his scores, as well as visual poetry, which is being exhibited.

He has his own record label, Kontrans, featuring a total of 25 releases so far. Other Blonk recordings appeared on various labels, such as Staalplaat, Basta, VICTO, Ecstatic Peace, Monotype Records, Terp and Elegua Records.His book/CD 'Traces of Speech' was published in 2012 by Hybriden-Verlag, Berlin. Forthcoming is a sequel with the title "Traces of Cookery".A comprehensive collection of his sound poetry came out as a book with 2 CDs in 2013, entitled "KLINKT"."

-Jaap Blonk Website (http://www.jaapblonk.com/Pages/biography.html)
2/26/2024

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

"Weasel Walter (real name Walter Wyzowski) is a composer and instrumentalist who founded the band The Flying Luttenbachers in Chicago in 1991 with a current member of Cellular Chaos and Behold...The Arctopus. Over the years, The Flying Luttenbachers included noted Dylan Posa, and Michael Colligan, while creating a body of music drawing equally from no wave, death metal, gamelan, noise music, hardcore punk and modern classical. Walter moved to the San Francisco Bay Area in 2003, where he formed the latest of many Luttenbachers lineups, remaining on percussion with the addition of bassist Mike Green (Burmese), and virtuoso guitarist Ed Rodriguez (ex-Colossamite, Gorge Trio). Singular guitar phenomenon Mick Barr (Krallice, Octis, Orthrelm) joined the group in 2005. The Flying Luttenbachers ceased to operate in late 2007. On November 25, 2009, Weasel Walter announced that he was moving to New York City to join the band Behold... The Arctopus on drums and will be writing "new, more extreme material from scratch." He also formed Cellular Chaos with Marc Edwards (drummer), Admiral Grey and Ceci Moss."

-Wikipedia (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Weasel_Walter)
2/26/2024

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

"Damon Smith studied double bass with Lisle Ellis and has had lessons with Bertram Turezky, Joëlle Leandré, John Lindberg, Mark Dresser and others. Damon's explorations into the sonic palette of the double bass have resulted in a personal, flexible improvisational language based in the American jazz avant-garde movement and European non-idiomatic free improvisation. Visual art, film and dance heavily influence his music, as evidenced by his CAMH performance of Ben Patterson's Variations for Double Bass, collaborations with director Werner Herzog on soundtracks for Grizzly Man and Encounters at the End of the World, and an early performance with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company.

Damon has collaborated with a wide range of musicians, including: Cecil Taylor, Marshall Allen (of Sun Ra's Arkestra), Henry Kaiser, Roscoe Mitchell, Michael Pisaro, Wadada Leo Smith, Marco Eneidi, Wolfgang Fuchs, Peter Brötzmann and Peter Kowald. After many years in the San Francisco Bay Area, and five great years in Houston, Texas working regularly with Alvin Fielder, Sandy Ewen, David Dove & Chris Cogburn, Damon will move to the Boston area in the fall of 2016. Damon has run Balance Point Acoustics record label since 2001, releasing music focusing on transatlantic collaborations between US and European musicians."

-Balance Point Acoustic Website (https://www.balancepointacoustics.com/damon-smith/)
2/26/2024

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


Track Listing:



1. Warm Up 8:25

2. Workout 29:56

3. Cool Down 8:07

Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Electro-Acoustic
Electro-Acoustic Improv
Unusual Vocal Forms
NY Downtown & Metropolitan Jazz/Improv
European Improvisation, Composition and Experimental Forms
Blonk, Jaap
Quartet Recordings
Staff Picks & Recommended Items

Search for other titles on the label:
Balance Point Acoustics.


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