The Squid's Ear Magazine

Thomson, Scott: Murray - Trombone Solos (Tour de Bras)

Trombonist Scott Murray (Monicker, AIMToronto) performed this installment of his "Trombone Solos at Odd Hours" series by paying homage after the passing of his friend, painter and drummer John Heward, recording this concert at Heward's studio in his home on Murray Street in Montreal, in a far-ranging and emotional solo performance of fascinating technique and expression.

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product information:

Label: Tour de Bras
Catalog ID: TDB90036cd
Squidco Product Code: 28613

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2019
Country: Canada
Packaging: Plastic Sleeve w/ inserts
Recorded by the artist on Murray Street in Montreal.


Scott Thomson-trombone

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Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"I had already planned a January 2019 installment of Trombone Solos at Odd Hours at another venue. After the death that autumn of my friend, the painter and drummer John Heward, it felt apt instead to do the work in his painting studio in the Murray Street building, Montreal, where he and Sylvia Safdie had lived and worked for decades.

The periodic series, which dates back to 2014, comprises thirty-minute improvised solo concerts six days weekly for as long as my time and interest can afford, amounting to more than 120 concerts to date. They are about working in a context where the potential exists that someone will listen; otherwise it may just be 'practicing.' And to do it almost every day puts extreme pressure on the material and the player working with it, ruthlessly exposing his habits, lazinesses, and cliches -- hopefully for the better.

John's studio, a wildly resonant industrial space, resonates as a place for such work. Its walls are marked evocatively with the oh-so-present residue of his quotidian efforts to avoid similar pitfalls, to work with the material with conviction and curiosity and purpose. It was so moving to arrive there daily, put the things in their place, and embark -- just as he had done for so many years. The proceeds of some of this work are included here.

If the series is for John, it is equally for Sylvia, whose wistful remark after his death, "the place is just so quiet," affirmed how good and right it was to hold it there. However, these discrete pieces are for Andrew and Lorenzo respectively; they were the audience members (each one an 'audient') for these concerts, and their ears, attention, and energy are vital keys to the work. I am grateful to all of these people."-Scott Thomson

Artist Biographies

"Scott Thomson is an improvising trombonist and composer. He works extensively with singer and dance artist, Susanna Hood, and writes songs for her based on published authors' texts to be played in many contexts, from duo to octet and sometimes including Susanna' s choreography. Monicker (with Arthur Bull and Roger Turner), for example, exemplifies Scott's commitment to open improvisation. He co-founded the Association of Improvising Musicians Toronto (AIMToronto) in 2004 and served as a director until 2009, and co- directed the AIMToronto Orchestra, formed for a project with Anthony Braxton in 2007. In 2016, he convened the Montreal-Toronto Art Orchestra to play Roscoe Mitchell's music. He founded Somewhere There, a Toronto creative music venue that hosted 850 concerts during his tenure, 2007-10. Scott has composed a series of site- specific works, "cartographic compositions" for mobile musicians and audiences in unconventional performance contexts including, notably, the National Gallery of Canada and the Art Gallery of Ontario. Scott programs the Guelph Jazz Festival."

-Bug Incision (

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Track Listing:

1. For Andrew MacKelvie 31:44

2. For Lorenzo Belli 29:27

Related Categories of Interest:

Improvised Music
Free Improvisation
Recordings featuring brass instruments - trumpets, trombones, tubas, other horns
Solo Artist Recordings
Musique Actuelle
Canadian Composition & Improvisation

Search for other titles on the label:
Tour de Bras.

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