The Squid's Ear Magazine

Venable, Phil

Bringing The Light [CD EP]

Venable, Phil: Bringing The Light [CD EP] (Soul City Sounds)

A new Free Jazz album inspired by Pharoah Sanders' Karma, from the North Carolina ensemble led by upright bassist, guitarist and Soul City Sounds label-leader Phil Venable with Crowmeat Bob on saxophone, Ken Moshesh on percussion and Tommy Jackson on drums, plus a work for spoken word with NC Poet Laureate Jaki Shelton Green and a song inspired by BLM with vocalist Jennifer Evans.
 

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product information:

Personnel:



Phil Venable-upright bass, guitar

Crowmeat Bob Pence-saxophone

Ken Moshesh-percussion

Tommy Jackson-drums

Jaki Shelton Green-poetry

Jennifer Evans-vocals


Click an artist name above to see in-stock items for that artist.




UPC: 195269238018

Label: Soul City Sounds
Catalog ID: SCS-013
Squidco Product Code: 33501

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2023
Country: USA
Packaging: Cardboard Gatefold
Recorded at Todd Warner Studios, by Todd Warner.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"The past few years have been a time of personal, spiritual and political turmoil. Emotions have been running high and, at times, seemingly out of control. When words fail to covey our profound sense of discomfort, music comes to the rescue. Bass player and composer Phil Venable and sax player and composer Crowmeat Bob, began experimenting with rhythms and melodies that captured the sense of hope and foreboding many were feeling. The result is Bringing the Light, an album with a mystical tone, that draws inspiration from Pharoah Sanders' Karma.

"The music depicts a journey from oppression to freedom, while recognizing that justice is a verb, not a noun," Venable says. "Once you get to the top of the mountain and look around, you see there is always more work to do."

Venable and Pence went into the studio with drummer Tommy Jackson, percussionist Ken Moshesh, North Carolina Poet Laureate Jaki Shelton Green and singer Jennifer Evans and cut three terse, experimental tracks. The result displays the communal bond the artists forged during the sessions.

"The Valley" brings to mind the Biblical valley of the shadow of death. A simple bass line opens things up, with flurries of percussion from Moshesh. Crowmeat Bob introduces a simple melody with hints of folk and gospel in its delivery, backed by Venable's electric guitar. Crowmeat alternates between squonking improvisations, bird-like trills and the opening melody. It ends with a sustained sax tone and a reprise of the hookplayed on Venable's bass.

"The Climb" portrays the passage of the oppressed from injustice to freedom. Pence states the melody, backed by Jackson's polyrhythmic drumming and Venable's bass. The music fades back, as Jaki Shelton Green reads her poem, "Love Note to the Ancestors," opening with her whispered invocation of the word "Ancestors." Her phrasing weaves around the melodic lines of Pence's sax, the rhythms of Jackson's drumming and Venable's bass line, which references, and builds off, Richard Davis's bass line from Sanders' "Creator Has A Master Plan," a track from Karma.

"The View" was inspired by the Black Lives Matter protests, as well as the Civil Rights marches of the 60s, with music echoing the hope and uncertainty of all marginalized people. Venable plays electric guitar, as well as bass, thinking of the music that provided the soundtrack for protesters, then and now. A sustained guitar chord, a drum roll and quiet sax give way to Venable's wha-wha guitar clusters, a nod to the rhythms of Jimi Hendrix, and the free-flowing feel of thelate 60s.

""The View", and the entire suite, was inspired by the story of Moses and the biography of MLK," Venable said. "They got to the top of the mountain but did not get to the Promised Land. The struggle is never over. I incorporated the gospel and rock elements to summon up the 60s, inviting the listener to compare this era to that. The compositions are fairly simple but, hopefully, put across passion, struggle, and joy."-Soul City Sounds


Artist Biographies

"Phil Venable is a Chapel Hill, NC composer and multi-instrumentalist. He plays in numerous groups including Tragic Assembly and The Phil Venable - Paul Swest Duo."

-Soul City Sounds 7/10/2024

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

"Upon graduating with a degree in cinema production in the 90's, Crowmeat Bob swiftly went to work at the Record and Tape Exchange and started playing bass and guitar with friends (primarily guitar guru John Aguero) in his parents' basement and in a friend's garage. No gigs were played during those years; they were a freaky little neurotic island in the strip-mall wasteland of northern Virginia. The prevailing aesthetic was some kind of heavy splatterjazz-noise-math-rock-free-improv, with 'frop breaks spent listening intently to all kinds of bidness like electric Miles, Black Sabbath, Messiaen, Sonic Youth, Marc Ribot, Cecil Taylor, Bartok, Last Exit, The Stooges, you name it. He eventually made the move to North Carolina in like '96, where he resides to this day, and picked up sax and bass clarinet while continuing with guitar.

He's played with about a billion bands, either as a composer or sideman, and been gigging on about a weekly basis since settling in the Research Triangle in 2000. Becoming fairly well known as part of the small "free improv" scene there, he was fortunate enough to get to play with a lot of great touring musicians, some of whom you probably revere. And mixing with the indie rockers provided ample opportunity to add sax to various rock'n'roll bands. His playing can be heard on local labels like Merge, Sorry State, and Paradise of Bachelors. Now that he is almost a halfway-decent player and has had a lot of experience writing music for many different kinds of ensembles, he has finally put out a record as a leader: Judge Schreber's Avian Choir is the name he gives to a recurring project that takes slightly different forms, in this case a large string ensemble with a heavy rhythm section."

-Bob Pence 7/10/2024

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

Ken Moshesh is a musician & videographer based in Durham, NC. He has created the Ameri-Cosmic drumming system.

-LinkedIn (https://www.linkedin.com/in/ken-moshesh-b20aa174?original_referer=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.google.com%2F)
7/10/2024

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

Thomas Jackson is a New York City and North Carolina drummer based in Harlem, NY.

-Tommy Jackson Instagram (https://www.instagram.com/tommyjacksondrums/)
7/10/2024

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

"Jaki Shelton Green, ninth Poet Laureate of North Carolina is the first African American and third woman to be appointed as the North Carolina Poet Laureate. She is a 2019 Academy of American Poet Laureate Fellow, 2014 NC Literary Hall of Fame Inductee, 2009 NC Piedmont Laureate appointment, 2003 recipient of the North Carolina Award for Literature. Jaki Shelton Green teaches Documentary Poetry at Duke University Center for Documentary Studies and was appointed the 2021 Frank B. Hanes Writer in Residence at UNC Chapel Hill. Additionally, she received the George School Outstanding Alumni Award in 2021. Her publications include: Dead on Arrival, Masks, Dead on Arrival and New Poems, Conjure Blues, singing a tree into dance, breath of the song, published by Blair Publishers. Feeding the Light, i want to undie you published by Jacar Press, i want to undie you English /Italian bilingual edition published by Lebeg Publishers. On Juneteenth 2020, she released her first LP, poetry album, The River Speaks of Thirst, produced by Soul City Sounds and Clearly Records. Jaki Shelton Green is the owner of SistaWRITE providing writing retreats for women writers in Sedona Arizona, Martha's Vineyard, Ocracoke North Carolina, Northern Morocco, and Tullamore Ireland."

-Jaki Shelton Green Website (https://jakisheltongreen.com/about-jaki/)
7/10/2024

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


Track Listing:



1. The Valley 04:40

2. The Climb (feat. Jaki Shelton Green) 10:13

3. The View (feat. Jennifer Evans) 05:05

Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
Spoken Word
Song Based Music
Quartet Recordings
New in Improvised Music

Search for other titles on the label:
Soul City Sounds.


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