|PRESS RELEASE: Climate Force presents “CALLING ALL FORCES,” An Earth-Friendly Inter-Arts Jazz ‘Party’ to honor the Earth. May 11th, 2013, 6 p.m.-11 p.m. at JACK in Brooklyn. Pay what you can/sliding scale. Suggested donation $20. Students $10. Seniors, Free. Produced by Katie Bull, featuring: Andrew Drury, percussion; Exposed Blues Duo (Fay Victor, vocals & Anders Nilsson, guitar); Ras Moshe Unit (Ras Moshe, tenor; Ratzo Harris, bass; Andrew Drury, drums; Anders Nilsson, guitar); The Katie Bull Group Project (Katie Bull, vocals; Landon Knoblock, piano and electronics; Joe Fonda, bass; Deric Dickens, drums; Jeff Lederer, tenor); with special appearance by jazz vocalist and songwriter Kevin Fitzgerald Burke. Dancers: Alex Romania & Amanda Hunt. Visual Artists: Fran Bull, paintings from the “Sophia” series (acrylic on paper); Robert Black, photography; and Aileen Gural, talismans. MC: Ted Cleary, Environmental Advocate. All proceeds gathered from this event will be donated to 350.org. CONTACT: Katie Bull, email@example.com. www.katiebull.comThe Climate Force “Calling All Forces” event is designed as a call and response to nature. The night will carry forth messages of respect and reverence for our earth within a festive air. The evening is structured as an earth-friendly listening ‘party’ to support the development of awareness and environmental action within the inter-arts jazz community. Audience is invited to experience the dynamic energy of nature’s forces through the work of cutting edge artists in free jazz, fusion-edged jazz, improvisational dance, and visual art. The Climate Force artists have come together to share a common love of the planet and in a creative act of safeguarding it from the current dangers to its vital systems.This “first annual” Climate Force inter-arts jazz event is produced by jazz vocalist and environmental advocate Katie Bull. Her intention is to contribute to the growing climate movement via the jazz and inter-arts communities by celebrating nature’s beauty and raising awareness about the need for mitigation and adaptation solutions to global warming. Bull, influenced by protests she has joined to halt hydraulic “fracking” and the Keystone XL Pipeline, has booked artists who share environmental fervor. All Climate Force artists are creative forces to be reckoned with. They include (in order of appearance): Andrew Drury, experimental composer and percussionist (The Pipeline Solo: “Pipe Dreams”); The Ras Moshe Unit, an improvised “conduction” project (Ras Moshe, conductor/tenor and flute; Ratzo Harris, bass; Andrew Drury, drums; and Anders Nilsson, guitar); The Exposed Blues Duo consisting of the critically-acclaimed vocalist Fay Victor and the red hot Anders Nilsson, guitar (Best Vocal Album 2011 The New York City Jazz Record); and the Katie Bull Group Project, whose genre-defying album of original compositions , Freak Miracle, received a 2011 NARAS Grammy nomination consideration, (Katie Bull, vocals; Landon Knoblock, piano/electronics; Joe Fonda, bass; Deric Dickens, drums; and Jeff Lederer, tenor).
At the close of the night, the acclaimed jazz-blues singer/composer Kevin Fitzgerald Burke (a veteran of the legendary Jon Hendricks’ vocal group) will take the stage for a couple of final songs. Described by Stephen Holden of The New York Times as “a virtuoso scat improviser,” Burke has composed for the environmental movement the elegiac “Wandrin’ the Gasland,” which is dedicated to the lives, lands, and communities destroyed by relentless and unthinking exploitation.
Dancers Alex Romania & Amanda Hunt will improvise with Andrew Drury, and visual artists Robert Black, Fran Bull, and Aileen Gural will offer painting, photography, and talisman art that respond to nature’s inherent life-giving energy, and that explores the dangers of defying Earth’s natural balance.
The relaxed, humorous, and sharp insight of environmental advocate Ted Cleary (also a writer, teacher, photographer, and songwriter) will bridge the sets with integrated thematic riffs and environmental updates. Cleary can also entertain questions. There will be volunteers from 350.org and other groups on site with literature and information about the latest actions and initiatives both local and national.
Producer Bull’s take on the current condition of our planet gives context for the event: “Psyche and weather are mirror reflections. Human psyche is collectively out of balance and this imbalance is manifesting in our planetary weather. We have over-identified with material objects. Our value system has constellated in global warming. The forces of nature are speaking to us through the howl of gale force winds and the roar of rising tides. The forces of nature are speaking to us in the silence of drying riverbeds and the tears of melting glaciers. We must call upon ourselves; call our inner forces, call ourselves to action, and heed nature’s ‘call’. There is still time to listen to nature and respond to this imbalance; the time is now.”
All artists involved in the Climate Force project have strong points of view about our planet’s condition: Please also note the attached Musical Artists Statements & Biographies. Visit the visual artists websites to view their dedication to the earth & see their aesthetics, drawn from the natural world. This will be a memorable night in support of a rapidly growing climate movement that is deeply meaningful within the jazz inter-arts community and beyond.
MUSIC – DANCE– VISUAL ART
Andrew Drury – 6 pm – The Pipeline Solo, “Pipe Dreams”
For Calling All Forces, Drury will present “Pipe Dreams,” a
semi-autobiographical work-in-progress featuring solo drumming and
percussion, improvised dance (by two dancers, Alex Romania and Amanda Hunt), and text. Pipe Dreams will muse upon the landscapes of Cascadia, legacies of colonialism, the evolving cultural landscape of the US since the 1970s—all against a background of dire ramifications posed by the prospect of the Keystone XL pipeline, extraction of petroleum from
Canadian tar sands, nuclear energy, and global warming.
Ras Moshe Unit
– 7 p.m. – The Ras Moshe Unit is comprised of veteran free-jazz improvisers who, under the leadership and conduction of Ras Moshe, find order in chaos, and chaos in order, spontaneously. Their improvised sessions are often soundscapes that invoke the forces of nature, landscapes, cosmic places, and local places. The soundscapes represent the confluence of machine, human, animal, and natural life. Improvisation embodies a process of true collective creation and therefore manifests Ras’s dedication to equality. Appearing at the Stone, the Evolving Music Series, and many other venues throughout the city including on his own Music Now! Series at the Brecht Forum, the Ras Moshe Unit has cultivated a remarkable synchronicity of impulse, flow, and unity.
The Exposed Blues Duo
– 8 p.m. – is a collaboration between guitarist Anders Nilsson and Fay Victor that has become an improvising blues duo using true blues, blues based material and all the wails and flails they can muster. With pieces ranging from the Rev. Gary Davis, Leroy Carr, Jimi Hendrix, Herbie Nichols and Memphis Slim alongside free improvisation and original tunes. In December 2007the Exposed Blues DUO was invited to perform at the Winter Nights festival in Marseille, France run by GRIM, an improvising collective based there. THE BLUES was the theme that year, where the Exposed Blues Duo was born with an electrifying set – the packed house wouldn’t go home after four encores! The Exposed Blues DUO released BARE in 2010 receiving rave reviews in the New York Times, Time Out New York and continuing to been perform around New York City at venues such as the 55 Bar, the Brecht Forum, The Stone, The Local 269, Barbes and DROM. The Exposed Blues DUO also invites esteemed guests to join, featuring prominent musicians such as cellist Tomas Ulrich, electric bassist Tim Dahl, alto saxophonists Darius Jones and Roy Nathanson. ”Accomplished vocal modernist Fay Victor manages to deconstruct the tradition of jazz song without pretension or tedium—quite a high-wire feat, if you ask us.”–Time Out New York
THE KATIE BULL GROUP PROJECT – 9 p.m.
Bull’s set will preview music from her next album, recorded in April and set for release in 2014 – All Hot Bodies Radiate
. The title is drawn from Irish physicist John Tyndall’s 1859 discovery of how the atmosphere operates, a discovery that led to the first revelation of a “natural greenhouse gas effect.” The title has a double meaning as well: “The amount that hot bodies radiate is a function of their temperature,” writes political journalist Elizabeth Kolbert in her book, Field Notes from A Climate Catastrophe: Man, Nature, and Climate Change
(Bloomsbury Press 2006). Says Bull, “All hot bodies radiate. The same could be said about love.” All Hot Bodies Radiate
is a collection of Bull’s new love songs, thread through with earth imagery, and the love of nature.
Alex Romania and Amanda Hunt will improvise with Andrew Drury in Drury’s Pipeline Solo, “Pipe Dreams”.Alex Romania
– Alex is a Brooklyn-based performer & artist. He recently presented a dance installation about presence, which he created and performed with Amanda Hunt at the Glasshouse in Brooklyn. Alex has performed in pieces by Simone Forti and Steve Paxton. He is a recent graduate of NYU Tisch where he trained at various studios including the Atlantic Studio, where his voice mentor was Katie Bull. He is happy to be creating multimedia work, and to be employing presence techniques. Find Alex on Facebook.
Amanda Hunt –Amanda is a Brooklyn-based performer. She recently choreographed for the “Reality Show” in Abu Dhabi under the direction of Liz Swados, and presented an original collaboration at The Glasshouse called “If I Were.” Amanda is a recent graduate of NYU Tisch where she trained at various studios including the Atlantic Studio. Her voice mentor at Atlantic was Katie Bull. She employs dance, theater, and performance presence practices. Find Amanda on FB.
Visual artists will explore the forces of nature and the impact of human nature. Their works will be hung on the walls that surround the playing space at JACK. Talismans made of turquoise on string will be available for sale; all proceeds will be gifted to 350.org. Please visit the artists’ websites for their bios and galleries.FRAN BULL – paintings (Sophia Series)
ROBERT BLACK – photography
AILEEN GURAL – talismans www.aileenguraljewelry.com
CLIMATE FORCE: CALLING ALL FORCES
Musical Artists Statements & BiosTED CLEARY, MC – Environmental Advocate
“Now Is the Time”
“We are reaching the end of the fossil fuel age, and the end game being played out is deeply disturbing. Powerful interests are going to more extreme and destructive lengths to secure oil, gas, and coal while also derailing serious development of wind, solar, and other renewable energy sources. Such unabated exploitation perpetuates systemic social and environmental problems while doing nothing to prepare for the post-carbon age. The costs of our heedlessness are being borne by the environment—and also by us, because, after all, we all live in the world and are part of the world. When we poison the Earth, we poison ourselves.
Through increased awareness and organized action, we have some hope of shifting the status quo towards a sane and sustainable energy future, but there is little time to lose. Climate change is not some future event—it is already happening. Ranks of climatologists, ecologists, and economists (among others) have repeatedly concluded that if we do not intelligently solve our energy dilemma, global civilization is at risk of contraction and collapse. These findings are not hysterical outbursts: they are grounded in sober fact and analysis. Viable clean energy technology already exists but is not integrating and spreading as rapidly as it should because of corporate control of politicians, media, and the energy infrastructure. Exacerbating—and indeed enabling—those problems are other ones of public inertia and lack of awareness. Unfortunate too are the fierce divisions between people over issues that—though perhaps important and valid in themselves—will become entirely moot if there is no habitable planet to live on. On the Titanic, all political debate ended the minute the ship hit the iceberg. Likewise, all human endeavor starts and ends with the Earth. There is no Planet B. To maintain the minimal ecological support of our societies, we must lay aside our various differences, vigorously raise consciousness, and unite to effect meaningful change. We need to light a fire under ourselves because there is a fire under the planet.
Towards these important ends, artists have a progressive role to play: they generate new narratives and images that transform attitudes and enhance people’s visions of what is possible. The work of an artist transcends that of a spin doctor, because while the hired gun serves only himself and the narrow interests of the client, the artist—at his or her best moments—is usually affirming life and serving the truth. And now is the time—this time of drought and melt and storm—that we urgently need to hear the truth.”
TED CLEARY – Environmental Advocate
Ted is a lifelong native of NYC, a teacher, and an environmental advocate. He spent several years as a gardener and nursery planter, through which he had contact with issues of water, food cultivation, and land use; recently he has been active both independently and with groups including Food & Water Watch, New Yorkers Against Fracking, and 350.org, raising awareness about fracking and climate change, and also acting as a photographer and songwriter. With jazz vocalist and guitarist Kevin Fitzgerald Burke, he co-wrote “Wandrin’ the Gasland,” recently performed in the Great Hall of Cooper Union at an event featuring Bill McKibben. In February 2013, he helped organize the New York contingent of the 350.org Climate Forward rally in Washington D.C. which drew 55,000 people to protest the XL Keystone Pipeline. He will co-host a screening of 350.org’s Do the Math movie at Theater 80 Saint Marks in NYC on April 21, 2013.
Andrew Drury: We humans
are sustained by this earth…
Drummer/composer Andrew Drury grew up in Cascadia where the magnificent presence of landscape and climate fundamentally shaped and inspired his sense of aesthetics from a young age. The ocean, mountains, rainforests, glaciers, deserts, salt water, evergreen trees, even the grey, the dullness, stillness, silence and the seemingly ever falling rain of the western coastal zone all made essential contributions to his sense of beauty in the relationships of forms.
This fuels his music to the present day.
“When I think of the Keystone XL pipeline I picture a lead pipe clubbing America into submission. I am amazed that here we are in 2013, after decades of petroleum related disaster—wars, the energy crises of the 70s, oil spills (including two within days of this writing related to the
Canadian Tar Sands), petro-dollar corruption of governments, ozone
depletion, fracking, air pollution, habitat destruction, resource depletion, and of course the greenhouse effect and global warming—conditions are such that we still won’t seriously pursue solar, wind, and other renewable energies. It’s not complicated. It’s the “same old, same old”—petroleum. There’s a long history of the top plutocrats in the US paying underlings to beat up, gun down, intimidate, and otherwise distract people from the truth. They do this to prevent them from protecting themselves against exploitation, and this is part of it: the oil companies and their owners pay off politicians and regulators, create a supposedly grass roots movement (the tea party), and fund widespread misinformation in the press to influence and control opinion so they can run their businesses in ever more unfair conditions. And it seems to work: the wealth disparity in the US is extreme—something like the ten richest people now own more than the poorest 40% of people in the US. I see the Keystone XL project as part of a lot of other things that have to do with destruction of the environment and destruction of democracy. Democracy aside, the environmental side of this is very simple: humans are sustained by the earth and if we destroy what sustains us we destroy ourselves.”
Andrew Drury – percussionist/composer. Drury has performed on more than 40 recordings and in more than 20 countries, with musicians in a variety of genres including Jason Kao Hwang, Jack Wright, 10^32K featuring Frank Lacy, and Myra Melford. From 1989 to 1996 he performed 21 “Earth Solos”—drum solos played and photographed in outdoor settings in eight western States highlighting geographic connections between scenes of environmental and colonialist catastrophe. He studied with Ed Blackwell and Annie Dillard at Wesleyan University.
Ras Moshe: Mama Earth Is Speaking.
“Mama earth is speaking. It’s time to listen. You can abuse her but so long. The waters rise and the earth opens. The spirit of the music encompasses the vibrations that are needed in response. The spirit of the music can be a force of energy that counters the force of war madness and plunder of nature.
Peace now! Love now! Music now!”
Ras Moshe – tenor saxophone, flute, composer, bandleader. Formerly known as Theodore Burnett III, Ras was born on March 22nd, 1968 in Brooklyn, N.Y. Ras studied music in public school (5th grade through college). He also studied with his father Ted II, who played Alto Sax, Flute, & Bass Clarinet. His grandfather, Theodore Burnett I (“Barnett” for professional reasons) played tenor and alto saxophones in the bands of Earl Bostic, Lucky Millender, Jimmy Mundy, Don Redman, and many others after arriving here from Jamaica. He also led small group combos with Shadow Wilson for many years. Ras has been writing poetry since childhood. He began leading his own ensembles in 1987 and playing as a sideman in Reggae groups. Ras has performed his compositions in numerous NYC venues. He is currently a member of Bill Cole’s Untempered Ensemble and has performed with many other ensembles. He is the founder of The Music Now Festival at the Brech Forum. Multiple recordings include the recently released 2013 Outsight (Straw2gold Pictures).
Fay Victor: This Planet Is A Gift
“We are but one species on this planet and we have felt the need to use the planet however we saw fit, no matter if other life was killed off in the process, all in the name of progress. This planet is a gift that will keep on giving if lived on in balance and harmony and a deep understanding that the journey is a shared one, not one of conquest and oppression. When this understanding is felt through action, the earth will be bountiful again. We have so much to learn until then.” (Victor)
Fay Victor – Vocalist/Composer Bandleader
Victor has many active groups, which can be explored viawww.fayfictor.com. In her work with guitarist Anders Nilsson inThe Exposed Blues Duo, she is fusing true blues and blues based music with free jazz and suite-like shapes. The duo’s debut release, BARE, was released in August 2010 and received accolades from The New York Times and Time Out New York. BARE landed 10th in the Vocal Category of the 2010 Village Voice Jazz Critics Poll (legendary journalist David Fricke picked it as his Vocal pick for the year for the Poll) and was selected one of the Best Vocal Releases for 2010 in AllaboutJazz-New York. With her active groups or as a featured guest, Victor has performed extensively, appearing at numerous venues here an abroad.
Anders Nilsson – Guitarist/ComposerRecognized by his personal tone, versatility, command, and expressive, evocative music, guitarist and composer Anders Nilsson is featured in numerous contexts spanning wide ranges of the musical spectrum. He plays solo guitar shows, leads Anders Nilsson Group (in NYC), Anders Nilsson’s AORTA (in Sweden), co-leadsFulminate Trio together with percussionist Michael Evans and bassist Ken Filiano, Hot & Cold ( a guitar duo with Aaron Dugan), and Exposed Blues Duo with vocalist Fay Victor, and is featured in numerous other contexts. He moved to New York in 2000 after having received training and working as a musician in Sweden for a number of years. He has performed and/or recorded with many musicians associated with the blues/jazz/experimental paradigm, and has also done works in interdisciplinary interaction. Nilsson’s work as a composer includes music for short films, dance performances, theatre plays, as well as a book of compositions for ensembles and solo guitar of which some can be heard on several highly acclaimed albums.
Katie Bull: For the Love of the Earth
The start of this jazz singer’s environmental advocacy journey began with a childhood spent in upstate New York climbing apple trees, running through cornfields, swinging on ropes hung from the arms of cherry trees, diving into quarries, and swimming in Lake Ontario. The flat wide open fields that hugged the country roads were dotted with dairy cows, huge cabbage, zucchini, tomatoes, watermelons, blueberries and other good-to-pick produce. That bounty left an indelible imprint. Love of the earth’s generous ground was planted in a child’s heart.
The grand sculpture of this New York City island’s skyline and the culture & energy of this magnificent crossroads is beautifully intermingled with nature if one looks. One need go no further than the dynamic city parks, or stroll and bike along the Hudson River, to find nature teeming. Love of nature is what primed this singer to receive an environmental “awakening.”
Awareness of global warming arrived in stages through reading books by Elizabeth Kolbert, Mart Hertsgaard, Jonathan Safran Foer, Robert Kennedy Jr., James Hoggan, and Bill McKibben; participating in action; and witnessing the effects of our changing weather patterns due to carbon emissions. Witnessing worldwide climate disasters, and living through hurricanes Floyd, Irene, and Sandy – aware of others not so lucky to live – led to volunteering. Cleaning up in the Rockaways with Occupy Sandy brought the dedication into further focus. The ground that I love is now the ground that I march upon. Joining into the movement, this singer’s voice rises to be heard in earth advocacy. As a producer I seek to support common ground between artists and audiences who love the earth and desire her survival.
In January I traveled to Alaska on an environmental pilgrimage to see the glaciers. The Alaskan Eskimos sustained their land and tribes for thousands of years through a practice of something called “The Giveback.” They gave back—even to their enemy clans—anything they gathered, hunted, or sewed in excess of their own clan’s needs. We artists can join forces and offer our voices towards The Giveback to Earth.
KATIE BULL – Producer, Jazz Vocalist/Composer, Bandleader, & Environmental Advocate. Katie has four CD’s released on her own label, Corn Hill, Indie, and her most recently released album, Freak Miracle, on the Innova Label, received a 2011 NARAS Grammy nomination consideration. Katie’s albums have been on the Jazz Improv, and Jazz Times Top 50 Indie Pick List, numerous CMJ Top 10 Radio Charting, and four AAJ-NY Honorable Mentions (Cup of Joe/No Bull;, The Story, So Far; Love Spook; and Freak Miracle). She has performed with numerous musicians in the USA and Latin America. Her jazz mentors are Jay Clayton and Sheila Jordan. Katie is also a writer of plays, stories, and essays. Katie has been the Vox News columnist for the New York City Jazz Record since January 2012. She is a freelance speaking voice coach for film, television, and stage & the head of vocal production at the NYU Tish/Atlantic Theater Company Acting Studio. www.katiebull.com
PORTAGE LAKE, PORTAGE GLACIER January 2013
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