Tuesday, March 22, 2016

April gets adventurous with concerts by Fred Lonberg-Holm & Frode Gjerstad, Tyondai Braxton, and Thurman Barker

Three shows recently added to the St. Louis concert calendar mean the first full week of April could be a busy one for local fans of adventurous jazz and creative music:

* Chicago-based cellist Fred Lonberg-Holm and Norwegian saxophonist Frode Gjerstad (pictured, top left) will team up for a concert of improvised music at 8:00 p.m. Tuesday, April 5 at Jackson Pianos, 4354 Olive St.

Lonberg-Holm is an active participant in Chicago's busy free-improv and jazz scenes, and has collaborated there and around the globe with musicians including Joe McPhee, Peter Brötzmann, Ken Vandermark, Chris Corsano, Lotte Anker, Mats Gustafsson, Glenn Kotche, Jim O'Rourke, Jeff Parker, Michael Zerang, and many more. He's also contributed to recording projects by rock groups such as Califone, Freakwater, God-is-my-co-pilot, L'altra, Smog, Super, US Maple, Wilco, and others.

Gjerstad, who concentrates on alto sax but also plays clarinet and flute, has contributed to more than 50 recordings since beginning his career in the 1970s. He too has played with Peter Brötzmann, and also has performed with many other well-known improvising musicians, such as William Parker, Borah Bergman, Derek Bailey, and Evan Parker.

Admission to the Fred Lonberg-Holm/Frode Gjerstad performance will be "$10-$15 suggested" at the door, a price that includes "free beer/wine/food."

* Composer Tyondai Braxton will perform at 8:00 p.m. Thursday, April 7 at The Luminary.

Braxton, former front man for the experimental rock band Battles and the son of famed saxophonist/composer Anthony Braxton, has created a wide variety of music during his career, ranging from a recent duo collaboration with Phillip Glass to symphonic works such as his album Central Market, which has been performed live by orchestras including the London Sinfonietta and the Los Angeles Philharmonic.

His multimedia installation "HIVE" recently premiered at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC, with an accompanying soundtrack set for release next month on Nonesuch Records.

Braxton (pictured, center left) will perform solo at The Luminary, with St. Louis' Hylidae as opening act. Tickets are $15 in advance, $17 day of show.

* Another well-known, Chicago-based improviser, drummer Thurman Barker, already was scheduled to be in St. Louis that same week to perform on Thursday, April 7 for Washington University's Jazz at Holmes series.

Now, Wash U has announced another performance by Barker (pictured, bottom left), a free event at 7:00 p.m. Friday, April 8 in the auditorium (aka Room 100) of Brown Hall, which for many years has been a site for film screenings on campus.

"Sonic Visions: Experimental Film + Live Jazz" will feature Barker, saxophonist Joel Vanderheyden, and bassist and Wash U faculty member Paul Steinbeck creating improvised scores for silent films by Stan Brakhage, Tomonari Nishikawa, and Walter Ruttmann.

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