Saturday, May 10, 2014

StLJN Saturday Video Showcase:
Improvising with Laubrock, Rainey & Damon

Today, we've got a series of videos featuring saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock, drummer Tom Rainey and drummer Tyler Damon, who will be the visiting performers at New Music Circle's final concert of the season at 7:00 p.m., Tuesday, May 20 at the William S. Kerr Foundation, 21 O'Fallon St. on Laclede's Landing.

Active in the NYC and international improvised music scenes, Laubrock and Rainey played in St. Louis last year as part of pianist Kris Davis' group. This time, they'll do a duo set, while Damon, who hails from Bloomington, Indiana, will team with two St. Louisans, guitarist Chris Trull of Yowie and electronic musician Kevin Harris. A solo performance by St. Louis sound artist Nathan Cook, aka N.N.N. Cook, will round out the event.

Keeping in mind that there's really no way to "preview" an evening of freely improvised music as such, the hope is that today's collected clips at least will convey a sense of each player's sound and some of the strategies and ideas used in their performances.

The first video up above is from a duo gig by Laubrock and Rainey in February of this year at the NYC performance space Barbès, with two more excerpts from the same show after the jump. As often happens with audience-shot clips, the video quality here isn't great, but the audio is more than satisfactory, and the clips certainly provide a ample taste of what they can get up to in this format.

Below that are two trio performances featuring Laubrock and Rainey. The first is a complete set also including Kris Davis on piano, recorded in October, 2011 at the Teatro Comunale in Cormòns, Italy. In the second clip, recorded a year earlier at the Jazz and More festival in Sibiu, Romania, Rainey and Laubrock are joined by guitarist Mary Halvorson.

As for Damon, he's not yet as well-known or well-traveled as Laubrock and Rainey, but his skills have been championed notably by St. Louis' Darin Gray, who, along with saxophonist Mars Williams, performed with the drummer in an NMC-sponsored concert last August at the St. Louis Art Museum.

Gray is featured along with Damon in the sixth clip, recorded in November 2012 at Bottom of the Hill in San Francisco, and the seventh and final video is an excerpt from a Damon solo performance last month at Dreamland in Louisville, KY.

You can see the rest of today's videos after the jump...

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