Wednesday, January 23, 2013
A relatively quiet start to the new year deceptively hides the fact that this year is set to be unquestionably my busiest yet. The BIG news is my relocation to Europe from late march this year. This has been a very long time coming (many friends in Australia have actually thought I was already based in Europe for some years…) and it is simply a case that now does seem like the right time to make the official move since there seems to be an increasing amount of music work for me overseas - both with long time collaborators and my own evolving music projects. Barely a week after I arrive in Germany I will be touring with Lulo Reinhardt and his
Latin-Swing Project. First stop is Agdz in Morocco playing at the Rendezvous de la Musique Festival on the 5th and 6th of April followed by the Volodymyr Molotkov International Guitar Competition in Kiev, Ukraine on the 12th and 13th of April. I will be touring throughout Germany, the UK, Poland, Australia and the US over the course of the year so keep your eyes posted many more dates to come!
In the first week of July I am set to be performing with Sydney based Yiddish singer Faye Sussman in Poland as part of an Australian-funded documentary focusing on concepts relating to the deep-seated feelings and reconciliations of 2nd and 3rd generation families of survivors, bystanders, resistance fighters and war criminals from WWII. This documentary is set to be filmed by Judy Menczel and Paul Green who were the masterminds behind the video footage of Zohar’s Nigun’s phenomenal Saturday April 14 2012 debut album launch of ‘The Four Questions’ at venue505. The Four Questions, released through my label Rectify Records is currently available in hardcopy at Birdland, Title Music, Thomas Music,
CD Baby and Amazon, and is also available for digital download through iTunes and CD Baby. There have been and continue to be many fantastic reviews online including from Brent Black from Critical Jazz who described the album as ‘an intimate and insightful hybrid of cultural tradition that is as stirring and beautiful as some of the more classically oriented post modern work of great depth and tenderness. An introspective sonic wonderland of texture couples with the raw emotion that springs forth from each composition. There is an ebb and flow unique to the life blood of Jewish culture and tradition…The Four Questions is a stellar offering.’ Reviewers Richard Scheinin, Chris Spector from MidWest Record, Grady Harp from Amazon and Don Albert from Artslink have all written extremely positive and very kind words about the album and there looks set to be many more reviews in the coming weeks and months ahead….
This year is going to be a very interesting year for Rectify Records which I set up primarily with the notion of releasing extremely rare and beautiful recordings that mix traditional folk and jazz elements drawing from some of the finest artists and ensembles from across Australia and the world. Despite my move to Europe I am planning to regularly visit Australia’s shores and there are some very exciting as well as quite poignant potential releases on the cards for this year through this little label. On February 24 there will be a fundraiser at Camelot Lounge for multi-instrumentalist and close friend Neill Duncan who was diagnosed with a sarcoma late last year and had his left arm amputated to fight this dreadful cancer. In time for this fundraiser plans are under way to release an album of studio tracks we recorded many years ago of our
New Orleans-Jazz-Klezmer band ‘ The Ticklers’ to be released through Rectify Records with all proceeds going to Neill and his family. There are several further recordings in the pipeline for this label including an album of Central/Eastern European, Gypsy and Polynesian music by the one and only Nadya Golski recorded in Paris several years ago as well as a recording I made with the phenomenal guitarist Ian Date several years ago. A sequel recording to my tribute album to the composing prowess of Django Reinhardt Souvenirs described in the New York City Jazz Record as ‘rejuvenating the gypsy jazz craft in evocative colours’ is also slated for completion this year and will also be released through Rectify Records. Souvenirs is available online both in physical form and digitally through Toca Records, CDBaby, iTunes and in hardcopy in Australia at Birdland.
My absolute favourite music project of all time Asthmatix has been BUSY working on our first full length album. This will be an album that I am pretty close to certain many people worldwide will be talking about for a long time to come upon release. Recorded over many years in an endless variety of studios, bedrooms, basements, balconies, parklands, etc it is a natural follow up to our critically acclaimed EP ‘Go Team Go’ and features some truly fantastic guest musicians including master drummer Achim Färber, groove meister bass player Taylor Savvy, legendary Yiddish singer Karsten Troyke and even beat boxer Killa Kella amongst many others. The band is touring Europe again this year from June to August in-between my other music commitments so STAY TUNED…