compositions

MartyParty at Fox Theatre - 08.20.11

Z2 Entertainment is proud to present MartyParty at the Fox Theatre on Saturday, August 20th.  Tickets go on sale Friday, July 1st for $15.00 in advance and $18.00 day of show.

Since the release of his Blueberry Kush EP in February 2011, MartyParty has been rippling a continuous wave of monstrous bass throughout the US.  Whether headlining alongside fellow Monsters of Bass FreQ Nasty and Opiuo or performing as PANTyRAID with co-producer Ooah of The Glitch Mob, his signature sound of purple dubstep oozes through the bins to entrance sold-out dance floors across the country.

Supporters have grown organically from the loyal tribes of crunkstep purveyors to a newer 100,000 person strong army of sonic kush connoisseurs.  Fans give rise to his PANTyRAID’s Superior release, pushing the EP to #1 position on iTunes electronic album charts in April 2011.

When not on the road, the South African-born performer and producer locks down in his Brooklyn-based studio to produce a diverse catalog of original heat-from downtempo compositions that slip behind the curtains of a dark and twisted audio fantasy to intense stadium anthems riddled with hooks and bass.  His exploration into the world of future bass tells an electronic story of Purple-the subject of his debut album release.

Purple hits stores on May 31st, 2011 and is supported by scheduled club and theater appearances throughout the US and Canada, as well as festival dates at Camp Bisco, Lighting in a Bottle and Sonic Bloom.  The 13-track LP begins with a breakfast of “Eggs and Toast” before launching into an amusement park ride that twist and turns through hyper-drive drum & bass and throbbing dubstep.

Amanda Palmer - CD Release Concert at Berklee Performance Center

A chance meeting with Amanda Palmer has led to the chance of a lifetime for Berklee summer student and Saratoga Springs, NY-based pianist Tristan Allen. Walking home from a rehearsal in late August, Palmer met a group of Berklee summer students on the last day of the college's five-week program. She decided to take a picture of three teens who were hugging on a bench. They obliged, and as she walked away, one of the teens, Allen, ran up after her, having been told "she plays cabaret piano music." When Palmer informed him she was in the Dresden Dolls, Allen was shocked -- he had been a fan of the band for ages -- and asked if she'd be interested in hearing his original piano music.

With no practice spaces available, Palmer said, "My house is six blocks away. I have a piano. Let's go there." So they did. Allen performed, and his music so impressed Palmer that she asked him if she could webcast to her fans on the spot. For the next hour, he played original compositions and improvisations for Palmer's online fanbase (over 450,000 Twitter followers), insuring that many would witness the event.

The response was ecstatic and demand for Allen's music was such that Palmer invited him to a studio a few weeks later to record a five-song EP. It was funded directly from her fanbase using Kickstarter, generating over $8,000 in 48 hours. The EP, recorded in September in Boston with engineer Owen Curtin and produced by Amanda Palmer, includes four of Allen's compositions and one four-handed piano duet, "János vs. Wonderland," that Palmer and Allen wrote together and recorded exclusively for the album.  You can download the MP3 of "János vs. Wonderland” duet with Amanda Palmer HERE for a taste of what you will hear on the rest of the self titled EP, Tristan Allen!

The CD release concert, An Evening with Amanda Palmer and Tristan Allen, will take place Sunday, December 12 at 7 p.m. at the Berklee Performance Center (BPC).  The concert will be streamed live via Ustream. Ticket proceeds will fund a Berklee Five-Week Summer Performance Program scholarship. The album will be available in physical and digital format on KickStarter!

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Tristan Allen
Tristan Allen's music is solo piano (no vocals), blending heartful passages of improvisational rhythm and textural, cinematic drama, inviting comparisons to his heroes Philip Glass, Steve Reich, Eric Satie, and Yann Tierson. His upbringing added to his artistic coffers; his Montreal-native mother is a dance professor at a university, and his father is a top scenic designer. The family lived in Japan for several years. Allen, currently a senior at Saratoga Springs High School, plans to study piano performance and electronic music in college.

Amanda Palmer
Amanda Palmer is a performer, director, composer, and musician who is best known for her role as front woman and keyboardist for the internationally acclaimed punk cabaret band the Dresden Dolls. In 2008, Palmer released Who Killed Amanda Palmer, her debut solo album which was produced by Ben Folds. Palmer is currently on a reunion tour with The Dresden Dolls and recently ended a sold-out run of 43 shows in which she starred as the Emcee in the American Repertory Theater's production of "Cabaret" in her native Boston.

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Berklee Performance Centeris located: 136 Massachusetts Avenue, Boston

General admission tickets are $10 and will be available starting Nov. 5 at the BPC box office and through Ticketmaster (800-745-3000 or ticketmaster.com). A limited number of free tickets will be available for Berklee students, faculty, staff, and alumni. For more information, visit Berkleebpc.com or call 617-747-2261. The venue is wheelchair accessible.

Michael Weiss Trio Performs at the Kitano

Pianist and composer Michael Weiss leads a trio in tribute to the late, great Detroit pianists Hank Jones and Tommy Flanagan at the Kitano New York.  Joining Weiss are bassist George Mraz, who was a member of trios led by both Jones and Flanagan, and drummer Dennis Mackrel, a former member of Jones' trio.

The suave and sophisticated styles of Flanagan and Jones have left an important imprint on Weiss, who considers both pianists to have been mentors. Weiss enjoys a similar relationship with another hero of Detroit, Barry Harris, who, like Flanagan and Jones, shares an affinity for Bud Powell, Thelonious Monk and mining a rich trove of neglected standards. Flanagan thought highly enough of Weiss that that he often attended his younger colleague's performances, including his 1992 Merkin Hall concert entitled "Rediscovered Rarities: Monk, Bud and Bird." When Flanagan was hospitalized briefly at one point, he even sent his wife to Bradley’s, the premiere piano room of the day in New York, to take note of Weiss’ repertoire. Last year Weiss and Jones shared the stage on the European festival circuit.

While Weiss still loves to draw from his unusually deep knowledge of jazz tunes and standards, his repertoire since the mid ‘90s has leaned toward his original compositions, which favor a meticulous attention to detail, rich harmonic schemes, formal ingenuity and imaginative melodic and rhythmic development. Still, while his writing has become fleshed out with a broader range of ideas and influences, his improvisations have never shed his bop-oriented roots. For this engagement, Weiss will perform a mix of originals, standards and selections by Thad Jones, Hank's  brother and a favorite composer of both Flanagan and Jones.

The Kitano is located at 66 Park Avenue. Set times are 8 and 10 p.m.There is a $25 cover charge and a $15 minimum.  For reservations and more information: (212) 885-7119.  For more information about Weiss, please click here.

MORE BACKGROUND:

A native of Dallas, Texas, pianist and composer Michael Weiss’s extensive resume includes work with Johnny Griffin, Art Farmer, Frank Wess, Slide Hampton, Wynton Marsalis, Jimmy Heath, the Jazztet, Lou Donaldson, Charles McPherson, Von Freeman, George Coleman, Joe Wilder, the Vanguard Jazz Orchestra,  Junior Cook and Bill Hardman. Weiss made his Village Vanguard debut as a leader in 2006 with his quintet. Reviewing the ensemble's performance, New York Times critic Nate Chinen praised Weiss' composing, playing and bandleading skills, noting that "he demonstrated a strong sense of leadership and organization." Chinen also wrote that Weiss was "a confident and sometimes sparkling presence on piano" and that his playing exhibited "sensitivity and logic, along with crisp control."

Groups led by Weiss have performed at the Detroit Jazz Festival, the Stanford Jazz Festival, the Smithsonian Institution, NPR’s "Jazzset," and in New York at the Village Vanguard, Blue Note, Jazz Standard, Jazz Gallery, Smoke, WNYC and WQXR. In 2000, Weiss was awarded the BMI/Monk Institute Composers Competition grand prize, presented to him by Wayne Shorter for his piece, “El Camino,” which appears on Weiss' latest CD, “Soul Journey.” With influences as varied as Scriabin, Szymanowski and Shorter, Weiss' compositions focus on extended forms, thematic development and attention to detail. In 2003 Weiss was a recipient of the Doris Duke/Chamber Music America New Works grant, for which he wrote the suite “Three Doors.”

Weiss has recorded four albums as a leader, including “Soul Journey” (Sintra), “Milestones” (Steeplechase), “Power Station” (DIW) and “Presenting Michael Weiss” (Criss Cross). He has also recorded widely as a sideman, including four CDs with Johnny Griffin and dates with Charles McPherson, Frank Wess, Ronnie Cuber and others.

Colin Stetson Announces US Dates w/ Arcade Fire

Colin Stetson has performed the solo saxophone music of New History Warfare in practically every type of venue that music inhabits, and although this music may seem challenging on it's surface, every audience in every room in every city has received it with a warm and energized embrace.

From chanting and clapping crowds of rock fans while opening up for the Arcade Fire in a string of Get out the Vote rallies for the Obama Campaign last summer to a captivated and curious standing room only in rural Germany. The monks at the National Shrine of St. Francis Assissi were so thrilled with an easter sunday performance that they had him back for two more in the years to come. It is a spectacle of physical extremes (Lexy Benaim of the Harlem Shakes likened it to watching the Olympics, and Alex Green at Caught in the Carousel calls him "the Roger Federer of avant-garde instrumental music") and an intense and cathartic experience of sound and lyricism.

Both sonically vast and melodically accessible. Allmusic.com's Sean Westergard had this to say: "Colin Stetson is an absolute master of the saxophone...New History Warfare, Vol. 1 is a truly impressive, fully formed, and highly individual musical statement... Stetson's compositions and ability to tell a musical story are what make this a great album. You haven't heard saxophone music quite like this".

Aside from his work as a soloist, Stetson has brought his unique voice on winds and brass to stage and studio with dozens of artists, including Tom Waits, Arcade Fire, TV on the Radio, Fiest, Bon Iver, Laurie Anderson, Lou Reed, Marc Ribot, David Byrne, Jolie Holland, Sinead O'Connor, LCD Soundsystem, My Brightest Diamond, Angelique Kidjo, Anthony Braxton, and The National.

Tour Dates:

Tue Oct 5th - Big Sur CA Henry Miller Library

Thu Oct 7th - Los Angeles CA Shrine Auditorium

Fri Oct 8th - Los Angeles CA Shrine Auditorium

Sun Oct 10th - Mexico City Palacio de los Deportes

Tue Oct 12th - Monterrey Banamex Theater

BILL EVANS TRIBUTE Tonight At Cornelia Street Café

We open our 2010/11 Serial Underground season with a unique evening to celebrate the great composer/pianist/jazz icon Bill Evans on the thirtieth anniversary of his death on September 15, 1980. Bill was an early mentor of mine. Although it took me a long to appreciate his influential lyrical side, the hard-swinging extroversion that characterized how he played in his last years grabbed me. I suspect our casual friendship arose from common musical interests; for instance, our mutual appreciation of great classical pianists. Bill set me up with a job fixing up and editing his transcribed solos for a book. and we painstakingly cross-checked details over the phone (this was before fax machines and computers, remember). I'd plunk out a chord on my piano, and he'd say yes or no or change this or keep that, and so forth.

Tonight's guest writers certainly bring us closer to the man behind the music. Bill Zavatsky's poems stay with you long after you read or hear them. Laurie Verchomin's upcoming memoir about her life with Bill Evans in the last year and a half of his life runs the full emotional gamut. Once I started reading it, I couldn't stop. Laurie and I decided to frame her words with piano music, and although I'm using Bill¹s compositions or, in some cases, songs associated with him, strangely enough, I'm not playing like him. Maybe a chord or two, or a favorite lick, but I just can't do my once letter-perfect Bill Evans imitation anymore. Perhaps that's a good thing. When I told Bill how much I had stolen from him, he said "Go right ahead. That's what I did when I was young. It only took me forty years to evolve my own style!"

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CORNELIA STREET CAFÉ
29 Cornelia Street, NYC, New York -- 212-989-9319
between West 4th and Bleecker Sts, Greenwich Village
1 Subway to Sheridan Square; A, C, E, B, D, V, F to West 4th St.