New projects and upcoming gigs

It has been a long time since I’ve posted; I hope this one finds you doing well. Now that I am settled here in Guanajuato I have been able to get some new projects going in both music and art. First, I’ll list the upcoming shows I have in November and then below you can read more about each of the new projects. I hope that I’ll be able to see you at one of these shows:

  • Saturday, November 10th 8:00 pm – Opening of the art exhibit of my prints and drawings at Galeria 6 in Mineral de Pozos, GTO Mexico
  • Sunday, November 11th 7:00 – 9:00 pm – The reunited Pong Unit at the Green Mill (4802 N. Broadway, Chicago IL) in the Uptown Poetry Slam. Carter Luke piano, Steve Hashimoto bass, Heath Chappell drums.
  • Thursday, November 15th, 7:00 – 10:00 pm – Midnight Blue duo with Steve Hashimoto at Adelles (535 W. Liberty Dr. Wheaton, Illinois 60187)
  • Friday, November 16th, 8:00 – 11:00 pm – Midnight Blue trio at Flight 112 (112 Park Ave., Elmhurst, IL)

The New Projects:

Dos Elementos – A new classical chamber duo with trumpeter Jason Pettit. Jason is a wonderful musician and has a lot of experience in both the classical and jazz worlds. We are taking advantage of the fact that we both improvise and we’ve assembled a touring program for 2013 titled “Sueños de España” that involves music from both the classical and jazz realms. The centerpiece of our new program is an arrangement of Joaquin Rodrigo’s “Concierto de Arranjuez” that is modeled partly on Rodrigo’s original for guitar and orchestra and partly on the Miles Davis/Gil Evans version for trumpet and jazz orchestra from their album “Sketches of Spain”. We will be announcing upcoming concerts soon.

Duo Valken – A duet with Early Music specialist Armando López Valdivia. Armando is a multi-instrumentalist and has a collection of over 250 replica instruments from the Middle Ages and Renaissance. In Duo Valken Armando plays several instrument form his collection such as viola de gamba, alto viol, hurdy hurdy, recorder and percussion. I play the classical guitar, dulcimer and vihuela. We have a new album called “Camino a Sildor” (The Road to Sildor) coming out in December that was funded by the University of Guanajuato We will begin touring to promote the album in 2013.

Solo shows – Of course, I’m still performing and composing music to be played in solo shows. I am working with a combination of solo guitar, a looping device and sample based works.

I have two new jazz related groups in the Chicago area:
Midnight Blue –  This group plays a blend of jazz, blues and Latin music. The name of the group was inspired by the title of Kenny Burrell’s 1964 album “Midnight Blue”. The style of the group is a blend of the sound of the Blue Note record label in the early 1960s with the sounds of Memphis, New Orleans and Latin America. It is a trio with Steve Hashimoto on bass and Heath Chappell on drums. We have two shows in November in Chicago.

One Big Soul –  A project that I co-lead with bassist Steve Arens that performs improvised music inspired by Anthony Braxton, Henry Threadgill and Ornette Coleman. It is a four piece group with Steve Arens on bass, Jason Stein on bass clarinet, Tim Daisy on drums and me on guitar. We have recorded a CD called “Shining Cities” that will be out sometime early next year.

I was asked to participate in an exhibit of drawings and prints in the gallery “Galeria 6” in the nearby town of Mineral de Pozos. Mineral de Pozos was a literal ghost town of mining ruins until artists began to move in during the late 1980s. It is now a budding artist community with several galleries in town. The exhibit starts November 10th and will have ten of my pieces in it.

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