The Squid's Ear Magazine


Williams, Mars / Katinka Kleijn / Rob Kassinger: Two Or Three (Amalgam)

Three performances of Pauline Oliveros' compositions for two or three instruments, performed by the same trio who premiered the work in 2017 at the commission of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's MusicNow Series--Mars Williams on reeds, Katinka Kleijn on cello and Rob Kassinger on bass--these versions performed live in 2018 at Elastic Arts along with two collective improvisations.
 

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product information:

Personnel:



Mars Williams-reeds

Katinka Kleijn-cello

Robert Kassinger-bass


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Label: Amalgam
Catalog ID: AMA047
Squidco Product Code: 34532

Format: CD
Condition: New
Released: 2023
Country: USA
Packaging: Digipack
Recorded live in March 2018 at Elastic Arts, in Chicago, Illinois, by Caleb Willitz.

Descriptions, Reviews, &c.

"On April 3, 2017 Mars Williams, Rob Kassinger and Katinka Kleijn performed the World Premiere of Pauline Oliveros' For Two or Three Instruments which was completed shortly before her death in 2016.

Commissioned by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra's MusicNow Series, these longtime collaborators reached deep into their musical dream boxes, initiated by the great Oliveros and shaped by the powerful riches and history of Chicago's musical womb. Saxophonist Mars Williams is a living free jazz and rock legend (The Psychedelic Furs, Peter Brotzmann, Ken Vandermark, Liquid Soul, Hal Russell's NRG Ensemble, 'an Albert Ayler Xmas'). CSO bassist Rob Kassinger (Silk Road Ensemble, Woody Herman Band, Teldec) grew up touring in his father's jazz band and regularly trades Orchestra Hall for Andy's jazz bar. And CSO cellist Katinka Kleijn (International Contemporary Ensemble, SONY Japan, Drag City Records) performs freely across the genres of classical, experimental, improvisation, and performance art.

In March 2018 the trio booked Chicago's Elastic Arts venue to capture Oliveros' work in a series of versions, adding improvisations inspired by For Two or Three Instruments. In true Oliveros' style, these collaborations are guided by her Deep Listening practice, opening up possibilities of the musicians' reactions to her typical explorative and self-assessing way. These musical travels therefore can not be typified by the word improvisation alone, but perhaps can invite the listener into three minds constantly assessing in real time how to interpret Oliveros' directions while creating material that may be a reaction, an initiative or both. While one might argue this is what improvisation is, Oliveros is brilliant in creating a very specific space to musically live in, as the worlds of composition and improvisation are currently becoming accepted as so rightfully intertwined.

To simultaneously receive and send, is a highly crafted brain space that musicians uniquely culture and polish with their lifetime. No words or visuals can truly describe it, but you may be able to enter it if you let yourself be transported with this record."-Amalgam


Artist Biographies

"Mars Williams is an open-minded musician, composer and educator who commutes easily between free jazz, funk, hip-hop and rock, Mars has played and recorded with The Psychedelic Furs, Billy Idol, Massacre, Fred Frith, Bill Laswell, Ministry, Power Station, Die Warzau, The Waitresses, Kiki Dee, Pete Cosey, Billy Squier, DJ Logic, Wayne Kramer, John Scoffield, Charlie Hunter, Kurt Elling, Swollen Monkeys, Mike Clark, Jerry Garcia, Naked Raygun, Friendly Fires, The Untouchables, Blow Monkeys and virtually every leading figure of Chicago's and New York City's "downtown" scene.

John Zorn credits Mars as "one of the true saxophone players--someone who takes pleasure in the sheer act of blowing the horn. This tremendous enthusiasm is an essential part of his sound, and it comes through each note every time he plays. Whatever the situation, Mars plays exciting music. In many ways he has succeeded in redefining what versatility means to the modern saxophone player."

In 2001 Mars received a Grammy Nomination for Best Contemporary Jazz Record with his group Liquid Soul.

Despite his busy touring schedule with Liquid Soul and The Psychedelic Furs, Mars manages to stay active on the Chicago underground improvising scene. In recent years he has toured and recorded with the Peter Brötzmann Tentet, Switchback, Full Blast, Scorch Trio, the Vandermark 5, Boneshaker, Chicago Reed Quartet and Cinghiale, teaming him with such musicians as Ken Vandermark, Hamid Drake, Michael Zerang, William Parker, Ikue Mori, Kent Kessler, Fredric Lonberg Holm, Peter Brotzmann, Joe McPhee, Paal Nilssen-Love, Ab Baars, Mike Reed, Jeb Bishop, Harrison Bankhead, Dave Rempis, Kidd Jordan and Matts Gustafson.

He performs weekly in Chicago along with Jim Baker, Steve Hunt, and Brian Sandstrom in the improvising quartet "Extraordinary Popular Delusions". As a bandleader, he continues to perform and record CDs with his own free-jazz groups, the NRG Ensemble, Witches & Devils, Slam, XmarsX, Mars Trio, Boneshaker and The Soul Sonic Sirkus which features improvising musicians and aerial circus performers. Along with Die Warsau's Van Christie, Mars has started Ratking Music, a production company focusing on music for film and television.

In addition to performing and creating music, Mars has been an educator in the field of woodwinds and jazz improvisation for over thirty years. Mars held the position of Woodwind Instructor at Bard College for two years. In the last few years Mars has presented Master classes and clinics to a number of private and public institutions including, the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, the University of Chicago, Roosevelt University (Chicago, IL), and June Collins Smith Museum of Fine Art (Auburn, AL)."

-Mars Williams Website (http://www.marswilliams.com/about/)
4/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Hailed as "Chicago's first lady of the cello" by Timeout Chicago Magazine, Dutch cellist Katinka Kleijn defies today's traditional definition of a cellist, transitioning comfortably through the styles of classical, experimental, contemporary, improvisatory, folk and progressive rock, as well as across the traditional fields of solo, chamber and orchestral performance.

Most recently, she appeared as soloist in the World Premiere of Dai Fujikura's cello concerto at Lincoln Center, New York, where The New York Times described her as "a player of formidable expressive gifts".

A member of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Kleijn is in frequent demand as soloist, performing with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Charles Dutoit in Penderecki's Triple Cello Concerto, as well as with the The Hague Philharmonic, the Chicago Sinfonietta , the Illinois Philharmonic, the Symphony Orchestras of Elmhurst, DuPage and Sheboygan, and as a soloist in Mark-Anthony Turnage's Kai on the CSO's MusicNOW Series.

Known for her innovative individual projects, Kleijn presented multi-media solo shows at the Library of Congress, Washington DC, the Chicago Humanities Festival and the Chicago Cultural Center. A collaboration with the Chicago-based performance art duo Industry of the Ordinary resulted in the highly-acclaimed and publicized work "Intelligence in the Human-Machine" by Daniel Dehaan, which Time Magazine called "a balancing act for Kleijn's whole body," and where Kleijn performs a duet with her own brainwaves.

In Kleijn's extensive work as a member of the prolific International Contemporary Ensemble (ICE), named Ensemble of the Year 2014 by Musical America, she has given numerous premieres, including the US premiere of Zona for solo cello and ensemble by Magnus Lindberg at the Lincoln Center's Mostly Mozart Festival, and Eternal Escape for solo cello by Dai Fujikura, described by the Chicago Tribune's John von Rhein as "a five-minute tour de force, played with wonderfully incisive bravado."

An avid chamber musician, Kleijn has collaborated with Yo-Yo Ma, Pierre-Laurent Aimard, Christoph Eschenbach, Richard Goode, and Lynn Harrell; and appeared in the Symphony Center Presents Chamber Music Series with pianist Jeremy Denk and violinist Stefan Jackiw. She has performed at the Marlboro Music Festival and Ravinia Festival's Rising Star Series. Kleijn was a member of the Chicago Chamber Musicians from 2006-2010.

Kleijn recorded for the Naxos, Boston Record and Cedille labels. Her 2003 recording of David Baker's Cello Concerto with the Chicago Sinfonietta received rave reviews: The Strad Magazine wrote "Kleijn gives infectious energy to the performance" and Fanfare Magazine commented that "Kleijn brings plenty of temperament and gorgeous tone."

Non-classical recordings include CD's with the progrock metal band District 97, the ambient-folk duo Relax Your Ears, singer-song writer David Sylvian, and for the newest single "Valkyrie" by Asia with John Wetton. She is part of a working improvised music duo with Chicago-based guitarist Bill MacKay, and performs on the Chicago free jazz scene."

-Katinka Kleijn Website (http://www.katinkakleijn.com/)
4/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.

"Robert Kassinger joined the Chicago Symphony Orchestra in 1993, and previously served as assistant principal bass for the Colorado Symphony and section bass for the New Orleans Symphony.

An active chamber musician, Robert has appeared with Daniel Barenboim, Menahem Pressler, Yo-Yo Ma and the Silk Road Ensemble, the Fine Arts Quartet, the Orion Ensemble, Fulcrum Point, Ars Viva, Music of the Baroque, MusicNow, and radio broadcasts on WFMT.

Robert is adjunct professor of Double Bass at DePaul University. He has also served as guest instructor at Indiana University, and interim instructor at Northwestern University. He is a frequent master clinician at Manhattan School of Music, the Juilliard school and International Society of Bassists. It was Robert's honor to teach at the West- Eastern Divan, a ground-breaking youth orchestra that brings together musicians from Israel and various Arab countries to study with Daniel Barenboim, Yo-Yo Ma, and members of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic, and Staatskapelle Berlin.

Robert grew up in a family of musicians in Boulder, Colorado. He began his bass lessons with Frank Carroll at the University of Colorado. In 1985 he moved to New York to study with Homer Mensch at Manhattan School of Music and the Juilliard School, followed by studies with Bruce Bransby at Indiana University.

Some of Mr. Kassinger's most influential experiences as a student were his two years as principal bass of the New York String Orchestra, directed by Alexander Schneider, and two summers as a fellowship student at the Aspen Music Festival, studying with Stuart Sankey and Bruce Bransby. In 1989 Robert was the winner of the Aspen Double Bass Competition.

Robert's experience as a jazz performer began in his teen years, working in the house rhythm section at the Denver jazz club El Chapultapec. Since then he has performed with Wynton Marsalis, Branford Marsalis, Kenny Burrell, Woody Herman Orchestra, Conte Candoli, Charlie Rouse, Teddy Edwards, Harold Land, Red Holloway, Charles Brown, Richard Stoltzman, Gary Burton, Alex Acuna, Laurence Hobgood, and Bobby Lewis."

-Robert Kassinger Website (https://robkassinger.com/bio)
4/10/2024

Have a better biography or biography source? Please Contact Us so that we can update this biography.


Track Listing:



1. For Two Or Three Instruments I 05:35

2. Improvisation I 07:21

3. For Two Or Three Instruments II 05:38

4. Improvisation II 17:17

5. For Two Or Three Instruments III 05:25

Related Categories of Interest:


Improvised Music
Jazz
Free Improvisation
Chicago Jazz & Improvisation
Trio Recordings
New in Improvised Music
Recent Releases and Best Sellers

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Amalgam.


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