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Steve Dalachinsky

Poet/collagist STEVE DALACHINSKY was a long time contributor to the Rail. His book The Final Nite & Other Poems (Ugly Duckling Presse - 2006) won the PEN Oakland National Book Award. His latest CDs are The Fallout of Dreams with Dave Liebman and Richie Beirach (Roguart, 2014), and the book/CD Pretty in the Morning with the French art rock group the Snobs (Bisou Records, 2019). He was a 2014 recipient of a Chevalier de l Ordre des Arts et Lettres. His most recent books include Frozen Heatwave, a collaboration with Yuko Otomo (Luna Bissonte Prods, 2017) and where night and day become one—the french poems (great weather for MEDIA, 2018) which received a 2019 IBPA award in poetry.

For Charles-Henri Ford— Another I Did Not Know

Its funny how memory works. Selective memory. What one chooses to remember. Forget.

Outtakes

The main problem with authorized biographies is that, well, they’re authorized. This means certain vital facts may be left out due to jealousies, estate disputes, etc. Such is the case with the long-awaited Moondog by Robert Scotto.

Outtakes

Let me start off by saying in this, my second attempt at writing a “column,” that I have many friends and acquaintances who consider themselves jazz journalists or music critics, and that I’m not one of them.

Outtakes

First, let me say that again I don’t want you all to think of me as a narrow-sighted one-trick pony—meaning that I’m not just a music junkie. I love all the arts, and I frequent galleries, museums, film, and readings, but my editor wants me to restrict myself to music so that’s what I do. These past weeks have been fruitful, though in some cases disappointing, but I’ll spare you all the details and just give you some highlights.

Outtakes

The new year has started off with a bang. We’ve got a new administration that rode in on a tide of new promises and old music by the likes of Springsteen, Stevie Wonder, Itzhak Perlman, Yo-Yo Ma, and Aretha.

Outtakes

Many years ago I asked a famous New York Times critic and a well-known jazz musician for advice on what I should do if I decided to write what passed for criticism.

Outtakes

So, dear reader, it’s that time of year again, and here I am suffering in gay Paree while you’re over there in New York having a wonderful winter sippin’ your lattes and, I hope, doing more than just reading this article.

Outtakes

Whether you’re walkin’ to New Orleans, or taking the train they call the City of New Orleans—aside from the harsh truth of Katrina and her aftermath, and the still-massive efforts at recovery, and the Xs marking the many spots of the victims—once you get there it’s both a nonstop party and tourist trap.

OUTTAKES

I was recently fired from my other “journalism” job and precisely for that reason. The “boss” claimed that my writing lacked journalistic qualities and that I was too personal, too general, and not analytical enough. In one discussion he had the gumption to tell me, “Well, you probably hate writing for us, anyway.”

OUTTAKES

First off, I can’t believe that while in Paris I got busted by the Métro cops for the second time in five years. The fine went up to a whopping forty euros.

OUTTAKES

It took me years to acquire a vinyl copy of Lou Reed’s Metal Machine Music at a reasonable price

OUTTAKES

One recent cold, full-moon spring night I was just about to give a second spin to Identical Sunsets, the new Dunmall-Corsano LP on ESP (the record is a killer), but instead the dial fell onto WKCR.

Outtakes

We’ve lost a lot of music-related folks over the past few months: writer Harvey Pekar, saxophonist Fred Anderson, Dutch bandleader Willem Breuker, the great Abbey Lincoln, and composer, trumpeter, and friend Bill Dixon.

Newk's Time

On September 10, tenor saxophonist Theodore Walter “Sonny” Rollins, Harlem native and one of the last of the great boppers, celebrated his 80th birthday with a major concert at the Beacon Theater.

OUTTAKES

There are three big birthdays and one anniversary in the music world in November, and all of them will be celebrated with major events.

Outtakes

It’s been said that Bernstein was music and Karajan made music. And to quote Johnny Depp as the Libertine, “That any experiment of interest in life will be carried out at your own expense.” To both ends I add the ideas that crystallized through my recent experiences in Paris.

Outtakes

This month I’d like to finish up with my listening experiences in Paris and talk about some of what I’ve managed to hear since returning to Appletown. So here is my last bi-polar report between Paris and New York. And I promise, no intellectualizing this time.

Outtakes

In the recent documentary Bill Cunningham New York, Cunningham states that “if you did away with fashion it would be like doing away with civilization.”

Outtakes

So I am sitting here listening to one of my new favorite CDs, from a band called Commitment. The music, originally recorded between 1980–83, includes a reissue from vinyl and selections from an unreleased live concert in Germany. The band consists of Jason Kao Hwang on violin, viola, and bird calls

Outtakes

Well, it’s summer again, and the number of festivals and outdoor concerts in the city has more than doubled.

OUTTAKES

Not since John Zorn’s Arcana project and Art Taylor’s Notes and Tones (which bassist William Parker says in his brief intro is the book that inspired him to do this project) has there been a book of interviews so vital, so down-to-earth, and so personal as this one.

OUTTAKES

It’s the year 5772, and a lot has been happening since the Ark set sail. We’re quickly approaching the season to be jolly, or an approximation thereof. Occupy Wall Street is in its 27th year, or at least it should be. So I will speak on events that led up to where I am now, sitting in a cold room listening alternately to Fela Kuti’s Greatest Hits and Bill Dixon’s monumental November 1981.

Outtakes

So I’m walking down Spring Street on a blustery winter day, when I’m greeted by the somewhat out-of-tune sound of an alto sax playing Bird. Suddenly I hear hysterical screaming coming from somewhere above, “Shut up. Go home. You can’t play. SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!”

Outtakes

In a time of artificially inseminated culture, where half the poetry world and presses in America have been infiltrated by wannabe publishers and rock stars, I have found—at times rather suspiciously, motive-wise—some vague smattering of light through all the pretentious darkness.

Outtakes

To continue with the subject of rock lit (see my April article): There were all these young poets/singer-songwriters who worked at the old Knitting Factory on Houston Street in the ’80s, many of whom eventually went on to achieve stardom.

Outtakes

A movie gangster once remarked, “It’s just money. It’s made up. Pieces of paper with pictures on it.” Then he shot the other guy dead and took his. Another said, “Walmart [itself a kind of gangster] sells to the bottom ranks of the American working class.”

Outtakes

I’ve been told time and time again that I should talk less about myself and more about the “other.” Well, Mostly Other People Do the Killing, who recently played Cornelia Street, has become one of my favorite groups.

Outtakes

Five recent films: Paul Lovelace and Jessica Wolfson’s remarkable Radio Unnameable deals with the histories of the indomitable Bob Fass, WBAI, and America from the late ’50s to the present. Fass’s archives, which include works of the greatest musical figures of that period, need a home.

Outtakes

I find the fact that I can read difficult to comprehend, and therefore I stumble along as I do so. With writing, on the other hand, I find the process a bit more natural, though awkwardly so; it is usually one or two steps behind the thinking that creates it.

Outtakes

Suffering from jazzheimer’s, I find it increasingly difficult to cite my first encounters with certain folks, music, etc.

Outtakes

I’m writing this in the new IHOP that, after two years of construction, has finally opened in the West Village. It’s a short walk from my house and close to where N.Y.U., like all the universities in this town, is planning to destroy more community property at the expense of the students and their unfortunate parents, giving no thought to the proletariat.

Outtakes

I’ve been running around like a maniac and am closer to a nervous breakdown than ever before, while debating which gig to concentrate on.

Outtakes

I’m painfully saddened that at a young age I gave up wanting to be a rock star, a blues singer, or a jazz drummer for three reasons: paranoia, stage fright, and ignorant elitism, aka self-indulgent, romantic, pseudo-intellectualism.

Outtakes

I recently wrote that I’d never go to IHOP again. But one night (more like 2 a.m.) after getting back from the Vision Festival, Yuko and I got hungry.

Outtakes

I knew SoHo was changing when, early one pristine summer evening in the mid-’80s, while I was out selling LPs in front of the Elise Meyer Gallery on West Broadway and Spring, a cute young woman walked by with her cute little designer dog. The dog promptly lifted its leg and relieved itself on my records.

Outtakes

Well, the conversation went on for six more hours, Taylor telling stories that started in the middle and never had endings. Stories about his mother, his aunt, his uncle, his grandmother, his father, and of course other musicians—many times telling the same story over and over again.

Outtakes

Born in Raleigh, N.C. and raised in Charlotte, N.C., prolific composer, saxophonist, and clarinetist Charles Waters, who has been a quiet presence on the New York music scene for almost 20 years, states: “Growing up I played hand bells and piano and sang in the choir [at the] Baptist Church.

Outtakes

So I finally caught the Maria Schneider Big Band. So? So nothing. I just wanted to make that point.

Outtakes

We are all traditionalists in a sense and though it’s rare, when an artist manages to find a new approach to an old tradition, infusing it with a fresh sense of individuality, while at the same time paying deep respect to its original form and intent, we invariably end up with the likes of one Joseph Keckler.

Outtakes

Ok. Here’s how two recent days went.

Outtakes: One Day In The Life Of A Recording Session

It’s all systems go at Systems Two Studio in Brooklyn. It’s also Marge Records owner Gerard Terrone’s first foray into New York City. He’s been running around from club to club catching as many gigs as possible in his one short week here, but his main reason for the trip is to do a follow-up recording for the young, promising French saxophonist Alexandra Grimal.

Outtakes

Friday night. Last set. Four young couples, apparently in love, line the walls of the Cornelia Street Café. They are infatuated and intoxicated by themselves and the music. I am intoxicated (yet again) on two gins provided me by the staff. The music, despite my state, is major. Tony Malaby’s Tamarindo, with Michael Formanek on bass and Nasheet Waits on drums. I’ve mentioned Tony in these pages before but can only reiterate that he is one of those rare beings, one who continues to take risks and grow on his instruments: tenor and soprano saxophone.

Outtakes

At my age, with all the music I’ve experienced, it’s very interesting to view inter-generational artists within a short period of time—all of them with unique qualities and skills. I was recently asked in an interview if there were any young players out there that interested me. My answer was “Yes. They range from ten to eighty-two years of age.”

Outtakes

We’ve had The Secret Garden. Grey Gardens. The Garden of Earthly Delights. The King of Marvin Gardens. Green Mansions, Home and Garden, and now: The Creeping Garden. So what exactly is slime mold? Well, it’s been decided that it’s not a fungus, but, rather than me giving away too much information, see the aforementioned The Creeping Garden, which played recently at the Film Forum.

Outtakes

I saw the wonderful dark frenetic 1965 Italian tragicomedy I Knew Her Well at Film Forum; it was directed by Antonio Pietrangeli, whom I knew nothing about, and who died tragically at age forty-nine in a drowning accident.

Outtakes

“You’ll have fun,” she told her friend, putting her arm around her. “No, I don’t think so,” the other replied, sounding scared and apprehensive.

Outtakes

I recently heard a friend of the Dalai Lama purport that, according to Buddhism, when you understand the nature of the world you are happy.

Outtakes

Some summer fare: Bill Frisell and Thomas Morgan gave a stunning performance at Roulette for their ECM duo release Small Town, recorded at the Village Vanguard. The concert lasted an hour and a half and included most of the tunes on the CD and then some. It was a harmonious set that got better as it went along with Morgan (who has a touch of Charlie Haden in him) getting closer to Frisell’s energy, emotions, concept, and content. Bill has stated that Morgan is an extension of his ideas and this showed through by set’s end.

Outtakes

Hello again from the city of light. I’m sure I’m, ha, greatly missed. I know I’ve missed you and all the good music, poetry, and art in New York this past month. One thing about Paris, it hasn’t completely become an overcrowded ghost town filled with designer dogs, designer donuts, and endless lines of folks waiting to buy fancy milkshakes and raw cookie dough—or maybe I just haven’t seen it yet, zombie that I am.

Outtakes

At the reading/talk the elderly academician proclaimed, “I’ve been teaching in the God-forsaken University for fifty-two years…” I wanted to ask during the Q&A, “So why do you teach?

Outtakes

One of the recent highlights of the new year for me was a trio set by Kris Davis, Tyshawn Sorey, and a new name for me, trumpeter Ambrose Akinmusire. I’ve been told that Akinmusire is an important rising star. I found nothing unique about his playing but felt he excelled in the set. As they all did.

Outtakes

I’m on my way to the West Coast and I just had a book party for my new book, Where the Night and Day Become One: The French Poems, which is a selection of writing between 1983 and 2017. I’m really happy about this book but, like with so many other projects, the key is will the book sell.

Outtakes

Butch Morris was a friend and a hard task master. When he started A Chorus of Poets, I and the late poet John Farris were asked to join. Being the rebellious, attention-deficit-type of kids we were, we quit during (not after) the first rehearsal. Learning the signals and following orders were just not in the mix for us. Here’s some pieces for Butch.

Outtakes

Language comes in all forms, and at times through simple or radical alterations one language becomes another without even a hint at the cause of the transformation. At other times it is expressed through direct movement, gesture, voice. There are as many variations in language as there are languages themselves. This article will explore the roles they play within the context of movement, dance, poetry, and in the case of Meredith Monk all three.

Outtakes

“Memory in the present tense. Do the eyes receive other things than what the mind projects on them? Or are they merely mirrors. Perhaps we live in a world invented by ourselves.” These words from the artist Jean Dubuffet can easily be applied or restructured to (fit) the philosophies Milford Graves proposes in the brilliant film by Jake Meginsky, Milford Graves Full Mantis. Rather than filled with talking heads we get ONE GIGANTIC MIND: that of Milford Graves dissecting / eating plants, hearts, life, pulse, music, beat, martial arts, and the drum.

Outtakes

Henry Flynt gave a whacky, insightful talk—after playing about seven minutes of music—at the Swiss Institute on what he felt was and wasn’t art. He also stated he had a science degree and that E=mc2 was bullshit and had never been proven (relatively speaking, it was, after all, only a theory).

Outtakes

This spring I had the privilege of hearing Clark Coolidge read from his latest manuscript at Bird and Beckett in San Francisco to a capacity crowd. I was anticipating the usual wild ride—beautifully and thickly laden improvised text special to Coolidge and his language, one of near pure improvisation and music without us needing to immediately seek or “get” its meaning. What I, and the audience got instead, was a taste of what has now emerged as a 320-page book, Poet (Pressed Wafer Press, 2018).

Outtakes

Though I didn't run around like a madman at this year's Winter Jazzfest here are the highlights of what I caught: Michael Formanek's Very Practical Trio with Tim Berne and Mary Halvorson; Borderlands Trio with Kris Davis, Stephan Crump, and Eric McPherson (he was a standout); Artifacts Trio with Nicole Mitchell, Tomeka Reid, and Mike Reed; Travis LaPlante, and Gerald Cleaver; Dave Liebman, Adam Rudolph, and Hamid Drake, plus standout solos by Charles Tolliver and Pharoah Sanders in Gary Bartz's Another Earth project.

Outtakes

I've seen so many gigs that are all smoke and mirrors. It's really bringing me down. Gimmicks and language that have been used so many times before. Folks playing for what's outside and not for what is inside. There's nothing new under the sun but hey, though the moon only mirrors the sun's light it is after all an entity unto itself. Listener and player are easily fooled.

Outtakes

Texas native, drummer Rock Savage, who has played with such icons as Arthur Brown, moved to New York in 1988 and became a fixture at the Knitting Factory.

Outtakes

After experiencing an extraordinary concert by Ka at the Fridman Gallery’s new location on the Bowery, I asked her if she would be willing to do an interview. Here are the results.

Outtakes

Steve Dalachinsky passed away in the middle of September, a good handful of days after this column had its final edits. Steve lived a full life and was at the age when his peers and colleagues were experiencing death, his dedications to them were an all-too-frequent kicker for Outtakes. So it is fitting and also very sad for me to write this dedication to you, Steve, lover of art, music, people, and a one-of-a-kind poet and man.

Outtakes

For thirteen years the Vision Festival, which I am proud to be a participant in, has led a nomadic existence. Wandering from one venue to another, this brave band of Visionaries—with the stalwart Patricia Nicholson (dancer/choreographer and wife of the great bassist/composer William Parker) at the helm and a shifting cast of characters amongst the faithful—has plodded through the institutionalized, gentrified, money-hungry waters of the Lower East Side, bringing with it always a sense of unity, community, creativity, and artistic integrity.

Winter Jazzfest

Outtakes

It’s the first night of the Winter Jazzfest and a sold-out show. I’m looking forward to Colin Stetson who I’ve heard twice before and want more of, also the Ex, whom I haven’t heard in years. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not a fan, just curious.

Outtakes

1. NEW YORK I’m sitting here listening to my favorite Monk LP, Alone in San Francisco, while I write this, rejoicing in the fact that the revelatory and possibly most important and moving jazz chronicle, Three Wishes: An Intimate Look at Jazz Greats, by the Baroness Pannonica De Koenigswarter, an abstract painter and authentic Rothschild, has finally made it to where it belongs: America, and more specifically the New York/New Jersey area, where most of its story takes place.

Outtakes

After Henry Rollins’s “lecture” at Joe’s Pub about his life, travels, how we should promote peace and be nice to each other, how he’d mellowed with age and loved us all, why it’s important that the right guy got re-elected, how he boldly went around Haiti after the earthquake giving kids soccer balls, and how at 51 he was most likely the oldest person in the room, I asked him to sign a CD that included two of my friends.

Outtakes

A now-retired New York Times music critic once described me as a free-jazz cultist, and a famous downtown saxophonist/composer once called me a JAZZ SNOB. Both are true to varying degrees, and I wear these banners proudly. But anyone who knows me well knows that besides being a chatty little Brooklynite, I love most forms of arts, but I have definite preferences.

In Conversation

Outtakes

Upon the release of Talibam!’s (keyboardist Matthew Mottel and drummer Kevin Shea) two new recordings on ESP, HARD VIBE and Endgame Of The Anthropocene, and their incredible record release party at Holo this fall—which included Battle Trance’s Matt Nelson on sax and pianist Ron Stabinsky, who both appear on HARD VIBE—I decided to both interview and intervene as the two sat down to discuss their origins and various projects; attempting to levitate Vice magazine into the East River, AtlantASS, their ongoing interest in ecology; and their overall Dadaist serious fun and antics.

Outtakes

One day while walking down St. Mark’s Place with a friend (a bit stoned) at the age of fifteen or so I heard this wild music coming out of a doorway, that I later learned was for the 5 Spot. I stuck my head through and saw this amazing pianist tearing up the keys. I was stunned.

Outtakes

Abstracting the idea from the fabric of reality which is already pretty abstract (idea/moment) / which is in a way the inspiration for the poem / from which that inspiration originates / emerges from . . . I’d say that’s MUSIC. What actually did I say?

Outtakes

So once again your wandering reporter who’s been entrenched in Paris and London gives you a report. Lots of gigs. Gigs. And more gigs. I got to catch folks like Steve Beresford, Alex Ward, Dominic Lash, John Butcher, John Edwards, Fred Frith, Syvain Kassap, Benjamin Duboc, the Dave Liebman Quartet, and more. I even got to play with some of them. In this column I will focus mostly on Frith.

Outtakes

I was invited to the Park Avenue Armory to see Heiner Goebbels’s play Everything that happened and would happen, inspired by, amongst others, John Cage and Gertrude Stein.

Outtakes

Gil Scott-Heron’s explosive memoir The Last Holiday is a must for any Scott-Heron fan. Published posthumously, it covers his life from childhood through his career up until the 1980s.

Outtakes

You might say that I’ve taken a personal interest in Vito Ricci. Why? Is it because he’s a friend? Collaborator? Mensch? Original? Consummate artist? Writer? Vietnam vet? Wonderful musician/composer? Well-kept secret deserving of wider recognition? If you guessed “all of the above,” you’d be correct.

Outtakes

Recently, composer/musician/curator Dan Joseph and I discussed Matisse and how with the simple action of the scissors he managed to blur the boundaries between color and image, almost literally obliterating the use of the “concretized” line. Similar to what Joseph does with his stunning minimalist compositions and playing

Outtakes

It’s rare that I get badgered over and over again by a publicist to listen to his/her client’s work, not really being a credible/full-time so-called critic/journalist, but for the past two months such was the case with so-and-so about listening to such-and-such CD and possibly attending a gig at an upscale club (which believe it or not, I turned down). Well, I did finally say yes to the CD and it arrived in the dead of winter and I listened to it on one of the coldest, snowiest, most miserable days of the year after just getting back from ditto weather in Boston.

Outtakes

Originally written in 1995 and centering around the wackiness that was part of a quickly changing mid-’80s Manhattan, Stink has been published by Folio Book Club.

Outtakes

Phone rings. I’m half asleep. It’s early morning and my seventh day of dealing with a severe kidney stone. “Hello.” “Is this Steve?” “Yes.” “Wow you’re as hard to get hold of as a pickle in a pickle drive.” (New one on me.)

Outtakes

I enter Paris after being away for more than two weeks. The train arrives on time. It is Sunday evening, less than two days after the attacks of November 13. I tap out a tune on the train window based on the announcement jingle. Montparnasse station is empty.

Outtakes

“If it’s something I like I have to write it myself […] I like that legendary string …” claims the narrator of Robert Ashley’s three-plus-hour non-opera Quicksand based on his novel of the same name.

Outtakes

Dexterity within the music sets the pace and the overture begins. In her new chapbook Empty Set (Overpass Press, 2016), a collaboration with visual artist Alexis Myre, Anne Waldman has proven yet again why she is one of our major poets.

Outtakes

It was a summer filled with music, art, poetry, and violence. May, June, July saw such an upsurge in the latter—what was one to do but submerge oneself in the former? Here’s a taste as I sit in my overcrowded mess, indulging in some Andrew Hill solo piano.

Outtakes

Drummer Tom Rainey and saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock could not have formed a more perfect union—husband and wife and artistic colleagues—and it’s one that keeps expanding, collectively and individually.

Outtakes

So folks, Paris is winding down. Countdown ten days until we return to the Apple even though you’ll be reading this a month after we are back.

Outtakes

George Lewis’s 676-page magnum opus A Power Stronger Than Itself: The AACM and American Experimental Musichas, after ten years of intensive labor, finally come out.

Outtakes

Two special treats—not music in themselves, but with great musical content—were the Nakadai film festival, which featured soundtracks by such greats as Toru Takemitsu, and Celebrate Brooklyn’s outdoor screening of Godfrey Reggio’s Powaqqatsi: Life in Transformation. The latter featured live accompaniment by the Philip Glass Ensemble along with the Brooklyn Youth Chorus.

Outtakes

I was recently diagnosed as bipolar, so I couldn’t tell whether it was my mood swings and racing thoughts or those of the Xenakis opera Oresteia that so agitated me.

OUTTAKES

I am writing this in a crowded subway car on my way to a gig, afraid that if my foot touches someone somewhere, or I say “God bless you” to someone who sneezes, my photo will be snapped, my soul stolen, and I’ll be hauled off in handcuffs.

Outtakes

Someone recently asked me what I did for a living. The proper answer would have been “Breathe” or “Live.” Instead I told him to ask Jim Feast while I went to the toilet.

Outtakes

I’ve been called rude before but never by the door-person. Anyway, I arrive late to a gig that was part of Zürich meets New York, featuring musician-composer Hahn Rowe and two androgynous, naked women chopping wood, flirting with rope, and generally distorting the worldview of Eden.

Outtakes

The newly recreated Charles Ives studio at the Academy of Arts and Letters is a must-see.

Outtakes

So what makes France any different from New York in my case? Well personality-wise, nothing.

OUTTAKES

What really does happen when a sewing machine encounters an umbrella on an operating table? I can’t say for sure though I have my ideas. But I can tell you what happens when a sewing machine encounters a piano and violin in a performance space.

Outtakes

The music was mesmerizing and the only thing I longed for was that it were somewhere in Spain in a dark, smoky café or basement, where all the passion and intimacy could be felt [...] There is a point where the artist transcends the context in which he/she appears, and such is the case with great Flamenco.

Outtakes

I first heard Canadian-born pianist Kris Davis play with Paradoxical Frog at the Jazz Gallery, when it was downtown. It was also the first time I heard Ingrid Laubrock. I was hooked and knew immediately they were forces to be reckoned with.

Outtakes

I first encountered flutist Robert Dick in the mid-’80s when he was playing with the group New Winds at a venue in lower Manhattan. His playing astounded me and I’ve been a convert ever since.

Outtakes

In Jake Marmer’s latest collection of poems, The Neighbor Out of Sound, his second on Sheep Meadow Press, we have his continued interest in Jewish constructs—in this case the nigun—described in the book as a traditional Hassidic chant, usually wordless.

Outtakes

I’ve helped fuel my bad reputation that I hate vocalists and prefer singers. When asked what I mean, I give the Billie/Ella equation, or explain: Bessie Smith’s a singer, Sarah Vaughn’s a vocalist.

Outtakes

Leaving Cornelia Street Café after an ecstatic set by the Kris Davis Quartet, I encountered one of the gentlest creations I have ever met: a red, white, and blue borzoi named Rhett. Like with all good therapy dogs we hugged, kissed, and smiled at each other until he gave me an “I’ve had enough” look, turned his back on me, and snuggled with another tourist in need. His owner told me that his crazy, oversexed girlfriend had sprayed the dog those colors a few days before, then abandoned it and him.

Winter Jazzfest

Outtakes

David Crosby said, “If you remember the ’60s, then you probably weren’t there,” and I always contended that no matter how stoned I got I remembered almost everything, and that he most likely wasn’t there. But I have felt lately as if the better part of the ’80s, that mostly white, Lower East Side world of sex, drugs, and rock and roll, was a total blur.

Outtakes

Another thought is that diversity in general is key to making the best music possible, the best art possible, the best anything possible. So it’s important that women improvise. How boring it would be to have nothing but major scales or just one hue of red or white or blue.

Outtakes

For years, Steve Joerg has been a devotee of this music we call free jazz, and has championed such giants as William Parker, Cooper-Moore, Matthew Shipp, and above all David S. Ware, along with younger ones like Darius Jones and Craig Taborn.

Outtakes

For many, jazz has been viewed as a dirty word, particularly among musicians. Roland Kirk preferred to call it “Black Classical music.” Duke Ellington said there’s only two kinds of music, good and the other kind. Mingus hated the term, as did Max Roach and so many other great composers/musicians.

Outtakes

Since I was a kid I’ve been fired from four jobs, two of which I never got paid for. The first paying job: clerk in an art supply store. Reason for termination: too slow. The second paying job: in a print shop. Reason for termination: too stoned. The two freebies were: emcee of a festival, a job I held for 12 or more years—reason:

Outtakes

The moody scientist with the eye patch over his left eye walks toward the bureau and turns on the stereo. It consists of two very modern-looking components. My guess is a tuner and receiver. What sounds like Vivaldi or Bach suddenly wafts through the room. The year is 1954.

Outtakes

​In his long career, which includes a brief retirement, pianist Matthew Shipp has done it all. But what has been rarest has been his participation as a sideman or guest.

for Stan Brakhage

“…..the equivalent of many behaviors…”

a walk to the butcher's @ sunset
(For Tuli Kupferberg)

Steve Dalachinsky was born after last big war managed to survive lots of little wars poet and contributing writer for brooklyn rail whose latest book is the mantis (iniquity press).

rumor has it...... for raymond ross, cecil taylor trio

cut the fram (e) / unaltered process…

The Birds of Marseilles

Poet/collagist STEVE DALACHINSKY was born in Brooklyn after the last big war and has managed to survive lots of little wars. His book "The Final Nite"(Ugly Duckling Presse, 2006) won the PEN Oakland National Book Award. His most recent books include "A Superintendent's Eyes" (Unbearable/Autonomedia, 2013), Flying Home (Paris Lit Up Press, 2015), a collaboration with German visual artist Sig Bang Schmidt, Black Magic (New Feral Press, 2017), "Frozen Heatwave", a collaboration with Yuko Otomo (Luna Bisonte Prods, 2017), The Chicken Whisperer (Positive Magnets Press, 2018) and where night and day become one – the French poems 1983-2017 (great weather for Media press 2018). His column "Outtakes" is featured regularly in the Brooklyn Rail.

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The Brooklyn Rail

OCT 2020

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