Blaise Siwula / Sten Hostfalt Live at Mulberry St. Library NYC

Jun 21, 2012 04:00 PM - 06:00 PM

Blaise Siwula / Sten Hostfalt Live at Mulberry St. Library NYC June 21 at 4pm / free.
A Make Music New York event

Longtime Downtown NY regulars saxophonist Blaise Siwula and guitarist Sten Hostfalt have developed a unique improvisatory report during some 60 live concert performance events together. In shared events with hundreds of musicians, including a virtual who's who of the Downtown scene. Manifested in a '11 CD release on the Sonus Rex label, titled Now Matter.

Blaise Siwula saxophone / clarinet.
Creative improvising saxophonist Blaise Siwula was born February 19, 1950, in Detroit, MI, growing up in a working/middle-class black neighborhood. His next-door neighbor practiced saxophone in the afternoon and occasionally allowed him inside to watch him play. Involved with the arts for all of his life, he began studying the alto sax at the age of 14, playing in the middle-school concert band.

Hearing John Coltrane's LP Om in 1969, he felt compelled to take the tenor saxophone and make his voice heard on it. Siwula was influenced by hearing Art Pepper in San Francisco, as well as Ornette Coleman, Sonny Stitt, Archie Shepp, Pharoah Sanders, Sun Ra, Blue Mitchell, Elvin Jones, and Miles Davis in memorable live performances around the Detroit area in the early '70s. Cecil Taylor's recordings with Jimmy Lyons were inspirational in a later period. The Ann Arbor Blues & Jazz Festival in 1972 and performances by Ravi Shankar and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra were also telling.

At college on and off for an extended period from 1968-1980, he studied theory and composition at Wayne State University, but earned a B.F.A. Siwula's first personal encounters with jazz musicians came around 1971 while living in a hotel near the downtown campus of Wayne State. Drummer Doc Watson had been hanging out while living there and returned to school to study composition. He and Siwula spent evenings talking about music, art, and Charlie Parker. Then the saxophonist got married, moved to San Francisco, and started playing free improvised music in coffeehouses and writing poetry. He was influenced by Spanish Civil War poets like Miguel Hernandez and Federico García Lorca, French poets Baudelaire and Rimbaud, beat poet Gregory Corso, Hart Crane, and W.B. Yeats. After four years in Northern California, he came back to Detroit, then headed for Europe in 1989, working and traveling as a street musician for three months, then returning to the States and settling in New York City.

After periodic explorations of drama, poetry, architecture, and visual art, and quite unable to secure a recording contract initially, Siwula made his music available via independently produced cassette tapes. Since then, the self-determining Siwula has been actively involved with the metro New York improvisation scene, including working with Amica Bunker, the Improvisers Collective, and (most prominently) the Citizens Ontological Music Agenda (COMA) series.

Siwula had initially booked shows with Bunker in 1991-1992, and COMA was created, formally staging diversified concerts centered in free music on a continual basis since March 1998. Every Sunday, some type of improvised music assembly was presented, with an open forum session afterwards. Once a year, COMA produced a benefit/festival where over 100 musicians gathered and made music on all the floors, the roof, and the garden of their venue.

During the decade of the 2000s, Siwula as a spontaneous composer has incorporated traditional musical scoring techniques with visual/graphic and performance-oriented presentations. Primarily an alto saxophonist, he plays a number of saxophones, clarinets, flutes, percussion and string instruments, and computer-altered sound files as background for improvisation. His many collaborators have included Doug Walker's Alien Planetscapes, Cecil Taylor's Ptonagas, William Hooker's ensembles, Judy Dunaway's Balloon Trio, Dialing Privileges with Dom Minasi and John Bollinger, Ken Simon, Karen Borca, Jackson Krall, William Parker, Mike Khoury, Eyal Maoz, Jeff Platz, Joseph Scianni, Adam Lane, Carsten Radtke, Peter Kowald, Perry Robinson, Newman Taylor Baker, John Voigt, Wilber Morris, Vincent Chancey, Theo Jörgensmann, Michael Zerang, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Rashid Bakr, Tatsuya Nakatani, Dominic Duval, Jay Rosen, Lukas Ligeti, Sarah Weaver, James Ilgenfritz, Fala Mariam, Ernesto Rodrigues, Hilliard Greene, Joe McPhee, Daniel Carter, Bern Nix, Syd Smart, Brian Groder, Ernesto Diaz-Infante, Matt Sullivan, Tan Dun, Maria De Alvear, Vattel Cherry, and Jeff Arnal. *

Sten Hostfalt guitar
Recognized as genuinely innovative and groundbreaking by Jazz Review, Impressive by Time Out NY and inimitable by PM NYC/ Paper Magazine and with his creative work enthusiastically featured in international press for the past 18 years. Initially self-taught guitarist Sten Hostfalt spent the 80's with classical studies and appearing live in concerts and on independently DIY produced cassette recordings on the scandinavian progressive scene. Before a decade long apprenticeship in large traditional jazz ensembles led by Phil Wilson, Herb Pomeroy, George Russell and Guillermo Klein in New York City and on tour in Argentina and recording and touring with traditional jazz orchestras in Sweden, Norway and Finland behind among others Rob McConnell, Bobby Shew and Deborah Brown.

Notably he was introduced on the mid-90's New York's Jazz scene alongside leading new generation jazz players like Chris Cheek, Mark Turner, Jeff Ballard, Ingrid Jensen and Aaron Goldberg weekly at the subsequently influential venue Smalls Jazz Club NYC, as a member of and featured soloist in a version of Guillermo Klein's lauded ensemble that The New York Times called 'Unlike Any Other - One Of The Better Continuing Experiments in New York' . And as a featured soloist on the 1995 Beat Records/1997 Candid (re-release) recording El Minotauro & BIG VAN that lauded by leading press like Jazz Times Magazine and All Music Guide in retrospect was included in NPR National Public Radio's list of 'the most influential recordings of the past decade'

With his career as a solo artist, bandleader and independent record label president launched through live performances, collaborations and support from Gary Burton and mentors legendary icons of American Music and Jazz, Jimmy Giuffre, Paul Bley and Joe Maneri. And composition master classes with Toru Takemitsu and Gyorgi Ligeti. He has been a recipient of numerous grants for recordings and tours in France, USA and Scandinavia since 1999 and his six CD releases as a leader, highlighting his original compositions and instrumental work on guitar, bass and electronics has featured Down Beat poll-winning electric bassist Matthew Garrison, former Guillermo Klein colleague tenor saxophonist Matt Renzi and drummer Marko Djordjevic. His original lineups and projects have included ( as members or guests ) Tom Beckham, Matt Pavolka, Tim Luntzel, Takuya Nakamura, Ole Mathisen, Seamus Blake, Dave Miller, Shayna Dulberger and Cyril Atef.

Sideman appearances, tours and concerts with Jimmy Giuffre, Clare Fischer, Peter Erskine, Gary Burton, Rob McConnell, Deborah Brown and Bobby Shew. Shared events with Niels Henning Orsted-Pedersen, James Moody, Ray Anderson, Bob Stewart, Mike Stern, MOBY, Tim Berne and Keith Murray (DEF JAM) and recordings for Beat Records (Italy), Pentaflowers ( USA), Candid (UK) Teichiku ( Japan), Sittel, Four Leaf Clover, g-wOw (Sweden), Clinical Archives (Russia), Sonus Rex (USA)

Recognized for developing original new instrument techniques for the standard 6 string/12 fret guitar, to interpret, explore and create new music based on mentor Joe Maneri's 72 note Equal Tempered virtual pitch continuum. Academic work includes clinics and lectures at alma maters New England Conservatory and Berklee College Of Music as well as New World School For The Arts at MIami Dade College/University Of Florida, faculty membership of The Royal College Of Music in Stockholm and since 2006 directing his own manhattan-based NYC Guitar Studio, known as one of few outlets in the world to offer systematic hands-on instrumental studies of microtonal music

Recent events include original arrangements of standards and solo concert performances live at New York's Symphony Space as well as appearing live in concert with New York Jazz Academy ensemble at Carnegie Hall's Isaac Stern Auditorium NYC. /

Mulberry St. Library ( NYPL branch ) 10 Jersey Street
( btw Lafayette & Mulberry St. ) New York, NY 10012
ph: (212) 966-3424 * *

Mulberry St. Library

New York NY 10012
United States

Featured Artists

Blaise Siwula and Sten Hostfalt

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