1/7 | Celebrate Shackelford’s Last Jam & Kate’s BDay tonight @ the Mason Lounge

9pm – 12am No Cover | Five Points Jazz Collective Live at the Mason Lounge

416 S Park St, Madison, WI 53715

After 7 years of keeping the time in-line at the Mason Lounge every Tuesday night with the Five Points Jazz Collective, our drummer Eric Shackelford is stepping down. Come join us tonight to celebrate his seven years in service of the groove! Also, we’ll be celebrating the birthday of our fearless bartendress, Kate!

Eric the Shack-man pictured here staring a hole through your soul. The camera lens was injured in the taking of this photograph and was later re-tired. (photo by Matthew Norman)

It’s been so much fun playing bass in the Five Points Jazz Collective with Eric at the helm of the pocket. Famous for his “buh-da-dun dun dun, _ duh-nunt!” endings and exciting solos, Eric has been the bedrock of the the Five Points sound for 7 years! In that time, Eric and I have developed what I would describe as an effortless groove. It’s easy and it just goes… You don’t have to think about it or calculate, you simply play. And for me, that’s when it’s really fun. If I ever throw a funky surprise at Eric, he’s ready to catch it and throw it right back at me. And when it’s time for a drum-and-bass-trade during solos, I know things are gonna get interesting because of his careful listening and conversational style. In fact, some of my favorite memories during my time with “the Tuesday Night Squad” have been those drum’n bass trades!

Drawing of Eric Drumford’n Sons on New Year’s Eve 2020 by master John Ribble, Crawdaddy of Five Points violinist Rin Q Ribble!

A versatile drummer, Eric also plays heavy in the blues trio Aaron Williams and the Hoodoo. It’s actually not common nowadays to play with a Jazz drummer who can bust out a solid blues style. Well, Eric’s got a whole bag of blues baby. I’ve always enjoyed hearing the blues side of jazz come out in The Shack’s playing. Sometimes just for a chorus during a solo, always in good taste.

One of my favorite memories playing with Eric and the Five Points Jazz Collective happened this past Fall 2019, when we collaborated with Music con Brio at the Barrymore Theater (pictures below). It was a crashing together of worlds for me, because I also teach cello at Music con Brio! Eric did such a fantastic job playing fun drum beats to fit the children’s songs and the kids had a great time. The cello group’s favorite moment was performing the surf-rock edition of “Drunken Sailor”!

Eric has the unique gift of an experienced drummer who know’s how to play-the-room. It’s a rare thing indeed for a drum set player to keep the volume at a low, manageable level yet also hold up the energy and create an exciting group sound. The Shack-man has always found the sweet spot at the Mason Lounge and never overplays the room. Quite a feat! This is but one of the many reasons why Eric will be leaving some big shoes to fill for the next drummer of the Five Points!

We tip our hats to you Eric and raise a glass… or two or three. We’ll miss you and your drumming at the Mason Lounge each week. It’s been a blast and we cherish the friendship & music we’ve created with you over the last 7 years!

We wish you the best!
from solid-blue-Brian, the Five Points Jazz Collective & The Mason Lounge


6/11 | Isthmus Jazz Festival: Five Points Jazz Collective CD Release + Live Art!

Tues, 6/11, 9p-12a no cover @ The Mason Lounge
416 S Park St, Madison, WI 53715, USA
Isthmus Jazz Festival presents the
Five Points Jazz Collective CD Release show with Live Art!

“Don’t Worry About It” CDs $10

Entering Madison’s Mason Lounge for the first time, one immediately notices the quirks. The stuffed chicken in a henhouse in the wall, complete with straw. The action figures dangling from string, rigged up to move when someone opens the door to the restroom. The collection of neckties and paint can lids on the walls. Every element is so out of place, it somehow fits.

Like the décor, the Five Points Jazz Collective is quirky and disparate. Serving as the house band since the Mason opened in 2010, the Collective is an extended family of local musicians from varied backgrounds. Playing a mixture of jazz old and new, the group has evolved over the years from an open jam into a stable sextet with an increasingly large repertoire.

In its current incarnation, the group consists of Rin Ribble (violin), Eric Shackelford (drums), band leader Charlie Painter (guitar), Trey Grimm (keyboard), Kyle Rightley (trombone and euphonium), and Brian Grimm (bass and contracello). As Tuesday night regulars will attest, no two shows are ever alike. Listeners can expect to hear many subgenres of Jazz including swing standards, modal jazz, latin jazz, pop arrangements, blues, and funk.

Five Points at the Mason’s frozen back patio on set break – photo by Matthew Norman

About the CD Release

In collaboration with the Isthmus Jazz Festival, the Five Points Jazz Collective will be celebrating its first official album release! For 5 years the sextet version of this collective has played nearly 50 shows a year and decided it was time to lay down favorite selections of our vast catalogue. When listening to this debut album, you’ll feel the energy and spontaneity of the Five Points live sound with the buzzing atmosphere created by our regular fans. CDs and download cards will be available for sale at the show. Come grab your very own copy of this special recording captured live at the Mason Lounge!

Our CD Release will be made extra special with live visual artist contributions. Watch along as one of our most regular supporters John Ribble, plus special guest Jim McKiernan, create portraits of band members in real time to our music!

Live Drawing of me on bass at the Mason by John Ribble!

June 5th-9th, the 2019 LunART Festival is here!

The mission of LunART Festival is to support, inspire, promote, and celebrate women in the arts through public performances, exhibitions, workshops, and interdisciplinary collaboration; thus enriching our community and creating a welcoming space for learning and experimentation. This international art festival features engaging and accessible events and concerts in Madison, an educational program for emerging composers, as well as community building events for artists. LunART interweaves art forms throughout events, offering diverse and exciting programming, where creativity is queen!

Wed June 5, 6pm free | Overture Center for the Arts
Women Against Hate United By Love Gallery Reception

Join us for a Playhouse Gallery Reception from 6 PM – 8 PM!
Art Discussion with Kelly Parks Snider starts at 6:30 PM!

We are women united against hate. We are mothers, sisters, grandmother and caretakers. We are joined together purposely to shine a light, capture attention, and push back against injustice.

A collective effort of artists and activists, “Women Against Hate United by Love” is a platform, an entry point for a female-led anti-hate campaign united against bigotry, intolerance and racism. The creative building blocks for our artwork and messaging are women’s stories—powerful, tough, revealing stories of injustice, tragedy, strength, and amazingly, hope.


Thr June 6th, 9am free @ First United Methodist Church
From Page to Stage: Emerging Composers Masterclass

Free and open to the public!

The goal of “From Page to Stage” is to support emerging women composers in gaining a clearer understanding of not only expressing their creativity, but also creating clear scores, cultivating relationships with performers, and the art of collaboration. The master class with festival composer-in-residence Valerie Coleman will explore works submitted by participants, while talks about collaboration and the role of the independent composer will offer participants a well-rounded approach to growing their own careers.

Thr June 6th, 7pm $20 @ Maiahaus (402 E Mifflin St)
Only The Words Themselves – Opening Gala Concert

Join the LunART Festival in celebrating women in the arts with our opening gala concert. Featuring chamber music, poetry, monologues and aerial dancing, this concert will be a spectacular showcase of creativity by women artists!

Program:
Kirsten Volness little tiny stone, full of blue fire for flute/alto, clarinet/bass clarinet, violin & cello

Valerie Coleman, Tzigane for woodwind quintet

Barbara Strozzi, L’Astratto, Opus 8.04
Che si può fare, Opus 8.06

Hilary Tann, The Walls of Morlais Castle for oboe, viola & cello

Kate Soper, Only the Words Themselves Mean What They Say for flute & soprano

Special guests:
Andrea Musher – poet
Deborah Hearst – theatre artist
Linda DiRaimondo – aerial dancer + BC Grimm guqin zither


Fri June 7th, 6pm free @ Overture Center for the Arts
Portrait of the Artist as a Young Woman

What does it mean to create art as a woman in the 21st century, and how do our experiences shape what we produce and perform? Join us to hear stories of modern women and their unique personal journeys that led them to lives and careers in the arts.

This is a free pre-concert lecture that is open to the public. Stick around for the 7 PM concert Portraits of Josephine featuring an evening of music and dance.

Fri June 7th, 7pm $20 @ Overture Center for the Arts
Portraits of Josephine – Friday Gala Concert

Join us for a night of music and dance! Featuring a percussive string quintet by composer Edna Alejandra Longoria and a choreographed exploration of rhythm by dancer Liz Sexe & Kimi Evelyn, this concert will have you moving in your seat throughout the evening.

Program:

Ellen Taaffe Zwilich, Concerto for trumpet and five players

Valerie Coleman, Portraits of Josephine wind quintet

Edna Alejandra Longoria, Danzas Cautivas for string quintet & piano

Liz Sexe, Lone Sum: Part II (choreographed dance)

Stacy Garrop, My Dearest Ruth for soprano, violin, cello, clarinet & piano

Kimi Evelyn, She (choreographed dance)

Missy Mazzoli, The Sound of the Light for flute, violin, trumpet, trombone & piano

Fri June 7th, 9pm $7/$10 @ Robinia Courtyard
Holding Court – All Women Comedy Show

This lineup of amazing comedians is gonna be a stunner! Featuring local comics from the Midwest who are blazing a trail of funny that will leave you gasping in their wake. Come to the Robinia courtyard where these Queens will be “Holding Court.”

Featuring Vanessa Tortolano, Chastity Washington, Vickie Lynn, Samara Suomi & Cynthia Marie!


Sat June 8th, 10am free @ Madison Public Library
The Multi-Faceted Artist – Panel Discussion

This engaging panel discussion is for anyone interested in the ongoing trend and need for artists to wear multiple hats to succeed and thrive.

This panel will be held in the Bubbler Room of Madison Public Library Central. Free and open to the public.

Led by Valerie Coleman-Page Flutist & Composer, Linda DiRaimondo & Katrin Talbot

Sat June 8th, 2pm free @ Capitol Lakes
From Page to Stage: Emerging Composers Concert

We are extremely excited to welcome our 2019 participants to LunART’s educational program “From Page to Stage: Emerging Composers!” After attending masterclasses and workshops, these 6 talented composers will have their compositions performed by Madison musicians during this free concert at Capitol Lakes.

Program:

Emily Joy Sullivan – Dangerous Curves Ahead for violin, cello & piano

Claudia Sofía Alvarez Cuba – Nada queda (Nothing Left) for soprano & marimba

Shelby Scott – Going Thoughts for piano solo

Veronica Cator – Direction for string quartet

Anna Marcus-Hecht – Transfiguration for mezzo-soprano & piano

Nikea Randolph – Underground for wind quintet

Sat June 8th, 7pm $20 @ Furst Unitarian Society
Gaia – Closing Gala Concert

Join us for our final gala concert of the festival! This program will feature a wickedly upbeat clarinet & piano duo by Eunike Tanzil (who will be here to perform the piece herself!), Clara Schumann’s classic Piano Trio in G minor, and Valerie Coleman’s groundbreaking Afro-Cuban Concerto for wind quintet.

The ARTemis Women’s Choir returns for a second year and we’ll be featuring the artwork of women artists from Studio 84, Inc. and ARTWORKING, two nonprofit organizations that support artists with disabilities.

Full program:

ARTemis Women’s Choir:
Joan Szymko, Eli Eli
Meg Huskin, Oblivion
​Jocelyn Hagen, Moon Goddess
Alexandra Olsavsky, What Happens When a Woman?

Eunike Tanzil, Catching Time! for clarinet & piano

Clara Schumann, Piano Trio in G minor for violin, cello & piano

Valerie Coleman-Page Flutist & Composer, Afro-Cuban Concerto for wind quintet

Andrea Clearfield, Gaia for soprano, oboe & piano


Sun June 9th, 10am free @ Common Ground Middleton
Mooning Around – Poetry Reading and Artist Mixer

“Mooning Around” Poetry Reading and Artist Mixer – no better way to close our 2019 season! Join us for a performance of “One for Mileva Maric (Einstein)” by Andrea Musher, with special guests Sarah Whelan and Jackie Bradley, and poetry readings by The Line-Breakers: Andrea Potos, Eve Robillard, Rosemary Zurlo-Cuva & Katrin Talbot.

Enjoy your morning coffee and brunch while making creative connections with other artists. Open the public and all artists – bring your portfolios, business cards, and get creative!


4/28 | Sound Out Loud @ Fort Atkinson Club

Sun, 4/28 | 4-5pm Free @ Fort Atkinson Club
211 S. Water Street East, Fort Atkinson, WI 53538
Chamber Series Concert featuring Sound Out Loud

From Fort Atkinson Club: Join us on Sunday, April 28 2019 from 4-5pm for the second 2019 Chamber Series Concert. Stay after the concert for a complimentary wine and appetizer reception. This is a great opportunity to meet the performers! This event is FREE and open to the public.

The Sound Out Loud Collective is a contemporary music ensemble based in Madison. While the specific instrumentation of the group fluctuates with each program, the core ensemble is comprised of flute (Iva Ugrcic), violin (Aaron Yarmel), cello (Brian Grimm), and two pianists (Satoko Hayami and Kyle Johnson). Sound Out Loud specializes in engaging works from the early 20th century–present and commissions new pieces from composers around the world. April’s concert will feature a diverse program of National Styles. Bryce Dessner’s “Murder Ballades” features intense, rhythmical arrangements of American ballads, while Arnold Schoenberg’s “Chamber Symphony” offers a mix of high modernism with popular European styles.

While these concerts are open and free to the public, many dedicated patrons and sponsors are to be thanked for their generosity and support of the Chamber Series Concerts.


Features on the Program, notes by Brian Grimm

I am thrilled to be joined by Todd Hammes (tabla) for a performance of compositions and variations in Drut Ektaal (fast 12 beat cycle) on Raga Bageshree. These theme and variations were given to me by my guruji pandit Sugato Nag, a sitar master based out of Kolkata, India. Sugato’s style of playing is highly melodic and vocal, which has been one of the great advantages as he has helped me to adapt this music on my ‘sarangicello’. Todd studied under Pandit Sharda Sahai and for a period of time, was my brother AJ’s tabla teacher. I’ve had a lot of fun rehearsing with Todd and can’t wait to perform more Indian Classical with him in the future! Here is a performance of my guruji Sugato Da and his son Snehesh Nag performing the same main compositions, with different variations:


Ravi Shankar, one of the greatest musicians of all time has remained a favorite inspiration of mine throughout my life. Only in the last year did I stumble upon one of his masterpieces for dance and theater, Ghanashyam: A Broken Branch (1989). Back in college, I found a CD of Indian ensemble music featuring a concerto for two sitars and ensemble music highlighting bansuri flute that Ravi had composed – I’ve always kept my eye out for more of that sound. Most people in the Western World have come to know of Ravi Shankar via his influence on the Beatles, being that he was George Harrison’s guru. Ravi became one of the first Global Musicians to help spread and educate on the deep joyful experience of Indian Classical and Folk music. I first heard the Overture of Ghanashyam on a compilation disc I found years ago at a Half Priced Books, and was blown away! This was exactly what I was looking for and what an exciting piece to kick off any album or production! I couldn’t find any more info on this piece and for a couple of years, I simply enjoyed it and stopped looking further. Then, curious again last year I happened upon the good news that the entire project was remastered and re-released in 2017! I immediately ordered a copy and it has become one of my favorite albums of all time.


Ravi of course was know also as one of the greatest sitar soloists of his time, but few Westerners know of his ensemble compositions that he did for film, radio, and dance. Shankar grew up performing traditional Indian dance and music, so he was the perfect person to create this dance and theater piece about the ultimate death of a dancer due to drug abuse, and the effect on those around him. If you’ve followed my blog for any amount of time, you know that the Brothers Grimm have composed many scores for dance and theater, so this is kind of an ultimate geek out album for me.

I have arranged the overture for Sound Out Loud to play at this Fort Atkinson performance. One brilliant idea executed in this overture is that no matter how that each musical theme presents it self later on in the production (4, 6, 7, 12, 16, etc beat cycles), they are all stitched together and made one by fitting each theme to an 11 beat cycle within the overture.

The remaster sounds amazing, they really did a great job cleaning up the mix and opening up space and definition around each instrument, bringing out the color in each instrument voice. You can pick up your physical copy here: East Meets West Shop

From East Meets West, Ravi’s legacy record label:
Nine Decades Vol. 5 is a special re-mastered recording of the music-theater piece entitled, Ghanashyam: A Broken Branch, originally commissioned by he Birmingham Touring Opera Company and premiering in 1989. Created out of his deep concern over the youth culture’s preoccupation with drugs as an “easy escape from the sadhana found in disciplined hard work,” Ravi Shankar wrote this outstanding piece of music in the folk tale tradition. It is an examination of the forces that can dilute the world-changing potential of the artist. The music is lush, featuring Shankar’s usual proclivity to combine Eastern and Western orchestral instrumentations to great effect. Featuring dance music in the North Indian Kathak style, as well as the South Indian Bharatanatyam and Kathakali styles, Ghanashyam is a dynamic work of unearthly beauty and one that is very much influenced by Shankar’s eight years of dancing in his brother Uday Shankar’s troupe. Originally released on CD in the early 1990s at a truncated 60 minutes, East Meets West has re-mastered the original reels and restored a full twenty more minutes to the music, making this recording a more faithful to the audio that accompanied the original theater production.

Behind the scenes footage of the production!

Murder Ballads

Sound Out Loud will close the program with a performance of Murder Ballads (2013) by Bryce Dessner. Dessner is famously known in popular music circles as the guitarist for the National and the Clogs. Murder Ballads (recording below by Eighth Blackbird, in Chicago) explores a wide range of folk styles converted to 21st century Classical chamber music. This piece is a set of seven instrumental ballads, the piece was inspired by the tunes, stories and playing styles from the great American folk music tradition. The ballads include pieces loosely based on classic tunes, plus Dessner’s original compositions which were informed by the many months he spent inhabiting the seductive music and violent stories of these murder ballads. It has been super fun and challenging to learn this piece, there are a number of movements which require very accurate bow technique. However difficult individual technique gets, it always remains melodic and easy on the ears. No matter how dark the murderous folk lore subject matter may be, we find it to be quite an enjoyable ride and a nice way to close out the concert.