Thursday, November 8, 2012

Kinagree Smith Band House – Week Three; The Wind Cried Sandy by Ira Norman Segall

Week three came in like a hurricane…. no it really did. Hurricane Sandy hit on Sunday and while in our particular spec of land it wasn’t as fierce as we’d anticipated, it was nonetheless a pretty bad storm - we were out of power for nearly three days. We missed a handful of shows and although somewhat cliché, one seriously takes for granted all that one uses excited electrons traveling across a conductor for in one’s existence, both entertainment as well as practical. We were very grateful for its reinstatement.

During the outage, nights were candle-lit and interestingly, I began to get used to the softness of the candles. A brief visitation back to a somewhat simpler existence. Playing tabla by candlelight was part of this for me. I channel deeply ancient energy when I play tabla, so it was a synchronicity of energy and experience for me.

Also during the outage Band House Creative Lab occurred for me in a very interesting way. Jack and I did the only rational thing we could to keep sane and that was pick up instruments and play. We made fantastic music during the first of a few candlelight improv sessions and for me, a compartment dissolved away in that before Band House I would show up in time to set up for a show, Jack and Lexie would already be in show-prep mode and Jack and I may have a few moments of improv but it was couched in a very necessary sound-check or a moment or two of loosening-up, but we really always played songs – the repertoire. Up until this candlelight improv, if I wanted to play totally free, completely improvisationally, I would play with ether of two other musicians that I play with as side-projects. It wasn’t until this particular evening that Jack and I had the free, open, loose, relaxed time to just “go” – just play music; instrumental, no lyrics. I felt the freedom to switch up and play a variety of instruments; the ceramic/fish-skin dumbek, 30” frame-drum, the big udu and the riq. It was, firstly a remarkable experience for me to get to know him on yet a new, deeper level as a player, but it dissolved a compartment for me. A division of sorts between Kinagree Smith and my free-improv side-projects. This was significant for me.

Since then, Jack and I have “gone out” with tabla and guitar in a very, very cool way. Each being that I play with brings a synergy of a different fragrance of musical personality and textures, and it is a deep experience of spirit for me to meet the musical energy and heart-space of the individual I’m playing with as well as the music. I play with deep respect and generosity to the being I’m playing with as well as the music. This is part of what improv is for me and what it means to me in a very deep and significant way, and as much as Jack and I learn about each other when we throw variations into parts of the Kinagree Smith literature or the Jack Kinagree literature each time we play a show, meeting him in a free, instrumental improv environment is a much different experience for me. We grow and players, band-mates and friends.

Band House is a Happening, a creative occurrence.

Not related to Band House; a rediscovery of Barbasol….. next time. Stay tuned