Ricardo Arias | New York-Bogotá 2000-2010

Ricardo Arias

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Released Oct 16, 2012
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RICARDO ARIASBass Balloon Kit | New York - Bogotá 2000-2010 
About the music
"Even though these recordings are now published under my name, all the music included was created collectively. I am by no means the composer, except perhaps for Miscelánea en General, which we made based on a basic premise that I defined. All the remaining pieces were improvised, and as I think most practitioners would agree, improvised music is in essence a collaborative endeavor. If anything, I could be credited with bringing the musicians together.
In Miscelánea en General my aim was to create what I thought of as a "media soundscape" by having the musicians use recordings of Colombian radio stations as the source material for their performance. Some of that can be heard, but the result has much more to do with the strongly idiosincratic character of the sound of the performers involved. For this piece I use the "Interactive Mapophone, a magnetic playback head detached from its usual fixed position on a tape recorder and housed in the carcass of a computer mouse which can then be moved over a pad of magnetic audio tape oufited with pressure sensors to generate audio and MIDI signals through Max/MSP. I developed this project as an artist in residence at Harvestworks in 1999 with the programming assistance of Dafna Naphtali. The contraption was inspired by Nam June Paik's 1963 sound installation Random Access and Jon Hassell's piece Map.
In October of 2000 I visited Buenos Aires at the invitation of Claudio Koremblit to perform at the Experimenta Festival. There I met the Trio de Improvisación: Diego Chamy, Luis Conde and Gabriel Paiuk. We organized a private session and one year later they visited New York and we performed as Cuarteto Agregado at Roulette. Musically at that time the trio was, I think, at a transitional fase in between a traditional european free style of improvisation and the more subdued, Berlin-influenced "lower case" or "reductionist" approach which some of them later adopted. Apart from the music, during the trio's visit I had the pleasure of enjoying Luis's unforgetable "paella" and of hearing Luis, Diego and Gabriel's a capella rendition of Piazolla's Adios Nonino.
During the years I lived in Barcelona in the 1980's I worked intensely on live electroacoustic improvisation and collective composition with Roberto García and Luis Boyra under the name Sol Sonoro (Sonorous Sun). Years later a similar group was formed in Bogotá by Daniel Leguizamón, Rodrigo Restrepo and Daniel Prieto. When I first heard the music 3x3 were making It was like hearing Sol Sonoro using digital synthesis and processingg instead of reel to reel recordings, tape loops and live analog modifications (ring modulation, filtering, etc). The esthetic affinity between the two projects can be heard in this recording of our first (and last) meeting.
When my dear frind Sean Meehan visited Bogotá in 2009 as an artist in residency at LIA (Laboratorio Interdisciplinario para las Artes) I organized a concert and a recording session with this quartet. Sean and I have worked regularly as a duo and in other groupings since 2003. In 2004 when we visited Bogotá for a concert in a trio with Barry Weiblat we met and played with Jefferson Rosas. Three years later, when I returned to live in Bogotá I met Juan Suanca and began collaborating with him. The music reflects the musician´s interest in long sounds and silences.
In July of last year I returned to New York for one month and organized a few concerts with old and new friends. Hans Tammen and I first improvised together in 1999 and have since then collaborated many times as a duo, in trios with Pascal Boudreault, Gunter Muller, and Dr. Stanley Schumacher; and in quartets with Bruce Gremo and Dafna Naphtali and with Chris Forsyth and Ernesto Díaz.Infante. I first played with Nate Wooley During the No-Net concerts organized by Jack Writhg (http://www.springgardenmusic.com/no-net.html). Since then we´ve played and recorded as a duo, in a quartet with James Fei and Vic Rawlings and as part of an octet piece the Bronx River Arts Center comissioned to do for their Summer Concerts in 2007. This recording documents the first meeting of this particular trio.
I met Vic Rawlings in 2003 when we both took part of the High Zero festival in Baltimore. A few months after the festival we began working as N. R. A, a trio with percussionist Tatsuya Nakatani. During the following four years, N.R.A. published two CD's and performed at the Vision Festival and Roulette in New York; at FIMAV in Victoriaville, Canada, and at the Festival Musique Action in France among other places. The trio's activities stopped when I moved to Bogotá in 2008. These days, Tatsuya is contantly on the road and posting pictures of his dishes on Facebook (he is also a virtuoso cook), so for this performance we premiered a trio with another extraordinary percussionits, Tim Feeney, who has collaborated with Vic for some time. The concert was part of the Floating Points festival at Issue Project Room. The festival was conceived an curated by Stephan Moore and makes use of his unique 15 speaker system (http://www.oddnoise.com/aboutme.html).
This compliation is a partial documentation of my activities during the last 10 years which had to do with improvised music and collaborative composition."
Ricardo Arias, Bogotá, September 2011
1-2. Sol Sonoro & 3x3Ricardo Arias, bass balloon kit, cracklebox; Roberto García, electronics; Daniel Leguizamón, amplified acoustic guitar; Daniel Prieto, electric guitar, laptop; Rodrigo Restrepo, amplified homemade instruments, laptop. Recorded in 2008 at the music department, Universidad de Los Andes, Bogotá.
3-4. Cuarteto AgregadoRicardo Arias, balloon kit; Diego Chamy, drums, percussion; Luis Conde, tenor sax, bass clarinet; Gabriel Paiuk, piano. Recorded by Gisburg live at Roulette (228 W. Bway), New York City, October 27, 2001.
5. Miscelánea en GeneralRicardo Arias, interactive mapophone, recordings; Pascal Boudreault, computer; Dafna Naphtali, sampling and processing; Yasunao Tone, wounded CD’s. Recorded by Jim Staley live at Roulette (228 W. Bway), New York City, March 26, 2000.
6-7. Ricardo Arias, bass balloon kit; Sean Meehan, snare drum & cymbals; Jefferson Rosas, tuba; Juan Sebastián Suanca, laptop.Recorded at Avila musical st., Bogotá, February 29, 2009. Engineered by Nestor Acosta. Mixed and Mastered by Ricardo, Juan and Jefferson.
8-9. Ricardo Arias, balloon kit; Nate Wooley, trumpet; Hans Tammen, endangered guitar, processing. Recorded in concert at Harvestworks, New York City, July 23, 2010.Recorded in concert at Harvestworks, New York City, July 23, 2010.
10-12. Tim Feeney, amplified percussion; Vic Rawlings, surface electronics, amplified prepared cello; Ricardo Arias, bass balloon kit. Special thanks to Stephan Moore. Recorded live at the Floating Points Festival, Issue Project Room, Brooklyn, New York, July 21 2010.
About the musicians
After the compositional language revitalization conducted by composers such as Roberto Garcia in Colombia. Daniel Leguizamón, Daniel Prieto y Rodrigo Restrepoare all graduated composers at University of los Andes.
Daniel Prieto (Bogotá, 1978) and Daniel Leguizamon (Bogotá, 1979) led the group in the time of the ECUA collective (Composition Students University of Los Andes). This group eventually (in particular during the short period during Roberto Garcia taught at the university) conducted a very important task of programming including the work of all kinds of composers, performers, etc.., regardless of any institutional link.
"The Argentine trio of Gabriel Paiuk, piano, Luis Conde, reeds and Diego Chamy, percussion meets Ricardo Arias, balloon kit, electronics, and disposable paraphernalia for a set of improvisations. The trio is devoted to unconventional methods and overall blending their sounds into a sort of 'sounding machine'". Roulette
Gabriel PaiukwebComposer and pianist born in 1975 in Buenos Aires. Has collaborated with artists like Axel Dörner, Jason Kahn, Andrea Neumann, Burkard Beins, Rhodri Davies, Gunter Mueller, Lucio Capece, Robin Hayward....
Diego Chamyweb(No CV) The idea behind this policy is to avoid people judging or knowing others for the things that are written on a CV or a bio. It's clear that people with an impressing CV can have a pathetic production, therefore I believe a CV means absolutely nothing and wish to promote a way of knowing each other that can avoid its representational logic.If you want to know more about me, I kindly invite you to spend some time at the works you can find on this site. I would also like to encourage you to adopt this same policy, with or without mentioning me.
Luis CondewebSingle reeds / sax and clarinet, an expert on popular music and contemporary improvisation / teaching and research, as well as performer, composer, performer. Born in 1965, Province of Buenos Aires, Argentina. Over the last decade has developed a continuous activity of new practices based on so-called instrumental extended techniques. He has studied saxophone with Victor Skorupski (ARG) attended clinics Ralph Lalama, Jim Odgren (Berklee College) and Villafruela Miguel (CUB). Masters in Clarinet with Eduardo Prado (National Symphony Orchestra), Martin Moore (Banda Sinfónica CABA), and with Alain Damiens Masterclasses (FRA, Ensemble Intercontemporain). He has also studied the shakuhachi (traditional Japanese wind instrument) with the Horacio Curti. Contemporary composition studies with Maestro Ernesto Conrado. Close collaborations with international musicians in Argentina and abroad, citing Axel Dorner, John Russell, Nabicht Theo, Jacques Demierre...
Dafna NaphtaliwebDafna Naphtali is a sound-artist/improviser/composer/singer/guitarist/electronic-musician. An active and versatile performer, she has been performing and composing since the mid-90’s using her custom Max/MSP programming for sound processing of voice and other instruments. She co-leads the digital chamber punk ensemble, What is it Like to be a Bat with Kitty Brazelton (http://www.whatbat.org) and has collaborated / performed with many experimental musicians and video artists, such as Lukas Ligeti, David First, Chuck Bettis, Joshua Fried, Ras Moshe, Alexander Waterman, Kathleen Supové and Hans Tammen, Benton-C Bainbridge and Angie Eng among others, and is a member of Magic Names vocal ensemble championing the vocal work of Stockhausen. She has been teaching, programming and consulting about computer music since 1995 at Harvestworks (New York), at Engine 27 ('01-'03) and as a freelancer, and has done sound design and/or programming work for the projects of many artists at the forefront of digital and interactive music and art.
Yasunao TonewebwikipediaYasunao Tone is a Japanese artist who has worked with many different types of media throughout his career. He was born in Tokyo, Japan in 1935, and he graduated from Chiba Japanese National University in 1957, majoring in Japanese literature. He became active in the Fluxus movement in the 1960s and moved to New York in 1972. He organized and participated in many noise music performance groups such as Group Ongaku, Hi-Red Center, Team Random (the first computer art group organized in Japan). Yasunao Tone is known mostly for his musical work, much of which relies on unconventional techniques. Tone began manipulating compact disks to achieve uniquely mangled sounds in the early 1980s. For his 1985 album, Solo for Wounded CD, he damaged audio CDs and used the information that a CD player was able to extract from those discs to create new pieces. Tone's CD player based works employ a process of "de-controlling" the device's playback so that it randomly selects fragments from a set of sound materials. Tone has stated that the error-correction functionality of modern CD players has made it hard to continue to use this technique and, for this reason, he continues to use older equipment. For his collaboration with Florian Hecker, Palimpsest, at MIT Media Lab, he converted Japanese Man'yoshu poems to sound.
Pascal BoudreaultCanada 1970, is a saxophonist, cartoonist and media artist. He was born in Canada and studied classical saxophone in Chicoutimi. He's been introduced to electronic music at the Conservatoire SupÈieur de Musique de Lyon in 1992 by Denis Lorrain and Philippe Manoury. He then decided to move to Netherlands and studied sonology at the Royal conservatory of The Hague with Paul Berg, Clarence Barlow and Joel Ryan among others. Now based in Montreal he's a freelance mainly for world music groups while doing his research on compositions-strategies for collective improvisation.
Sean MeehanwebSean Meehan’s music practice began in the late 80's at the amica bunker series for improvised music, then housed at the Anarchist's Switchboard and later ABC No Rio in New York City. For nearly 20 years he has collaborated with Tamio Shiraishi on their annual summer concert series. This project, which explores the social construction of space, invites its audience off of the city’s mercantile grid and into elusive spaces that are commonly overlooked and unwatched. In 2007 an expanded version of the endeavor that included Ikuro Takahashi and radical cartographer Denis Wood was exported to the United Kingdom for a tour produced by Arika Heavy Industries.Meehan also creates object-based discursive compositions for speculative listening, such as: Field Recordings, Vol 3, a letterpress folio of aural suggestions; audio, a boxed set of four cassettes without sound; and the recent Meehan Reads Helmholtz, a book on tape, of sorts.
Jefferson Rosas, tuba
Juan Sebastián Suanca, computer. Visual Artist of the Universidad Nacional de Colombia with deepening of sound creation.
Nate WooleywebNate Wooley was born in 1974 in Clatskanie, Oregon. Nate moved to New York in 2001, and has since become one of the most in-demand trumpet players in the burgeoning Brooklyn jazz, improv, noise, and new music scenes. He has performed regularly with such icons as John Zorn, Anthony Braxton, Fred Frith, Evan Parker, and Yoshi Wada, as well as being a collaborator with some of the brightest lights of his generation like Chris Corsano, C. Spencer Yeh, Peter Evans, and Mary Halvorson.
Hans Tammen webHans Tammen creates sounds that have been described as an alien world of bizarre textures and a journey through the land of unending sonic operations. He produces rapid-fire juxtapositions of radically contrastive and fascinating noises, with micropolyphonic timbres and textures, aggressive sonic eruptions, but also quiet pulses and barely audible sounds – through means of his “Endangered Guitar” and interactive software programming, by working with the room itself, and, as a critic observed, with his “…fingers stuck in a high voltage outlet”. Signal To Noise called his works “…a killer tour de force of post-everything guitar damage”, All Music Guide recommended him: “…clearly one of the best experimental guitarists to come forward during the 1990s.”
10, 11, 12
Tim Feeney webTim Feeney seeks to explore and examine the timbral possibilities inherent in everyday found and built objects. He treats his percussion setup as a friction instrument, using bows, scrapers, and rosined drumheads to capture and amplify frequencies that go unheard when an object is struck with a traditional mallet. He supplements this acoustic console with an electronic instrument, arranged from mixers, contact microphones, and effects pedals, that synthesizes and alters the spectral characteristics of low-fidelity tones, feedback, and noise.Tim works within Boston's timbral improvising community, a group of musicians interested in unstable sounds and silences, exploring austere combinations of sound and the otherworldly ripple effects that pulse through a silent space and alert ears. Currently teaches at Cornell University.
Vic Rawlings web(Boston- amplifier/ prepared cello, speaker elements/ exposed circuitry) employs a still and unstable sound language. He has designed and built 2 separate instruments to realize this aesthetic, including extensive and invasive cello preparations- some directly based on obscure baroque instrumentation. The amplified cello is used as a resonant wooden microphone. He also continually develops an electronic instrument from the exposed circuit boards of sound processors, effectively producing an analog synthesizer with a highly unstable interface. Longtime active collaborations include Laurence Cook Disaster Unit (Laurence Cook, Jason Lescalleet, Greg Kelley), undr quartet (Greg Kelley, Liz Tonne, James Coleman), and the BSC (improvising octet led by Bhob Rainey), as well as duos and trios with Michael Bullock, Mazen Kerbaj, Tim Feeney, Tatsuya Nakatani, Ricardo Arias, Bryan Eubanks, Chris Cogburn, Jaime Fennelly and many others. He has performed with a diverse group of major figures of improvised music including Ikue Mori, Eddie Prevost, Jaap Blonk, Daniel Carter, Donald Miller, and Andrea Neumann, among many others. He has also performed the works of Christian Wolff (with the composer), Karlheinz Stockhausen, John Cage, and Cornelius Cardew.