Even though 2020 started with two cancelled tours and lots of uncertainty, I’ve managed to stay somewhat motivated and productive. I hope that you’re also getting by in okay shape.
I issued a number of self-releases in 2020. The first was our water is fire, a collaboration with multi-instrumentalist Colin Fisher. We recorded this in a single session back in November 2019, when I was in Toronto for a concert and talk at the Canadian Music Centre (seems like a lifetime ago). The album marks a progression in my musical relationship with Colin and showcases some wild, unhinged playing. Free Jazz Collective gave our water is fire 4.5 stars out of 5 (not that I’m keeping score). In early spring I also self-released a short diary-like solo album called interiors as well as a collection of Northern Spring Peeper field recordings. My most recent self-release is Atlantic Ocean Recordings 2020, a long-form collection of water sounds. These albums can all be download for free/PWYC from my Bandcamp page.
Although I tend to release much of my own material, I did work with a few labels this year. In April, Belgian imprint Kraak Records commissioned me to produce a collection of isolation performance videos for their Spring Brakers series. Using my phone, I shot videos of myself improvising with nose flute, jaw harp, and voice in various locations around my property and neighbourhood. Shortly after the collection was released on the Spring Brakers site, Cafe Oto’s new label, Taku Roku, released the remastered audio from these videos as a digital-only album entitled 207. Half the sales of 207 go to support Cafe Oto, one of the premier experimental music venues in the world. My most recent label release is next spring, a short digital EP for Kraak’s new sub-label, Krut. The album is available to download on its own and will eventually accompany a multi-artist book.
By far the most significant project for me this year was marshlands, my musical short film about the tidal flats in front of my home in Chezzetcook, Nova Scotia. With the generous support of the Canada Council for the Arts, I was able to spend two months developing my filmmaking skills in order to produce this work. The film centres around a recurring dream about the shape-shifting salt marsh. My mind is absorbed; a doppelganger nose flute allows me to transcend. You can watch the 13-minute film on my Youtube channel (or right from this post), and an extended version of the score is available on my Bandcamp page (and soon on Spotify).
Okay, that’s it from me. Links to most of what I discuss here are available from my Link Tree URL. Much of my work is free/pay-what-you-can. So don’t be shy. If something that I’ve created speaks to you, please take it. And if you’d be so kind, share it with your community.