Monday, May 3, 2010

Ellery Eskelin w/Andrea Parkins & Jim Black

Back in 1994 I decided to start a band. Saxophone, accordion and drums. In the process I got much more than I bargained for. I thought we'd make a couple/few recordings, maybe a tour or two and then move on. Well, it's 2010 and we just did our...I've lost count of how many...well, we just got back from a European tour that's given me a lot to think about.

One of the criteria I had in mind when forming the band was that I wanted each member of the group to be the type of musician who could play an improvised solo concert on their instrument. And I wanted the band as a whole to be able to perform completely improvised concerts. Ironically however, we never did that. We could have, but I had ideas about the nexus between composition and improvisation that I wanted to explore. And that kept me busy with this band. Each tour we did opened up some new musical territory that I wanted to concentrate upon before recording and taking the next step. I had thought about doing an improvised tour from time to time but there was something about the way the band played when compositional elements were involved that just wouldn't let go.

But with this recent tour we finally took the plunge. Two weeks of concerts, two sets a night completely improvised music. So...I guess it's taken me sixteen years to get to the starting point. Let's see where we go now...