Righteous Girls in the Recording Studio

Today Righteous Girls went into the studio to record my flute/piano duo “For Milton.” An homage to Milton Babbitt, it was first recorded by John McMurtery and Ashlee Mack and released by Perspectives of New Music/Open Space Magazine. I am thrilled that there will be a rendition released by Righteous Girls too!

First double bar of 2014

Today, I finished a revised version of my setting of Jane Kenyon’s “Otherwise,” for voice and piano rather than its previous incarnation for voice and cello. It will be published by our little concern, File Under Music (ASCAP), in both “medium” and “high” keys. Thanks to Gray Wolf Press for allowing us to set Ms. Kenyon’s beautiful poetry. 

Matt Mitchell – Fiction

File Under Best of 2013

Matt Mitchell

Fiction

Matt Mitchell, piano; Ches Smith, drums and percussion

Pi Recordings

The pieces on Fiction, pianist Matt Mitchell’s debut recording as a leader, began as etudes. Composed by the pianist in an attempt to integrate his notated composing and his considerable prowess as an improvisor, they soon took on a life of their own as creative work well beyond exercises or technical craftsmanship. Add energetic percussionist Ches Smith into the mix and you now have a combustible duo creating some of the best ‘out’ music of 2013.

Mitchell has played with some of the greats in modern and experimental jazz, from Dave Douglas to Tim Berne. Smith has an even more diverse pedigree, working with rock and pop artists as well as jazz musicians. Going head to head on Fiction, one can readily hear why Mitchell and Smith are so in demand. It isn’t just chops, though both have them aplenty and for days; it is the creative mindset with which they approach and embrace music-making. It leaves one with the impression that the album is a fully embodied, eminently expressive, and original statement – no mean feat when you consider that it is also challenging fare that requires a great deal from its listeners. Recommended.