Ken Vandermark & Nate Wooley

16 May 2017

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ISSUE Project Room

New York
New York, United States


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Avant-Jazz prodigies Ken Vandermark and Nate Wooley return to Issue Project Room.


Tuesday, May 16th, ISSUE presents jazz leaders Ken Vandermark & Nate Wooley in duo performance, returning together to 22 Boerum for the first time since ISSUE’s 10 Years Alive On The Infinite Plane in 2013.

Since that period, they have released two albums East By Northwest and All Directions Home and have toured repeatedly in North America and Europe. Their music combines composition and improvisation, and explores the potential of modern melody and rhythm posited against abstract sound and texture. The interplay between between Vandermark and Wooley is exceptional, rigorous when phrasing written material, shifting quickly to spontaneous counterpoint during their open improvisations.

2017 promises to be an exceptional year for the duo. There will be three North American concert tours -- along the East Coast, in Canada, and the Midwest -- during which they will be developing new, long-form compositions to record for the first time, in June, at the conclusion of the North American work. This music will be designed with the intention of creating two pieces, each the length of an LP side. Then in autumn of 2017, the duo will travel overseas to present this exciting new music to European audiences.

Chicago saxophonist/composer Ken Vandermark and New York trumpet player Nate Wooley had been operating in each other's orbits for several years- having worked together with Paul Lytton, Joe Morris, Agusti Fernandez, and Terrie Ex- before putting together their duo project in October 2013, when they toured the United States for the first time. With this unique ensemble, they deal directly with each other's iconoclastic compositional and improvisational vocabularies, and have created a book of original material that takes inspirational cues from the under-appreciated work of John Carter and Bobby Bradford (two of their compositions are part of the group's repertoire). Vandermark and Wooley have worked together to create an organic combination of the jazz tradition, free improvisation, and modern composition, and have then placed it into the raw and intimate context of this duo.

Born in Warwick, Rhode Island on September 22nd, 1964, Ken Vandermark began studying the tenor saxophone at the age of 16. Since graduating with a degree in Film and Communications from McGill University during the spring of 1986, his primary creative emphasis has been the exploration of contemporary music that deals directly with advanced methods of improvisation. In 1989, he moved to Chicago from Boston, and has worked continuously from the early 1990's onward, both as a performer and organizer in North America and Europe, recording in a large array of contexts, with many internationally renowned musicians (such as Fred Anderson, Ab Baars, Peter Brötzmann, Tim Daisy, Hamid Drake, Terrie Ex, Mats Gustafsson, Devin Hoff, Christof Kurzmann, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Joe McPhee, Paal Nilssen-Love, Paul Lytton, Andy Moor, Joe Morris, and Nate Wooley). His current activity includes work with Made To Break, The Resonance Ensemble, Side A, Lean Left, Fire Room, the DKV Trio, and duos with Paal Nilssen-Love and Tim Daisy. More than half of each year is spent touring in Europe, North America, and Japan, and his concerts and numerous recordings have been critically acclaimed both at home and abroad. In addition to the tenor sax, he also plays the bass and Bb clarinet, and baritone saxophone.

New York-based American trumpeter Nate Wooley (b. 1974) has performed on over 100 recordings. Increasingly acknowledged internationally, Wooley’s specific style is part of a burgeoning revolution in experimental trumpet technique. His own compositions expand conceptions of linguistic based embouchure manipulation and utilize the trumpet to control amplified feedback. He has performed regularly with such icons as John Zorn, Anthony Braxton, Eliane Radigue, Ken Vandermark, 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.

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