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The Brooklyn Rider Almanac is a celebration of an artistic community, explored through music, dance, essays, fashion and photography. Read more

Brooklyn, NY Music
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Funded!

This project was successfully funded on May 25, 2014.

The Brooklyn Rider Almanac is a celebration of an artistic community, explored through music, dance, essays, fashion and photography.

Brooklyn, NY Music
Share this project

About this project

The Brooklyn Rider Almanac

Honoring the Past & Celebrating the Present

Everybody needs a hero. We are inspired by Der Blaue Reiter (the Blue Rider), an artistic collective active in the days leading up to World War One. Visual artists such as Wassily Kandinsky, Franz Marc, and musicians like Arnold Schoenberg collaborated on a publication in 1912 that served as an artistic testament to their time and place, while offering a vision for the future. That publication was the much celebrated Der Blaue Reiter Almanach, which combined essays, art and music.

Living in New York City, we are continually energized by the artistic community we are a part of: musicians, film makers, choreographers, photographers, writers, animators, fashion designers - each with a unique voice of artistic expression. The Brooklyn Rider Almanac strives to honor our namesake by creating a shared space for those voices to be heard.

An Almanac for the 21st Century:

A Music Commissioning Project

As a string quartet, one of our great loves is the act of commissioning and performing new music, and this is where the Brooklyn Rider Almanac got started. We've already commissioned fifteen new works from a diverse list of musicians, all of whom operate mostly outside of the classical music world. We asked each composer to name a personally influential artistic figure active within the last 50 years, and incorporate the spirit of that influence into the piece. Every time a composer came back to us with their source of inspiration, our excitement mounted. We started to realize that there was a much deeper story to tell...

Beyond the Music

We are reaching out to some incredible artists from a wide spectrum of genres to create an ambitious body of work directly related to the commissioned music. This will include videos, animation, choreography, photo essays, articles, interviews, remixes, and much more. Your support for the Brooklyn Rider Almanac will help create a multi-layered and immersive experience that will illuminate the compositions and their sources of inspiration.

Sharing this project with the world

The Brooklyn Rider Almanac studio album will come out in fall of 2014. But this campaign is not just about creation of a studio album (as excited as we are about the music); it is about so much more! The new work that you will be supporting will be released periodically throughout the 2014-2015 season via YouTube, social media, our website, as well as right here on our Kickstarter page. Our project's exciting culmination will be the release of an interactive coffee table book, which will present the work that you helped to create to the world, celebrating all of the creative spirits that make up the Brooklyn Rider Almanac.

We are so thrilled about this project, and we would love you to be a part of it!

-Brooklyn Rider (Johnny, Colin, Nick, and Eric)

Composers and inspirations

1. "String Quartet No.1" Nik Bärtsch, Swiss jazz pianist (Ronin) - inspired by Russian composer Igor Stravinsky

2. "The Haring Escape" Daniel Cords, American jazz saxophonist - inspired by American artist Keith Haring

3. "tralala" Christina Courtin, American singer-songwriter & violinist - inspired by inspired by Russian composer Igor Stravinsky

4."John Steinbeck" Bill Frisell, American jazz guitarist - inspired by American writer John Steinbeck

5. "One Five Legged Cat" Gonzalo Grau, Venezuelan multi-instrumentalist - inspired by American jazz pianist Chick Corea and Venezuelan instrumental group Ensemble Gurrufio

6. "Morris Dance" Ethan Iverson, American jazz pianist & critic (The Bad Plus) - inspired by American choreographer Mark Morris

7. "Dig The Say" Vijay Iyer, American jazz pianist & writer - inspired by American singer James Brown

8. "Exit" Colin Jacobsen, American violinist & composer - inspired by American singer David Byrne

9. "The Architect's Brother" Carla Kihlstedt, multi-instrumentalist & vocalist - inspired by American photographers Robert and Shana ParkeHarrison

10. "Necessary Henry!" Rubin Kodheli, Albanian cellist - inspired by American multi-instrumentalist & composer Henry Threadgill

11. "Ping Pong Fumble Thaw" Glenn Kotche, American drummer (Wilco) - inspired by German electronic music producer Jens Massel

12. "Maintenance Music" Dana Lyn, American multi-instrumentalist - inspired by American artist Mierle Laderman Ukeles

13. "Gaps and Gorges" Padma Newsome, Australian multi-instrumentalist (The Clogs) - inspired by Aboriginal artist Albert Namatjira

14. "Show Me" Aoife O'Donovan, American singer and songwriter - inspired by American writer William Faulkner.

15."Sequence for Minor White" Kyle Sanna, American guitarist - inspired by American photographer Minor White

16. "Quartet, Parts One & Two" Greg Saunier, American drummer & producer (Deerhoof) - inspired by American composer Christian Wolff

17. "Amelia's Room" Jenny Scheinman, American violinist & singer - inspired by American comedian and singer Amelia Zirin-Brown, aka Lady Rizo

Artistic collaborators

Erin Baiano - American photographer

Brian Brooks (Brian Brooks Moving Company) - American choreographer

Lil' Buck - American jookin' dancer

John Heginbotham (Dance Heginbotham) - American choreographer

Dennis Herring - American musician & producer

Ingrid Hertfelder - German photographer

Becky James - American animation artist

Heidi Kim, American professor of English and Comparative Literature, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Bradon McDonald - American fashion designer

Raz Mesinai (Badawi) - American composer, filmmaker, writer

Justin Messina - American composer & electronic music producer

Kevork Mourad - Syrian/Armenian visual artist

Will Robin - American music critic

Damian Woetzel - American choreographer, producer and educator

Risks and challenges

In our experience, most successful collaborations always begin with deep respect and friendship. We are deeply honored that every artist we've approached has been incredibly supportive and excited to get involved. That in itself makes us confident that this project will be successful, despite challenges that will most likely come up.

Everyone in this project has a busy life, so the simple act of scheduling might be one of the biggest challenges in this project. That's one of the reasons that the work you will help us create will be released over the course of an entire 2014-2015 season.

We learned a lot from our first Kickstarter campaign. For example, vinyl production most often gets delayed, so those rewards' estimated shipping allows extra time to make sure that we can deliver what we promised on time. Chocolate is better shipped in the cooler months - we are allowing extra time for this as well. Shipping the rewards is a complicated job, not suited for one person - we now have 4 volunteers who will help us with packaging and shipping.

Another aspect of the project that is somewhat unknown is the interactive coffee table book. We have the utmost respect for the team of designers we are working with - they are truly amazing at what they do. Currently, they are working on a prototype. We are allowing a full year to fulfill this reward, so that our team has time to iron out any problems that may arise.

We expect new challenges to come up, probably some that we can't fully anticipate at this point. What we do know is that the project is made possible by the generous participation of every single backer. When this campaign comes to a close, our community will be bigger and stronger, thanks to your support. You have our deep thanks and respect, and we are committed to honoring these new friendships by fulfilling the promises we made to you, 100%.

Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

FAQ

Have a question? If the info above doesn't help, you can ask the project creator directly.

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Rewards

  • You selected
    Pledge $10 or more

    4 backers

    A big thanks from the four of us. We really appreciate your support!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $20 or more

    67 backers

    Thank you! We will email you a download of the Brooklyn Rider Almanac album. MP3 or high quality files - your choice!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $30 or more

    55 backers

    Thank you! You will receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac CD.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $60 or more

    4 backers

    Thank you! You will receive a download of the album, as well as a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe.

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $60 or more

    37 backers

    Thank you! You will receive a download of the Brooklyn Rider Almanac album, as well as a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt.

    Estimated delivery:
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  • You selected
    Pledge $100 or more

    41 backers

    Thank you! You will receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac album on a limited edition,180-gram vinyl, signed by BR. The vinyl will include a download card for the album.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $300 or more

    3 backers

    Thank you! You will receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt.

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $500 or more

    18 backers Limited (2 left of 20)

    Thank you! You will be the very first recipient of the Brooklyn Rider Almanac interactive coffee table book, which will include essays, photography, and of course the music! You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt.

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  • You selected
    Pledge $750 or more

    1 backer Limited (4 left of 5)

    Thank you! A truly unique reward awaits! Eric Jacobsen will tattoo your name on his body (but only if your name is Arnold Schoenberg)! You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag! Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,000 or more

    3 backers Limited (7 left of 10)

    You and your guest are invited to a performance of Colin's latest work, "Chalk and Soot' (inspired by the Blue Rider and based on texts by Kandinsky), in collaboration with the amazing Dance Heginbotham in NYC. (Date to be confirmed in June). You will receive two tickets to the performance, and all of the folks in this category will gather together with Brooklyn Rider at a nearby watering hole for drinks and merriment. You and your guest will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude! (If you choose vinyl, it may be shipped separately, in December 2014)

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    Do you love horse-riding? If the answer to this question is "giddyup", this reward is for you! You and your guest will go for an hour-long horse ride in Prospect Park with Brooklyn Rider's violinist and composer, Colin Jacobsen! You and your guest will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    Are you a foodie? You and your guest will spend a few hours roaming around NYC with Brooklyn Rider's violinist, Johnny Gandelsman. Pizza, pork sandwiches, tacos, cappuccino, gelato, truffles - Johnny will take you to some of his favorite spots in the city! You and your guest will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    Do you love Kandinsky? You and your guest will get to see some of his greatest works at the Guggenheim Museum in NYC with BR violist Nicholas Cords. Afterwards, unwind with kaffee und kuchen at the nearby Neue Gallerie! You and your guest will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $1,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (2 left of 2)

    Are you a fan of Prohibition-era mixology? BR cellist and Vine video master Eric Jacobsen will take you and your guest to one of his favorite spots in NYC - Attaboy! You and your guest will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $2,500 or more

    1 backer Limited (3 left of 4)

    A video telegram from Brooklyn! For that special occasion, we will film a performance of an Almanac piece of your choice with a personalized greeting! You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

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  • You selected
    Pledge $2,500 or more

    0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)

    Spend 2 hours reading your favorite chamber music works with the members of Brooklyn Rider! This can happen in NYC, or it can happen when we are close to you while on tour - we'll figure it out. You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac gift bag. Inside you will find a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $5,000 or more

    0 backers Limited (5 left of 5)

    You and your guest are invited to an Almanac-themed dinner party with Brooklyn Rider and other backers in this category at Casa Jacobsen! Meet some of our friends, enjoy a delicious meal and have a ton of fun! This will be an unforgettable evening (a blue horse pinata may or may not be involved...). You and your guest will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Deluxe gift bag. Inside you will find the Brooklyn Rider Almanac interactive coffee table book, signed by BR; a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $5,000 or more

    1 backer Limited (1 left of 2)

    Have something you want us to record? Are you a composer or a songwriter? Need a backup band? Do you want to give a very special musical gift to a loved one? The Almanac was recorded by the incredible, Grammy Award winning producer Jesse Lewis. Brooklyn Rider will spend 3 hours with you and Jesse in a studio, and we will make it happen! You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac Deluxe gift bag. Inside you will find the Brooklyn Rider Almanac interactive coffee table book, signed by BR; a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $10,000

    0 backers Limited (1 left of 1)

    You inspire us! Brooklyn Rider will write a collaborative composition based on your favorite artistic figure active within the last 50 years, to be included in future touring with your name credited. We will also create a personalized video recording of the work. Or if you live in the NYC area, stop by a rehearsal and we'll play for you in person! You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac Deluxe gift bag! Inside you will find the Brooklyn Rider Almanac interactive coffee table book, signed by BR; a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude!

    Estimated delivery:
    Ships anywhere in the world
  • You selected
    Pledge $10,000

    2 backers Limited (1 left of 3)

    Experience the beauty and intimacy of chamber music in the comfort of your home, through an hour-long concert, specially tailored for you in consultation with Brooklyn Rider! You will also receive the Brooklyn Rider Almanac Deluxe gift bag. Inside you will find the Brooklyn Rider Almanac interactive coffee table book, signed by BR; a bag of limited-edition "Brooklyn Rider Almanac" coffee beans, roasted by one of our favorite roasters in the country - La Colombe; a signed copy of the album (cd or vinyl - your choice) and a custom-made Brooklyn Rider Almanac t-shirt. And of course, our thanks and gratitude! (Details and scheduling of the concert to be discussed immediately after the end of this campaign)

    Estimated delivery:
    Only ships to: United States

Funding period

- (60 days)