October 1, 2017:
€2,073 pledged; 103% funded' 47 backers; 3 days to go.
For those who have yet to back the campaign, or to select a reward, you still have three days to do so. As stated on the ‘risks and challenges’ section below:
“Anything raised beyond our goal will go towards the design, packaging and manufacturing costs of the CD.”
The first €350 over our goal will go towards paying for the design, packaging and manufacturing costs of the CD. Should we raise more than that, the next €150 will pay for a second day of recording for our album.
So you still have time to join us. Plus there are cool rewards (starting at the price of a coffee and muffin) still to be had such as exclusive recordings, super-rare items, and not-available-from-anywhere-else hand-made items. Select your reward, and back this project.
Eris 136199 is reuniting for a European tour complete with a second album. All we need is YOU.
Eris 136199 may be the closest to how I think music should sound like, or how I would like to imagine a music. Musicality and interactivity are tightly knotted together as we improvise, create, and explore. Making improvised music is a uniquely rewarding artistic struggle that brings exceptional joy to musicians and audience alike, who join in making and watching unpredictable events unfold! Today we are asking for you to support this struggle from a more pragmatic (i.e. financial) angle, as we embark on our European tour and the recording of our second album. Improvised music is a decidedly non-commercial endeavor that enriches those who step into it. Please consider helping us this effort to bring vital music to a wider range of audiences!
We are a small, mobile trio that doesn’t travel with a ton of gear. As efficient as this is, we will incur hard expenses that will exceed performance income: plane tickets, train travel, local travel, and lodging, in addition to paying recording engineers, all add up pretty quick. The venues and promoters are being as righteous as they can be with their artist fees, but the hard truth is that without your help, we’ll be in the red. We’re offering real cool rewards (including a new album), so please check out the various rewards and see where you might fit in to help us!
Interaction with, and within, Eris is an always awesome experience; unique in bringing so many strands of the musically possible together. I’m very excited to be playing again with two of my favorite musicians, avant-rock legend Nick Didkovsky and the powerfully creative improviser Catherine Sikora, and finally bringing this trio to European audiences.
I’m guitarist, improviser and constructor Han-earl Park. I’ve been playing fuzzily-idiomatic improvised music for two decades, performing in Europe, North America and Asia with folk such as Paul Dunmall, Charles Hayward, Richard Barrett, Josh Sinton, Ingrid Laubrock, Wadada Leo Smith, Evan Parker, Gino Robair, Franziska Schroeder, and Lol Coxhill. I’ve played at house gigs and at concert halls. I’ve performed at festivals including Freedom of the City (London), Brilliant Corners (Belfast), ISIM (New York), CEAIT (Los Angeles), and Sonic Acts (Amsterdam).
Nick Didkovsky is best known for his work as the mastermind behind avant-metal big band Doctor Nerve, the long-standing fixture of Downtown Music, which has appeared in festivals including the Composers’ Showcase at The Whitney Museum of American Art (New York), FIMAV (Victoriaville, Quebec), and Moers Festival (Germany). Nick is also an active composer, working with ensembles such as Bang On A Can All Stars, ETHEL, and the Meridian Arts Ensemble, and the author of Java Music Specification Language, a system for algorithmic composition and real-time computer music.
I’ve been a fan of Nick since 1998 when I picked up a copy of Ayaya Moses by the Fred Frith Guitar Quartet. I remember clearly hearing that unashamed metallic-sheen and diamond-cut precision of his tone, articulation and compositional sensibility—I was hooked. I met Nick a few years later when he visited CalArts to discuss his compositions, his experiments with Java, and his approach to prepared guitar, and came to know him as a unerringly enthusiastic and inspiring musical figure.
It wasn’t, however, until 2012 that we finally performed together (but more about that later…).
Nothing quite prepares you for Catherine Sikora’s sound. Six years ago, even though I had heard some of her recorded work, I still got knocked-out by that big, bold tenor and that elegant and sure-footed melodic sense when I first performed with her.
And I’ve certainly come to rely on her as an invaluable collaborator, working with her on realizing Metis 9, my playbook of improvisative tactics, among other projects. Together, Catherine and I have released three albums together.
She’s (co-)instigator of collaborations with Eric Mingus, Brian Chase, Stanley Zappa, David Lacey, and Christopher Culpo, as well as being called upon to be side-woman in projects such as Ross Hammond’s Humanity Suite, Ursel Schlicht’s SonicExchange, François Grillot’s Contraband, Elliott Sharp’s band, and Mingus’ radical reimagining of Tommy by the Who. She’s toured North America, Europe, and Australia.
Since our last performance as trio, Nick, Catherine and I have been concentrating on a diversity of other ventures: Nick has been busy with his extreme metal band, Vomit Fist, and the multitude of his projects (many of which were showcased during his residency at The Stone in 2015); Catherine has continued to work her collaborations with Eric Mingus, and with Brian Chase, and also, in 2014, was artist in resident at Centre Culturel Irlandais (Paris); and I’ve been touring and recording with my European quartet Sirene 1009 with Dominic Lash, Mark Sanders and Caroline Pugh.
But we’d always been planning to return to Eris, and 2017 is the year we do so with a tour and a recording. (Plus, we’ve got even bigger things in the works for the second half of 2018!)
Eris 136199 came together in 2012 when Nick, Catherine and I were all based in New York. Initially billed as the ‘Han-earl Park Ensemble’ (hah!), I recall the exact moment I knew this group was something special, when, fifteen minutes into the 40 minute improvisation, the broken-machinery-rattle-buzzes-and-bumps of the guitars were joined by the melismatic lines of the soprano saxophone. And the trio refused to collapse that juxtaposition—letting that idiomatic dissonance remain standing—creating its own logic by force-of-will.
So that’s, to me the unique pleasures of playing in, and listening to, Eris 136199: a trio that let’s melody be melody, noise be noise, meter be meter, metal be metal, bluegrass be bluegrass, jazz be jazz, without collapsing under idiomatic gravity.
Eris 136199 is going on tour, performing Hamburg, Copenhagen, Cheltenham, Derby and Newcastle, November 2017. We’re also going to be recording our second album during this tour.
While Nick, Catherine and I continued to collaborate (working with Josh Sinton, with Mike Pride, with Michael Lytle, Gerry Hemingway, and others), as a trio, Eris 136199 this tour will be a reunion! The European debut of the ensemble, the performances will take place at:
1 November 2017: MS Stubnitz, Hamburg (with funding from Verband für aktuelle Musik Hamburg)
2 November 2017: Jazz Club Loco @ Bryggekælderen, Copenhagen (co-presented by Jvtlandt)
3 November 2017: Xposed Club @ Francis Close Hall Chapel, Cheltenham
4 November 2017: OUT FRONT! @ The Flower Pot, Derby
5 November 2017: Jazz North East @ The Bridge Hotel, Newcastle
The venues represent a wide and diverse audience, from noisy, counterculture art spaces to accessible, family-friendly concerts.
We will document many of the concerts, and, in particular, recording engineer Chris Trent will be documenting the Derby performance. Chris has recorded releases by Evan Parker, Pat Thomas, Derek Bailey, Susan Alcorn, Alex von Schlippenbach, Otomo Yoshihide, Paul Dunmall and many others. I will mix the recording, and Richard Scott will master the album. Richard, in addition to being a fantastic improviser, is an engineer who has worked on releases from PSI, Kwan Yin, Inu.itu, sruti BOX, GRP Impulse, Isisongs, Discus, Fantastic Plastic, Metier Records and others. I’ve previously worked with Chris on two albums, and I’ve worked with Richard on many projects.
I’m very excited that the very best engineers (with the most musical ears) will be documenting our work, and cannot wait to present the finished album to you.
We have secured funding and support from the following organizations:
Jazz Club Loco (Copenhagen)
Jvtlandt (Copenhagen and Oita)
OUT FRONT! (Derby)
Jazz North East (Newcastle)
Verband für aktuelle Musik Hamburg
Xposed Club (Cheltenham)
MS Stubnitz (Hamburg)
The total budget for the tour and recording, not including ‘in-kind’ contributions (such as publicity, and tech and venue hire) by the individual promoters and venues, is €6800. That includes transportation (trains, planes and automobiles), accommodation, artists’ fees, and album production and post-production costs. With the awesome and enthusiastic contributions from the organizations listed above, and my own personal contribution to the project, we can afford to cover almost all of the travel and accommodation costs, and artist fees. Your pledge will help us cross the finish line; to plug the small shortfall, and enable the production and post-production of the new album!
Why pledge now? We want you to hear this trio, this music—by turns noisy, boisterous, delicate, and beautiful—professionally recorded, and mastered by one of the best engineers in the field. For this to happen, with a tour that brings musicians together again from across the Atlantic, now’s the time!
Thank you for reading, and thank you for your interest; I truly appreciate it. I hope you’re excited to be part of this very musical noise.
For your pledge, whatever the reward, we will thank you in name online on our website and in our newsletter.
Rewards include the new album, but also include exclusive recordings such as an ‘official bootleg’—a previously unreleased live recording of Eris 136199. We’re also going to be producing Eris 136199 T-shirts specifically for this campaign.
There are also some super rare items such as the beautifully designed and hand-printed posters and T-shirts from Xposed Club, and not-available-anywhere-else one-off items such as a battery-powered audio buffer like the one I hand-built for use in my own signal chain.
And for our super fans who already have our collective back-catalogs, we’ve created a special category (‘Everything New and Only The New’) which collates the rewards produced specifically for this project (recordings, T-shirt, etc.).
Also, select rewards include FREE shipping!
Hit the green button; get ready for the noise.
Thanks to George Haslam of SLAM Productions. Thanks to the videographers and photographers Scott Friedlander, Kevin Reilly and Don Mount.
Special thank to the camera operator A. Park, age 4½.
All images, audio and video recordings copyright the respective owners. All music by the respective musicians.
Risks and challenges
The money raised here will go towards coving some of the travel costs of the tour, and cover all the recording and mastering costs. Anything raised beyond our goal will go towards the design, packaging and manufacturing costs of the CD.
Here’re the parts that have minimal risks: the tour and the record production. I’ve been successfully organizing music events and tours, and producing and self-releasing music for many years.
Here’s the part with challenges: crowdfunding and the attendant workflow. This is my first crowdfunding campaign. Although I have solid experience and skills in terms of record production and tour management, this is the first time I’ve turned to Kickstarter to fund the project.
For the last five years, I’ve been attending crowdfunding workshops, and I’ve been closely watching, and learning from, friends and colleagues run crowdfunding campaigns. I’ve been taking notes, aware that I’d need to turn to crowdfunding in the future for one of my projects.
In order to minimized risk, I’ve deliberately chosen a project in which the budget shortfall is relatively small. Considering the scope of the project, I’ve set a modest Kickstarter goal so as to minimize the risks. The Kickstarter component is there to carry us to the finishing line; the bulk of the project is already complete and funded.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (17 days)