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UA STUDENTS INSPIRED BY ANTHONY BRAXTON FUSE ART & MUSIC
image credit: Ali Hval
niversity of Alabama art students will exhibit works inspired by the music of renowned jazz composer and musician Anthony Braxton Feb. 6-27 at The University of Alabama Gallery in the Dinah Washington Cultural Arts Center in downtown Tuscaloosa. The exhibit, “Anthony Braxton: Falling River Music Exhibition,” coincides with Braxton’s weeklong residency at UA Feb. 18-25. An opening reception and concert will be held Friday, Feb. 6 from 5:30-7:30 p.m. at the gallery. A closing reception and concert will be held Monday, Feb. 23 from 6-8 p.m. at the gallery. Students in Assistant Professor Pete Schulte’s advanced concepts in drawing class will exhibit works inspired by the musical scores and audio works of Braxton. Ausharea Adams, Mitchell Griest, Brittany Gunnells, Ali Hval, Patrick O’Brien, Jennifer Ocampo and Seth Saunders also curated the exhibition. Braxton’s musical career spans more than five decades. His many awards include a MacArthur fellowship, Guggenheim fellowship, 2009 honorary doctorate from the Université de Liège in Belgium, 2013 Doris Duke Performing Artist Award and 2013 New Music USA Letter of Distinction. He is also a 2014 National Endowment for the Arts Jazz Master. “Falling River Music is the name of a new structural prototype class of compositions in my music system that will seek to explore image logic construct ‘paintings’ as the score’s extract music notation,” Braxton writes about his current work. These scores consist of large, colorful drawings (reminiscent of the titles of Braxton’s earlier compositions) alongside other notational symbols. The students created artworks in response to Braxton’s work. “Each of us has taken on one of Anthony Braxton’s unique visual scores and one of his auditory com-
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positions and are in the process of making work in response to it,” said Mitchell Griest, a junior from Brighton, Michigan double majoring in computer science and studio art and minoring in math. “We are considering his larger body of work as well, but paying special attention to the pieces we were assigned individually as jumping off points.” For the curating process, the students selected 35 of Braxton’s visual scores to show alongside their own works. The exhibit and weeklong residency are sponsored by the National Endowment for the Arts and The University of Alabama’s New College, College of Arts and Sciences, Office of the Provost, School of Music, jazz studies program, Blount Undergraduate Initiative, Honors College, University Programs and departments of American studies and gender and race studies. For a full schedule of Braxton’s weeklong residency at UA, visit http://www.sonicfrontiers.ua.edu.
CBDB RELEASES SECOND ALBUM // A GROWING FORCE IN THE SOUTHEAST
ne of Tuscaloosa’s premier groups is ready to drop their second effort on the ears of diehard fans and nightlife enthusiasts alike. CBDB, a popular jamband whose signature “joyfunk” sound has delighted music fans and patrons in town for years, are proud to announce the release of their second album entitled "Joyfunk is Dead." The release date for the new record is set for February 24th, but fans who want to get a copy early can attend the album’s release party at Green Bar on February 20th. The album shows the band continues to push forward and expand their audience beyond that of West Alabama, though they have not forgotten where they came from. Since releasing their first album, "phone.keys.wallet.," CBDB have seen their profile raised significantly. They have opened for national touring acts such as Moon Taxi, The Revivalists and Umphrey’s McGee. The band has also played several respected venues across the southeast, including Exit In in Nashville, Proud Larry’s in Oxford, Terminal West in Atlanta and Zydeco in Birmingham. According to the band’s website, their single “Slow Foxes” has been played over 22,000 times on the music streaming site Spotify. There is quite a wave of momentum around CBDB that could take them to even greater heights. CBDB is manned by six members: Cy Simonton and Kris Gottlieb on guitars, Paul Oliver on drums, Glenn Dillard on saxophone and keyboards, David Ray on bass and Donald DeLoach as a second percussionist. Simonton typically handles vocal duties, though Gottlieb, Dillard and Ray all provide their voices to recordings as well. Those who have seen them live can attest to the band’s range of influences across various genres. As shown in their term “joyfunk”, the band is heavily influenced
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by funk groups, but they also have elements of rock, reggae, jazz and progressive music in their sound. In order to celebrate the release of their second album, the band is hosting a party at Green Bar. There could not be a better venue to celebrate this achievement. Green Bar has a long history of hosting and supporting local and unique talent in Tuscaloosa, even going back to their days as Little Willie’s. While many bars and venues in town appeal to college life with cover bands and DJs, Green Bar features acts ranging from jam, punk, rap, blues, folk, jazz and others to be one of the most unique watering holes in the downtown area. CBDB have played the stage at the Green Bar many times in the past. It’s not the biggest venue, but it’s a perfect representation of what CBDB is and who they appeal to. The name of CBDB’s new album is "Joyfunk is Dead", but the exact opposite may be true. Joyfunk could just be getting started. If you want to get an early preview, head to the band’s website cbdbband.wix.com to hear the song “Stuffed Avocado” off the new record. Personally, I’ve seen the band well over ten times and can attest that they provide a different experience every time. They can play in small, intimate venues, but can also rock out in larger theaters. They have a connection with the audience that is rare among local acts nowadays. In fact, I’ll go ahead and say that joyfunk is far from dead. It’s growing, and could be one of the biggest forces in the southeast in due time. I’ll repeat those words again. Joyfunk is not dead, it’s growing. CBDB is a must see if you’re a fan of the nightlife scene in Tuscaloosa. Be sure to look for the album when it comes out next month.