“fizzy, angular susurrations” (Ann Arbor Observer)
“a skillful merger of recorded Arabic phrases flecked with DJ turntable effects” (Washington Post)
“rigorous … improvisatory” (Gramophone)
NEWS ARCHIVE: performances and projects prior to August 2011. For current news, please visit dubble8productions.com main page.
July 15, 2011-- Solo electronic set of original material at Bohemian Coffee House, on the outer periphery of Baltimore's Artscape festival.
June 1, 2011-- DJ set at final Mobtown Modern concert of the season, Oswaldo Golijov's "Ayre", as part of the Syncronicity series in collaboration with the Baltimore Symphony Orchestra.
May 13, 2011-- Performance in collaboration with Quentin Gibeau as part of an exhibition at MICA PLACE, featuring works by students graduating from the MFA in Community Arts program. I worked with Gibeau in the preparation of a live electronic set featuring interview excerpts and spoken word poetry on the topic of bullying, recited by Baltimore City middle schoolers, in combination with original and sampled beats.
May 1, 2011-- Dubble8 Productions has moved to a new spot near Mount Vernon Place, in the heart of Baltimore. Dedicated studio room (wooden floors & high ceilings) is now large enough to accomodate a rehearsal by a small chamber group plus two tables of audio circuitry!
April 30, 2011-- Hosted and performed on the 2nd annual Vigil all-night music festival at Maryland Institute College of Art, from 7 PM to 7 AM the next morning in the Cohen Plaza. Overlapping experimental and ambient performances from multiple soundsystems surrounding the plaza.
March 31, 2011-- Illbient improv set with Jason Sloan at the Windup Space in Baltimore. Shared the night with performances by Three Red Crowns and Broadcloth Trio.
March 25, 2011-- Release of duYun's debut album Shark In You on New Focus Recordings. I had the pleasure of working with duYun on five of the songs, off and on over a period of a few years: "Stay", "Shark in You", "Panacea", "Life isn't Pretty", and "i-Goh-Doh". A landmark project for both of us. I am very pleased to announce that the album can be purchased (here) on 12" vinyl as well as CD Digipak formats!
March 9, 2011-- DJ set for Mobtown Modern show todd reynolds and the LEMUR robots at the Windup Space in Baltimore.
February 25, 2011-- Improv trio set with David Smooke (toy piano) and Bonnie Lander (voice) at the Highwire Gallery in Philadelphia.
February 23, 2011-- DJ set for Mobtown Modern show notations 21 at the Windup Space in Baltimore.
January 10, 2011--
Completed a new sample-collage/beat-based piece called Mobtown DoubleDecade for Mobtown Modern's Project 20 Remix. Twenty Baltimore musicians contributed samples of their playing, each twenty seconds in length. Other remixers for this project include Cex feat. Get Em Mamis, Dennis DeSantis, Michael Lowenstern, Matt Papich (from Ecstatic Sunshine), Wendel Patrick, Gabriel Prokofiev, Quincy (from Uncle Jesse), Ricky Rabbit (from Food For Animals), Todd Reynolds, Schwarz, and Cullen Stalin. You can support this project by donating on Kickstarter.
January 4, 2011-- Performance on Out Of Your Head music series at the Windup Space, part of an improvising ensemble with Dana Jessen-bassoon (visiting from Amsterdam!) and David Smooke-toy piano. I played with a new setup for improvisation: single turntable, foot controller board controlling a looper in Live, drum pad controller triggering various vinyl artifacts, and video input via JunXion controlling other signal processing. Kaoss Pad as a send/return track on my DJ mixer.
2010 in review-- This year saw the premiere of my doctoral dissertation, Mandala of the Four Directions (a ritual cantata for 4 singers and 4 ensembles) as the kick-off to The Vigil all-night music festival at MICA, the first in what I hope to continue as an annual outdoor multimedia celebration. From some of the ensemble members from the Mandala piece, in collaboration with conductor Julien Benichou I put together a new ensemble, the Purple City Players, which gave its first concert as a new music ensemble-in-residence at MICA in November. I completed several pieces: Grandpa Dale Songs, a solo multi-instrumental electronic piece based on the songs and spoken auto-biographical narrative of my grandfather, Conrad Dale Spangler; the second piece being the soundtrack to Joe Zohar's short film noir, Chalk Outlines, which I scored for a quartet of tenor saxophone, trumpet, vibraphone and double bass, plus samples. In addition to composing and putting together DJ mixes such as Station North Clubstep, I have delved deeply into group improvisation, largely through my experiences on the Out Of Your Head series at the Windup Space, creating a variety of setups in Ableton Live, Max For Live, and Ms Pinky (MaxiPatch) software, optimizing my setup for split-second decisions and a variety of directions that a performance may go within an improvising ensemble. My performance practice expanded into the realm of video sensors through my orientation workshop at STEIM in Amsterdam at the end of October, leading me to begin using STEIM's sensor-mapping software junXion. My role within the Contemporary Museum's Mobtown Modern music series shifted this year away from co-curating and contributing live remixes within ensemble compositions to a more specialized role as resident DJ: playing music before and after the pieces on the program, and releasing a mixtape in advance of each show. Some of the Mobtown Mixtapes are composed of tracks that I have selected and mixed, and some are tracks selected by other composers featured on the series that I then remix.
December 22, 2010-- I am putting the finishing touches on the soundtrack for Joe Zohar's (Moving Box Studios) film noir Chalk Outlines. This film has been a few years in the making, including some portions of the score that were created entirely through sample-mining while living in the isolation of southwest Florida in 2006. New pieces for the score were written and recorded this fall with a jazz-inspired quartet of trumpet (Dave Ballou), tenor saxophone (Eric Trudel), vibraphone (Greg Herron), and double bass (Adam Hopkins).
December 14, 2010-- Performance on Out Of Your Head music series at the Windup Space, part of an improvising ensemble with Jake Henry & Brad Henkel-trumpets; Jon Lipscomb-guitar. Also that night at the Windup Space, I hosted my Sound 1 class' B-MORE SOUNDBOX sound art show, which included an improvisation set I played with my student Chang Park.
December 11, 2010-- As part of what I was promoting as Guerilla Sound Art Day, I presented a guerilla audio piece called Amplification of the Playground at a public park/playground at Calvert Street & 22nd Street in Baltimore, utilizing video and audio sensors through junXion software (from my workshop at STEIM in October). Approximately eight people (half from my Soundscape Composition Workshop at the Baltimore Free School) participated over the course of an hour and a half, performing acoustic instruments and the playground structures themselves through a signal processing environment that I created in Max For Live. Next to the central stereo microphone, I had cards with phone numbers that participants could dial on their cell phones to play back one of two audio files (background harmonies or a field recording I made of Baltimore street celebrations on the night of Obama's election) in speakerphone mode. [Video above is of an earlier playground piece that I did with my Free School class back in October.]
November 23, 2010-- First concert of the Purple City Players as a resident new music ensemble at MICA. I performed a live remix of an earlier guitar piece, Gut Matrix with guitarist Ben Beirs. Other repertoire included music by David Smooke, R. Murray Schafer, and graphic scores by the students in my Sound 1 class. Following the concert, I made it to the Windup Space in time to play melodica on the second set of the Out Of Your Head Orchestra night, always a blast.
October 27, 2010-- Performance at OT301 in Amsterdam, with an improvising ensemble of Dana Jessen - Bassoon, Erik Spangler (a.k.a DJ Dubble8) - Melodica/Turntable/Electronics, Ivo Bol - electronics, Oscar Jan Hoogland - Clavichord/keyboard, Anne LaBerge - Flute/electronics. Truly a pleasure performing with this group. The hospitality of the OT301 venue and Ivo's hosting Wonderland Series was also second to none.
October 26 - November 2, 2010-- Orientation workshop at STEIM (Studio for Electro-Instrumental Music at Amsterdam. I had a chance to hear many inspiring presentations on the STEIM approach to live electronics, artist presentations, and introductions to LiSA and junXion software. Especially fruitful were the collaborations with the other workshop participants: Matt Wakefield (from the Isle of Wight), Abdullah Benabdallah (from Zurich, Switzerland), and Hannah Schrafenberger (from Stuttgardt, Germany).
September 17, 2010-- Performance with mezzo-soprano Megan Ihnen at an open house event of the Federal Hill Parlor Series, hosted by jordan faye contemporary. Megan and I worked together to combine a set of my electronic instrumental tracks (and additional turntable/sampler improvisation) with African-American spirituals, following the model of George Crumb's "A Journey Beyond Time".
October 11, 2010-- Performance on Out Of Your Head music series at the Windup Space, on which I played melodica as part of an improvising ensemble with Eric Trudel-reeds; Blake Cramer-vibes; Alan Munshower-drums.
September 9, 2010-- Ensemble improvisation with Jason Sloan, Susan Alcorn, Matt Frazao, and John Dierker, for the opening of READSBORO - paintings by Regina Tumasella, at the Metro Gallery. I chose 5 of Regina's paintings to project on the wall and interpret as graphic scores while providing the musicians with some additional parameters (starting pitches, dynamic level, and order of entry) for each of the paintings.
September 7, 2010-- Out Of Your Head improv set at the Windup Space, playing melodica and electronics with Anthony Pirog on guitar, Chris Pumphrey on Rhodes, and Alan Munshower on drums.
August 25, 2010-- Performed the premiere of my Grandpa Dale Songs (solo piece based on the songs and spoken narrative of my grandfather, Conrad Dale Spangler) and several of my chamber ensemble compositions (Pre-Dawn Artscape/Ghost Town, Inner Circle, and Midnight Turning) at the Windup Space. This concert featured a prototype formation of the Purple City Players, a new ensemble that I am starting with conductor Julien Benichou and percussionist Greg Herron.
July 20, 2010-- Out Of Your Head improv set at the Windup Space, with Brent Madsen on trumpet, Chris Pumphrey on Rhodes keyboard, and Mike Kuhl on drums.
June 22, 2010-- Out Of Your Head improv set at the Windup Space, with Kevin Gift-keys, Alan Munshower-drums, Ben Frock and Danny Gouker-trumpets. I played melodica (with effects processing via Kaoss Pad with foot controller).
May 15, 2010-- DJ set at the Windup Space for the Megapolis audio festival.
May 12, 2010-- DJ set at the Metro Gallery for Mobtown Modern's "The Rite of Swing", the premiere performance of Darryl Brenzel's arrangement of The Rite of Spring for jazz ensemble.
May 2, 2010-- Performance at the Windup Space, sharing the bill with Will Redman. Improvisation on melodica and keyboard over a collage of personal archival audio from previous compositions.
April 29 - May 13, 2010-- The beginning of a composition residency workshop with the Chesapeake Youth Symphony Orchestra- collaboration with students to create a concerto for DJ and orchestra. Theme: layers of history on the Chesapeake Bay.
April 27, 2010-- Out Of Your Head improv with John Dierker-reeds, Susan Alcorn-pedal steel guitar. Really enjoyed this one.
April 1, 2010-- The premiere of my ritual cantata for 4 singers and 4 ensembles, Mandala of the Four Directions- the opening of an all-night music vigil. We performed the work in the atrium of the Brown Center at Maryland Institute College of Art, with audience seated in the midst of the ensembles and on 3 levels of the stairway overlooking the atrium. Acoustics were superb for the piece and well suited the brilliant playing by the musicians brought together for the project- Singers: Nola Richardson, soprano; Megan Ihnen, mezzo-soprano; William McCullough, tenor; Jeffrey Williams, baritone; North Ensemble: Julien Benichou, conductor; Brian Sacawa, saxophones; Jeanne Wiesman, horn; Jacqueline Pollauf, harp; Ben Beirs, guitar; Caleb Johnson, viola; Domenica Romagni, cello; Joel Ciaccio, double bass; West Ensemble: Ruben Capriles, conductor; Lauren Rester, John Blair, Jennifer Everhart, Chad Maritin, clarinets; East Ensemble: Takuya Nishiwaki, conductor; Phillip Johnson, Ward Yager, trumpets; Bob Cherry, horn; Aaron Kadrmas, trombone; Scott Cameron, tuba; Paul Neidhart, percussion; South Ensemble: Brandon Keith Brown, conductor; Martha Morrison, Ruby Fulton, violins; Sarah Lowenstein, viola; Rachel Hsieh, cello; Janet Kuperstein, accordion; Neil Gladd, mandolin; Nathan Ellman-Bell, percussion. I played laptop in place of a notated percussion part in the score.
Following the premiere of the cantata, the action shifted to the Cohen Plaza just outside the Brown Center, for The Vigil all-night music festival. The audience was greeted by 4 element-themed box sculptures and a video installation by Jon Bevers. 4 dancers, led by Michelle Clark, circled the perimeter of a drum circle that formed in the center of the plaza. Musicians volleyed sets across the space on 4 different soundsystems, and the crowd stayed strong until dawn. This festival, which I organized as the setting for the premiere of Mandala, is something that I would like to do annually, hopefully with better communication with the residents of Bolton Hill- who I would like to make feel invited to the party. A very special night.
March 26, 2010-- Improv trios with musicians brought together by David Smooke in honor of Ken Ueno's visit to Baltimore. A great night at 2640 Space.
March 17, 2010-- DJ set for "High Art" Mobtown Modern show featuring Jennifer Everhart and Katayoon Hodjati.
March 13, 2010-- DJ set and collaboration with Niv Bavarsky, Peter Brown, and Zak Greene. Windup Space
March 2, 2010-- DJ set for Open Society Institute screening of the film "New Muslim Cool" and panel discussion entitled "Is America Really Post-Racial?", at MICA's Falvey Hall.
February 24, 2010-- Participated in a performance of John Zorn's COBRA on the Mobtown Modern series. Other performers included Brian Sacawa, saxophone; John Dieker, saxophone and bass clarinet; Adam Hopkins, bass; John Berndt, saxophone; Will Redman, drums; Joel Ciaccio, bass; Audrey Chen, cello; Sam Burt, reeds; Dave Ballou, trumpet. Read Tim Smith's review of the concert here.
January 20, 2010-- Premiere performance of Zodiacrobatic, Hybrid Groove Project's eclectic remix of Karlheinz Stockhausen's Tierkreis or "Zodiac", with video by Jon Bevers. The concert, which we presented on the Mobtown Modern music series, was reviewed by the Washington Post and the Baltimore Sun. We plan to tour with the piece, and to record it as an album in the studio, starting this summer.
January 16, 2010-- Performance with Rare Degree on the Red Room series at Normals Books & Records, Baltimore, MD. Music by Riley, Shatin, Burtner & Barrett.
January 15, 2010-- Performance with Rare Degree at Pyramid Atlantic Arts Center in Silver Spring, MD. Music by Riley, Shatin, & Burtner.
December 12, 2009-- DJ set at the BOOM! (Unsilent Afterparty) event following Mobtown Modern's presentation of Phil Kline's "Unsilent Night" for an infinite number of boomboxes.
December 8, 2009-- B-MORE SOUNDBOX experimental music event at the Windup Space, which I organized for my MICA students to present their work, was followed by my improvisation set with Jon Birkholz and Nathan Ellman-Bell on the Out Of Your Head series also at the Windup Space.
November 20, 2009-- Baltimore premiere of Z-Land, in a new arrangement for string orchestra, amplified string quartet, and DJ. Performed by the Zeeland High School Orchestra (on tour from Zeeland, MI) at Maryland Academy of Technology and Health Sciences (the public charter high school where I taught formerly).
October 7, 2009-- I performed a live remix of Giacinto Scelsi's Maknongan as performed on baritone saxophone by Brian Sacawa. I played the remix (using a combination of Ableton Live, Kaoss Pad, and turntables) as an interlude on Mobtown Modern's "Low Art" concert, eliding with the ending of Brian's performance of the original Scelsi piece.
September 16, 2009-- I premiered my composition Pre-Dawn Artscape/Ghost Town on Mobtown Modern's "Loopy" concert. My first performance using Ableton Live, I played guitar, melodica, theremin, violin, toy megaphone, Kaoss Pad and turntables, with the looping assistance of my FCB1010 foot controller board.
September 12, 2009-- I performed along with Brian Sacawa, Jennifer Everhart, and Katayoon Hodjati, at the opening of the Contemporary Museum's FAX exhibition. For the occasion, Mobtown Modern commissioned a new piece by Du Yun and Ken Ueno, to be faxed into the exhibition opening and sightread on the spot. Our performance of the resulting composition, "Die Faxmachine", can be viewed here.
August 28, 2009-- With my son Drew now three months old, I prepare for a new semester of teaching Sound I at MICA while settling into my new existence as a stay-at-home dad of two. We are getting our daily patterns figured out together, and charting our own home education. Starting in mid-September, I am organizing an art/music/storytelling class for young kids and their parents at the new Baltimore Free School, right in our own neighborhood. The class will be called "Art For Free Children".
May 28, 2009-- Birth of Andrew Leo Spangler, otherwise known as Drew, my beautiful baby boy. Staying home with my kids is the best job in the world, completely amazing.
May 21, 2009-- Taking back my DJ name, after 8 months of letting it sleep, I am not going to let other peoples' delusions dictate the meaning of my personal numerology and birthdate. DJ Dubble8 lives.
May 20, 2009-- Preview of "Capricorn" (minus parts to be performed live) from Hybrid Groove Project's ZODIACROBATIC, an arrangement of Karlheinz Stockhausen's "Tierkreis", 12 melodies of the Zodiac. To be premiered on the Mobtown Modern music series in Baltimore, January 2010: Capricorn Instrumental.
May 19, 2009-- Premiere of Z-Land for orchestra, by the Zeeland High School Orchestra, Zeeland, MI.
May 7, 2009-- The conclusion of our second season of Mobtown Modern featured "Octandre" by Edgar Varese, "Music For Solo Performer" by Alvin Lucier (greatly amplified brain waves), "Leo" (from "Tierkreis") by Karlheinz Stockhausen arranged by Hybrid Groove Project, "God Bless The Child" by Eric Dolphy, and "Zappastrata" (The Black Page/Waka Jawaka/G-Spot Tornado) by Frank Zappa arranged by Vince Norman. Click here to read a review of the event by Tim Smith of the Baltimore Sun.
May 1, 2009-- First B-MORE SOUNDBOX festival, which I organized on behalf of my Sound I class at MICA, took place at the Metro Gallery. Although the audience turnout could have been better, I consider it to have been a successful first event of this type. My plan is to organize one of these festivals of experimental music and sound art every semester, as a situation for which my students can either perform or create a sound installation or video piece. Apart from my students' work, great performances were given by artists including Buckminster, Faith in the Glitch, and Microkingdom. Brian Sacawa and I performed out new HGP arrangement of the "Leo" movement from Karlheinz Stockhausen's Tierkreis, which is feeling like one of our strongest pieces yet.
April 25, 2009-- Working on a new type of live solo set that I plan to perform at the upcoming B-MORE SOUNDBOX experimental music festival I've organized for next week at The Metro Gallery. I am considering the use of a slide show to present my tools to the audience and provide them with opportunities to control the direction of my performance, to collaborate with me. I think it fits nicely with the concept of Dr. Spangler's Beat Lab. View my PowerPoint in progress here.
March 14, 2009-- Performance with duYun at Canadian Music Week in Toronto, at a venue called Cameron House (Video Cabaret). We presented a live version of what we will be releasing as an album through Tag Team Records, an indie label based in Beijing. Five of the songs in our set were co-written with me (Dr. Spangler on the beats). Du Yun's live instrumental arrangements, spoken narrative, and sung lyrics create a very fluid and striking set to perform live. I can't wait to perform again with the new band formation. More info to come soon.
March 7, 2009-- Performance at the Musicbox Club in Lisbon, Portugal. Three sets of new music: Michael Straus and Vitor Rua (improv), Rare Degree (my collaboration with Dana Jessen and Michael Straus), and a solo set for which I was billed as DJ Dubble8. Lisbon was flat out amazing during my 3-day visit. I'm definitely going to come back.
March 3, 2009-- Mobtown Modern "Sequenzathon", presenting the solo instrument Sequenzas of Luciano Berio, with DJ interludes by Dr. Spangler's Beat Lab.
February 27, 2009-- Interview with Mobtown Modern curators Erik Spangler and Brian Sacawa on Zeitschichten.
February 20, 2009-- New track available for free download, Pierrot Redux 2, one of a series of beats based on samples of instrumental parts in Schoenberg's "Pierrot Lunaire".
December 31, 2008-- Z-Land is completed. Piece for high school orchestra commissioned by Marie TenElshof for the 10 year anniversary of the Zeeland Orchestra program, Zeeland, Michigan, to be premiered in May 2009.
November 18, 2008-- Penn Station Sound Installation: my Sound 1 class at MICA did field recording of sounds in Baltimore's Penn Station, then manipulated the audio in various ways to create camouflaged electronic tracks to be played back inside the train station on laptops and hidden boomboxes. Students started out scattered around the station, then over the course of two hours coalesced in one area and gradually raised the volume. Amtrak police were eventually called over to investigate our unauthorized sound situation, after causing some perplexed looks on the faces of rush hour commuters.
October 31, 2008-- Halloween show with Oxter at Joe Squared. Two solo sets and one shared set with Oxter, using theremin in a live show for the first time. Halloween provided a good cover for that!
October 1, 2008-- Mobtown Modern's second show of the 2008-09 season at the Contemporary Museum was "Sound Ecology", a program of music influenced by sounds of the environment. I opened the event with a live mix of tracks based on field recordings of the natural soundscape, including tracks by Amon Tobin, Erik M, glu, DJ Krush, and R. Murray Schafer. In the main program we featured compositions by John Luther Adams, Olivier Messiaen, Stephen Vitiello, Alexandra Gardner, and Ingram Marshall. Good turnout.
September 27, 2008-- Solo turntables performance at Joe Squared Pizza & Bar.
September 20, 2008-- The final installment of "The Story of This Place: Charm City Remix" with Kianga Ford, commissioned by the Contemporary Museum in Baltimore. The final track, "South: Read, Riot, Race, Railroad ...Lamenting Loss of Industry", is designed for a southward walk on Charles Street from the Washington monument to the Inner Harbor.
September 10, 2008-- I have just had an article published on NewMusicBox, a web magazine of the American Composers Forum. The article, entitled "In The Cut: a composer's guide to the turntables", is written primarily for composers and musicologists who would like to know more about the performance practice of scratch DJing.
September 9, 2008-- Mobtown Modern kicked off its 2008-09 season with an event called "Too Cool For School", featuring non-academic compositions by Jacob ter Velduis, Julia Wolfe, Anna Clyne, David Lang, and myself.
September 7, 2008-- Mobtown Modern profiled in the Baltimore Sun.
August 28, 2008-- I am pleased to announce that I will be teaching "Sound 1" as an adjunct faculty member at MICA (Maryland Institute College of Art) for the Fall 2008 semester. My curriculum will cover topics such as basic field and studio recording techniques, sample editing, audio filters and effects processing, sequencing, and sound theory, explored through creative projects in a range of media. Teaching just blocks from where I live is an added bonus.
July 26, 2008-- I have created 4 playlists with free track downloads at an emerging music community on the web called alonetone. The newest playlist up on the site is Children's Stories and Soundscapes, the outcome of my collaborations with students in grades 7 - 9 at two schools in very different regions: Oasis Charter Middle School in suburban Cape Coral, FL, and Maryland Academy of Technology and Health Sciences in inner city Baltimore, MD. The music that I have up on alonetone can also be heard as a free podcast through the iTunes Music Store. My site on alonetone is now the main place to hear and download my music on the web.
July 21, 2008-- R.I.P. DJ K-Swift, the Queen of Baltimore Club. The musical life of the city won't be the same without her.
July 20, 2008-- Hybrid Groove Project performance at the Metro Gallery as part of the Baltimore's Artscape festival. Featured at this show was the premiere of our Hip-Hop/Baltimore Club remix of "Grab It!" by Jacob ter Velduis.
June 23, 2008-- Hybrid Groove Project releases "HGP Anthem", an ironic diss rap directed at modern chamber music groups. The song has gained widespread attention on the web, including a feature in the music critic of The New Yorker, Alex Ross' blog The Rest Is Noise.
June 13, 2008-- My last day as music teacher at Maryland Academy of Technology and Health Sciences, a charter school in the Baltimore City Public School System. The culmination of my work at the school was the creation of a full-length album of original songs by the students, with some beats and a few cameo raps from the teacher. Despite the flowering of students' creativity in my self-created "School of Rap", the administration decided that my classroom was too wild. My contract was not renewed.
June 2008-- A documentary by Joe Zohar, Moving Box Studios, on my collaboration with Kianga Ford, "A Story of This Place: Charm City Remix" is selected by Current TV for broadcast.
May 24, 2008-- Performance with Sonic Circus Duo at Artomatic, an annual arts festival in Washington D.C., transforming an unfinished office building into a multimedia art gallery with two music stages, a film room, and a tattoo parlor, among other attractions.
May 23, 2008-- Solo performance and collaboration with Oxter, at Joe Squared Pizza & Bar, Baltimore, MD.
May 9, 2008-- Mobtown Modern, the new music series that I am curating with Brain Sacawa, held its second concert in partnership with the Contemporary Museum. "not so much: minimalish music", featured works by Philip Glass, Terry Riley, Steve Reich, Michael Gordon, and Nico Muhly. Classic pieces of the minimalist tradition, Glass' "Music In Similar Motion" and Riley's "In C", were given a new treatment by the inclusion of guest beatboxer Shodekeh and my use of a Korg KP3 to add a modern remix aesthetic. As with our first Mobtown Modern concert, we received favorable reviews in the Washington Post, Baltimore Sun, and Devin Hurd's blog "Hurd Audio".
May 3, 2008-- Hybrid Groove Project provided the music for the Contemporary Museum's "Sustain-a-Ball" fundraiser at the Montgomery Park building in southwest Baltimore. Sampled environmental sounds, jazzy trip-hop, and spacey improvisations on saxophone and melodica underscored the most sustainable cocktail hour ever experienced in Charm City.
April 5, 2008-- DJ performance at the University of Maryland, College Park, for LevelTen Leaders in Action's "Global Champions Leadership Conference", working with high school and middle school youth.
April 4, 2008-- Hybrid Groove Project performance at the Metro Gallery in Baltimore, for the opening of the "Ironing" exhibition, featuring artwork by Okan Arabacioglu and Brian Payne.
March 20, 2008-- Performance with Sonic Circus Duo at The Lighthouse in Washington D.C., a unique down-home venue for experimental music in the basement of a residential house, 1421 Buchanan Street. Our multimedia performance featured works by Terry Riley, Judith Shatin, and yours truly, DJ Dubble8.
March 15, 2008-- Kianga Ford's "The Story of This Place: Charm City Remix" opened at The Contemporary Museum, with music composed and performed by DJ Dubble8/Hybrid Groove Project. MP3s of Kianga's recorded narrative and the musical score are available on iPods at the museum, along with a map to guide four possible walking routes through the city. The installation continues through May 11.
February 9, 2008-- Completion of soundtrack to Joe Zohar's experimental short, M9. I am feeling good about the sound and flow on this one, and I think it will work well with the beautiful metaphysical images that Zohar has put together. Look out for this one at upcoming experimental film festivals.
February 1 and 2, 2008-- I joined Sonic Circus (saxophonist Michael Straus, bassoonist Dana Jessen) on a Michigan mini-tour, performing at the Canterbury House Concert Series in Ann Arbor and (SCENE)Metrospace in East Lansing. I performed my solo "Iraq Mix", my piece for Dana Jessen entitled "a firefly in the belly", and improvising roles in Jessen's own "Eshtyn", Judith Shatin's "Grito del Corazon", and Terry Riley's "Dorian Reeds". At the show in East Lansing, I also discovered that my "pastlife laptops and attic instruments" had been played there at Michigan State just two nights before!
January 29, 2008-- A very successful inaugural concert of Mobtown Modern, a Baltimore new music series at the Contemporary Museum, curated by Brian Sacawa and Erik Spangler. Presented in conjunction with George W. Bush's final State of the Union address, this first concert featured provocative politically-themed music by composers including Frederic Rzweski, Vinko Globokar, Erik Spangler, Steve Reich, and Louis Andriessen. Acclaimed NYC video artist Art Jones mixed images to accompany the compositions. We received excellent press coverage in the Baltimore Sun and the Washington Post.
January 19, 2008-- Dubble8 performance at Talking Head in downtown Baltimore. In addition to a solo set, I joined jazz-funk fusion group Oxter for a few songs. Other performers included Satabdi Express, and Dominique Leone.
December 21, 2007-- DJ Dubble8/Hybrid Groove Project performed at the afterparty for "Unsilent Night", a boombox parade piece by NYC composer Phil Kline. Joe Squared Pizza & Bar. The Unsilent Night event, organized by HGP co-conspirator Brian Sacawa, drew a crowd of near-100 participants who formed a boombox procession up Charles St, through indoor spaces including Penn Station and the lobby of the Charles Theater, and up to North Ave. Now known as "Baltimore's newest holiday tradition".
December 2, 2007-- Cornell doctoral student Chris Gendall’s "Holy Rollers", for turntable soloist and orchestra, was premiered by DJ Dubble8 and the Cornell Symphony Orchestra under the direction of Chris Kim.
October 31, 2007-- Dubble8 Halloween show at Joe Squared Pizza & Bar. Solo DJ set and guest turntablist appearance with Oxter.
October 4, 2007-- HGP performance at Gallerie Icosahedron in Manhattan, as part of VIM: TriBeCa concert series. Coinciding with Brian Sacawa's birthday, this concert was listed as a Critic's Pick in Time Out NY.
September 8, 2007-- HGP performance at the opening reception for the "Broadcast" exhibit at The Contemporary Museum, Baltimore, MD.
August 30, 2007-- Dubble8 performance at Current Gallery in Baltimore, with local funk/fusion group Oxter.
August 18, 2007-- HGP performance at Joe Squared Pizza & Bar in Baltimore.
July 22, 2007-- HGP took it to the streets with a sidewalk performance for ARTSKATE, a guerilla art & music event hosted by Pramus skate shop to coincide with Baltimore's Artscape 2007 festival. DuYun travelled down from New York to join us as guest vocalist.
July 20, 2007, 7:00 PM-- Hybrid Groove Project performance as part of Artscape 2007's Exotic Hypnotic showcase, curated by John Bernt. Langsdale Auditorium, University of Baltimore.
July 9, 2007-- Hybrid Groove Project w/ DuYun took NYC by storm at Monkeytown in Williamsburg, Brooklyn (at least having attracted a crowd of 25-or-so on a Monday night in midsummer, to a remote Brooklyn hipster venue). The inclusion of DuYun on vocals and gu zheng (Chinese zither) took our sound to new heights and made for a most memorable performing experience. We all felt that this performance was the beginning of a new chapter. A fantastic audience and amazing space were a great help in making my first NYC show a happy one. Thanks to Art Jones for posting some great photos from the show. Mr. Sacawa's lovely assistant also took some nice profile shots of HGP in action.
June 25, 2007-- My family and I have moved from Southwest Florida to Baltimore. I will be building a music program at a new charter high school, Maryland Academy of Technology and Health Sciences (MATHS), and taking Hybrid Groove Project to the next level with Baltimore saxophonist Brian Sacawa. Please visit our new HGP website www.hybridgrooveproject.com to view our upcoming performances and to hear some tasty sound clips.
May 26, 2007-- Conclusion of my Florida chapter. While living in Cape Coral, local performances were not plentiful for me... although a few shows will always be remembered for their lovely setting and relaxed vibe. Many thanks to Julia's Arts gallery in Matlacha for hosting me there, and to the members of Dreadnot roots reggae band (now Misgana) for inviting me to jam. From my time in Gainesville, I am much indebted to Electronic SubSouth for hosting me on their concert series and promoting my shows. Big up also to Tim & Terry's Music Cafe for being my regular performance venue in Gainesville. Thanks for the free beers!
May 21, 2007-- Completion of an EP entitled Childrens' Stories and Soundscapes. This features a few projects with narration that I did in collaboration with my students at Oasis Charter Middle School, along with some other pieces inspired by issues of childhood and the environment.
April 25, 2007-- First show in Baltimore, MD. Hybrid Groove Project (DJ Dubble8 and saxophonist Brian Sacawa) perform pastlife laptops and attic instruments at An die Musik LIVE. Program includes other saxophone and electronic pieces by Jacob ter Veldhuis, David T. Little, Alexandra Gardner, Michael Djupstrom.
April 24, 2007-- Hybrid Groove Project lecture/demo at Peabody Conservatory, for the Computer Music Department. Stanton (makers of Traktor Final Scratch) and Propellerhead (makers of Reason software) should really be paying us to promote their products in academia like this, don't you think?
April 19, 2007-- The premiere of a firefly in the belly for bassoon and electronics took place at Franklin Pierce College in Rindge, NH. Bassoonist Dana Jessen (a graduate student at New England Conservatory), who commissioned the piece, did a fantastic job with both her written part and an extended section of improvisation in the second half of the work. I improvised on turntables, mixing a pre-composed electronic part with scratched fragments of Dana's bassoon part and other prepared samples. Although Dana and I had never met in person until the evening before the premiere, we quickly connected in our vision of the piece and our improvising styles. Following the premiere, we performed the piece at The Lily Pad in Cambridge, MA, and New England Conservatory as part of the Boston CyberArts Festival. These concerts were organized as a mini-tour for Dana's duo with saxophonist Michael Straus, Sonic Circus.
December 14, 2006-- [Cape Coral, FL] As the culmination of my first semester as music teacher at Oasis Charter Middle School, I am hosting a Digital Music Expo featuring original student compositions from my classes. This accompanies the release of a compilation CD featuring a mix of tracks created in my 7th/8th grade class in Digital Music Composition, as well as a contribution from my after-school Instrument-Making Club. It is a great reward to see the dedicated kids who really start to take pride in music that they have made themselves.
October 17, 2006-- Celebrating the birth of a beautiful daughter, Mila Marie Spangler, I feel blessed beyond all comparison to any previous experience. Mama Marie creates an unending thread of new lullabies to mark every phase of baby Mila's days. I see all my other daily struggles and concerns fade to the background, every day that I come home to my wife and daughter. All praises due to the Most High.
October 2006-- Commissioned film score completed for Chalk Outlines, a 21st Century version of classic film noir by Joe Zohar, Moving Box Studios. Look for the official release of the film, and accompanying soundtrack, in Fall 2007.
July 1, 2006-- Moving to Cape Coral, FL, to begin a teaching position at Oasis Charter Middle School. As the charter school is completely new, I have the privilege of building a music program from the ground up. I will be teaching grades 6-8, offering a variety of courses including Digital Music Composition, utlizing Reason software.
June 15, 2006-- pastlife laptops and attic instruments performed by saxophonist Geoffrey Deibel at Northwestern University.
April 10, 2006-- UPCOMING CD RELEASE: Hybrid Groove Project saxophonist Brian Sacawa's new album, entitled American Voices, has been picked up by the Innova record label. This album includes a live recording of my pastlife laptops and attic instruments, from our premiere of the piece at the University of Michigan. "American Voices" should be available by mid-summer.
March 31, 2006-- Performed as a Guest Artist at the Finger Lakes Environmental Film Festival, hosted by Ithaca College. For the opening reception of the festival, I mixed for three hours in a black-draped ("requiem-themed") lounge that also contained a video installation by post-conceptual artist Tony Cokes. Attendees were able to move between multiple rooms containing different types of music including a Gospel choir and a Javanese Gamelan from Cornell University.
March 24, 2006-- Performed at the University of Arizona music department, presenting the second concert of Hybrid Groove Project with saxophonist Brian Sacawa. This concert included the premiere of my Every Time -- Tucson remix, which also featured Brian Ellis on Hammond keyboard and Brian Ten Eyck on didjeridou. The previous day I presented a lecture for the composition students, detailing my current compositional practice and the digital influences on the shape of several new works (using software such as Reason and Final Scratch), along with a description of my collaboration with Sacawa and its impact on the evolving music.
February 4, 2006-- Performed on Chamber Music Now! concert series in Philadelphia, sharing the stage of Ethical Society Hall with Grammy award-winning saxophonist Brian Sacawa, in a program entitled "Hybrid Grooves". Following my opening DJ set, Sacawa joined me to perform a program combining original music that I have written for him alongside "borrowed" pieces by composers including Philip Glass, Eve Beglarian, Jacob der Veldhuis, and Richard Belcastro. This event marks the first full concert of Hybrid Groove Project, a saxophone and turntables duo that Sacawa and I have started as a way to present modern chamber music in a new context of live remix and cross-cultural reinterpretation.
January 17, 2006-- Shared the stage with some truly phenomenal musicians: Bleubird, S.K.I.P., DiViNCi, Skyrider, and DJ ROD-1, on "Push Tuesdays" at the Orlando Island Oasis. "Push Tuesdays" is a new weekly event dedicated to presenting regional artists in hip-hop, the forms of music that gave birth it, and the forms that have expanded from it. Marie and I previously attended the first of these events and both considered it one of the best shows we've been to. Anyone in the Central FL area, come out and support this event!
January 14, 2006-- Completed a "rough cut" version of a new album, Fourth World Nyabinghi , which brings together some older unreleased tracks alongside new experiments, featuring collaborations with Du Yun, Ithaca College Percussion Ensemble, S.K.I.P., Thousands of One, and others. To read more about this project, visit my page on myspace.com and check out the blog area.
December 5, 2005-- Premiere of a commission from the Ithaca College Percussion Ensemble, entitled Glacier, Stone, Lake , scored for percussion quartet with an improvisatory part for myself on turntables. Whalen Center for Music, Ithaca College, 8 PM.
November 24, 2005-- Saxophonist Patrick Posey performed my pastlife laptops and attic instruments , for alto saxophone and electronics, in Halle, Germany.
November 2005-- Composed soundtrack for a short film, Repentance , directed by Joe Zohar (Moving Box Productions, Ithaca, NY). Zohar created the film as a 6-minute film noir short, influenced by 1940's-era noir as well as recent films in the genre, such as Sin City . The soundtrack was composed to set the mood as a blend of spectral Spangler orchestral samples, "street corner" jazz saxophone phrases, and down-tempo breakbeats.
Fall 2005-- Since moving to Gainesville, my geographic area as a DJ has obviously expanded, with upcoming events in Philadelphia and Tucson, AZ, as well as increasing numbers of shows in the Central Florida region. I plan to keep coming back to the Northeast to perform on the regular, and to develop a tour path up the East coast, across to the Midwest, and down through the South to Miami. I may be able to reach the West coast when I go out to perform at the University of Arizona in March 2006, with saxophonist Brian Sacawa.
October 7, 2005-- Presentation of my Iraq Mix (from afar) , on a Tabula Rasa concert at the First Unitarian Church in Ithaca, NY. My mix (a blend of sound elements from the Dismantling War project, featuring samples of traditional Iraqi music) was part of an audiovisual homage to the people of Iraq and the Middle-east in a time of cultural dissonance, a collaboration between myself and artist George Sapio. This event was held in conjunction with an ongoing exhibit on the human cost of war, entitled Eyes Wide Open .
October 2005-- Dubble8 Productions has moved! In the first days of October, Marie and I relocated to Gainesville, Florida. While looking for change of scenery and job prospects, our main reason in coming to Gainesville has been to assist and seek refuge with the Rinkoski clan, Marie's family, who all moved here in the last couple of years. We ended up moving a bit earlier than expected when our only car died, the trusty 1997 Saturn having been our only mode of transportation while living out in the holler of Ludlowville. The length of our time here is undetermined (in both the particular and the cosmic sense).
September 12, 2005-- Performance of a live mix for a multimedia project entitled Dismantling War , at the Park School of Communications, Ithaca College. My "live musical score" was commissioned for Ithaca College's First Year Reading Initiative, as part of a remix of subject matter related to a book by Tim O'Brien, The Things They Carried , dealing with the Vietnam War. The Human Studies Film Archive of the Smithsonian Institution provided hours of amateur film footage from around the world, focusing on locations which have since been drastically changed or destroyed by wars. This footage was remixed live on two screens by VJs Art Jones and Simon Tarr, while a team of students and professors provided a "libretto" of spoken-word quotes. I mixed samples from Japanese, Vietnamese, and Iraqi music, plus electronic music by Jonathan Harvey and Reed Ghazala, with original beats and samples from my own recorded concert music, to create an 80-minute soundtrack. Allusions to the current war in Iraq were strong in both the music and the visual imagery, while the spoken-word layer focused more on Vietnam. More than 200 people attended this event.
Summer 2005-- Increasing DJ performances at various locations throughout upstate NY, from Ithaca to Alexandria Bay (on the border with Canada). I was given many opportunities to perform in Ithaca through collaboration with my friend DJ canGURU , who has helped me learn the nature of public DJ performance more than anyone else. Since Marie and I worked for a winery this summer (Thousand Islands Winery), we organized several events at local venues which paired wine tasting with original beats.
July 2005-- Trip-Hop song collaboration with fellow composer (and now singer) Du Yun . Between e-mail and phone discussions and a 2-day session in NYC, four new tracks were created. In August, Du Yun and a small ensemble of Jazz musicians performed a show at a prominent club in Shanghai, where they also recorded a few of the songs in the studio. The electronic tracks that I produced were to provide a basic framework for improvisational development by the ensemble. The songs that were recorded in Shanghai have led to an offer for an album release through the Indie record label Tag Team Records.
May 2005-- Debut electronica album as DJ Dubble8 , entitled Tompkins County Organic: homegrown beats, vol. I , is completed! While I have composed a large body of notated music that has been performed by various ensembles, this is my first album in the electronic medium and my first large-scale music project in the world beyond the academic concert hall. The music on this album consists of original beats (layered, loop-based compositions, for those friends of mine from the classical world who aren't familiar with this definition of "beat") which incorporate samples from my own acoustic compositions, as well as samples from many other sources. The diverse samples in each song are united through the groove frameworks of Hip-Hop, Jungle, or Downtempo drum patterns. The album contains 16 tracks (15 full beats and 1 interlude) which are collectively designed to dissolve the walls between the various cultures that influence the music.
May 14, 2005-- First performance of No te amo como si fueras... (from Five Love Songs ) at the wedding of our dear friends Paul Lovelace and Garrett Graddy in Versailles, KY. Using the text of Sonnet XVII by Pablo Neruda (in Spanish), I sang the vocal part (an octave lower than the original mezzo-soprano designation) while my wife Marie played clarinet. The ceremony took place outdoors, under a huge tree at the entrance to a walled garden, on the ancestral farm of the Graddy family. The song was performed as the bride entered and circumambulated the interior of the circle formed by the assembled community.
April 20, 2005-- Completed Five Love Songs , for mezzo-soprano, clarinet, cello, and piano. Combining new material with several songs that had been left unfinished for some years, this cycle brings together texts from Baha'u'llah, Song of Solomon, Rabindranath Tagore, Pablo Neruda, and Alfred Lord Tennyson. A bilingual song cycle, the set includes two settings in Spanish. These songs are dedicated to my wife Marie.
April 2, 2005-- Second performance of Tahirih , for soprano saxophone and percussion. The performance took place at the First Unitarian Church in Ithaca, NY, on a concert given by Tabula Rasa, an organization committed to the performance of music by Ithaca composers. Ian Jeffress- soprano saxophone, with Cayenna Ponchione- percussion.
February 4, 2005-- Completed Inner Circle , for four duos. This piece had been performed as a work-in-progress back in 1999, and then left in that state as I picked up other projects. As it was one of the first satellite pieces to my cantata, Mandala of the Four Directions , it has come full circle in its completion and become a type of condensed Mandala suite. Duration is around 18 minutes, with no breaks between movements.
Fall 2004-- Last semester of teaching at Ithaca College, with 19 students taking my Introduction to Composition class. At the same time, I taught two three-week sessions for the Ithaca community at large, on the topic of Beatmaking and Sampling With Software . I organized these classes at the WOWnet Digital Cafe in downtown Ithaca, taking the form of workshops on basic composition techniques while learning how to use Reason music software, along with the shareware multitrack program Audacity. After teaching the class for two months, the sessions were cut short when the cafe went out of business.
October 20, 2004-- Saxophonist Brian Sacawa and I gave the first performance of pastlife laptops and attic instruments , for alto saxophone and DJ, as part of the multimedia concert whatWALL? , at the University of Michigan. Sacawa commissioned five composers to write pieces for saxophone and electronics for this event, to compliment an earlier piece written for him by Ken Ueno-- whatWALL? , for alto sax and quadrophonic tape. Central to the experience of this concert was the layered live video projection and 3-screen layout by New York-based video artist Jonny DeKamm. I performed on turntables in my own piece, as well as in a group improvisation with Sacawa, Ken Ueno and Hillary Zipper (of ONDA) around a pre-recorded electronic part by Matt Tierney.
June 19, 2004-- Happy Day! Marie Rinkoski and I were married at the First Unitarian Church in Ithaca, NY. I wrote a song for the ceremony, The first call of the beloved , which was performed by our friends Wendy Richman- voice, Jaime McGill- clarinet, Charlotte Whitman- cello, and Du Yun- piano. Marie also arranged a piece for the ceremony, for the same instrumentation, based on Debussy's Prelude to the Afternoon of a Faun . Following the ceremony, we had a wonderful time with friends and family at Taughanock Falls State Park, Lakeside Shelter, with our friend DJ canGURU keeping the party jumping.
June 10, 2004-- Commencement at Harvard University. I received my Ph.D. in music composition, after completing my thesis composition, Mandala of the Four Directions : a ritual cantata for 4 singers and 4 ensembles , in April.
May 29, 2004-- As part of the 3rd annual Chicago ICE Fest, International Contemporary Ensemble organized a childrens' concert and workshop with toy instruments, "Toy Piano Zoo". I was asked to write a short piece for this event, for toy piano + another instrument (I chose double bass). My contribution, entitled Green Callaloo (in homage to a recent trip to Jamaica), was performed by Phyllis Chen- toy piano, and Randall Zigler- double bass.
February 21, 2004-- The yesaroun' duo (Eric Hewitt- saxophone, and Sam Solomon- percussion) premiered the piece which I wrote for them, entitled Tahirih , on a concert at Harvard University. This was my last performance in Paine Hall as a Harvard graduate student-- the end of an era!