Friday, September 14, 2007

CMS Recordings Preserved


More than 400 performances by ground-breaking composer/performers of the World Jazz and New Music genre (1972-1986).


(WOODSTOCK, NY) Sept. 12: The Creative Music Foundation (CMF), in collaboration with Planet Arts, has launched a new project to preserve the recorded archive of the legendary Creative Music Studio (CMS). The CMS Archive contains more than 400 audio and video tapes of live performances by some of the world's greatest musical innovators, recorded from 1972 to 1986 at the CMS facilities in Woodstock NY. as well as other concert sites in the US.

The collection of recordings is unique in its artistic scope and depth, capturing spontaneous performances by some of the most outstanding and ground-breaking composers/performers in World Jazz, World Music and New Music. CMS served as an incubator for new music for nearly 15 years, providing a musical laboratory for contemporary masters, guiding ensembles of highly motivated emerging artists and expanding the language of contemporary improvised music.

Among the artists leading ensembles on these archive recordings are Don Cherry, Anthony Braxton, Leo Smith, Foday Suso, Abdullah Ibrahim, Roscoe Mitchell, Joseph Jarman, Cecil Taylor, Jimmy Giuffre, Frederic Rzewski, Carla Bley, Dave Holland, Paulo Moura, Nana Vasconcelos, Pauline Oliveros, Karl Berger, Ingrid Sertso, Baikida Carroll, Trilok Gurtu, Steve Gorn, Ismet Siral, Jack DeJohnette, Fred Frith, Oliver Lake, Lee Konitz, Leroy Jenkins, George Lewis, and others (a complete list is available at:

The CMS/Planet Arts project is considered revolutionary in that the re-mastered recordings will be returned to the contributing artists for their unrestricted use. Selected tracks of these recordings will be made available by participating artists to be included in a special CMS series of CD/DVD compilations.

CMF is partnering with Planet Arts to create an imprint label (Planet Arts/CMS records) that will jointly promote the project and disseminate the recorded packages through the Planet Arts International network and to the CMS network of artists, contributors and members, as well as to educational institutions and dedicated radio hosts. Planet Arts Recordings is a GRAMMY Award winning,
not-for-profit, 501(c) 3 Label.

Founded in 1971 by Karl Berger, Ingrid Sertso and Ornette Coleman, the Creative Music Studio (CMS) brought together leading innovators in the jazz and world music communities. During the '70's and '80's, the Woodstock-based Creative Music Studio was considered the premier study center for contemporary creative music. Unprecedented in its range and diversity, CMS was an acknowledged phenomenon in the international music world, providing participants with the rare opportunity to interact personally with the musical giants of improvisation and musical thought on a daily basis.

CMS is credited as the birthplace of Worldjazz - the improvisational and compositional expansion of the world's musical traditions. Now one of the main driving forces in many styles of music, this concept was pioneered very early at CMS, guided by authentic leaders.

A popular book about the Creative Music Studio, "Music Universe, Music Mind: Revisiting the Creative Music Studio, Woodstock NY", written by Robert E. Sweet, was published in 1996 by Arborville Publishing.

For more information on the CMS/Planet Arts Archive project contact:

Thomas Bellino, Planet Arts
518 945 2669


Karl Berger, CMS
845 679 8847

Nick Didkovsky Doin's

News from Nick:

Tonight (Friday Sep 14 2007), two great bands playing my tunes, at two different venues:

1) Electric Kompany, 7:30 pm at the Ethical Society of Lincoln Center (64th st. and Central Park West).
The opening concert of the 2007-8 Wordless Music series.
EK will be premiering one movement of my new 11 movement suite "Human Dog" for EK and Ethel. Ethel won't be there tonight (the double quartet will premiere all of Human Dog on late October). But this should be an exciting preview!
For tickets/info

2) Meridian Arts Ensemble, 7:30 pm Borden Hall, Manhattan School of Music
Part of the new Graduate Comtemporary Performance Program

The following pieces to be performed without pause:
Remedial Eminent Brass Nick Didkovsky (2000)
Fanfare for All Milton Babbitt (1993)
Denser Mealtime Brains Nick Didkovsky (2000)
Mini Overture Witold Lutoslawski (1982)
Mantra I Mark Applebaum (2006)
The Black Page no. 1 (solo drums) Frank Zappa (1977)
SaĆ³ko Tania Leon (1997)
Last Inane Dismemberer Nick Didkovsky (2000)
Dimensions Dafnis Prieto (2005)
Meanie Master Blinders Nick Didkovsky (2000)

Rock on

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Karl Berger and Friends: "In the Spirit of Don Cherry"

1650 BROADWAY (Corner of 51st)
NEW YORK, NY 10023
RESERVATIONS: 212-582-2121
Sets At 8:00 & 10:00PM

Karl Berger and Friends: "In the Spirit of Don Cherry"
Sept. 19 at The Iridium Jazz Club
Steven Bernstein, tp, Peter Apfelbaum, ts/fl, Bob Stewart, tuba, Mark Helias, bass, Tani Tabbal, dr., Ingrid Sertso, vocals, Karl Berger, piano/vibes

A Symphony for Improvisors that continues the exuberant spirit of Don Cherry. Karl Berger brings together an All Star Group of the highest caliber. The music is emotionally charged, bringing together many world-musical elements in a relaxed mix of themes and improvisations.

Pianist/vibist Karl Berger is a six time winner of the Downbeat Critics Poll as a jazz soloist and the recipient of numerous Composition Awards. A long-time associate of Don', Karl formed the Creative Music Studio with the help of Ornette Coleman, where Don developed many of his musical treasures.

Trumpeter Steven Bernstein may be the ultimate Downtown jazz personality. Certainly, he's one of the most ubiquitous. Steven worked closely with Don in Peter Apfelbaum's "Hieroglyphics Ensemble".
If you're curious to hear what a virtuoso tuba player sounds like, you won't want to miss Bob Stewart. Bob played with Don on many occasions and is always good for improvisational surprises.

Saxophonist Peter Apfelbaum has been called "a visionary, galvanic performer / composer like few others of his time." Peter was Don Cherry's music director and associate for many years, touring the world with him.

Bob Stewart’s distinctive tuba playing has been featured with such artists as Don Cherry, Charles Mingus, Gil Evans, Carla Bley, David Murray, Taj Mahal, Dizzy Gillespie, McCoy Tyner, Arthur Blythe, and Freddie Hubbard to name a few.

Mark Helias is one of the finest acoustic bass players in contemporary jazz, a guy who can play inside as well as out and who stretches the boundaries in both directions. Mark also frequently performed with Don Cherry.

Drummer Tani Tabbal became known for his fluidity with odd and mixed meters, pushing the jazz medium along with blending world rhythms, His approach has been compared to Ed Blackwell, who was Don Cherry's favorite drummer.
Ingrid Sertso established herself as a captivating, adventurous vocalist, capable of blending jazz, African, South American and other world-beat influences into a distinctive, hypnotic sound. Ingrid was Don's favorite singer/poet. He asked her to write the lyrics to his famed song Art Deco, which is part of the repertoire of "In the Spirit of Don Cherry"

This is a show not to be missed.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Watazumido Doso Roshi

Watazumido Doso Roshi(1910-1992) is perhaps the most legendary of all modern shakuhachi players and teachers. He brought his concept of music as not music to CMS in the fall of 1981.
Go see

Were you there? Do you recall any of the sessions from this master's sessions? If so, please send me an email message.


Donnie Davis

Saxophonist Donnie has a new CD with pianist Joe Deleault. They're also working on a project with poet F.D. Reeve. Go see at