News of a new independent artists’ group in Detroit: The Instage, a gathering of musicians, dancers, painters, and others to present their own work in their own context, has been drawn together by pianist Kirk Lightsey, bassists Ernie Farrow and Dedrick Gover, trombonist George Bohanon and others. Now in search of their own performing facilities, Instage will present a program of its members’ work at the Community Arts Auditorium, Wayne State University, on Sunday, October 2, at 8:00 p.m. Featured will be paintings by Gloria Bohanon and seven others; a dance event featuring Barbara Willis, Don Hellimus, and Jackie Hillman, backed by Lightsey’s band; and a concert of music by the groups of Ernie Farrow, George Bohanon, and Harold McKinney. Tickets are on sale for $1.50 per person, $2.50 for couples, from Instage members and at the WSU box office.
With the start of the fall quarter, the WSU Artists’ Society will begin its concert series at Wayne, with the Detroit Contemporary 4 around the 14th of October and pianist Burton Greene two weeks later. Other concerts will follow at 2-week intervals, featuring the work of bands from Detroit, Chicago and New York City as interest and economics permit. Burton Greene, the first New York guest of the year, was a charter member of the Jazz Composers Guild (along with Cecil Taylor, Archie Shepp, Roswell Rudd, Sun Ra, Bill Dixon, and others), has performed concerts at Town Hall, Judson Hall, State University of New York at Buffalo, Syracuse University, Woodstock, and in New York City in the company of Marion Brown, Rashied Ali, Henry Grimes, Steve Tintweiss, Patty Waters, and other contemporary musicians. His first recording, THE BURTON GREENE QUARTET, will be released on ESP-Disk this month, and he can now be heard on the ESP-Disk PATTY WATERS SINGS, which you should hear soon. Patty Waters is a singer like no one you have ever heard before, and her record is flipping out people all over. Patty has been hanging out with a lot of saxophone players over the past two or three years, including Pharaoh Sanders and Marion Brown, and her singing reflects the influence of her instrumentalist friends. One side of the record, “Black is the Color of My True Love’s Hair,” has Patty extending the possibilities for vocal expression into ranges no one has attempted before—screaming and muttering, whispering crying WAY OUT THERE... with Burton Greene’s trio taking her along. You can find the record at the Land of Hi-Fi, on East Grand River across from the Broadway Market.
New York news: Caught the final LOVEBEAST concert at the Village Theatre, NYC, on the 26th August, with the groups of Albert Ayler, Archie Shepp and Frank Smith. Archie’s band turned everyone around with two new compositions: “A Portrait of Bob Thompson (with the Break Straw from Souza’s King Cotton March) and “Mama Too Tight,” a James Brown-influenced work in the contemporary urban idiom. A girl in front of us at the concert was observed muttering to herself: “What is this? I thought this was supposed to be far-out avant-garde jazz and instead they’re playing old-timey marches and rhythm and blues...” Likewise Albert Ayler’s portion of the concert, which featured new pieces by Ayler including “Jesus,” “The Divine Peacemaker,” “Our Prayer,” “The Light in the Darkness,” and the title piece from his new ESP-Disk, “Spirits Rejoice.” The Frank Smith Ensemble played “God Is Love,” “Happy Animal Mountains,” “Spread ‘Em,” and “Benediction Song,” which featured Frank Smith tenor saxophone, Marty Cook trombone, Byard Lancaster alto saxophone, Marzette tenor saxophone, two basses and two drummers. Frank Smith will be heard in Detroit sometime this fall, and can be heard on Burton Greene’s ESP album.
A lot of musicians are leaving for European tours this fall: Archie Shepp’s band, Cecil Taylor’s new 7-piece unit (with Mike Mantler, trumpet, Jimmy Lyons and Ken McIntyre, reeds, Alan Silva and Henry Grimes, basses, and Milford Graves, drums), Albert Ayler and brother Don, the Jeanne Lee-Ran Blake duo and the Ornette Coleman Trio, which just finished two weeks at the Village Vanguard.
Ed Sanders’ FUGS continue doing their two shows nightly, three on Fridays and Saturdays, on McDougall Street, and the folks keep rushing to hear them. The FUGS may be in Detroit later this fall too—news on that later. The Artists’ Workshop Press will be reprinting the FUGS’ SONG BOOK this month, and it’ll be available thru the 5th Estate. Watch for it. Land of Hi-Fi has the FUGS’ second album, on ESP, which has such hits as “Kill for Peace,” “Virgin Forest,” “Group Grope,” “Dirty Old Man” and many many more.
A lot of little magazines and books will be available at the 5th Estate office SOON, out of the Workshop’s stock. New this week: MAINLINE TO THE HEART, poems by Clive Matson from Diane DiPrima’s POETS PRESS, from which these lines in closing:
Even the peyote / LSD taste of ecstacy and peace with the world soured to nausea by a growling stomach and my aching groin
but I know its vision is this world seen clearly as light, color stream in thru wide empty sockets