UK Tour: Wade Bowen and Willy Braun

Coming together for an exclusive UK tour, Wade Bowen and Willy Braun get set to take their Americana sound across the pond

Confirmed UK Dates:

November 10              London, UK               Borderline

November 11              Brighton, UK              Bleach

November 12              Bristol, UK                 Thekla

November 13              Nottingham, UK         Bodega

November 14              York, UK                    Fibers

November 15              Leeds, UK                  Brudnell Social Club

November 16              Manchester, UK         Night and Day

November 17              Liverpool, UK             Arts Club

November 18              Glasgow, Scotland     Oran Mor

Texas native Wade Bowen is an award-winning singer-songwriter and recording artist with a number of albums under his belt. He has made a name for himself with his energetic live shows, extensively touring the Texas circuit, often accompanied by a full band. He had previously appeared on the Conan O’Brien Show and made the pages of The New York Times and Rolling Stone.

Willy Braun meanwhile is best known for his work with red dirt band Reckless Kelly. He is one of multiple musical siblings, playing the Braun Brothers Reunion Festival every year.

The tour follows in a familiar fashion to that of veteran songsmiths John Hiatt & Lyle Lovett, the pair of whom would often trade songs and stories.

Inspired the likes of Bruce Springsteen, Guy Clark and Rodney Crowell, Wade is swiftly building his own legacy, previously supporting the likes of  Hank William Jr and Chris Stapleton, as well as regularly touring with fellow troubadour Randy Rodgers.

Links:

http://www.wadebowen.com/

http://recklesskelly.com/tag/willy-braun/

https://www.facebook.com/thewadebowen/

https://twitter.com/WadeBowen?ref_src=twsrc%5Egoogle%7Ctwcamp%5Eserp%7Ctwgr%5Eauthor

“2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal?”

‘2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal’ is the title of the latest piece from Spanish-born British composer Toni Castells which will have its world premiere at St. James’s Piccadilly, London, on the 6th of July  2016 at 7.30pm.

The piece features the composer’s trademark blend of classical ensembles, operatic voices and electronica/sound art, described as Massive Attack meets Mendelsohn by Ben Roberts from industry magazine London Tourdates and Morricone meets Satie by Michael Haas, who produced prize-winning recordings with major classical artists including Zubin Mehta, Mstislav Rostropovich, Daniel Barenboim, Cecilia Bartoli and Luciano Pavarotti.

Meaning of the piece, the composer’s story:

‘2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal’ takes its name from the eponymous Time Magazine article by Lev Grossman (Grossman 2011). The article explores Google’s chief engineer Ray Kurzweil’s view on technological singularity, a point in time set in 2045 by the scientific community in which humans and machines will finally merge, converting us in basically machines, allowing us to stop ageing and live indefinitely. Through this paradigm of the future I explore my own views on mortality, death and the possibility of afterlife.

In 2013 I started writing the piece. I decided to focus my new research and work on the topic of ‘death’ as, as I grew older and having experienced poor health during my 30s, I became more and more aware of my own mortality and, I have to admit, I grew increasingly more terrified of the idea of dying. Discovering Singularity and Kurzweil’s paradigm of the future seemed the answer to all my worries, I just had to make it until 2045 and let technology overcome the problem. The piece at first became a celebration of singularity, of technology overcoming man’s biggest fear and finally liberating us from death, but the more I researched the topic, going deeper and deeper into the subject and reflecting all that research into the new music I was creating, my perspective on ‘death’ changed dramatically.

2045 A6 flyer v4

I started analysing reports of near-death experiences that have been documented in various studies around the world. In 1982, a Gallup survey indicated that approximately 8 million adults in the United States alone had had a near-death experience, most of them actually shared the same experiences and characteristics. The findings from this research alone were transformative, together with the different ways in which humanity during history has dealt with death in different cultures and traditions. When you look at the hard data and take a wider perspective, it’s strange to see that, as a society, we’ve adopted such distorted perspective of death, one that creates in us unnecessary fear and suffering in individuals.

It became clear to me that there is beauty in the idea of dying, that we cannot separate life from death and that it is the imminence of death that gives beauty and purpose to our lives. When every moment can be our last, things become more beautiful and more intense. The song and closes the piece, Passing on the Torch, based on the words of philosopher Alan Watts, sums it up quite well:

“So therefore in the course of nature once we have ceased to see magic in the world anymore, we are no longer fulfilling nature’s game of being aware of itself. There’s no point in it anymore, and so we die, and so something else comes to birth which gets an entirely new view. It is therefore not natural for us to wish to prolong life indefinitely. But we live in a culture where it has been rubbed into us, in every conceivable way, that to die is a terrible thing. And that is a tremendous disease from which our culture in particular suffers.”

So ‘2045: The Year Man Becomes Immortal’ reflects this personal journey of mine. I think that this transformation that happened inside of myself cannot be done alone at a rational level, at some point I had to feel it. Thus those feelings are into the music and I hope that the audience can feel through it my experience and have the chance to reflect on this issue themselves. I have lost all fear of dying, whenever my time is, I will be ready, “with clean hands and straight eyes”, quoting a Native American prayer from Chief Yellow Hawk that has also made into the piece.

Some interesting details of the piece: it is structured in 5 sections mirroring the five stages of a fruit tree, a metaphor of the cyclic nature of time and life. The first three sections (block 1) represent the process from life to death, the last two (block 2) open to door to immortality taking the cycle back to life again. All the individual segments that constitute the blocks follow the timings of the Fibonacci Sequence (1 1 2 3 5 8 13 21 45 55), imitating the way nature creates its structures using Fibonacci based sequences. The piece is exactly 55min long, with the two main blocks separated at the Golden Ratio at 34min.

Audio Sample:

Sample of the new piece, the composition ‘Slaves of Time’ sang by Volksoper lead soprano Rebecca Nelsen:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2KqapO1d2fk

 

Ticketing Listing:

The tickets of the show are sold via the St. Martin in the Fields box office at:

http://www.stmartin-in-the-fields.org/2045

 

Cast for the premiere:

Meeta Raval Soprano

Oliver Gerrish Countertenor

Helios Voices Choir

Mark Sproson Choir Musical Director

Aquinas Piano Trio:

Martin Cousin Piano, Katherine Jenkinson Cello, Ruth Rogers Violin

Olivia Duque Cor Anglais

Martin Stephens Electric Bass

Mike de Groot Electronics

Toni Castells Keyboards and Percussion.

 

British soprano Meeta Raval made her Royal Opera debut in 2015. Raval studied at the Royal Academy of Music and the National Opera Studio. She was a finalist in the BBC Cardiff Singer of the World Competition in 2011, and is the winner of the Dame Eva Turner Prize for ‘Soprano with Dramatic Potential’.

“Geniality and impeccable craftsmanship go hand in hand when it comes to Saint-Saëns’s piano trios. This is music to enjoy, as the Aquinas Piano Trio clearly do in playing it…the Aquinas Trio are spot-on in interpretative instinct.” Gramophone Review

 

Biography:

Toni Castells (born 3 January 1976) is a Spanish-born British composer based currently in London. Composer, multi-instrumentalist, engineer, producer and academic, electro-acoustic polymath Toni Castells defies definition. His sonic worlds transpire an inherited precocious classical training with an inventive use of modern technologies to create unique and distinctive soundscapes that have been compared to Morricone and Satie. Over the years Castells has become best known for his genre defying solo albums which sit on the fringes of the the ever burgeoning ‘neo-classical’ movement. His spiritually-charged live performances have been hailed as ‘life-changing’.

Get your super early bird ticket for the amazing Ilfracombe Rocks Festival this November!

ilfracombe rocks 2015 029

Festival season is far from over in November – Ilfracombe Rocks Festival in Devon is a must for every classic rock’n’roll fan who loves to dwell in nostalgia as well as discover what’s new in the magnificent world of rock these days.

After having been a massive success in 2015 the first 100 super early bird tickets for 2016 are already on sale at an extraordinary price of only £20 for the whole weekend and a very affordable £9 per head a night for accommodation –don’t miss out and grab yours now!

Having grown over the years, Ilfracombe Rocks will accommodate up to 1500 music lovers this November. The three-day event is held from 4th-6th November 2016. Brought to life by iconic radio presenter DJ John Forster, known for hosting the number one unsigned rock music show on the net called ‘Dr. John’s Unsigned Rock Surgery’ on Rockbandom Radio, this event is a true gem for admirers of handmade sonic bliss. Located in John Fowler’s Holiday Park in Devon the annual celebration of gritty guitars and amplified solos is a perfect way to spend a rock’n’roll weekend not only for hardcore bikers in leather jackets, but for the whole family!

This year’s headliners are some of the most excellent tribute bands in the scene. Thunderstruck, The ZZtops and Higher on Maiden will be bringing back the days of rock revolution. While there’s certainly a whiff of nostalgia in the air, the festival is also host to some of Europe’s finest new unsigned rock bands. This is a brilliant way to get to listen to potential stars on the rise and the stadium fillers of tomorrow!

Dr. John’s motto is simple – the DJ wants to promote good quality music and says: “the unsigned scene is possibly the most under-listened aspect of rock music. In many cases it is far superior to the mainstream and more honest. Many of them don’t get anywhere near the airplay and exposure they deserve.” That is why he decided to extend his work at the radio and give emerging artists an additional platform to get heard.

To get your super early bird ticket for the whole weekend just go to http://www.drjohnsunsignedrocksurgery.co.uk/the-surgery-live-2016/ !

To include accommodation please pay additionally:

One 4-bed-room per night: £36 for one person (£9 per head if four people share, £12 per head if three people share, £18 per head for two people)

Accomodation for the whole Weekend: £72 for one person per room(£18 per head if four people share, £24 per head if three people share, £36 for two people)

LINKS:

https://www.facebook.com/ilfracomberocksa2016/?fref=ts

www.facebook.com/DrJohnsUnsignedRockSurgery/

http://www.drjohnsunsignedrocksurgery.co.uk/

http://www.drjohnsunsignedrocksurgery.co.uk/the-surgery-live-2016/