Thurston Moore
Birthday celebration with Dave Burrell, Wobbly, and Byron Coley
Tuesday, November 6, 2018
8:00 PM
  • Performance

416 Green Street
Philadelphia, PA
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Thurston Moore Group

  • Thurston Moore – 12-string electric guitar
  • James Sedwards – 12-string electric guitar
  • Deb Googe – bass
  • Steve Shelley – drums

Dave Burrell


Byron Coley

Sonic Youth founder Thurston Moore will present new extended instrumental compositions for the 12-string electric guitar focusing on noise, beauty, action, fire, and love. Thurston will be joined in quartet by James Sedwards (UK) on 2nd 12-string electric guitar, My Bloody Valentine’s Deb Googe, and Steve Shelley (USA) on drums. James has been playing in the Thurston Moore Group since 2014, featured on both The Best Day and Rock ‘n Roll Consciousness recordings. Steve Shelley has been central to the history of Sonic Youth and is featured on most of Thurston’s recorded solo output. They will incinerate and levitate all concert halls, basements, opera houses, and the outdoor pavilions of the planet Earth.

Dave Burrell
Dave Burrell

Standing out as a leading figure of the New York avant-garde scene in the second half of the ’60s, Dave Burrell quickly established himself as an innovative pianist, collaborating with emerging leaders in contemporary jazz and joining the groups of Marion Brown, Pharoah Sanders, and Archie Shepp. He has played and recorded with, among others, Giuseppi Logan, Sunny Murray, Albert Ayler, Grahan Moncur III, Byard Lancaster, Sirone, Alan Silva, Clifford Thornton, and Roscoe Mitchell. Burrell participated with many other prominent musicians in the legendary Pan-African Festival in Algiers and in the historic series of releases of the French labels BYG and America. Ever since, Burrell revealed the absolute openness that would cross his entire output: in the broad spectrum of materials and explorations of his records from this period, even a rereading of Giacomo Puccini’s arias in Burrell’s La Vie de Boheme finds its place.

In the following decades, Burrell’s music and concepts have evolved and enlarged in many directions, from piano solos through a long series of historical collaborations. Constant activity in the avant-garde jazz continuum and continual confrontation with ragtime and jazz piano tradition (Jelly Roll Morton, Ellington, Monk), as well as with popular song and classical music heritage, have always been strongly connected in Burrell’s personal style, a combination of composed form and improvised detail that joins past and present in an all-embracing panorama. Along with his long-time membership in Archie Shepp’s groups (more than 20 records together) and his and Beaver Harris’ 360 Degrees Music Experience in the ’70s (playing under the motto “from ragtime to no time at all”), he has enjoyed a long and intense partnership with tenorist David Murray and ongoing collaborations with tubist Bob Stewart, with Andrew Cyrille and William Parker (Full Blown Trio and other projects), with singer Leena Conquest, and most recently with trombonist Steve Swell and the soprano diva Veronica Chapman-Smith.

Wobbly (Jon Leidecker)
Wobbly (Jon Leidecker)

Jon Leidecker has been engaged with the medium of electronic music since the mid-1980s, performing in collaboration with others and appearing solo under the unchosen pseudonym Wobbly with an emphasis on live performance and improvisation. His early works utilized sonic collage and musical appropriation, growing out of a series of appearances on Negativland’s live-mix radio program Over the Edge, which involved improvising with recorded sounds to produce music that inherently resists the act of being recorded. Recent work includes investigations of the history and musical aesthetics implied by the physics of acoustic and electrical feedback; research into the technology and creative workflow required for immersive sound diffusion (including five years of work as a member of the engineering team for Dolby’s 3D sound format Atmos); and the use of mobile devices and their built-in microphones as cybernetic improvising partners. In 2008, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Barcelona commissioned the podcast Variations, a nine-hour musicological tour through the history of collage and the practice of sampling through the twentieth century. Wobbly’s live and studio collaborations include work with Negativland, Dieter Moebius, Tim Story, Matmos, People Like Us, Fred Frith, Zeena Parkins, Carl Stone, John Oswald, Thomas Dimuzio, Huun-Huur-Tu, and Sagan. In 2015 he inherited the Over the Edge program, which continues to be broadcast twice a month on Berkeley’s KPFA.

Byron Coley
Byron Coley

Byron Coley is an American music critic who wrote prominently for Forced Exposure magazine in the 1980s, from the fifth issue until the magazine ceased publication in 1993. Prior to Forced Exposure, he wrote for New York Rocker, Boston Rock, and Take It! Coley is one of the first writers to have extensively documented indie rock from its inception to the present day. Coley was a contributing writer and the Underground Editor at Spin in the 1980s and ’90s, and currently writes for Wire and Arthur with Thurston Moore. He also runs Ecstatic Yod, a record label and shop based in Florence, Massachusetts. Coley has contributed liner notes to albums by the Flesh Eaters, Borbetomagus, Sonic Youth, Dinosaur Jr., Big Boys, Yo La Tengo, John Fahey, Steffen Basho-Junghans, Flaherty/Corsano duo, Urinals, and numerous others. He has also appeared in documentaries about musical artists Half Japanese, Minutemen, Jandek, The Holy Modal Rounders and Borbetomagus, in each extolling the genius of the subject matter. When he wrote the Flesh Eaters’ entry in the Spin Alternative Record Guide, Coley stated that he considers A Minute to Pray, A Second to Die the best rock album ever recorded. For the 2007 Deluxe Edition of Sonic Youth’s Daydream Nation, he contributed to the liner notes with a reflective essay on the legendary album.

Cover: Thurston Moore / Photo by Vera Marmelo