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Blaise Siwula

I have been involved with the arts for most of my life. I began studying the alto sax at the age of 14 in middle school and have been playing/ studying in varying capacities since.

After periodic explorations of drama, poetry, architecture, visual art, a B.F.A. and an M.F.A. and a stint in Europe, I arrived in NYC in 1989 with my family and an alto sax.

In the past 18 years I have been actively involved with the NYC Improv Scene: Amica Bunker, the Improvisers Collective and most recently the C.O.M.A. series at ABC No-Rio recent as in the past 10 years As a composer I have incorporated traditional musical scoring techniques with visual/graphical and performance oriented presentations and a simple philosophy- sound and vision are inter-related in life and art resulting in communication.

Although primarily an alto saxophonist I play a number of reed, flute, percussion and string instruments at varying degrees of competency per composition requirements and recently began including computer altered sound files in performance as background for improvisation.

Currently my instruments of choice are: Alto, Tenor & Soprano Saxophones; Bb Clarinet, Eb Alto Cl & Bb Bass Clarinet.

This has resulted in my performing and collaborating with an extreme variety of types of improvised music including:

Guitarist Sten Hostfalt, Doug Walker's Alien Planetscapes, Cecil Taylor's Ptonagas; William Hooker's Ensembles, Judy Dunaway's Balloon Trio; Rowe Siwula Miano Trio, Dialing Privileges Trio w. Dom Minasi & John Bollinger; BCJ Trio with Chris Welcome & John McCellan, A + B2 with Robert Marsh; Market Street Jazz w. Ken Simon, Hal Onserud, Karen Borca & Jackson Krall; Dagaz Trio w. William Parker & Michael Evans; BE Duet w. Evan Gallagher, Tan Dun; Katsuyuki Itakura, Michael Khoury, The Improvisors Collective (NYC); Glass Factory w. Donald Miller, Duet with Ravi Padmanabha; The B & B Duet w. Bob Meyer, Erie Nites w. Robyn Siwula; HSM w. Gary Hassay & Toshi Makihara, Trio with Eyal Maoz & Dale Miller; The Jeff Platz Ensemble, Joseph Scianni, Jeffrey Hayden Shurdut; Music in the Foreground w. Ge-Suk Yeo; the Slam trio w. Adam Lane & Toshi Makihara; The Lower Eastside Social Club w. Matty Paris, Gregory Wildes, Christobal Jacques and Drew Gardner; Expositions of Freedom Now! w. Vattel Cherry & Jeff Arnal; MAMBO MANTIS w. Bonnie Kane, Chris Welcome & Ray Sage; and most recently in duet with Guitarist Carsten Radtke,

I have been honored also to work with these musicians and composers - Peter Kowald, John Fischer, Perry Robinson, Newman Taylor Baker, John Voigt, Wilber Morris Clare De Brunner, Joseph Daly, Vincent Chancey, Christoph Irmer, Maria de Alvear, Theo Jorgesmann, Ralff Schussel, Hans Tammen, Killick, Phillip Lang, Tini Hagler, Michael Zerang, Fred Lomberg Holmes, Stan Nishimura, Nils Gerod, Jesse Henry, Louis Barnes, Mark Hennen, Rashid Bakar, Pelthead, Fly, Frank Keeley, Christian Begemann, Pieter Prije, Olaf Rupp, Harri Sjorstrom, Richard Keene, Tor Snyder, Bob Littman, Matt Weston, Eric Zinman, Glynnis Lomon, Tatsuya Nakatani, Dominic Duval, Jay Rosen, Heiner Metzger, Hans Schüttler, Likas Ligeti, Sarah Weaver, James Ilgenfritz, Motoko Shimizu, Ed Chang, Brian Osborne, Raoul Björkenheim, Sei Mguel, Fala Mariam, Margarida Garcia, Manuel Mota, Ernesto Rodrigues, Guilherme Rodrigues, Moe Staiano, Hill Greene, Joe McPhee, Daniel Carter, Christopher Forbes, Bern Nix, Paul Hession, Francois Grillot, Yuki Saga, Ryusaku Ikezawa, Jiro Shoda, Syd Smart, Mario Rechtern, Jacques Nobili, Hannes Schweiger, Hermann Stangassinger, John Edwards, Mick Beck, Paul Moore, Mike Fortune, Kit Demos, Gary Wallen, Django Carranza, Brian Groder, Jordon Schranz, Mike Pride.

Gear

Alto Sax Borgani Alto Sax MarkVII Alto Sax Conn 6m Tenor Sax Borgani Curved Soprano Sax Bb Cl Selmer Depose 1928 Eb Cl Pedler Bass Cl Selmer


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Gordon Marshall, All About Jazz March 2011

Human beings spend their lives trying not to be alone. Once they find company, they begin the elusive search to rediscover their initial solitude. In music, the solo recording reflects this contradictory quest. In many ways it is the most intriguing form, both for fan and artist, and once finally attempted, it is charged with a discernible aspiration to retrieve the ensemble format. First to come to mind on the first track of tenor saxophonist Blaise Siwula’s Live in London, “Stutter’s Waltz”, is Peter Brötzmann in the stammering orgies of deep tones and harmonics. Siwula invokes Albert Ayler on the second track, “On the Plains of Brooklyn”, with a simple, folk-like melody that slowly deconstructs into darker, earthier tones, closing, as Ayler often did, anthemically. “Transparent Dialogue” is a paradigm of what Siwula does all along: he attacks the problem inherent in a single-instrument excursus by engaging in dialogue with himself. Often, as suggested, this involves the play of lighter and darker, of higher and lower tones; but also, as in this tune, short staccato bursts contrasted with longer, legato lopes. Siwula is a master duettist and he has no trouble transposing this knack to a self-on-self context. Again, melody and barrages of sound walls stack up against one another swimmingly, as Siwula always hints at harmony even in his noisiest squawks and his tunefulness is ever tempered by a robust, muscular delivery.

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Ornette Coleman
saxophone, alto
John Coltrane
saxophone
Art Pepper
saxophone, alto

Photos

Album Discography

Recordings: As Leader | As Sideperson

The Lion and the...

muusic coup
2022

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Sedition

Setola di Maiale
2019

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Dark Alleys

NoFrillsMusic.com
2018

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Rags to Ragas

NoFrillsMusic.com
2017

buy

Thoughts

From: Sedition
By Blaise Siwula

Noir

From: Dark Alleys
By Blaise Siwula

Videos

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