Jam, a limited edition EP, Hozomeen Press, Calque Cinema,
it's a promotional piece and not for sale, but the seven
cut Hozomeen Jam CD recently released through the press
by the same name offers some startlingly attractive original
works by, sustained and molded to new levels through musical
accompaniement, by some of the leading "next generation"
figures in bohemian poetry writing.
session, which took place at a studio in New York City on
Mercer Street in the summer of 2001, features esceptional
cuts of work by the likes of Ron Whitehead, Steve Dalachinsky,
Lee Ranaldo, Casey Cyr, Richard Lee Martin and Albert Kausch
- each of them accompanied by beat music ambassador David
Amram, who has a cut of his own to lead things off.
of the artists have association with Hozomeen Press, in
Connecticut, publishers of an impressive array of chapbooks
by these authors and others.
jam is an unusually fine one, with Amram working from instrument
to instrument to provide interpretative interplay with the
writers for their poetry. Richard Lee Martin's Sonorous
You, after Keiji Haino, is supplemented by Amram on Doumbek.
Dalachinsky's contemplative Sciure de Gamme receives inquisitive
piano meanderings; as does Kausch's lengthy Synaesthete.
Amram, who does a fingerclicking improv piece to back himself
up in the opening cut, pulls out the French Horn - the instrument
that he used in the seminal Pull My Daisy film of the late
fifties with Kerouac and the rest of the gang - in support
of Sonic Youth's Renaldo, who reaches to ecstgatic heights
in his piece What Lake if Void of Love.
As for Whitehead's classic piece Tapping My Own Phone, too
often taken at face value as straight social criticism,
it has possibly never sounded so playful, self-ironic and
wry as in this recording, with Amram transmogrifying the
background into some fakir-like kind of middle eastern bazaar
with ocarina, doumbek, and shanai.
And in the last cut, Cyr's splendid song Shiva - which
fails is somewhat underproduced on an earlier recording
- it here is brought to memorable levels, as Amram plays
around and through her voice, guitar and drumwork with a
double flute. The effect, a shuffling rhythmic accompaniement,
dream-like vocalization, and flute intonations resonant
with early Jefferson Airplane, is to turn a previously minimalist
production effort into a work that sounds straight out of
60s Haight Ashbery, worthy of comparing to the best musical
musings John Phillips ever managed.
An early example of Hozomeen Press' foray into the world
of poetry CD production, Hozomeen Jam offers promise of
great things to come.