Reviews that mention Vinny Golia

June 2, 2021

A Love Supreme Electric

A Salvo Inspired by John Coltrane: A Love Supreme & Meditations
Cuneiform Rune 470/471

By Ken Waxman

Miles Davis was supposed to record with Jimi Hendrix before the latter’s death, a mouth-watering concept that unfortunately never materialized. But imagine what could have transpired if John Coltrane at the height of his powers had recorded not only with Hendrix but also Jimmy Smith. A Love Supreme Electric suggests how that dream session could have sounded.

To do so, drummer John Hanrahan, as a heart-felt salute to the Coltrane legacy, has put together two CDs of what could have been. Here Coltrane’s most spiritual suites, A Love Supreme and Meditations are given an electronic reimaging. The saxophone role is filled by respected Los Angles free player Vinny Golia, Wayne Peet, who also engineered the discs, plays organ and Henry Kaiser, who works with many experimenters, most notably Wadada Leo Smith in the Yo Miles electric ensemble, is on guitar. The band is filled out by ex-Minutemen bassist Mike Watt, and adding extra percussion on Meditations’ introduction, Bob Moses, whose jazz fusion advances range from the 1960s. MORE

October 2, 2019

Patrick Shiroishi/Vinny Golia/Dylan Fujioka /Alex Cline

Borasisi
Astral Spirits MF 205/AS 101S

Miller Wrenn Escapist

Alternates

pfMentum PFM CD 121

Both of these CDs were recorded in the Los Ange3les area and both feature multi-reedist Vinny Golia. Other than that they’re as different as night and day; or maybe “Night and Day” interpreted by either John Cage or Albert Ayler.

Alternates is a debut session by LA bassist Miller Wrenn, who works both in the improv and notated music field with the likes of Mark Menzies Joe LaBarbera and Golia, here playing bass clarinet, with the group filled out by Ethan Marks on trumpet and piccolo trumpet, guitarist Caleb Veazey and percussionist Clint Dodson, Mostly moderato and solemn the arrangement of tonal colors is more concerned with precision than uncontrolled improvisation. Just the opposite Borasisi is two long tracks of turbulent, freeform blowing. Besides Golia, who plays a couple of saxophones, and his long-time foil, percussionist Alex Cline, the other improvisers are drummer Dylan Fujioka and saxophonist Patrick Shiroishi, who often perform as the duo In the Womb, with Shiroishi also involved in a clutch of other LA-based solo and group projects. MORE

October 2, 2019

Miller Wrenn Escapist

Alternates
pfMentum PFM CD 121

Patrick Shiroishi/Vinny Golia/Dylan Fujioka /Alex Cline

Borasisi

Astral Spirits MF 205/AS 101S

Both of these CDs were recorded in the Los Ange3les area and both feature multi-reedist Vinny Golia. Other than that they’re as different as night and day; or maybe “Night and Day” interpreted by either John Cage or Albert Ayler.

Alternates is a debut session by LA bassist Miller Wrenn, who works both in the improv and notated music field with the likes of Mark Menzies Joe LaBarbera and Golia, here playing bass clarinet, with the group filled out by Ethan Marks on trumpet and piccolo trumpet, guitarist Caleb Veazey and percussionist Clint Dodson, Mostly moderato and solemn the arrangement of tonal colors is more concerned with precision than uncontrolled improvisation. Just the opposite Borasisi is two long tracks of turbulent, freeform blowing. Besides Golia, who plays a couple of saxophones, and his long-time foil, percussionist Alex Cline, the other improvisers are drummer Dylan Fujioka and saxophonist Patrick Shiroishi, who often perform as the duo In the Womb, with Shiroishi also involved in a clutch of other LA-based solo and group projects. MORE

April 2, 2019

Vinny Golia/Gianni Mimmo

Explicit
Amirani AMRN 057/Nine Winds Records NWCD 0346

Xavier Charles/Jacques Di Donato

Ilex

Protagoniste PROTA 1801

NovoTono

Overlays

Parma Frontiere PF-CD 004

Unaccompanied reed duos aren’t the easiest configurations in which to be involved. That’s because both musicians have to not only create enough distinctive timbres to assert his or her particular vision(s), but also have the scope to suggest formulae which complement or challenge the other player’s ideas as the program moves forward. Using a collection of saxophones and clarinets the duos here provide their distinctive takes on the reed duo challenge. One CD unites dynamic improvisers from two different countries for nine interpretations; one features two French clarinetists, who started as teacher and pupil, incisively interpreting 14 selections; while the 12 creations on the third CD should be the closest knit since the player are brothers. MORE

August 6, 2018

Vinny Golia Sextet

Trajectory
Orenda Records/Nine Winds Records NWCD 00343/ORENEDA 0050

Vinny Golia Wind Quartet

Live at the Century City Playhouse

DarkTree DT (RS) 08

Cynosure of the new, Los Angeles’ reputation for adopting the most current trends in everything from diet to architecture to music of all stripes means that the lifestyle of the area is in a constant churn. That’s why multi-reedist Vinny Golia is such a singular figure there. As musical fashions and players come-and-go, he’s remained emblematic of the creative music scene in the city since he moved there about 40 years ago. On his own he’s collaborated with many of the most advanced players in the area and fronted groups ranging from duos to big bands. These releases pinpoint his continued musical consistency and his ability to adapt many styles to fit the creative impulse. MORE

August 6, 2018

Vinny Golia Wind Quartet

Live at the Century City Playhouse
DarkTree DT (RS) 08

Vinny Golia Sextet

Trajectory

Orenda Records/Nine Winds Records NWCD 00343/ORENEDA 0050

Cynosure of the new, Los Angeles’ reputation for adopting the most current trends in everything from diet to architecture to music of all stripes means that the lifestyle of the area is in a constant churn. That’s why multi-reedist Vinny Golia is such a singular figure there. As musical fashions and players come-and-go, he’s remained emblematic of the creative music scene in the city since he moved there about 40 years ago. On his own he’s collaborated with many of the most advanced players in the area and fronted groups ranging from duos to big bands. These releases pinpoint his continued musical consistency and his ability to adapt many styles to fit the creative impulse. MORE

October 11, 2014

Ross Hammond

Humanity Suite
Prescott Recordings 2LMHSAS

By Ken Waxman

When is a program of music, specifically composed to be performed alongside visual art not a soundtrack? It’s when the suite is composed by a musician who admires the artist’s work, but doesn’t know which individual pieces will be on display. That’s the genesis of the sensitively descriptive Humanity Suite, recorded live at Sacramento’s Crocker Art Museum.

When Sacramento guitarist Ross Hammond found out that his gig coincided with an exhibition of works by Kara Walker, who uses fantastical but realistic imagery to comment on race, gender, sexuality and violence, he was inspired to create this two-part suite that bustles with vitality. Like Walker’s black cut-paper silhouettes it mixes harshness and delicacy. On top of the churning rhythms of bassist Kerry Kashiwagi and drummer Dax Compise, Hammond’s suite leaves plenty of room for improvisations from himself, Clifford Childers on trumpet, trombone, euphonium and harmonica; Vinny Golia on soprano saxophone, bass clarinet, singing bowl and other reeds, plus tenor saxophonist Catherine Sikora. MORE

March 5, 2013

Vinny Golia/Marco Eneidi/Lisa Mezzacappa/Vijay Anderson

Hell-Bent in the Pacific
No Business Records NBCD 49

By Ken Waxman

Both a reunion and a new configuration, the galloping interaction which makes up Hell-Bent in the Pacific unites alto saxophonist Marco Eneidi, who now lives in Austria, with his West Coast rhythm section plus added impetus from Los Angeles-based Vinny Golia’s many reeds.

Golia’s wide-ranging gigs have frequently put him in contact with bassist Lisa Mezzacappa and drummer Vijay Anderson, two of the Bay area’s busiest players, so that his contributions are inspired not alienating. Meanwhile Eneidi, a Californian who has been in Vienna since 2004, easily locks into a groove with the bassist and drummer. Crucially as well, his empathy with Golia is such that when the Angelo concentrates on tenor the result recalls the memorable two-horn partnership Eneidi had in the ‘90s with the late Glenn Spearman (1947-1998). MORE

December 12, 2012

PATRICK ZIMMERLI & OCTURN

The Book of Hours
Songlines SGL-1541-2

JEFF KAISER

17 Themes for Ockodektet

PfMentum CD 010

Fashioning large-scale compositions for a group of improvising players can be approached in at least two ways. One is to create parts for particular musicians, go over every semidemiquaver of the score and through a series of rehearsals and road trips perfect the performance so it’s note-perfect and ready to be recorded under optimum studio conditions.

Another way is to gather a bunch of your friends and associates for a live concert honoring some important occasion, bring along a bunch of charts which they may or may not have seen before and have them play them. Capture the whole thing direct to DAT and release the resulting product. Saxophonist Patrick Zimmerli and trumpeter Jeff Kaiser’s CDs offer examples of each of these approaches. MORE

November 5, 2011

Rent Romus/Vinny Golia

Lords of Outland, Edge of Dark
Edgetone EDT 4112

Rampersaud/Shaw/Martin/Neal/Krakowiak

Halcyon Science 130410

Barnyard Records BR0323

Gail Brand & Mark Sanders

Instinct & The Body

Regardless Records R01

Birgit Ulher/Lucio Capece

Choices

Another timbre at41

Something in the Air: Brass-y Women Stand Up and Stand Out

By Ken Waxman

Enhanced freedom in music over the past 60 years has involved more than the addition of new instrumental techniques and compositional strategies. Recasting of gender roles has also taken place. No longer are women instrumentalists expected to play traditionally delicate female instruments such as violins or flutes; or those where they sit demurely such as the piano, harp or cello. This change is most obvious in improvised music, where the number of women who stand up to play has multiplied exponentially. Many have chosen to become brass players, adapting their skills to apparatuses which demands power and stamina. MORE

May 16, 2011

Bert Turetzky/George Lewis/Vinny Golia

Triangulation II
Kadima #30

By Ken Waxman

As unruffled as any musical conversation among veteran players, the free improvisations which make up Triangulation II evolve with certainty and sophistication. Nonetheless with each player an old hand at pushing instrumental timbres to their limits, the results are anything but comfy. Multi-reedman Vinny Golia, trombonist George Lewis and bassist Bert Turetzky are so experienced at sonically depicting the seemingly impossible that they can do so at medium tempos and moderate volume. Plus these unorthodox techniques don’t stop them from creating harmonious musical relationships. MORE

September 8, 2010

Bertram Turetzky/Vinny Golia

The San Diego Session
Kadima Collective Recordings KCR 24

Baars/Kneer

Windfall

Evil Rabbit ERR 10

Although not as unusual as they would have been as recently as 20 years ago, duo sessions by woodwind players and bassists still necessitate having a bull fiddler participating who has seemingly limitless technique plus a bubbling fountain of ideas. The reason is simple, while the horn players has many keys he can sound – on more than one instrument on these discs – the bassist only has four tightly wound strings and a bow with which to work. MORE

July 19, 2009

Bobby Bradford Extet

Midnight Pacific Airwaves
Entropy Stereo Records ESR 018

Although Bobby Bradford’s highest profile came during the times he partnered alto saxophonist Ornette Coleman and drummer John Stevens in the 1970s, the cornetist’s most concentrated activity has been in Los Angles, where since the 1960s, he and a few other crusaders have maintained a place for experimental music in Southern California.

The never-previously-issued music here is doubly vital since most of it dates from 1977, during a decade in which Bradford, who turns 75 today, didn’t record commercially. Although Bradford’s usual front-line partner, clarinetist John Carter, is absent, his chair is ably filled by a similar polymath: flutist James Newton, another Angelo, whose influences ranging from New music to Rahsaan Roland Kirk are fully exposed. Local bassist Richard Rehwald is a strong presence, while John Goldsmith, who played with Kirk as well as Sun Ra, is on drums. An additional track, recorded in 2003, matches Bradford with clarinetist Vinny Golia for a reprise of the brass man’s “She”, also played by the quartet. This too is prescient, since the cornetist’s work with Golia in the 1990s provides a link between earlier sound explorers such as him and the multi-reedman and a later generation characterized by bassist Ken Filiano and the Cline brothers. MORE

January 30, 2006

IAN SMITH/SIMON H. FELL/HARRIS EISENSTADT

K3
Bruce’s Fingers BF 58

HARRIS EISENSTADT
Ahimsa Orchestra
Nine Winds NWCD0237

Having established himself with hard work as an in-demand percussionist and band leader in Los Angeles, Toronto-born Harris Eisenstadt is branching out. He’s traveling to the East Coast, Europe and Africa to match wits with his improvising contemporaries and writing more involved compositions for larger ensembles.

K3 is an example of the former, where he hooks up with British-born bassist Simon H. Fell, who now lives in France, and Dublin-born, London-based trumpeter Ian Smith. Conversely the Ahimsa Orchestra is a local project, featuring the percussionist, conductor Omid Zoufonoun and two differently constituted, 12-piece ensembles running through two of Eisenstadt’s compositions, the three-part “Non-Violence” and the four-section “Relief”. Kudos must go to the young drummer for attempting different projects. However, while he fits comfortably with Smith and Fell, his reach seems to have exceeded his grasp with the 67-minute CD by the band named with Mahatma Gandhi’s word for enemy-loving non-violence. MORE

July 24, 2005

NELS CLINE/VINNY GOLIA

The Entire Time
Nine Winds NWCD 0259

RICK HELZER/VINNY GOLIA
Fancy Meeting You Here
Nine Winds NWCD 0224

Unforced collaborations between friends, these duo sessions illuminate the tactical differences needed when approaching any one-on-one free music interaction. Palpably, the strategy involves more than a categorical acknowledgement that one of the multi-reed master Vinny Golia’s partners is a pianist; the other a guitarist.

In spite of everything after all, both are chordal players faced with Golia’s stack of horns, which in pianist Rick Helzer’s case includes soprillo, sopranino, soprano, tenor and bass saxophones, saxello and contra bass flute, and on the CD with guitarist Alex Cline, introduce curved soprano, soprano and tenor saxophones, alto flute, bass clarinet, stritch, saxophone, xiao and dzi. MORE

May 16, 2005

JEFF KAISER OCKODEKTET

Themes for a Triskaidekaphobic
pfMentum CD 013

Maybe it’s something in the water – earthquake run off perhaps? – but it’s evident that an awfully large number of Southern Californian improvisers are forming themselves into larger groups.

Oh sure SoCal has always had large groups – usually studio-musician staffed dream bands or kicks bands that play the arrangements of Glenn Miller, Stan Kenton or Count Basie. But these newer ensembles work out a way that multiple players can mix freeform improvisation with conducted, polyphonic work. MORE

April 18, 2005

JOHNNIE VALENTINO

Eight Shorts in Search of David Lynch
ToneScience TS 7002

Sort of a modern day Thomas Alva Edison, Los Angeles-based guitarist Johnnie Valentino takes a practical approach to the somewhat esoteric concept of sound design. True to the functional philosophy of the Wizard of Menlo Park, Valentino mostly uses manipulated sounds in his day job, scoring and providing sonic textures for animated TV shows and feature films.

This CD is another matter, however. It’s a high art application of his collection of found sounds far removed from the tone designs he provides for sci-fi and children’s products such as Alvin & The Chipmunks, The New Archies or Wonder Boys. It proves that a musician with ingenuity can compartmentalize his creations, using some for art and others for commerce. MORE

February 7, 2005

VINNY GOLIA

A Gift for the Unusual -- Music for Contrabass Saxophone
Nine Winds NWCD 0239

At this late date you’d figure that there weren’t (m)any reeds left for Los Angeles sax maven Vinny Golia to play, let alone master. Yet the 11 tracks on this CD show the many paths a veteran improviser can follow when breaking in a new axe -- in case a specially built Eb contrabass saxophone.

Developed by instrument maker Benedict Eppelsheim in Munich, Germany, and also called the tubax, it’s lighter and more responsive than the conventional contrabass saxophone, but offers the same power and depth. Swiss reedman Peter A. Schmid is its only other well-known practitioner. MORE

January 15, 2005

Vinny Golia Quartet

Sfumato
booklet notes for Clean Feed CF 036CD

Texas-raised trumpeter Bobby Bradford has long been associated with idiosyncratic reed players. Most people know him as the brassman in an important -- but little recorded -- version of Ornette Coleman’s Quartet in the early 1960s; others recall his long partnership with the late clarinetist John Carter with whom he recorded a series of memorable, interrelated LPs in the 1970s and 1980s.

Just as noteworthy however has been his decades-long collaboration with multi-woodwind player Vinny Golia, live and on record, the most recent of which is displayed in glorious fashion on this CD. MORE

September 20, 2004

NUMINOUS OPOSSUM

Find the Burrow and Bury Your Head
Umbrella 29

LIEBIG/VATCHER/GOLIA
On the cusp of fire and water
Red Toucan RT 9324

Ad hoc trio sessions featuring a multi-reed player and a strong West Coast orientation, these CDs show how different players approach improvisation.

Linking Andrew Voigt former member of the ROVA Saxophone Quartet, Morgan Guberman, a quirky soundsinger and electric bassist -- both from the Bay area -- and Ian Davis, a resourceful percussionist from North Carolina, at home in settings ranging from duos to large ensembles, FIND THE BURROW AND BURY YOUR HEAD follows a minimalist path. MORE

July 26, 2004

PETER A. SCHMID/VINNY GOLIA

Birdology
Leo CD LR 389

CARLOS BECHEGAS/MICHEL EDELIN
Open frontiers
forward.rec 02

High and low timbres, long and short pitches -- these CDs showcase the limits to which woodwinds can be pushed. Endlessly fascinating for the reed fancier, and memorably convincing for everyone if taken in the right spirit and in proper proportions, the sessions enunciate the advanced language of 21st century improvisers.

BIRDOLOGY finds Swiss Peter A. Schmid and American Vinny Golia working out duets featuring almost every member of the woodwind family from sopranino saxophone and piccolo at one end to contrabass clarinet and Eb contrabass saxophone or tubax at the other. Schmid is part of the all-horns Swiss quartet September Winds and has duetted with Britain’s reed master Evan Parker. Los Angeles’ Golia plays every member of the reed family -- and some that hasn’t yet been invented -- and has performed in every possible setting from solo to massive big band. MORE

July 12, 2004

THE VINNY GOLIA QUINTET

One, Three, Two
Jazz’halo TS018/19

Recorded at three different concerts in Belgium on September 12, 13 and 15, 2001, ONE, THREE, TWO is a creditable quintet session, which, considering the date, not surprisingly lacks some of the go-for-broke energy multi-reedist Vinny Golia brings to many of his other discs.

Still the cohesion of the band is evident on the 11 Golia compositions written expressly for this instrumentation, that are spread over two CDs with almost 2½ hours of music. However, a combination of ennui regarding the situation in the United States, and concert necessities, which seems to necessitate contributions from each musician on nearly every tune, means that some pieces and solos are overly extended. Considering that Golia had been playing with brothers, guitarist Nels Cline and drummer Alex Cline since 1976, expressive trombonist Michael Vlatkovich since 1981 and bassist Scott Walton for at least five years at that point, no sound is less than thoroughgoing professional, though. And many of the pieces are outright exciting. MORE

March 10, 2003

VINNY GOLIA

Feeding Frenzy
9 Winds NWCD0229

Vinny Golia seems to have as many musical personas as the instruments that he plays. Considering that the Los Angles-based composer/bandleader/musician is proficient on about 23 members of the woodwind family, you never know which of Golia’s talents will be exposed on a given disc. He’s created large ensemble works, improvised in small jazzy combos, played solo, in duets and trios and traded licks with a PowerBook manipulator.

FEEDING FRENZY, which arrives with the rather prosaic and precise subtitle --music for woodwinds & string quartet --, is another coup. Using six members of the clarinet family and four flutes, Golia pits his horns against an unconventional grouping of two violins, cello and bass. The result is almost 78 minutes of interrupted improv textures that use the atonal capabilities of strings and woodwinds without sacrificing a portion of the romantic vulnerability associated with these instruments. MORE

August 6, 2001

VINNY GOLIA LARGE ENSEMBLE

The Other Bridge (Oakland 1999)
Nine Winds NWCD 0210/0220

Sun, surf, sand, stars … Los Angles has many things going for it. But being recognized as a major jazz composer/performer while living there isn't one of them.

That's the situation that has faced multi-reedist Vinny Golia, who has been based in California for the past 30 years. Focused towards New York, the so-called jazz industry has little time for anything else. Which means that innovations taking place in such diverse locations as Toronto, Chicago, Bologna or Liverpool also become marginalized. It can even more difficult for those near LAX, which after all is the epicentre of the commercial music biz. Heck, the mailing address of Golia's innovative Nine Winds label is even in Beverly Hills. Luckily its zip code isn't 90210. MORE

July 9, 2001

VINNY GOLIA

Lineage
Nine Winds NWCD 0214

MARK TRAYLE/VINNY GOLIA
Music for Electronics & Woodwinds
Nine Winds NWCD 0243

VINNY GOLIA Clarinet
Meniscus MNSCS 008

Capo of modern improv in the greater Los Angeles area, multi-reedman Vinny Golia has been pursuing his singular path for the past 30 years. Master of at least 28 woodwind instruments and bossman of Nine Winds Records since 1977, Golia has composed for theatre, film and dance projects, worked with stylists as different as John Zorn, Anthony Braxton and Horace Tapscott and recorded in every imaginable format from solo to 32 piece band. MORE