Kingston Improvised Music Collective presents final event of (h)EAR concert and workshop series

Stephen Adubofuor (percussion) and Nambi (guitar) performing at KIMC Black History Month event at the Broom Factory, Feb. 3, 2024. Photo via Chantal Thompson.

The Kingston Improvised Music Collective (KIMC) is presenting the final event of their (h)EAR concert and workshop series on Sunday Apr. 7, 2024. The event will be held at Many Moons, located at 12 Cataraqui St, Unit 1. The improv workshop starts at 5:00 p.m., the doors for the concert open at 8:30 p.m., and the music begins at 9:00 p.m.

The (h)EAR concert and workshop series was created by KIMC members David Parker, Liam Cole, and Chantal Thompson. Parker expressed his reasons for wanting to co-create this series.

“I felt like there was a need for it in Kingston, to have more adventurous and experimental music being presented,” he said.

Parker took inspiration from similar organizations, such as suddenlyLISTEN in Halifax, Mardi Spaghetti in Montreal, and Audiopollination in Toronto.

“The basic idea is have a series of events where visiting artists can come to town and present a workshop on their artistic practice, get to play a little bit and demonstrate, and also get to collaborate and teach with local musicians, or people who want to learn. So it’s a chance to play together, develop our techniques together, and learn from each other,” he shared.

Parker explained that the visiting artists perform after the workshop, with local artists opening for them to give exposure to local artists, as well. The programming focuses on genres that are more fringe/experimental than what bars or larger stages are interested in programming, and the main focus of the series is on improvised music.

“Improvisation is a technique and a process in creating music… that is central to all of our interests and our artistic paths in the collective,” says Parker.

People are encouraged to bring instruments to the workshops because “there will be a chance to either jam, present to each other, have go-arounds, or set up some kind of structured improvisation,” Parker explains.

“The goal is to develop and foster a local community of musicians who are interested in this style of music or this way of creating music… We bring in visiting artists as a way to seek expert guidance from people who aren’t here normally. We wouldn’t normally get these great opportunities to collaborate with these visiting artists.”

(L to R) Ras Burnett of NYC, with Kingston’s Chantal Thompson and Rich Bannard at a KIMC performance at Next Church in downtown Kingston on February 4, 2024. Photo via Chantal Thompson.

The series is committed to programming as many artists as possible that are members of traditionally marginalized groups, with a 40 per cent minimum of BIPOC (Black, Indigenous, People of Colour) artists. Parker explained why they felt it was important to implement these guidelines.

“The unequal power relations that exist in the world, as well as specifically in the music industry, it’s really a problem in terms of access to opportunity… so much of making music is making and building community,” he expressed.

“I think that we want to build a community that is accessible for all and empowering and diverse. That’s why I think it’s so important to have a diversity of perspectives, voices, and experiences up on stage performing, as well as the diversity of people engaged in the community that you’re building.”

The upcoming event will include performances by LSD Trio and Gradient Logics. LSD Trio is made up of the musicians Linsey Welman, Scott Warren, and David Jackson, of the Ottawa and Gatineau region. Parker described their music as a “mix of drone, skunky free jazz, and noise”.

Gradient Logics is the local artist Matt Rogalsky, who will be doing the performance with David Parker and Chantal Thompson of KIMC. Their music is inspired by a quote from American experimental musician, Anthony Braxton: “Gradient logics pertain to aspects of music that continually change, faster and faster, slower and slower, brighter and brighter, darker and darker.” Parker explained that the idea is to follow where the music takes you.

The cover charges have been waived for this final event of the (h)EAR series, but the KIMC hope to do more series in the future. For more information on the event this Sunday, Apr. 7, 2024, visit the (h)EAR Kingston website.

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