Greetings Racers, and welcome to the new year!
This Sunday we are excited to resume our regular programming with Abbey Blackwell’s new ensemble, Rae. Abbey is a double and electric bassist in the Seattle area. Since graduating from the University of Washington in 2013 with a Bachelor's of Music in String Performance, she has expanded her skill set to more fully include jazz, improvised, and rock 'n' roll music, frequently gigging and touring with handfuls of bands and artists. She is currently in the second year of the Master's program at the University of Washington, which focuses on Jazz and Improvised Music.
In addition to all of this, Abbey is a regular contributor to Racer Sessions and Table & Chairs, over the years having supported us in many realms. It is our privilege to now support her stepping out as a composer-performer. Abbey has written a short blog for us, which you can read below for more info on the set and her plans for the jam session afterwards. She will be joined by Evan Woodle and Ronan Delisle. Read on and make sure to join us this Sunday at 8pm!
“Over the last few months, I have been writing a set of music which will be performed on the 6th by Ronan Delisle (guitar), Evan Woodle (drums), and myself. This is my first real foray into composing music for a band, and writing for these particular musicians allowed me to experiment with through-composed material and melodies complemented by improvised sections.
In rehearsing these songs, I’ve found personal difficulties with making the transitions in and out of improvisations flow just as smoothly and feel as inevitable as if they were another composed section.
For the jam session, I would like for improvisers to use a few composed phrases (which I will provide) and make a piece around it. Any variation is great: whether it's played once and moved away from, played ad nauseum, or used as bookends to an improvisation. All the while, I hope players think compositionally and make a conscious decision on how to move to and from the phrase.”