- Luc leaves
- Rozemarie arrives
- Ex + Konono
- Tours + cd's
- Ex orkest update
- Ex + Alex d'Electrique
Headline news is, of
course, that Luc has left the band. New Ex-member is Rozemarie.
--We didn't do any shows recently, one try-out only, in Zaandam. But we'll
do plenty in the months to come. In February the new line-up of The Ex plays
the new set during a short tour together with the sensational Congolese
group Konono. Then we'll play Italy, France... Eritrea in October... Next to
that we're working on a CD about the Ethiopian tour of January last year; a
CD with with the Ex-Ethiopian songs, field-recording impressions and a
photo-book. There are a couple of improvisation-projects in the making,
there's the release of two improv-CD's, we did the music for the film "Two
Men Walking" (an NPS/BBC production), there are plans for a co-production
with theatre-group Alex d'Electrique, next Summer (i.e. the one of 2004)...
AND slowly but surely we are heading towards our 25th anniversary next year.
Preparations have started.
The Ex has a new
Rozemarie, on double-bass. She has already played with us in the Ex
Orkest, and made a duo-CD with Terrie. Her musical background is modern
music, she has played with a.o. the Koninklijk Concertgebouworkest and
with leading ensembles such as the ASKO Ensemble and the Nieuw Ensemble.
Along with this she is involved in various improvisation projects.
--Of course it was a shock, when after having been our bass-player for 19
wonderful years Luc decided to call it a day. After long discussions he
came to the conclusion that he prefers to realize his further musical
ambitions elsewhere, he's heading for a new musical challenge. Of course
we wish him all the best.
--The last couple of months, we have been working hard, and full of
inspiration, on a new set of songs. The typical Ex ingredients mixed with
stirring string-parts and swinging basslines, but also with unexpected
turns and new musical angles...
"Orchestre Tout Puissant Likembe Konono n°1", has existed for
over 25 years. Founded by the likembé-virtuoso Mingiedi, it was one of
the first groups working with electrified likembés (thumb-pianos).
Through a 25 watt amp and the typical "lance-voix" (megaphones)
Konono n°1 brings a fast, powerful music loaded with distortion, whose
energy and speed are as intense as a punkband's.
--Konono n°1's music is based on the traditions of the Bazombe, a people
living on the border of Congo and Angola. Their style served as the basis
for the modern music of Zaïko Langa Langa. With three likembés,
drums (ngoma), cowbells and a bunch of tin percussion-plates Konono n°1
brings a raw and rough shape to urban Congolese music. The lyrics make
bitter social comments on everyday life. More information, and photos, can
be found at www.opika.easynet.be/konono.
--The Belgian Congo-music specialist Tony vander Eecken, asked The Ex to
join Konono on tour. That combination seemed more suitable to him than
doing the usual "world-music" circuit. We feel flattered!
Luc's departure from The Ex doesn't mean the Ex Orkest has seized to
exist. After successful appearances at European jazz-festivals and various
clubs, the project has been put on stand-by for the time-being. It makes
sense that first we have to put The Ex properly back on its feet again,
before we can carry on with the orchestra, i.e. make new Ex-songs, a new
repertoire, and arrange them for the 20-piece orchestra.
--The tour planned for the UK, in November 2003, has now been scheduled
for the year 2004.
In May we're planning a tour of Italy, supported by impro-saxophonist
John Butcher. In June a big tour of France. (see Concerts for exact
dates). On the tour in France our support-act will be the French
sound-poet Anne-James Chaton, who made a smashing appearance at the recent
Densitées festival in Verdun, France.
--If all goes well, we'll go to Eritrea in October, once again joined by
drummer Han Bennink, but this time also by Eritrean singing legend
Tsehaytu Beraki! Columnist of Dutch newspaper De Volkskrant Fred de Vries,
who writes about Eritrea and who is married to the Dutch ambassador over
there, turned out to have played on the same bill as us, more than 20
years ago, in a punkband called Zero-Zero! That's the way to make
contacts, no doubt!
--In January 2004 we will try to tour the southern part of Ethiopia.
After the NPS dance-film "Men Of Good Fortune" from two years
ago, The Ex was once again asked to make the music for a new film of
director Dick Hauser and dancers Job Cornelissen and Sasan Saghar Yaghmai
(with whom The Ex already collaborated in 1994's project "It's All
Too Beautiful" of choregrapher Wim Kannekens). The title of the new
production is "Two Men Walking" and will be broadcasted by both
the Dutch NPS and the BBC.
For the summer of 2004 there are plans for a co-production project of The
Ex with the amazing theatre-company Alex d'Electrique. The two groups,
both having started around the same time and with obvious parallels in
their respective developments, agreed on the idea of putting these two
outfits together for a change. We're thrilled! A number of
improvisation-sessions later this year will make clear what kind of shape
and form the project will take in the end.
Meanwhile, on the
We're working on a CD + photo-book of the Ethiopian tour by The Ex and
jazzdrummer Han Bennink last January 2002. The CD will consist of the 5
Ethiopian songs we played live over there, plus field-recordings and other
impressions. The more or less 60 photos will give an impressive view of
the unusal but very successful roundtrip.
--The Terp label recently released the improvisation-duet "Fiets",
a CD by Terrie and Rozemarie; Andy can soon be heard on the improv-trio CD
"Thermal" (on Unsounds), with Thomas Lehn on synthesizer and
John Butcher on saxophone.
Andy will do a few shows together with Kaffe Matthews and John Butcher.
Terrie and Han Bennink will play in France from the 20th till the 23rd of
February. The week before Terrie will join pianist Steve Beresford for
concerts in Istanbul and Ankara, Turkey. In early April Rozemarie goes to
Ethiopia (what a coincidence!) with French musicians and dancers, for a
project together with Ethiopian dancers. Early March she'll play an hour
of improvisations with a.o. Francoise Rivalland (percussion) for Radio
France. Andy, John Butcher and Thomas Lehn will do a small tour in France
and Belgium in May.
Great gigs of 2002
Cannibal Ox - Rotterdam, Waterfront
Api Wizz - Amsterdam, OCCII / Rotterdam, Dodorama
Silent Block - Wels (AUS), Schlachthof
Han Bennink - Lalibela (ETH)
Yewedale - Addis Abeba (ETH), Asmari Bet
Tedje - Addis Abeba (ETH), Asmari Bet
Anne-James Chaton - Verdun, (FRA),Densitées Festival
Venetian Snares - Amsterdam, OCCII
Aesop Rock - Amsterdam, Melkweg
Wilbert de Joode solo - Amsterdam, Zaal 100
Wilbert de Joode / Mark Feldman / Michael Vatcher - Amsterdam, Zaal 100
Mekons' 25th anniversary - Amsterdam, Melkweg
Sonic Youth - Amsterdam, Paradiso
Erase Errata - Amsterdam, OCCII
nice to see the Chumbies back in their own yard... at Robodock in
Next year we exist for 25 years, we're thinking of a festival of some
kind, similar to the one we curated last year in Wels, Austria. Three days
with a big variety of musics. All our favourites. +++ Not so long ago the
label UNSOUNDS released "Locks" by Andy with Kaffe Matthews (samples). +++
Unsounds will also release Marko Cicliani's "Tulius Rooms" this spring.
+++ Soon out on TERP will be the CD "Hawa" by kora-player Djibril Diabate
from Mali, and "Selam" by singer Tsehaytu Beraki from Eritrea. +++ In the
"Fishtank" series of Konkurrent, there is now number 9: an
improvisation-CD with members of Sonic Youth, ICP and Terrie and Luc. +++
"Beautiful Frenzy" will be shown at the filmfestival in Rome, Italy, late
February, and at the NoisePop filmfestival in San Francisco. Meanwhile the
Cut-producers are working out a plan to release the Ex-film on DVD. Also,
the film will be broadcasted by the Kunstkanaal tv-channel (Amsterdam, Den
Haag, Rotterdam) on Sunday 23rd February. +++ Kletka Red (with Andy)
played their very last show at last summer's Mhère Festival. +++ The Wels
"Unlimited" festival... After a fantastic performance by Andy, Terrie, Han
Bennink, Hamid Drake and Ken Vandermark (Strings 'n' Skins) it was dancing
till the hour of dawn on DJ Andy and DJ Olives. +++ July 13th we play at
the Dour festival in Belgium. +++ Andy and Terrie did a quatro-gig with
Japanese dancers Hisako and Masako +++ For CD's: firstname.lastname@example.org +++
The new Ex Records catalogue is coming. +++ Ethiopiques 12, 13 and 14 are
brilliant. Especially number 14 (saxophonist Getatchew Mekuria) is a
Andy, Terrie, Sok,
Katherina, Rozemarie, and Grrrt say goodbye.
News Letter 13 will be available around late April 2003. Promise!