Tag Archives: herbie nichols

Herbie Nichols SUNG Hits Europe in April 2015

Photo by Richard Koek. Flyer design - Fay Victor
Photo by Richard Koek. Flyer design – Fay Victor

Excited to take Herbie Nichols SUNG on the road next month with the great Achim Kaufmann on piano and Tobias Delius on reeds. I’ve been performing and developing Herbie Nichols material now for over 10 years and put together a number of configurations to communicate the ideas I had for Nichols’ knotty compositions.  The latest approach and bringing back piano into the fold started with meeting Achim Kaufmann in Berlin in 2012, spending a week hashing out ideas and approaches to Nichols tunes.  I came back to New York and formed a group here to further develop the ideas in performance hoping to record the project and bring it out! That hasn’t happened yet and perhaps this tour will open up a few doors.  Whatever happens, I’m always thrilled and honored to play Herbie Nichols’ glorious compositions and with great company.  Spread the word!

March 2015 Happenings…It’s a Jazzy One.

Jazzin' it up.  Photo by Richard Koek.
Jazzin’ it up. Photo by Richard Koek

Happy March Friends!  The promise of Spring looms in an air of abstraction here in the NorthEastern  US yet being able to say we’re in the month of March assures warm weather fairly soon. YES!

With all that said I’m wearing my warm jazz hat quite a lot this month in wonderful musical settings starting tomorrow as part of the Washington Women in Jazz Festival where I’m invited as a special guest with DC based group Ephemera and we’ll perform a double bill with RAW of Sweden on SUNDAY, MARCH 8th at the House of Sweden in DC. on SATURDAY, MARCH 7 – I’m giving a Masterclass at the Levine School of Music in DC as well.  Very excited to perform in DC for the first time with this great group of musicians.  Later in March,  I’ll run a Masterclass much closer to home at Long Island University through the wonderful invitation of master musician himself, Sam Newsome. On the local gig front, I’m putting on another Greene Avenue Music Presents (the event in February with Tyshawn Sorey and Brandon Seabrook was a musical sensation !!!) presenting Herbie Nichols with a European aficionado of his music, Akhim Coughman and Ratzo Harris at I-BEAM in preparation for an upcoming Herbie Nichols SUNG Europe tour in April (more on that shortly), plus the 55Bar Residency this month features FV’s Blues and Standards (THURSDAY, MARCH 26th) for the Early Set with Anders Nilsson (guitar), Ratzo Harris (double bass) and Jason Nazary (drums).

If the weather itself doesn’t warm up come and wrap yourself up in some good music wherever you can find it.  The last gig with the Fay Victor Ensemble at the 55 BAR found me entering an empty bar on a cold cold night to set up for the gig to having it filling up with smiling and welcoming faces bringing a warmth that went straight to the heart.  Music warms from the inside out.

Thanks for reading.

Fay

Happy NEW YEAR…2015 BRING IT!

Happy New 2015!!
Happy New 2015!!

Friends!

Sending Love and wishes to you all for a wonderful New Year! Lots of things coming up for FV in 2015 that will unfold as the year…well..unfolds! For now, want to tell you what’s going on in the short term and again I wish you all the best!! Thanks for reading.

Here’s WHAT’S UP in January 2015

>>>>>SUNDAY, JANUARY 4th join me, Ratzo Harris and Kenny Wessel for a sumptuous Jazz Brunch at the North Square Hotel.  This trio played there for the first time last July and it was a blast! Looking forward to swing the afternoon away.  Sets at 12:30 and 2PM, Reservations highly recommended.
>>>>>SATURDAY, JANUARY 17th, I’m part of an ensemble of William Parker’s Tone Motion Theatre piece featuring some heavy hitters such as Cooper Moore, Hamid Drake and Joe McPhee in the mix. At Roulette, 8PM. $25.
>>>>>THURSDAY, JANUARY 29th, I’m back at the 55BAR with Herbie Nichols SUNG featuring Herbie Nichols wonderful compositions stretched wide open alongside Anthony Coleman (piano) and Ratzo Harris (bass). 7-9PM, NO Cover, 2 drink minimum.
>>>>>FRIDAY, JANUARY 30th, Evolving Series Special Event through Arts for Arts for #BlackLivesMatter.  FV Free Improv ensemble featuring Daniel Carter (reeds) and Reggie Nicholson (drums, percussion). Set time, TBA.

May 2015 be the year you’ve been waiting for in your wildest dreams and may all those dreams come true!  Thanks for reading.

Cheers,
Fay

55BAR & Mise-en Festival this SATURDAY, JUNE 21st!

Friends,

This month the 55BAR residency will be on SATURDAY, JUNE 21ST from 6-9PM instead of THURSDAY, JUNE 26 as previously scheduled.  Still with Herbie Nichols SUNG featuring Michael Attias on reeds and Ratzo Harris on double bass.  NO COVER, 2 drink minimum.

Earlier in the day, I’ll run an IMPROVISATION Workshop for the wonderful and new Mise-en Music Festival at the Cell in New York City. Click the link to learn more about this festival and how you can participate.

Herbie Nichols Workshops MISE

June June June June June 2014!

Between Cold Spring and Peekskill, NY
think of all the possibilities…photo taken by FV

What this month this June will be will be will be! A fun and action packed month so let me get right to it.

Starting the month off with performing at private party/fundraiser for ARTOMI featuring former formidable fellows of Music OMI with flautist Jamie Baum, pianist Ursel Schlicht and guitarist Anders Nilsson on WEDNESDAY JUNE 4 then THURSDAY, JUNE 5 the Fay Victor Ensemble (FVE) performs at The Jazz Gallery in New York City for the first time!  I, WE are so excited to play here and introduce our music to the Jazz Gallery audience.  If you’re in town, please join us for a special evening where we’ll venture through the full book nine years running. The FVE just returned from an amazing appearance on the Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares Series in Western Massachusetts, playing a 2-hour long set and receiving a standing ovation after! We can’t wait to bring some of that energy this coming Thursday to the esteemed Jazz Gallery stage.

Photo by Richard Koek
The Fay Victor Ensemble. Photo by Richard Koek

A few days later I head to Istanbul, Turkey as part of the New York Jazz Workshop faculty where we’ll head up a week of workshops and masterclasses at Bognazi University in celebration of the institution turning 150 years old. Honored to say the least plus excited to go to this seriously important world city for the first time. Just as I get back, I’ll appear on Vision Festival 19 in duo with multi-instrumentalist/composer Tyshawn Sorey for the 6:00 Set on SUNDAY JUNE 15, Our first two outings as a duo was an transformational experience. I expect nothing less on this occasion.  Vision Festival 19 begins at Roulette, starting on WEDNESDAY, JUNE 11 specially honoring artist Jeff Schlanger and the great, great Charles Gayle.  Check out full schedule for the Vision Festival here.

On TUESDAY JUNE 17 back at the Lexington Hotel with Anders Nilsson with jazz hats firmly in place. SATURDAY, JUNE 21st happy as pie to run an improvisation workshop on the Mise-en Music Festival (Check festival details and events here…this is a very special festival dedicated to new and contemporary music composers) and WEDNESDAY JUNE 25th I’m at the Austrian Cultural Forum with Reddeer, my collective trio with Austrian pianist Elisabeth Harnik and British bassist Dominic Lash.  THURSDAY JUNE 26th back at the 55BAR with Herbie Nichols SUNG in TRIO – still coming down after a wonderful experience on the Brooklyn launch of the Sound it Out Series at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music on May 15th.

Herbie Nichols SUNG on the Sound it Out Series launch in Brooklyn on May 15th. Photo by Jeff Evans
Herbie Nichols SUNG on the Sound it Out Series launch in Brooklyn on May 15th with Michael Attias, FV, Ratzo Harris and Michael Sarin (shown). Photo by Jeff Evans

As the month winds down, I’m playing in a number of configurations on Andrew Drury’s SOUP and SOUND Series including a set with Elisabeth Harnik on SATURDAY JUNE 28th. I’m closing out the month finally back on the Evolving Music Series on MONDAY JUNE 30 with a special group I put together that may never come together again called VoiceBassHorns with the great Will Connell on reeds, Vincent Chancey on french horn, Ken Filiano on bass. Should be a blast and will be the first time I’ll play with Will Connell.

In other news, I’m finishing up my first semester at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music running the Jazz Vocal Workshop and we’ll have our final performance on TUESDAY JUNE 24th on the main stage of the school. A great group of vocalists and I’m excited for them and this performance. Wow. How lucky and blessed I feel to have the opportunity to share so many sides of myself with so many of you. This year has been a wild and crazy ride; the possibilities seem endless.  May all the dreams, visions and opportunities you seek find you and take you where you need to go.  Walk in the dream of your own making.

Can’t wait to see you out there!
Fay

great crowd to great us in Greenfield, MA on May 25th as part of the Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares.
great crowd to greet the FVE in Greenfield, MA on May 25th as part of the Pioneer Valley Jazz Shares.

A month of transitions into May 2014

A month of transitions…

April 2014 has got to be one of the most tumultuous months in my life.  This isn’t hyperbole – just the truth. I always look forward to April.  Spring is normally in full bloom. My husband’s birthday is right at the beginning of the month so we celebrate that and peoples faces begin to lighten since everyone knows that Winter is gone for sure.

booboobyebyeThis year’s difficult winter felt like it wouldn’t quit but even worse, just a few days into April we lost our beloved dog Martin on the 4th in a horrible car accident. This happened just a week before Jochem and I were presenting our first commissioned piece for the Fay Victor Ensemble with special guests as part of the TriCentric Music Festival put on by the TriCentric Foundation with generous support from the Puffin Foundation.  Happily and despite it all -  the piece came off very well.  The incredible Ensemble which consisted of Vincent Chancey (french horn), Nicole Mitchell (flute), Anders Nilsson (guitar) and Ken Filiano (double bass) presented Neighborhood Dynamics with aplomb, receiving wonderful feedback on the music and how we communicated our idea of gentrification, the subject the piece is based on. An absolutely incredible experience working, writing, rehearsing and developing this piece.  A huge step up for Jochem and myself as composers and the band dived into the music, giving it their all.  It was a blessing and a gift to have this opportunity and  I’m happy to say we did our damnedest to rise to the occasion.  Most touching of all was how the great Anthony Braxton took the time and space to listen to Neighborhood Dynamics and told me after that he was “simply blown away”.  A few days after the premiere, Jochem and I headed to Grenada to celebrate my uncles’ 89th birthday. Having no idea that Martin would be gone from our lives, the ability to get away was more of a godsend then ever.  A rejuvenating and transitional trip for many reasons, mainly for finding and connecting with family and learning so much more about myself in the process.  Truly a month of the loss and found.

Vincent Chancey, Nicole Mitchell, Fay Victor, Anders Nilsson, Ken Filiano courtesy of Jason Gutharz
Vincent Chancey, Nicole Mitchell, Fay Victor, Anders Nilsson, Ken Filiano courtesy of Jason Gutharz

I finished out the month of April gigging with the FVE at the 55BAR, now back to the book after working so much on the premiered piece for the Tricentric Festival. We also had cause for celebration – NINE years of being together as a group! Its the longest I’ve kept a group together and so grateful to have the best musicians and cohorts to work with.  Guitarist Anders Nilsson and bassist Ken Filiano are the absolute best.  What an honor.  We’re gearing up to play later this month (SUNDAY, MAY 25 2014) in Greenfield, MA as part of the Pioneer Jazz Shares Series and then the FVE will play at the Jazz Gallery on THURSDAY, JUNE 5 2014 in New York City! Our debut at this venerable NYC jazz institution and we’re thrilled. So please save the date NYC!

St. Georges, Grenada
Before all that I’m SUPER excited to present Herbie Nichols SUNG as part of the part of the Sound it OUT Series move to Brooklyn on THURSDAY, MAY 15, 2014 with Anthony Coleman (piano), Michael Attias (alto and baritone saxophone), Ratzo Harris – double bass and Michael Sarin – drums at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music, my first time performing there as well.  Pretty cool since I started running the Jazz Vocal Workshop at the Brooklyn Conservatory this past February, long after the date was booked. The last show we had in December 2013 that closed out the Sound it Out Series at the Greenwich House was one of my musical highlights ever. We fired on all cylinders and the audiences responded with a rousing standing ovation! Its been magical delving into Herbie Nichols glorious compositions. Head on over to my soundcloud pages to hears some clips here: https://soundcloud.com/greeneavemusic

Herbie Nichols
Closing out the month back to at the 55BAR on May 29th at the 55BAR pianist sensation Aruan Ortiz and bassist Sean Conly for the Early Set and as always get all the deets on the GIG Section of the site and please sign up to receive my monthly newsletter if you haven’t already.

Thank you for reading.  I’m looking forward to Spring and music!
Fay

April JOY Spring

April Post Pic

Spring is here.

April is here and I’m just warm and fuzzy all over.

Well…at least I’m warm! Higher temps makes a very happy Fay and just in time for a robust month of firsts and bigs and more.  What’s happening?  Well the big news this month is my hubby and musical collaborator Jochem van Dijk and I received our very first commission for the Tricentric Music Festival starting from APRIL 10th through APRIL 19th all going down at Roulette. We’ve written a one hour long piece about gentrification called Neighborhood Dynamics, a look inside gentrification in Brooklyn, NY and as part as an ever growing trend in cities around the US. The piece is written for the Fay Victor Ensemble with two esteemed special guests – flutist Nicole Mitchell and French horn player Vincent Chancey. Not only will we present this piece as part of the TriCentric Presenting Series but we’ll share the night with the great Anthony Braxton himself performing with his Falling River Nonet!! Join us on SATURDAY APRIL 12th, 2014 and note the full program for the Music festival here.  Jochem and I will appear on WKCR (89.9 FM) on WEDNESDAY APRIL 9th to talk about Neighborhood Dynamics, Anthony Braxton, influential music to us and more surprises from 3-6PM.

Right before that join myself and bassist Ratzo Harris at the Lexington Hotel for a early evening Bass Duo featuring standards, put on by the New York Jazz Workshop on TUESDAY, APRIL 8th, 2014. This coming SUNDAY, APRIL 6th join the entire New York Jazz Workshop at Smalls  for the semi annual student presentation! My  Advanced Vocal Class is closing out the event and I’m so looking forward to hearing everyone give their best at Small’s…showtime starts from 12-6PM

Later in April, join the Fay Victor Ensemble as we open it up at the 55BAR residency on THURSDAY, APRIL 24th for the Early Set and closing out the month and my small run at The Lexington with guitarist Anders Nilsson on TUESDAY, APRIL 29th from 6-8PM.  Find specific deets about tall the performances on the FV site.

May will be hopping with a new Herbie Nichols SUNG show at the Brooklyn Conservatory of Music on THURSDAY, MAY 15th and The Fay Victor Ensemble heads up to Western Massachusetts to play as part of the great great series run by the Jazz Pioneer Shares.  They are taking good care of left of center musicians. We are so honored to have been asked to take part, one of those wonderful rare occasion where an email lands in my box with an offer to come play our way. We’re pretty damn excited.

Thanks for reading and I hope and trust that you all are enjoying the sun as much as you can….

Music and light,
Fay

The New Year’s NEWS – January 2014

cloudsDear Friends,

Best wishes for an enriching and fulfilling New Year.  I know it’s just getting off the ground and running so to speak and so am I, after a well needed break around the holidays, I’m gearing up for a busy 2014, looking forward to seeing, listening to and playing with many friends abroad and here in New York City.

First…some wonderful news for the Fay Victor Ensemble (FVE).  My group of now almost 9 years released Absinthe & Vermouth in November (Greene Ave Music) and the reviews so far have been just wonderful and reverent about the album.  Its wonderful to receive great reviews yet I’m most thankful for the reviewers really getting what my vision is for the  music,  which is just gold to me. Absinthe & Vermouth tied for 6th place in the NPR Jazz Critics Poll under Vocals, tying with Gretchen Parlato’s Live CD/DVD and Vijay Iyer’s/Mike Ladd Holding it Down Project.  I’m grateful to all the journalists that took the time to go through so much amazing music for 2013, what a daunting challenge that must be! A special thank you to those that chose Absinthe & Vermouth as their favorite Vocal Album of 2013 as well.

The FVE will celebrate the love shown when we perform on JANUARY 22, 2014 at Roulette in Brooklyn, NY performing selections from Absinthe & Vermouth and more.  More on this in a moment.  There’s more FVE news! We’ve received our first commission to write and present a piece for the Tri-centric Foundation Festival in April 2014!  We’ll present a piece called Neighborhood Dynamics, about the inner workings and feelings of a gentrifying Brooklyn. Joining the  FVE for this auspicious occasion in April as special guests will be Nicole Mitchell/flutes and Vincent Chancey/french horn.  The premiere will be alongside a set of Anthony Braxton Falling River Nonet!! To say I’m excited is the understatement of this new year and so I’m laying low, completely and working this expansion of written music for the FVE so far. Here are the details below for the performance later this month.

WEDNESDAYJanuary 22, 2014
The Fay Victor Ensemble presents selections from
Absinthe & Vermouth
Fay Victor – voice, compositions
Anders Nilsson – electric guitar, effects
Ken Filiano – double bass, effects
at
ROULETTE
509 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217
8PM
General Admission: $20
Members/Students/Seniors: $15
Free for All Access Members

December 2013 was a very special music month with a number of wonderful performances…Two of these performances are lingering with me still.  Herbie Nichols SUNG, my project of lyrics and arrangements to Herbie Nichols compositions at the Greenwich House was one of the best performances I’ve ever done in all my years as a musician.  One of my top ten gigs in LIFE so far.  What made it so?  It seemed everything was firing full throttle the entire night.  We were all in the music deeply and that made for incredible journeys and forays.  Thank you for being there if you were, I can’t tell you what it means.  If you weren’t, you missed something! LOL.  At the end of the night when the crowd rose in thunderous applause to give use a rousing standing ovation, I could feel my mouth fly open in disbelief and happiness.  The other concert that was amazing to be a part of was flutist/composer Nicole Mitchell’s When Life’s Door Opens Project that went on the road to Milan to perform right before Christmas.  I’m honored to be a part of this ensemble and to perform with the array of musicians she’s bought together.  This was my second reading of the piece and at the end of January, I head to Chicago to do it again and this time with the Chicago Modern Orchestra Project (CMOP)!

SATURDAYFebruary 1, 2014
Nicole Mitchell’s – When Life’s Door Opens
Chicago Modern Orchestra Project conducted by Renee Baker plus…
Featured Vocalists:
Fay Victor
Damon Locks
Kiran Ahluwalia
Featured Improvisers:
Nicole Mitchell – flutes, electronics
Jeff Parker – guitar
Marquis Hill – trumpet
Tomeka Reid – cello
Joshua Abrams – bass
Marcus Evans – drums
at
CONSTELLATION
3111 N. Western Avenue
Chicago, IL 60618
8:30PM
$15

Thanks for reading, for your continued support and please continue to support live music.  There’s simply nothing like it.

 

Herbie Nichols SUNG + the LAST Gig of 2013!

IMG_20131217_141613Ahhhhh just back in NYC from  an inspiring and beautiful weekend of music making with flautist/composer Nicole Mitchell’s spellbinding project “When Life’s Door Opens” in nonet in Milan, Italy for  about 1000 riveted folk. The piece is beautiful, employing many musics plus lots of space for improvising. Moreover, the band has five women, such a treat and I’m loving working with powerful, FIERCE women like Nicole as well as vocalist Kiran Ahluwalia, spoken word artist Jamika Ajalon and afro-electronica specialist Val Jeanty…along side bassist Ken Filiano, guitarist Marvin Sewell, drummer Tomas Fujiwara and Vincent Chancey on French horn. A great project written and lead by a beautiful and musical soul, composer and musician.

Now this week, I turn my focus back to an older musical hero..Herbie Nichols. If you follow me at all, you probably have an idea of what he means to me.  I discovered his music in the ’90′s when I first moved to Amsterdam, the Netherlands by stumbling across a cheesy compilation disc my then boyfriend had at his home.   The badly recorded CD didn’t hide the beauty in the composition “House Party Starting”.  I was caught by the jugular hearing it the very first time. I knew instantaneously that I wanted to sing it yet I also knew that I didn’t have the chops to do so at that time.  A couple years went by before I revisited the tune (better able to at least navigate the melody) again as a possibility for my sophomore recorded effort, ‘Darker Than Blue‘ (Timeless Records, 2001).  One Saturday afternoon the lyrics came pouring forth and thus my journey with Herbie Nichol’s Music began.  I did record “House Party Starting’ on the album called which lead me to the great European Herbie Nichols and Thelonious Monk stylist, Misha Mengelberg and with him I began performing Herbie Nichols’ music in 2005.  I started a NYC based group in 2007 and in 2012 settled on an instrumentation and approach to his unbelievably beautiful melodies. They are just that. Sinewy, twisting, angular and soulful melodies that I’ve always found singable and it’s a thrill to get to play his music this week once again with a band that’s incredible and strong.

Its the holiday season and I know folks have a lot to do but if you’re free it would mean a lot to me if you came to check out the music from this seldom performed composer We’re playing this FRIDAY, DECEMBER 20 at the Greenwich House in the West Village. Such a beautiful venue and sound and I’m honored to not only play there, we’ll also close out the Fall 2013 season.

We look forward to seeing you and the deets are below…

FRIDAYDecember 20, 2013
Herbie Nichols SUNG
at the GREENWICH HOUSE
part of the SOUND IT OUT Series
46 Barrow Street, just west of 7th Avenue South
www.greenwichhouse.org
8PM (2 sets)
$20
212-242-4770
FV – voice, lyrics, arrangements
Michael Attias – alto & baritone saxophone
Anthony Coleman – piano
Ratzo Harris – double bass
Rudy Roylston – drums

I close out the month at the 55BAR the day after Christmas and I’m bringing back Blues & Standards to close out my performing year for 2013.  What a year it has been!

THURSDAYDecember 26th 2013
FV Blues & Standards at the 55BAR
FV-voice
Anders Nillson – guitar
Ratzo Harris – double bass
Reggie Nicholson – drums
Early Set, 7-9PM
No Cover, 2 drink minimum
www.55BAR.com

Thanks for reading and I wish you all a wonderful, fruitful, joyous, restful, reflective and loving holiday season!

In music,
Fay