Beautiful words on Roswell Rudd’s Trombone for Lovers!

Happy Winter Greetings!

rudd_roswel_trombonef_101bStopping in to report some news on legendary trombonist Roswell Rudd’s beautiful record that I had to the honor to be a part of that included such amazoid luminaries as Bob Dorough, John Medeski, Steven Bernstein, Gary Lucas and more.  I performed the great blues tune “Trouble in Mind”  and had a ball the day we recorded it Upstate State New York on a gorgeous mid-Fall day in 2012.  First UP – Trombone For Lovers cracked the top 50 Jazz Albums by the NPR Jazz Critics Poll, coming in at #41! Well beautiful words have been pouring in and I’d like to share a few of those quotes here:

“Legendary jazz trombonist Roswell Rudd may be 78 years young, but he hasn’t lost a beat as a vibrant musician. On the consistent and enjoyable Trombone for Lovers, Rudd – “with a little help from … friends” – covers songs that are meaningful to him encompassing various genres. On “Baby, It’s Cold Outside”, Rudd and partner in crime Steven Bernstein (slide trumpet) interpret the Loesser vocal classic in dramatic fashion, accompanied by a churchy B3, compliments of John Medeski.

Guest vocalist Fay Victor steals the show on the bluesy “Trouble in Mind
”, with the rhythm section soundly backing her. On “Green Onions”, Rudd and company let loose, with the acclaimed soul tune easily lending itself to jazz. Later, Rudd liberally approaches Duke Ellington’s “Come Sunday”, adventurously changing styles, and breathing new life into the timeless classic. Track after track, Rudd’s musicianship and sharpness impresses, making Trombone for Lovers shine radiantly.”
-Brett Faukner,

Trombone for Lovers
Sunnyside ***1/2
“An audaciously titled record (!), the band of avant garde trombonist Roswell Rudd, now 78, whose playing over the years has decorated such landmark recordings as Archie Shepp’s Mama Too Tight and Charlie Haden’s Liberation Music Orchestra sets up a ‘Comin’ Home Baby’-like groove on opener ‘Ghost Riders in the Sky’. And uncannily on the very next track the co-writer of ‘Baby’, Bob Dorough, pops up, growlingly, as if by magic on Lennon and McCartney’s ‘Here, There and Everywhere’. With songs drawn from Rudd’s recollections of childhood (“at this time in my life I worship at the altar of melody”, he wrote during the album’s Kickstarter campaign) when he would sing the songs in school or in church here seen as “standards in American song” Rudd is in a core quartet with John Medeski on B3, bassist Richard Hammond and drummer Aaron Comess, with lots of guests including Gary Lucas, Fay Victor, and Sexmob’s Steven Bernstein on a fun set of tunes. As you’d expect with Medeski on the organ it’s a highly infectious groove (carefully weighted on ‘Green Onions’) and while there is something of a raggedy jamming feel throughout, that doesn’t detract; in fact it’s a bonus. The album is not without its great moments, Fay Victor capable of stopping the traffic dead in its tracks on ‘Trouble in Mind’ a performance that simply soars away; Rudd raw and emotional on ‘Unchained Melody’; and showing his soloing imagination on ‘The Relentless Walk’ section of ‘Joe Hill’ segueing into Reggie Bennett’s conscious rap.

Roswell Rudd: Trombone for Lovers
“The “Joe Hill” suite at the end takes some getting used to, but since when has organizing been easy? Everything else is just superb: the opening “Ghost Riders in the Sky” with Steven Bernstein’s slide trumpet, Bob Dorough on “Here, There & Everywhere,” Fay Victor on “Trouble in Mind,” Michael Doucet’s violin on “Autumn Leaves” and “Tennessee Waltz,” familiar songs that seem perfect when they pop up: “Baby, It’s Cold Outside,” “Struttin’ With Some Barbecue,” “Green Onions,” “Unchained Melody,” “September Song.”
Tom Hull, The Village Voice
The Best Jazz Albums of 2013

Learn more and purchase at


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
509 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217
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
3111 N. Western Avenue
Chicago, IL 60618

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


November 2013: Halloween, Absinthe & Vermouth, Trombones, Duos etc…

FVE_Absinthe&VermouthHello everyone,

I hope this email finds you well and all is well in your world.  The news came on Sunday that the great musician, poet and rocker Lou Reed died at the tender age of 71 stopping me dead in my tracks for a moment until I realized he lived a full – take no prisoners – kind of life, not without consequence.  I applaud and respect anyone who is confident enough to live that way. He had guts and grit, to me its a gift that he was here to experience through his music. SO tough to put your heart and soul out into the world and be secure in how you’ll be perceived – good or bad.  Yet we creative sorts do this every time we step onto a stage or reveal a new piece of art or premiere a play.  Its the unknown response that seeps inside us and helps us try to be better, more focused, more connected so we can feel it when any genuine response is there. It works that way for me…the more I connect, the deeper I want to go the next time.

Speaking of a revealing….NOVEMBER 5, 2013  I’m extremely excited to release Absinthe & Vermouth, the newest CD from the Fay Victor Ensemble!  It’s our third release as a group and my third of all original music by Jochem van Dijk and myself. Guitarist Anders Nilsson and bassist Ken Filiano have been tussling with the music for 8 1/2 years now and I am incredibly grateful for their contribution to my strange musical vision. Not only do I love what we managed to lay down but the composing for the group has evolved significantly toward this new direction which I’ll call ‘chamber-funk’ for now. I hope you’ll check it out, enjoy it, spread the word and purchase it.  Its my most important project to date and your feedback is deeply appreciated.  If you’re in the New York City area, then join us for the CD release event on WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 13 2013 at JACK in Brooklyn. It is going to be a serious explosive blast! Three Sets of music – starting the Night off with Roy Nathanson & Friends with Ben Perowsky, Sam Barfield and Tim Kiah, the The Fay Victor Ensemble Absinthe & Vermouth CD Release show followed by Marika, Mazz and Morley, which is Marika Hughes, Mazz swift and Morley Morley! you can preview Absinthe & Vermouth here and you can pre-order Absinthe & Vermouth on Amazon right now.

Another major highlight in November: I’m fortunate and honored to be on a track of the esteemed trombonist Roswell Rudd’s new CD TROMBONE for LOVERS to be released on November 19th on Sunnyside Records. It’s a star studded affair with such folk as John Medeski, Steven Bernstein, Gary Lucas, Bob Dorough and Alan Commess (of the Spin Doctors) and more. I’m performing “Trouble in Mind” on the new record and I’ll join everyone at Le Poisson Rouge on SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 24th for the celebration of this wonderful album and Roswell’s 78th birthday.  Save the Date for that too!

There’s a lot more great happenings coming up starting with this Thursday (HALLOWEEN) and into November so without further ado – here are the details

THURSDAYOctober 31, 2013
A DUO Dialogue for Halloween
FV – voice
Marvin Sewell – guitar
blues, jazz, mayhem, wails, shrieks, etc….
Early Set (7-9PM)
NO COVER, 2 Drink minimum

SATURDAYNovember 2, 2013
Tyshawn Sorey/Fay Victor DUO
FV-voice (and more)
Tyshawn Sorey – Drums (and more)
No way to say how this will go other than it will GO! Bring seat belts.
in double bill with
Doggy Woof
Super Natsuki Tamura (didgeridoo)
Ken Kobayashi (drums, percussion)
Jochem van Dijk (bass guitar, effects)
121 7th Street
Brooklyn, NY

SATURDAYNovember 8th, 2013
House concert with Jaap Blonk!
Details on a need to know basis – inbox me for details.

**WEDNESDAYNovember 13, 2013**
CD Release Feast at JACK!
The Fay Victor Ensemble presents
Absinthe & Vermouth (Greene Avenue Music)
with sets by Marika, Mazz & Morley
Roy Nathanson & Friends
$15 for the night
505 1/2 Waverly Place
Brooklyn, NY 11238

SATURDAYNovember 16, 2013
Improvisations at
Real Art Ways
FV – voice, words
Joe Morris – guitar, bass
Stephen Haynes – cornets
56 Arbor Street #1
Hartford, CT 06106

SUNDAYNovember 24, 2013
Trombone for Lovers: A 78th Birthday Concert for Roswell Rudd
Le Poisson Rouge
158 Bleecker Street
NY NY 10012

TUESDAYNovember 26th 2013
Party for Han Earl Park!
w/ a cavalcade of pretty amazing improvisors!
Douglass Street Music Collective
295 Douglass Street
Brooklyn, NY

Thank you for reading and keeping in touch. This month is packed full of performances with musical heroes I’ve never worked with before such as Joe Morris, Steven Bernstein, Bob Dorough and Jaap Blonk on top of releasing the new FVE record and being a guest on Roswell’s new disc! I feel so blessed and I hope to see you out. thanks so much for reading and for all your support.
Autumn greetings to you!


Looking back and forward

Dear Friends,

Happy September to you.  This time of year tends to be filled with summer  shutting down and life revving up for the cold and all the activities swirling around it.  Kids go back to school, life resumes a  cold-world order and I do hope a relaxing summer sets a precedent for you to ride out the rest of the year.  Have I had a relaxing summer?  Absolutely not! Yet I feel so invigorated and grateful for the enriching summer that I had.   I’m using the remaining days to take in a dose to get me through this next period which  is chock full of  activities and its inherent stresses.  But more on that later in this note!  First I’d like to share just a bit about my summer and the riches procured because.


I had the honor  to perform at The Stone in NYC three times this summer as a bandleader.  First in July, Brandon Ross curated and asked the Fay Victor Ensemble to take part.  It wasn’t our best gig but the thrill of playing in here and directing the sound in my own way for the first time was exhilarating and the set the course for the two concerts to follow in August under Tyshawn Sorey’s curator-ship of the space.  First in August, the ExPosed Blues Duo (with guitarist Anders Nilsson) with Tomas Ulrich on cello. We did about 5 tunes in the space of an hour, stretching, chanting, wailing, screeching, straight-beseeching the blues and her cousins in this space…where you could hear a pin drop throughout.  So intense was this thing.  I’d been thinking about cello and the blues for a while and this union was a match made in purgatory, alongside Anders’ dirty guitar. We’ll work it again in October, close to Halloween when these sounds will resonate even more with the times. Perhaps you can join us and I’ll post something on the myspace page from the Stone gig at very, very soon.

The last concert at the Stone was with trombonist Roswell Rudd and Tyshawn Sorey, performing pieces of mine, Herbie Nichols and a snippet of a bigger project around haikus. Mind altering, life changing and challenging as hell, this was a meeting of the minds and a collaboration with space shifters and openers. I could breathe tons of air with the molecules left bare.  Space is the place.  Sun Ra said it and now I get it and I want more of THAT.

Moreover, I began curating a left-of-center vocal series at the Local 269 with Arts for Art, inc./RUCMA in August as well, that has already had some memorable performances.  This is a dream of mine to present vocalists doing original, experimental and distinct work in a venue that is open to this presentation.  The Evolving Voice Vocal Series is all about casting a spotlight on vocalists with idiosyncratic styles and on the more experimental side of the music.  Patricia Nicholson Parker and I are curating the series and we’re delighted to be involved in highlighting what we consider to be an under-served side of the scene. Keep up with the schedule at and  Questions, suggestions, booking for the series? Please get in touch at Coming this month on the Series:  Lisa Sokolov, Leena Conquest, Gina Leishman, Ellen Christi, Yoon Sun Choi and Dean Bowman!!

The FreeSong Suite

As I have been sneezing, and hinting at for the past couple months  – The  Fay Victor Ensemble is about to release our new record, The FreeSong Suite on September 22, 2009.  So excited about this record and presenting to the world the evolution of the FVE and our approach to creative vocal music that we think is as accessible as it is challenging. So interested in how folks will take the music and looking forward to lots of feedback and discussion about it too. Legendary and eminent guitarist Gary Lucas wrote the liner notes and mentions that the record is “…hypnotic in its flow, every song in the three sections of the suite a masterpiece of compressed story-telling…”. We’re celebrating on the first day of October at Roulette.

Fay Victor Ensemble CD Release “The FreeSong Suite”

FV-voice, compositions
Anders Nilsson-guitar, effects
Ken Filiano-bass, effects
Michael ‘TA’ Thompson-drums

Roulette 20 Greene Street
(between Canal and Grand Streets)
Reservations/Tickets: 212.219.8242
Admission: $15 Harvestworks & DTW members, Students, Under 30 & Seniors: $10
Roulette members / Location One members: FREE.

The FreeSong Suite is a recommended New Release in AAJ-NY
-Laurence Donahue-Greene, Managing Editor
September 2009 AAJ-NY

The FreeSong Suite Contest!

Now for some fun.  I’m giving away 3 copies of the FreeSong Suite!  How cool is that?
Here’s the deal:

The FreeSong Suite is divided into three parts or ‘rooms’.
Each room has a number; which are related to real things.
Take a stab at what they mean and if you come close, you’ll win a free copy of the FreeSong Suite!

Here are the room numbers:




All entries for consideration should send their guesses to By September 21st, 2009.

Moving Forward

I am happy to announce that my husband Jochem van Dijk has composed  a site specific piece in commemoration of Henry Hudson’s ride up the Hudson River. His pocket oratorio (with libretto by Gerhardus van Wilgen) will be performed by three decidedly non-Dutch but definitely immigrant vocalists: Kyoko Kitamura, Yoon Sun Choi and myself alongside Tomas Ulrich on cello.  This is an exciting development for the a cappela vocal quartet  (sans Jen Shyu, on tour in the Far East) to perform  in one of the most glorious spaces in the DIA Museum in Beacon, NY – the Chamberlain room of sculptures made of salvaged automobiles.

And on September 28th,  my great friend and saxophonist Oleg Kireyev is visiting New York City and he’ll join me at the 55Bar for the Early Set alongside Hill Greene and Dom Minasi.  I’m pulling out my standards for this one but we’ll veer off into strange places as well.

Lots more coming in October with the FreeSong Suite CD Release here in NYC and on October 4th in Philadelphia, PA  at the Rotunda. Tell your Philly friends to come down and say hello.
Stay tuned for news on that + upcoming tour news for 2010 to boot.

Happy September indeed!

August 25, 2009 – Roswell Rudd/Tyshawn Sorey/Fay Victor – SAVE THE DATE

Upcoming performances……


Roswell Rudd/Tyshawn Sorey/Fay Victor

Crash, Braaaww, Thud, Aaaaah

Roswell Rudd-trombone
Tyshawn Sorey-drums, piano

The Stone

8PM Set
One Set Only


Corner of Second Street and Avenue C
F, V Train to 2nd Avenue

This is a once-in-a-lifetime trio with trombonist extraordinaire Roswell Rudd and the astonishing Tyshawn Sorey.  We’ll go  places keeping jazz as the starting point for many explorations. You can’t miss this.

August is BUSTING out all over: Upcoming Performances

Dear Friends,

With another birthday just behind me, I’m feeling good about the future and starting my new year strong. I have two amazing concerts this month and I”ll begin curating a Vocal Series in the city for the first time.

First up…about the gigs!  The inspiring and amazing Tyshawn Sorey is curating the Stone in August and I feel fortunate to perform there as part of his month long residency. Tyshawn has programmed a great month of music with folks like Matana Roberts, Vijay Iyer, Okkyung Lee, Craig Taborn and groups such as Fieldwork, BassDrumBone + Tyshawn himself in all sorts of creative configurations.  I’ll be hovering around the place myself this month with the fantastic line-up he’s put together.  Get all those details here

On Wednesday, August 12, I’m at the Stone with the Exposed Blues Duo/Tomas Ulrich Meeting of blues and the abstract strings for the 10PM set…then on Tuesday, August 25, a very special concert indeed with Tyshawn Sorey himself and legendary trombonist Roswell Rudd for the 8PM Set! Please come out for these very special performances.

On top of all that, August also kicks off a new vocal series I’ll co-curate (alongside Patricia Nicholson Parker) at the Local 269 called the Evolving Voice Vocal Series.  The series, presented by Arts for Arts & RUCMA, will run onTuesdays starting tomorrow August 4, 2009 with spoken word artist Juju Seahorse and KJ Denhert!   Look for performances by stupendous vocalists such as Ellen Christie, Jen Shyu, Gina Leishman, Dean Bowman, Leena Conquest, Kyoko Kitamura and more in September and beyond.

How is life and the summer treating you?



The ExPosed Blues Duo meets Tomas Ulrich

Anders Nilsson-guitar
Tomas Ulrich-cello

The Exposed Blues Duo adds cello and fire to an already simmering cauldron.

10PM Set
$10 Cover


Crash, Braaaww, Thud, Aaaaah

Roswell Rudd-trombone
Tyshawn Sorey-drums, piano

8PM Set
$20 Cover

Join us for the world-premiere of this special trio!

All happening @ THE STONE
Corner of Second Street and Avenue C

F, V Train to 2nd Avenue


**The Evolving Voice Vocal Series **
Presented by: Arts for Arts and RUCMA

$10 Cover per Set


269 E. Houston Street (corner of Suffolk Street)
Fun and funky bar atmosphere with great drinks and a hip vibe.
F, V to 2nd Avenue