An Evening with A Percussionist

Enhanced CD: featuring 13 Audio Tracks and 30 minute .avi file that can be viewed on computer

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I was honored and privileged to be invited to present an intimate look into my world by Sarah Craig, Executive Director of  Caffe Lena.  Have been blessed to work with a great number of different artists over the last 3 decades here at the Caffe and Sarah told me many many times she has heard our audiences say that they would have really liked to have learned more about the different instruments that I have performed on during the various concerts. She asked me to take center stage and present a program that would allow me to not only introduce a diverse group of percussion instruments by just 

performing on them, but to present them in a way for folks to learn about where they came from and their back story.  I was very excited to be able to engage the audience in more of an “Informance” environment as well as to take the time to be able to really perform on a wide variety of my instruments.  Aside from wanting the listener to be inspired emotionally to my work the most rewarding thing for me is to use my percussive sounds to create imagery to support the music I am performing and for the story that is being told. 

I believe we did some firsts for Caffe Lena during this evening.  I had the audience regard the sound of my instruments as a color, texture, shape, temperature, weight etc. 

Introduced various playing technique by having them put their hands into different postures and by playing on the tabletops they heard how these different hand postures created different sounds.  We made our own found object instrument by creating “sugar packet shakers”  I offered a few different technique so that everyone could experience the subtle differences even creating somewhat of a rattle sound.  For me although there were many highpoints, I think that the improvisational soundscape that everyone present created by utilizing their sugar packet shakers, the hand technique they learned as well as creating sounds with their voices, we were able to honor the late Naná Vasconcelos and create our own version of the Amazon. 

What an absolute amazing evening it was.  Thank you Sarah for allowing me to share my world with the renown Caffe Lena audience.  I was also very blessed to have as special guest my very good friend and a wonderfully creative artist, Studio Stu on his own creation the “Studivarius” Tub Bass and Vocals. 

audio & video recorded with single ambient room microphone and single camera                                  used with special permission from Sarah Craig, Caffe Lena’s Executive Director.                                      audio digitally edited by Robert Bard, Skytop Sound, New Paltz, NY                                                         

Tracks                                                                                                                                                                                1 - Sarah Craig’s Intro                                                                                                                                                    2 -  Frank Giorgini, Udu Mbwata Drum                                                                                                                      3 - Congas (LP Galaxy Quinto & Tumbadora, REMO Kick / Conga Segunda)                                                      4 - Day O - arr. Studio Stu featuring Congas                                                                                                            5 - Michael Thiele 6 Tone Slit Drum & Peter Engelhart Agogo Cluster 6 Pentatonic Bell Set                    6 - Schlagwerk Duel 2 in 1 Cajon                                                                                                                                7 - I Like To Scat & The Lady Is A Tramp - arr. Studio Stu featuring Flamenco Side of Cajon                        8 - Iko Iko - arr. Studio Stu featuring Peruvian Side of Cajon                                                                            9 - David Russell Earth  Drum - Paper Drums Set of 6: 8”, 10”, 12”, 14”, 16”, 18”                                                10 - Introduction to “Sugar Packet Shaker’s” featuring Audience Participation                                          11 - Group Improvisational Soundscape to honor the late Naná Vasconcelos                                              12 - First Ever LEGO Drum Kit Introduction                                                                                                            13 - You Really Got Me - arr. Studio Stu featuring LEGO Drum Kit 

* There is also a bonus 30 minute .avi video included on this CD which highlights performance excerpts. 

You can view this video by playing it in your computer.  Put it in your cd / dvd drive and open disc.  This will expose the video file to you.  Simply play video by using your default video player. 

Musicians                                                                                                                                                                          Brian Melick - Udu Mbwata, Congas, Slit Drum, Agogo Bell Cluster, Cajon, Paper Drums, Sugar Packets, LEGO Drum Set, Amedia Cymbals, Misc. Found Sounds and Percussion 

Studio Stu - on his own creation the “Studivarius” Tub Bass and Vocals 


Released: 2020