[NetBehaviour] Pre-Release of The Songs on Fire Release Records (fwd)

Alan Sondheim sondheim at panix.com
Fri Oct 7 23:52:41 CEST 2005

Pre-Release of The Songs on Fire Release Records

The following is a pre-release of The Songs, which I recorded back in the
60s, and which has just be re-released. It's from Riverboat Records, which
no longer exists; Steve Tobin has reissued it. The work is one of my
stranger pieces; there's a full group on it, and only one piece - an
oratorio of sorts which we improvised against deliberately somewhat
imprecise information. The audio fidelity isn't great, but Steve worked on
it. It's cheap at the price.

"make the webpage http://www.museumfire.com/sondheim live, i just won't"

>From the webpage:

First ever reissue of "The Songs", the debut recording by Alan Sondheim
& Ritual All 770, originally released on Riverboat Records (later
recordings appeared on ESP Disk). Recorded in March 1967 and included
on the legendary Nurse With Wound list of experimental recordings, on
this album Alan Sondheim played Electric Guitar, Violin, Flute, Suling,
Xylophone, Alto Saxophone, Classical Guitar, Clarinet, Shenai, Bass
Recorder, Mandolin, So-na, Hawaiian Guitar, Koto, Sopranino Recorder,
Chimta, Cor Anglais, Sitar and Bansari.

Joined by Barry Sugarman (Tabla, Dholak & Naquerra), Chris Mattheson
(Bass), Robert Poholek (Trumpet & Cornet), Ruth Ann Hutchinson (Vocals),
June Fellows (Vocals) and J.Z. (Jazz Drums); Ritual All 770 were a group
of improvisors living in Providence, Rhode Island. (Perhaps they could
be considered the sonic forebearers of the Fort Thunder scene...)
Rejecting the notion that avant garde music was solely the realm of
isolated academia, they delved fearlessly and joyously into their
music, creating a work that sounds fresh nearly 40 years later.


This work is a single improvised performance in which one of the
performers sings "Oratorio on the end of illusions", although, in
my libretto the words were originally "Oratorio on the end of
visions". A libretto of eight pages was prepared. The vocalists
were not told how to sing it. They could go backward or repeat
any section if they wanted to. There was no score. The only
instruction given to the instrumentalists was this: no playing
behind the koto or classical guitar. I had several rehearsals with
each of them, mostly individually. The session lasted through two
takes, this is the second. After the master was made, I added
reverberation and volume controlling; other than that, all of the
music heard here is from the live performance.

Note: This CD was mastered using the best available vinyl source.


Cray/Turn, cdrom, 2001
Global Report, Damaged Life, Spasm cassette, 1986
Flesh, Damaged Life. Spasm cassette, 1987
Live at Starck Club 1987, Damaged Life cassette
Lips, Damaged Life cassette, 1987
The Songs, Riverboat, LP, 1967
Ritual, ESP LP, 1968
T'Other Little Tune, ESP LP, 1969
Participant on ESP samplers 1969-70


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