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The renaming of the CalArts School of Music, as discussed in this previous MM post, has progressed to the Temporary Sign Stage. Here's proof photographic.
I made another trip to the beautiful Santa Clarita Valley (read about the first trip in this other previous MM post.) Trip one was at the request of my friend Art Jarvinen. Trip two was at the request of my friend Vinny Golia. Here's a picture of Vinny.
This time I was asked to speak to a class in "Career Design". Don't ask me what that is because I don't know. Apparently students who know what I have done during my so-called career will be able to avoid my obvious mistakes. Good luck with that.
I made the following video of Vinny as he introduced me to the class. I've added a few text comments of my own to the video.
At the end of the introduction Vinny mentions a wind-instrument improvisation trio which consisted of Anne LaBerge on flutes, myself on clarinets, and Vinny on clarinets, flutes and small saxophones. This happened during the eighties.
I asked Anne and Vinny for permission to post some recordings of the three of us. They agreed (although Anne wanted me to mention that she is still alive. She has a home in a place called Holland and maintains a homepage in a place called the Internet.)
I've posted three studio improvisations which we recorded in February 1986. We never did anything with the tapes except culling these three takes onto a separate reel for radio interviews. The box is marked "No electronic sound processing" because, apparently, there had been some confusion about how we made the sounds.
This is completely spontaneous unplanned music. It was like a conversation between people with different views on common interests. We are all composers. Vinny and Anne are still explorers of the outer realms of woodwind performance. So was I, back then. We were a good match. I look back on this group with great fondness.
The three improvisations are Copyright (c) 1986 and 2008 by Vinny Golia, Anne LaBerge and David Ocker. Timings #3 - 6'43" #11 4'20" #12 1'48"
Our only available pictures as a group come from a photo session proof sheet. These were taken by photographer Joel Mark. I did not ask permission of Vinny or Anne or Joel to post these. I'm the one hiding behind a mostly-not-yet-gray beard and photo-gray glasses. Click any picture for a bit of enlargement. Don't expect much.
This third improv is actually a duet between Anne and myself. If it sounds like we had been listening to Schoenberg's Pierrot Lunaire, that's because we had. She and I had recently played Pierrot together in a group called The Thirteenth Floor.
Here's a flyer for a trio concert at a place called BeBop Records. The drawing of the sea lion wearing a pirate hat on which sits a parrot is one of my doodles. If I remember this concert correctly Anne couldn't make it for some reason so it ended up being a duo concert, just Vinny and myself. Anyway, I like the doodle.
And finally while I was at CalArts - er, I mean at the Herb Alpert School of Music - for the final time, Vinny had to tell me how to close a piano lid. "You have to retract the nurkle" he explained.
I liked the word "nurkle" although I have no idea what he meant.
I decided that "nurkle" needed to be part of a musical title.
The Nurkle (for Vinny) - (c) Copyright 2008 by David Ocker - 34 seconds
Nurkle Tags: Anne LaBerge. . . Vinny Golia. . . David Ocker. . . woodwind trio. . . musical improvisation. . . CalArts. . . Herb Alpert. . . school of music. . . The Nurkle. . . 30+Second+spots. . . Career Design