Myriam Gendron with Jim White & Marisa Anderson

Recommended
Monday, May 20, 8 pm
Holocene Buckman (Portland)
This is an in-person event
$20
21+
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The following description comes from the event organizer.

Mayday is the third LP by Montreal-based artist, Myriam Gendron. It follows her earlier, critically acclaimed albums, Not So Deep As A Well (2014) and Ma délire – Songs of love, lost & found (2021). Prior to her debut album, Myriam’s primary musical focus was busking in Paris Metro stations, performing the songs of Leonard Cohen and others, accompanying herself on guitar. Through her day job, working at a Montreal bookstore, Myriam discovered the poems of American writer, Dorothy Parker, who was better known for her cutting wit than her verse. Inspired by Parker’s words, Myriam wrote music to accompany a suite of them, then recorded the results in her bedroom. These recordings were issued as her debut LP, and continue to delight listeners who discover them, with their freshness, clarity and humor. After a brief hiatus, Myriam began exploring the complex folk traditions of Quebec (and beyond), recording the 2LP, Ma délire, which combines traditional and original songs (largely in French) with arrangements that make space for avant-garde musical interludes by such folks as guitarist Bill Nace (Body/Head) and renowned jazz percussionist Chris Corsano. Mayday is an even more syncretic fusion of these elements. Most of the songs are original, in both English and French, and blend traditional and avant elements with abandon. Additional players this time include drummer Jim White (Dirty Three), guitarist Marisa Anderson, Montreal bassist Cédric Dind-Lavoie (a fellow fan of trad/avant dynamism), Bill Nace and saxophonist Zoh Amba (whose horn actually gets the final “word”). Mayday is a thoroughly thrilling effort that manages to create new vistas of sound while maintaining a feel that is both intimate and familiar. Beautiful work.The collaboration between renowned drummer Jim White and acclaimed guitarist Marisa Anderson is a natural union of two of the most intuitive players and listeners working in music. White and Anderson are each very in-demand as collaborators in no small part because of their mastery, versatility and highly expressive playing. The duo have each amassed an impressive body of work, and remain at the vanguard of their practices due to an insatiable curiosity and delight in exploration of new avenues of expression. Their 2020 debut The Quickening exemplified that daring spirit as an exercise in trust: two musicians who had never performed together before committing those first moments in time to record. 2024’s Swallowtail is a deepening of that trust, White and Anderson completely immersed in the moment, each attuned to the other fluidly moving as wind and water. Swallowtail was recorded in the Australian coastal town of Point Lonsdale, Victoria with engineer Nick Huggins (Resting Bell Studio). White was coming off a month of international touring and Anderson traveled to Australia for the duo’s first few performances, the remote setting and calm provided the ideal backdrop. Says Anderson, “to be out of the city and on the coast with no distraction and to be working with an engineer (and avid surfer) who is attuned to the cycles of tides and sunrises and sunsets and ocean rhythms. I think all of that got into the music as we were making it.” The coastal cadence is evident in Swallowtail’s more gradual temporal shifts. Movements ebb and flow, in an undulating constant motion whose dynamic flourishes closely resembles their adaptive live performances. “When we play live we don’t stop, there are no breaks in between ‘songs’,” notes Anderson, “we segue naturally between movements and ideas. Sometimes we are together, and sometimes we are apart, sometimes the segues become the pieces.” The natural development of the duo’s own singular meter, this early in their collaboration, is nothing short of revelatory.

This event is recommended by the Portland Mercury, our sister site. See more of their picks here!

Event Location

Holocene

1001 SE Morrison Portland, OR 97214 Venue website

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