We have been inspired by many wonderful collaborators. Their contributions help us create unique music that neither of us would have come up with on our own.
Carnegie Hall, as part of their “125” commissioning project, sponsored a new work for Sō Percussion and Shara Worden called Timeline. Timeline represents the first occasion on which Sō Percussion and Shara Worden have worked together. We’ve admired her work for many years, both as My Brightest Diamond and on works such as David Lang’s Death Speaks. Shara’s haunting voice and penetrating verses explore the subject of time, and as such provide Timeline as a kind of companion piece to Steven Mackey’s It Is Time.
Working with Shara was one of those moments of instant chemistry for us: she is a consummate, almost frighteningly gifted musician. She handles our typically quirky rhythmic layers with grace, but then adds a lyricism and emotional depth that makes our mutual exploration come to life.
Buke and Gase
Our collaboration with Buke and Gase began at the Ecstatic Music Festival in New York in 2014. Since they perform on custom-designed instruments – “Buke” is baritone ukulele, “Gase” is a hybrid guitar/bass – it wasn’t difficult to find common ground. Buke and Gase also love to experiment with complex overlapping rhythmic loops, which only helped!
We’ve just recorded a new album together, and we’ve had performances in New York, at the Big Ears Festival in Tennessee, and the Walker Art Museum.
Here’s our set from the premiere on New Sounds Live at the Ecstatic Music Festival: March 26th, 2014 at Merkin Concert Hall. Our combined performance starts at about 1:13 into the show.
The very first time we sought collaborators outside of the classical and new music world, we found Matmos. The now legendary duo specializes in making music with strange and ordinary objects: their most recent effort is an album made entirely out of washing machine sounds. They opened entirely new horizons to us…after working with Matmos, we began incorporating more electronics and found sounds into our own music.
In 2010, we released Treasure State on Cantaloupe Music. One of the most popular pieces from that record is “Needles,” our own take on John Cage’s idea of the amplified cactus.