|Pushkin & Toure
Sasha Pushkin (piano, voice) & Sainkho Namtchylak (voice)
Sasha Pushkin (piano & more) & Andráás Tiborcz (violin & more)
Sasha Pushkin - piano & Mahmoud Fadl - percussion
Sasha Pushkin & Circus of now
Sasha Pushkin (piano) & Edsel Scott (body)
Sasha Pushkin (piano) & Tobias Vethake (cello, electronics)
Buckets (In memoriam Boris Rayskin)
PUSHKIN & TOURE
Sasha Pushkin (piano, voice & more)
world jazz and world fusion
Sasha Pushkin and Souleymane Toure met in 1995 at a pre-concert sound check. As Sasha prepared for that evening's solo concert, house manager Ben Msild introduced him to an African percussionist who happened to be present that night for the show. In front of the 500 people already gathered, they improvised. The crowd loved it and the Pushkin & Toure duo was born.
Two voices, two feet and four hands. Spontaneous, improvised arrangements backed by modern grooves. Jazz infused with African and Arabic rhythms. Russian melodies interwoven with experimental sounds. Elements of Rock. Elements of Swing. European abstraction and African impulse. Slavic sadness and African joy. Music for serious listening and for pure fun. A dynamic and expansive musical dialogue.
"Papa Toure" (as named and known by Berlin's musicians) was born in 1938, in Ivory Coast, Africa into a family of drummers. Toure laid an international musical path, encountering along the way musicians such as Mamadou Doumbia, Manu Dibango, Alpha Blondi, Radio Orchestra of Abijan. A "virtuoso" percussionist, Toure plays drums, Djembe, Talking drums, Timbales, Congas, Darabuka, to name a few.
Toure is involved in many on-going projects which includes leading his own band, "Academy Percussion." He is also the drummer for PUSHKIN FUNPLUGGED and percussionist for PUSHKIN BOOM BEAT.
SASHA PUSHKIN (piano, voice) & SAINKHO NAMTCHYLAK (voice)
Jazz, free Improvised, world fusion
Ten years after their initial introduction, Sasha and Sainkho began a musical collaboration. The duo creates music through free improvisation as well as pre-composed fixed scores, written by the duo.
Read about Sainkho:
With her shaved head and seven-octave range, Sainkho Namtchylak would stand out on any stage. Add her particular mix of Tuvan throat-singing and avant-garde improvisation, and she becomes an unforgettable figure. The daughter of a pair of schoolteachers, she grew up in an isolated village on the Tuvan/Mongolian border, exposed to the local overtone singing - something that was generally reserved for the males; in fact, females were actively discouraged from learning it (even now, the best-known practitioners remain male, artists like Huun-Huur-Tu and Yat-Kha). However, she learned much of her traditional repertoire from her grandmother, and went on to study music at the local college, but she was denied professional qualifications. Quietly she studied the overtone singing, as well as the shamanic traditions of the region, before leaving for study further in Moscow (Tuva was, at that time, part of the U.S.S.R.). Her degree completed, she returned to Tuva where she became a member of Sayani, the Tuvan state folk ensemble, before abandoning it to return to Moscow and joining the experimental Tri-O, where her vocal talents and sense of melodic and harmonic adventure could wander freely. That first brought her to the West in 1990, although her first recorded exposure came with the Crammed Discs compilation Out of Tuva. Once Communism had collapsed, she moved to Vienna, making it her base, although she traveled widely, working in any number of shifting groups and recording a number of discs that revolved around free improvisation - not unlike Yoko Ono - as well as performing around the globe. It was definitely fringe music, although Namtchylak established herself very firmly as a fixture on that fringe. In 1997 she was the victim of an attack that left her in a coma for several weeks. Initially she thought it was some divine retribution for her creative hubris, and seemed to step back when she recorded 1998's Naked Spirit, which had new age leanings. However, by 2000 she seemed to have overcome that block, releasing Stepmother City, her most accessible work to date, where she seemed to really find her stride, mixing traditional Tuvan instruments and singing with turntables and effects, placing her in a creative firmament between Yoko and Bjork, but with the je ne sais quoi of Mongolia as part of the bargain. A showcase at the WOMEX Festival in Berlin brought her to the attention of many, and in 2001 a U.S. tour was planned. She has been resident in exile in Vienna, and has also recorded more prolifically as a solo artist- although she has released over thirty albums in the past twenty years, only seven have been entirely solo. in 2005 Italian publish house Libero di Scrivere released a book of poetry "Karmaland". In 2006 in Petersburg was published a book "Chelo-Vek" (in Russian, "A Human Being") in Russian, Tuvinian and in English.
St. Petersburg, June 2006:
SASHA PUSHKIN (piano & more) & ANDRÁS TIBORCZ (violin & more)
World music, fusion, jazz, with elements of the free and the experimental.
András Tiborcz is a composer, violinist, and singer. Originally from Hungary, András lived in Australia before relocating to Berlin - the city where he currently lives and works. He leads the "Transylvanians," formerly "Chillagok"- a group that Sasha had appeared with as a guest musician.
András Tiborcz has played violin for a "PUSHKIN" group.
SASHA PUSHKIN (piano) & MAHMOUD FADL (percussions)
World music, jazz...
To convey a vast musical energy and depth, Mahmoud Fadl plays a diverse family of instruments (Sandouk masri, Duff, Duhula, Bongo, Marakash, Sagat, Tabla, Tamborine, Congas.) Mahmoud is also a "PUSHKIN BOOM BEAT" guest percussionist.
Read about Mahmoud:
Born in 1955, descendant of a Nubian family, he grew up in the Egyptian cities of Aswan and Cairo where he began his musical career thanks to his prowess in the then current dance craze, the Limbo, which he performed at clubs, hotels and weddings. Moving on to percussion his obvious talent won him jobs with a number of ensembles including the Nile Nubian band and wedding king Ali Hassan Kuban's orchestra. Since 1980 he has lived and worked between Berlin and Cairo, recording nine albums for PIRANHA with his Drummers of the Nile group, the Nubian all-star ensemble Salamat and his Arabic classical orchestra projects and developing club mixes for his experimental "United Nubians" Drum'n'DJ project as well as contributing to albums by The Klezmatics, PianOrientalist Maurice El Medioni and Gypsy sax master Ferus Mustafov.
Quote "The drum and the dancer are like lovers, parent and child, brother and sister. They talk to each other with sweet words and signs of closeness." Mahmoud Fadl
Info by Piranha (www.piranha.de)
Sasha Pushkin (piano)
Support - 007-berlin
A highly improvisational project, its action develops according to shared stimuli which are given, received, processed. The three performers enter an intuitive dialogue - each performer using a distinct sets of tools, each set of tools belonging to a separate medium. Sasha shapes sound, Viktor paint and symbols, and Edsel movement and dance. To enable the conversation, Edsel's shadow and Viktor's "calligraphy" are projected onto a screen. What results for the audience is all at once visual, aural and kinetic.
After its original performance, the project was presented in other venues with variants. In one variation the piano is absent. Sasha uses instead pre-composed electronics and other media with voice and effect-processor. In another, both piano and pianist are absent. Recorded electronics (previously composed by Sasha) are heard.
Viktor has employed Sasha's composed electronics for other dance collaborations of his own. These projects have been presented in such venues as the GZSI (the russian national center of contemporary art) in Moscow.
SASHA PUSHKIN & CIRCUS OF NOW
Digital Piano Painting / Multi media performance
Imagine that you are a painter. You get your colours and brushers. But your canvas is the sky. You paint on the sky with sound and colours. This is what Sasha feels while playing this.
This is a collaboration with a great High Tech visual Team of "Circus of now" Technically this project is based on high computer technologies. This is a real-time event. A piano is connected to a computer system, which projects pre-produced visual images on to a screen (or any surface). These can actually be anything. And the way in which the keys are played produces a different visual reaction. The pianist has 88 keys to play with. And each key can trigger any number of different variations. And there are millions of chord and note combinations… So what the viewer sees is a fluid stream of live video images produced by live piano playing. You see what you hear and you hear what you see.
SASHA PUSHKIN (piano) & EDSEL SCOTT (body)
Free improvised, contemporary dance
A little bit about Edsell:
2006 "Schinkiro" Akira Kasai, Theater Tram Tokyo, Ai-Hall, Itami-shi, Osaka
2005 "Grenzwertig" Yvonne Hardt, Tanztage Festival "Schinkiro" Akira Kasai, In Transit Festival "Biomatrix" Horst Wirral "Amo" Kitunga Projek
2004 "Olhos d`Agua" Ismael Ivo, im Rahmen des Atlantic "Bismarck`s African Hostages" Mark Headley
2003 "The Voice" Ein Fest der Stimmen, mit Bobby McFerrin "DaSein" Necla Kaya "Symbols" Rajyaschree Ramesh
2002 "Stadt Graniza" Irina Roerig "Keep on walking" Yvonne Hardt "Resident Evil" Werner van Eden
2001 "Perle Irregular" Thome Ajarro "Stadt Graniza" Irina Roerig
2000 "5 Elements" Diana Dragos
SASHA PUSHKIN (piano) && TOBIAS VETHAKE (cello, electronics)
Improvised ambient, jazz, classic, noise
Versatile musician and multi-instrumentalist Tobias Vethake (e-cello, guitars, rhodes, lapsteel, zither, bass, mandolin, synthesizers, drums, electronics) is a "Pushkin Boom Beat" member, a "Pushkin Funplugged" guest musician, and a "Serenade FBI" projects partner.
After studying classical cello at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater Hannover, Tobias Vethake was drawn to songwriting. He initiated several collaborative as well as solo projects, including "Blankmusic," "Fotomaton" and "Siker Man."
Tobias currently composes music for film and theater productions.
memoriam Boris Rayskin
SASHA PUSHKIN (piano & objects, electronics, voice) & BORIS RAYSKIN (cello & electronics, voice)
In 1995, Boris Rayskin and Sasha Pushkin formed the duo, "Buckets." "Buckets" provided a means of intense and creative collaboration for its two members, as well as a backdrop for friendship and professional support; during this period, Sasha produced concerts for Boris in Berlin and facilitated his musical activities in Europe. The duo was named for a pair of yellow plastic buckets lying around Sasha Puskin's home. During a session at Sasha's, Boris saw these buckets and said, "Hey! that's what we need!"
Boris Rayskin, based in New York City from 1990 until his untimely death in March 1997, was an active and energetic cellist and composer. He was an accomplished classical musician as well as a powerful improvisor.
Moving within New York's free jazz circles, Rayskin co-founded and organized the first annual Sergey Kuryokhin International Festival - SKIF. The festival's activities were supported and presented by The Knitting Factory, a well-known and respected venue for music's avant garde. After its successful beginning in New York, SKIF moved to St. Petersburg. With remote performances still in New York, and venues added in Berlin, it is a thriving and important event for experimental music.
He collaborated with such artists as Sergey Kuryokhin (the inspiration and namesake of the Sergey Kuryokhin International Festival,) Frank London, Thomas Chapin, Sainkho Namchylak, Sakari Luoma.
Born in St. Petersburg, Russia, Boris Rayskin died in New York at the age of 33.
This note from Boris, hung on Sasha's studio wall for several years. Written in Russian as a sincere and playful wish for both Sasha and himself, it translates:
"We weren't told to talk bullshit or to fucking doubt ourselves! Live the way you play (and so will I!) Boriska Rayskin 12.10.95"
© translated by Theresa Rosas
Tina Wrase (Soprano - sax)