Tuesday, March 26, 2019

Cartoon Justice SoCal Tour 2019

March of 2019 was certainly a busy month for Cartoon Justice. First a bunch of shows with Elliott Levin, and next a quick trip down to Los Angeles and Joshua Tree in SoCal for three more. A quick rundown.....

Cartoon Justice-Cafe Nela, Los Angeles CA; 3/21/19
Thankfully, we didn't have to rush down to Los Angeles for this show. In fact, we left the SF Bay Area a day early, thus having a ton of extra time to get our heads right for this gig. After a fun several hours of visiting Amoeba Records downtown and Griffith Park, we headed over to Cafe Nela in pretty relaxed moods. Now, our set, however, was anything but. Inspired by emotions still somewhat raw from our very tense gig at Muchmore's in Brooklyn last year, we really let it all fly out. A version of Spirit Aligned Truth morphed into some pretty crazed spaces. Mika and Eli were especially blasted on this set. Crazy, fun and very much laid INTO. I had a great time playing my "Acid Jazz" kit, too.   The other acts on this bill were equally weird and cool. Cafe Nela is a great, funky place. Go there when you're next in Los Angeles.

Below: Small kit with big sounds; 3/4 of Cartoon Justice at Griffith Park Observatory
Below: video! By and courtesy of Tommy Blatnik, thanks Tommy!

Above: audio only, second half of set at Cafe Nela.

Cartoon Justice-Furstwurld, Joshua Tree CA; 3/22/19
Cartoon Justice rolled into Furstwurld and its very funky desert art environment pretty early on the evening of 3/22. I was wondering if anyone would be at this show, as it's pretty well out of Joshua Tree proper. Thankfully, some folks showed up for it. After a cool set from Emily Hay, Lucio Menegon, and Danny Frankel, we managed to get our set going, even with some technical difficulties. I was having trouble hearing Mika and Kersti, as the stage was set up so that Eli and I were basically "in another room". Even so, we managed to pull together a pretty manic set. It seemed as though we cleared the room, but apparently Eli got some good feedback from people. I just recall digging in and going for broke with my drums, in tandem with Eli. The end of the evening featured a groovy collaborative Lingua Incognita set from all of the evening's players. That was really cool!

Below: Eli awaits the onslaught

Cartoon Justice-The Palms Restaurant, Twentynine Palms CA; 3/23/19
Man, I thought Furstwurld was out of the way, but damn The Palms is out in the middle nowhere! Totally surrounded by desert scrub! Its interior is wicked cool though, full of strange acidic Funk Art and dusty ambiance. A really neat place for sure. Cartoon Justice hooked up with Emily Hay for this one. She did a bit of a short set with Eli on bass and me on drums. This proved to be pretty satisfying, albeit somewhat truncated. Cartoon followed, and we played two sets of very free and loose grooves. Spirit Aligned Truth emerged again, along with Elegy de Amazonia. We got all over the map, playing soft, loud, and all points in-between. After the previous two evenings' playing, I felt suitably amped up and inspired. Not a ton of people there, but we did get some folks to watch. After our sets, I overheard one guy saying that our music "goes nowhere", and yeah, I can dig that. I guess it's about being in the moment. Improvised music is certainly not for all people. I wasn't mad at the guy. It seemed pretty "somewhere" to me, but maybe I'm just biased.

Below: Cartoon Justice at Joshua Tree National Park

Heading back up to Northern California, I left Joshua Tree way before sunrise on Sunday. The 210 freeway is a lot easier before 7 AM, that's for sure. I got over the Grapevine by 8:30 and found myself back in Richmond in the early afternoon, satisfied with another trip with the Cartoon Justice crew.

Monday, March 18, 2019

Cartoon Justice Southern California Tour Dates!

Cartoon Justice will be heading to Southern California to play some shows!

Thu., 3/21/19
Cafe Nela
1906 Cypress Ave.
Los Angeles 90065
8:30 PM
Cartoon Justice
also on the bill: Joe Baiza/John Wynne Duo, Hookah, Sonic Utopia

Fri., 3/22/19
8528 Desert Shadows Rd.
Joshua Tree 92252
8 PM
Cartoon Justice
also on the bill: Emily Hay/Luciano Menegon/Danny Frankel Trio

Sat., 3/23/19
The Palms Restaurant
83131 Amboy Rd.
Twentynine Palms 92277
7 PM
Cartoon Justice with Emily Hay

Looks like a fun weekend ahead!

CDP video up at Youtube!

Thanks, Outsound!

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Cartoon Justice with Elliott Levin video up at Youtube!

Many thanks to Ann O'Rourke for coming to the show and taking this footage!

Saturday, March 16, 2019

New Olduvai March Shows Roundup!

I'll just cut to the chase and say, "...damn, what a great time I had playing with Elliott Levin's New Olduvai..."
The shows, respectively at Luggage Store in S.F., Backroom in Berkeley, Studio Grand in Oakland, Peacock Lounge in S.F., and Bird & Beckett Books and Records in S.F., were all incredibly fulfilling on aesthetic and spiritual levels. It seems safe to say that the members of Cartoon Justice put our all into them; we played hard and intensely. I'm feeling pretty well DRAINED after these shows, but in the best kind of way. It was great to collaborate with Elliott. He's most definitely the kind of poet and player that will have a musician elevating their musical game. What a gas it was to get to go toe to toe with him as he played.
It was also pretty incredible to get to share a stage with cellist Kash Killion for a few nights at Peacock Lounge and Bird & Beckett. He's been a musical hero of mine since I saw him play at Yoshi's in 1994. That was a mind blowing set, and I still think about it a lot. To get to share sound with the man.....incredible.
On account of fatigue, I'm keeping this post really short, but suffice it to say that I'm feeling very lucky and musically fulfilled from New Olduvai's March 2019 SF Bay Area run of shows. These experiences will be cherished, these memories relished.
Big ups to those with whom we shared bills, equipment, and space.
Many thanks to Elliott Levin, Kash Killion, and the members of Cartoon Justice!

Sunday, March 3, 2019

Cartoon Justice teams up with Elliott Levin in March!

Philadelphia based, internationally working woodwind player and poet Elliott Levin will be coming to the SF Bay Area over the next couple of weeks. Cartoon Justice will have the privilege of being his backing group and collaborators for several shows. The moniker we'll be going under is New Olduvai. We're very excited about it!

Thu. 3/7/19
Luggage Store Gallery
1007 Market St.
SF 94103
8 PM
New Olduvai
DNR Trio
$8-15 sliding scale

Fri. 3/8/19
The Back Room
1984 Bonita Ave.
Berkeley 94704
New Olduvai
Underweather Kitten

Mon. 3/11/19
Studio Grand
3234 Grand Ave.
Oakland 94610
9:30 PM
New Olduvai

Wed. 3/13/19
Peacock Lounge
552 Haight St.
SF 94117
8 PM
New Olduvai
Substation 6
Gabby Fluke-Mogul
Matt Ingalls

Thu. 3/14/19
Bird & Beckett
653 Chenery St.
SF 94131
7:30 PM
New Olduvai

These shows are going to be incredible.