A monthly series curated by RDL+, Bay Area Bridges celebrates the Bay Area, with Oakland as its hub, and brings together the most interesting and ground-breaking voices that need to be heard and reckoned with. Shows include music written and presented by RDL+ as well as other innovative artists, and will break new ground in modern music.
This month, Bay Area Bridges is excited to host Steve’s Shuffle Play.
A Note from Steve’s Shuffle Play...
When approached for this show, I knew my recent compositions were going to be a roller-coaster for the audience. Disparate genres with different instrumentations, electronics mixed with samples and acoustic sounds…. Cats and dogs sleeping together. “So what,” they said, “you’re doing it anyway”. So I guess everyone has listened to their playlist on shuffle… so maybe I should take that approach. Expect everything to be a little disjunct. But never fear, lots of terrifying risks will be taken, lines crossed… etc...
Steve Weems’ application of the drumset has been called by some volcanic, by others melodic, and to other ears comes across as “someone falling down the stairs.” His drumming both supports and challenges the musicians he plays with in a both carefully intentional and yet intuitive way.
From a background in classical percussion at University of Oregon, Steve also studied jazz, composition, and electronic music. These studies were in part made possible by a full tuition scholarship playing bass guitar. Steve grew up around a lot of instruments in a very musical household, he quickly became comfortable playing guitar and bass, and later piano. He played trumpet and baritone in the school band, but no instrument held as much interest to him as percussion. Perhaps this spectrum of talents adds to his ability to sympathetically calibrate to each musician he plays with.
Steve lives in the Bay Area where he teaches percussion to students from 4th through 12th grade. Active in the CMEA and NCBA music festival circuit, Steve has routinely sent his students and ensembles to adjudicated events where they have received top honors. Steve instills excellence in his students, much like he strives for it himself. Steve always considers himself a student first.
With their 2014 debut album, Más P’alla Va, RDL+ is building an original sound that embodies the members’ collective ideas, inspirations, and histories. RDL+ is Ruthie Dineen on keys, Doug Lee on bass, Steve Weems on drums, Luis Salcedo on guitar, plus(+) the Bay Area's best up-and-coming musicians. The group focuses on writing and playing original compositions, while taking both lyrical and open improvisations on the pieces. While maintaining an aesthetic stemming from traditional jazz, the group experiments with odd meters, timbre, form, and melodic ideas. Nonetheless, the exploratory nature of the group is always rooted in the essence of the composed or arranged pieces.
Doug Lee, bass
Ruthie Dineen, piano
Steve Weems, drums
Luis Salcedo, guitar
DOORS AT 6:30PM, SHOW AT 7PM
$10-15 Sliding Scale