Oakland Freedom Jazz Society and Studio Grand present a special showcase for touring composer/instrumentalist Sahba Sizdahkhani, with support from his Oakland-based friends Chuck Johnson and DunkelpeK.
Iranian multi-instrumentalist Sahba Sizdahkhani serves as a unique crossroad of East meets West. Inspired heavily by 1960s free jazz and traditional Persian music, he constantly channels the fire-energy and longing for connectivity that these two stormy histories represent.
Sahba has recorded with artists on the imprints of Dischord Records, Southern Lord, and Drag City, and has appeared live with Peter Brotzmann, Devendra Banhart, Miho Hatori (Cibo Matto), Marc Ribot, Eli Keszler, and Mary Halvorson. He completed a Bachelor of Arts at The University of Maryland in Art History and Archeology as well as in Jazz Performance at Berklee College of Music.
For this performance of 104-string santour and percussion, he will be channeling slow, long-form compositions coupled with primeval pulse-rhythms, based on the ancient spiritual ceremony of Sama: a ritual used by the Persian Sufi Dervishes to achieve a state of spiritual trance and numbness. Recent studies of the Sufis by scientists have found that, while under the influence of these rhythms, the chemistry of the brain changes causing a shift from anger to sadness to kindness to joy.
Chuck Johnson is a composer and musician residing in Oakland, CA. He approaches his work with an ear towards finding faults and instabilities that might reveal latent beauty, with a focus on guitar, experimental electronics, minimalism and soundtrack composition. Recordings of his work have been published by VDSQ, Trouble in Mind, Scissor Tail, Merge, and Three Lobed, among others.
Balsams, Johnson’s first album dedicated solely to the pedal steel guitar, is an immersive collection of meditations that highlights the instrument’s underutilized capacity for subtlety and beauty. The music is at once ambient and dramatic, swelling with unexpected melodies that emerge from the tonal ether.
DunkelpeK is Japanese-born percussionist Nava Dunkelman and Canadian-American guitarist Jakob Pek. This iconoclastic duo creates an experimental improvised music for the new century. Visceral, cathartic and contemplative, DunkelpeK’s sound transfigures and hybridizes many musics of the world, offering listeners a holistic exploration into the very essence of musical experience.
DOORS 9:00 PM; SHOW 9:30 PM
$10-20 sliding scale
*no refunds or exchanges permitted on advance tickets purchased*
This event is co-presented by Studio Grand and Oakland Freedom Jazz Society. OFJS normally takes place every Monday night at Studio Grand. Lineups feature avant-jazz, experimental and noise performances by local and touring musicians and multimedia artists. OFJS is a long-running (4 years and counting!) series curated by Fernando Carpenter of VAMP. For more information, check out OFJS's Facebook page.