Wednesday, Feb 13
Time: 8:00 PM
Description: What happens when two Buddhists and a Muslim meet to make music? Arabilly. Countryeastern. Indofunk. Sufisurf. Jazz. World. Jam. Music to help you Pray For Brain. Pray for Brain is not your auntie's world music band, nor your uncle's country twang, nor your grandad's jazz vinyl: think 70s era Miles Davis, Chet Atkins and late Coltrane playing with the White Stripes and Isaac Hayes on a Calcutta rooftop with a bird's eye view to Morocco. Johnny Cash and Bengali icon Rabrindranath Tagore may sit in, too. Pray For Brain is an evolution of Sama Duo, where Mustafa Stefan Dill (guitars, oud) and Jefferson Voorhees (drums) brought a telepathic level of interplay to their groove-oriented energetic improvisations, delivered with a gutsy south Asian and Middle Eastern twist. One fan wrote, "I love Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Indian classical music and Zeppelin and improv jazz, and your music was hitting all of those buttons in my brain at once." Albuquerque's Weekly Alibi called them "catchy, challenging, spacey and spiritual all at the same time." With the addition of upright bassist Christine Nelson and retooled as Pray For Brain, the new trio expands the range of groove, nuance and improvising conversations. The music is simultaneously lighter but deeper, easier to hear and harder to shake off. Pray For Brain binds their diverse musical influences into a unified, coherent soundscape: skillful writing frames artful, telepathic dialogues that draw on a deep core of both cutting-edge and ancient improvising methods from India, Africa and the Middle East. The trio offers their voice with an energetic finesse wrapped in a rhythmically-driven, wide-ranging rock/funk/country/jazz ethos. BIOS: Mustafa Stefan Dill (guitars, oud) was born in New Mexico to a Mexican mother and German-Irish father. His multinational and cross-cultural childhood experiences include strong memories with Lebanese relatives in Mexico and formative years in the culturally diverse city of Montpellier, France. His early music - an intense and unique convergence of traditional flamenco elements and modern free improvisation - won critical praise with recordings such as Warning Clothed in Bright Robes of Dawn, Sangre Del Rio, and Six Peaces (his debut on the oud), paving the way for his hallmark approach of combining modern and traditional improvising methods within a deep immersion of various cultural musical traditions. A guitarist for over 30 years, he earned a Masters degree in composition from the New England Conservatory in Boston, studying with Joe Maneri. He has incorporated oud into his music since 2002. Dill also plays sarod, though now prefers fretless guitar for Indian-derived pieces. He has performed solo concerts throughout Europe since 1992 in both improvised music and guitar circles at such venues and festivals as FMP's Total Music Meeting, Wirral Guitar Festival, Paderborn Guitar Festival, Zuid Nederlands Jazz Festival, Festival HispanoAmericano de la Guitarra, Erlbach, Nickelsdorf, and others. He has performed with artists such as Cecil Taylor (special invitation as part of the Ensemble, Knitting Factory, May 1996), Guus Janssen (Eindhoven 1995), John Dikeman, John Jasnoch, Out Of Context and Nacha Mendez. Jefferson Voorhees is a life-long drummer whose career has included touring and playing across North America, Europe and South Asia in hundreds of bands you've likely never heard of. Some you might have, such as the Tom Guralnick Trio, Out of Context, and others. After long residences in New York and San Francisco, he now resides in New Mexico and is one of the region's most versatile and sought after percussionists. He and Mustafa have been playing together in one band or another for nearly two decades. Christine Nelson (bass) recently returned to her native Albuquerque after time in the Idaho and Washington state music scenes. After years on classical and gypsy jazz guitar, Christine picked up bass in 2007 and has played for Northwest - based Afro-pop/reggae band United Roots and various groups in Albuquerque.