AMN Reviews: Apocryphal in New York, Sept. 18, 2014

Thank you, Avant Music News for posting this and for providing a consistent and broad-based resource for all!

Avant Music News

by Monique Avakian


Vinnie Sperrazza – drums, compositions
Brandon Seabrook – guitar
Loren Stillman – alto sax
Eivind Opsvik – bass

Cornelia Street Cafe, NYC
CD Release
Cornelia Street Café, September 18, 2014

As I walked my own crooked trail to the venue, I met a man in monk’s robes. He gave me a golden ticket and a bracelet. But when I wouldn’t give him any money, he took them back! Hey! Didn’t he just mention the name of the Dalai Lama? A moment ago, wasn’t he speaking of love and peace? Oh, 6th Avenue! Ah! Apocryphal!

Apocryphal. A word and a concept. Perhaps even a lifestyle. First definition reads “false.” The second: “dubious.” Going deeper, you encounter cycles of biblical texts unearthed, locked away and subsumed. Rome is involved. Greece is presented at root. You begin to wonder about the earlier incarnations of the…

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Incanto Incognito, A Poem by Monique Avakian

I am pleased to announce that Winged has posted my poem and prose explanation about how the improvised music of this trio lifted me into BEE consciousness ! :
Ellery Eskelin tenor sax
Susan Alcorn pedal steel guitar
Michael Formanek upright bass
Their CD is available here:

Winged: New Writing on Bees


Incanto Incognito

                    … though this map has been danced out for you before,

this may be the first time you realize where you’re going …

People~machines crushed by the invisible hand

take flight like warmed bees


propelled by the ethereal sound of live, improvised music

their winged shield holds, forms a third body

of protection


pain, invited into the light

burns into the nothingness of understanding


called forth by the sound of the Spheres,

each crumpled life, in turn, unfolds into the sweet heat

of loving kindness


each un-shuttered heart

at once

 the Soul in search


the delicate anther



Soul Work: The Story Behind the Poem

I went to hear a jazz trio on November 23, 2013. Near the end of the concert, round about

9:47pm, something magical happened. As the inventive…

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Avitar Face 2 Face Interview with Golda Solomon

Golda, the Medicine Woman of Jazz, is interviewed in a conversational manner by Jewel Kinch-Thomas on her White Plains Cable Show, Avitar. This half hour video outlines Golda’s groundbreaking career and her shared history with myriad organizations and individuals in her work with poetry and jazz.

Various Jazz Reviews I’ve Written:

(organized by writer, by date, perpetually scrolling)

Rough Draft for Sound and Music Facilitator Project

Imagination. Creativity. Music. Word. Rhythm. Vibration. E to F call to Persian scale–.docx

Saraswati is the Goddess of leaming, knowledge, and wisdom. The Sanskrit word sara means "essence" and swa means "self." Thus Saraswati means "the essence of the self."

E to F call to Persian scale–Garage Band–still working on how to save this in a format that Word Press will take–well I got it in mp3 format on my harddrive, but it looks like WordPress will charge an arm and a leg yearly to allow that format. Video too, needs an “upgrade” from them

This minor second interval (E to F) that I just played is my new invocation to greet each day. I can sing this or play this on guitar or bass. I recorded the clip here by playing E to F on the vibes and recorded it on my new MAC under the WORD project area notebook which has an audio button. I am not sure that others can hear this clip, though, unless they also have a MAC and download it into their .docx place.

Where did all this come from? On Feb. 6, Silvia Nakkach brought us to a new level of awareness and skill via Indian Raga and devotional music to Saraswati. I internalized a deep understanding of the music theory pattern* in a gentle and loving way. As I surprised myself improvising using some of my handwritten notes about the form, I heard David Darling’s voice in my head: “Nothing is difficult.”

* example:

Bb, B, D Eb, F, Gb, A, Bb

1st interval minor 2nd

2nd note flat (not sure if that is the same as above and redundant)

3rd note, major 3rd

4th note natural 4th

5th note natural 5th

6th note minor 6th

7th note major 7th