206 W. Michigan Ave, Ypsilanti, MI 48197


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Aug 27 2019


8:00 pm - 11:00 pm



Cinghiale (Ken Vandermark, Mars Williams) & Steve Marquette

An intimate night with Ken Vandermark, Mars Williams, and Steve Marquette. Tickets will be $10. Advance Tickets:

Saxophonists Mars Williams and Ken Vandermark met in Chicago during the early 1990s and were part of a new wave of activity taking place in the city during that decade, one that involved the work of a diverse number of projects and musicians based around significant venues for adventurous music at the time, Hothouse and the Empty Bottle. As part of that activity, which included legendary improvised music groups the NRG Ensemble and Vandermark Five, Mars and Ken formed the duo Cinghiale, both composing for the group and building off the rapport that they had been developing through their various collaborations at that time.

In February of 2019 they reconvened the project, composing a new book of material together and presenting it in Chicago and at the Instigation Festival in New Orleans. The music, solidly grounded in foundations built over decades also projected into future possibilities, based on projects and developments in their individual work. The excitement over this potential quickly led to a decision to put Cinghiale on the road later in the year, working on the new material, composing some additional pieces, and recording the music at the end of that tour.

Steve Marquette is part of a contemporary evolution taking place on the Chicago music scene, one that is again cross-pollinating between categories and genres, combining improvisation with new and experimental music, underground rock, and noise. He belongs to the trio, The Few, which has been an instrumental part of the resurgence of individuality among younger players in the city. Steve’s solo music builds off of that trio’s activity and collaborations with many other artists, particularly musicians based in New Orleans.

The time feels right to bring these generations of creative musicians together to present new work. The energy and commitment toward the tradition of searching for personal languages- so integral to Chicago’s music history going back to the early 20th century, continuing toward the landmark work of the AACM, and going further forward from there- puts their attitude toward the artistic search completely in common and on target in these times.

Mars Williams is an open-minded musician, composer and educator who commutes easily between free jazz, funk, hip-hop and rock. Mars has played and recorded with The Psychedelic Furs, Billy Idol, Massacre, Fred Frith, Bill Laswell, Ministry, Power Station, The Waitresses, Pete Cosey, DJ Logic, Wayne Kramer, John Scoffield, Charlie Hunter, Kurt Elling, Swollen Monkeys, Jerry Garcia, Naked Raygun, and virtually every leading figure of Chicagos and New York City’s “downtown” scene.

John Zorn credits Mars as “one of the true saxophone players–someone who takes pleasure in the sheer act of blowing the horn. This tremendous enthusiasm is an essential part of his sound, and it comes through each note every time he plays. Whatever the situation, Mars plays exciting music. In many ways he has succeeded in redefining what versatility means to the modern saxophone player.” In 2001 Mars received a Grammy Nomination for Best Contemporary Jazz Record with his group Liquid Soul.

He performs weekly in Chicago along with Jim Baker, Steve Hunt, and Brian Sandstrom in the improvising quartet Extraordinary Popular Delusions, leads the groups the NRG Ensemble, Witches & Devils, Boneshaker, and has collaborated with Ken Vandermark, Hamid Drake, Michael Zerang, William Parker, Ikue Mori, Kent Kessler, Fredric Lonberg Holm, Peter Brotzmann, Joe McPhee, Jeb Bishop, Tim Daisy, Ingebrigt Haker Flaten, Paal Nilssen-Love, Ab Baars, Mike Reed, Jeb Bishop, Harrison Bankhead, Dave Rempis, Kidd Jordan, and Matts Gustafson on a regular basis.

Ken Vandermark moved to Chicago from Boston In 1989 and has worked continuously from the early 1990s onward, both as a performer and organizer in North America and Europe, recording in a large array of contexts, with many internationally renowned musicians (such as Fred Anderson, Ab Baars, Peter Brötzmann, Sylvie Courvoisier, Tim Daisy, Kris Davis, Hamid Drake, Terrie Hessels, Mats Gustafsson, Elisabeth Harnik, Steve Heather, Didi Kern, Kent Kessler, Christof Kurzmann, Fred Lonberg-Holm, Paul Lytton, Lou Mallozzi, Lasse Marhaug, Joe McPhee, Andy Moor, Jason Moran, Ikue Mori, Joe Morris, Paal Nilssen-Love, Eddie Prevóst, Mette Rasmussen, Tom Rainey, Eric Revis, Jasper Stadhouders, Chad Taylor, John Tilbury, Mars Williams, Nate Wooley).

His current musical activity includes work with Marker, Made To Break, Lean Left, Shelter, DEK, The DKV Trio, The Eric Revis Quartet, VWCR; duos with Paal Nilssen-Love, Terrie Hessels, and Nate Wooley, as well as work as a solo performer. Since June of 2015 has been co-curator of Option, a music series held on a weekly basis between March and October at the Experimental Sound Studio in Chicago. In 2014 he began an independent label, called Audiographic Records, created to document special aspects of his work through albums and books. More than half of each year is spent touring in Europe, North America, Latin America, and Japan, and his concerts and numerous recordings have been critically acclaimed both at home and abroad. In addition to the tenor sax, he also plays the bass and Bb clarinet, and baritone saxophone. His activity as a writer includes liner notes for recordings by a variety of artists; and contributions to the eight edition of John Zorn’s “Arcana: musicians on music,” the Spanish language journal, “El Esatdo Mental,” and “Catalytic Quarterly.”

Steve Marquette is a guitarist, improviser and organizer based out of Chicago, IL. Over the past decade he has become an integral part of the city’s storied and vibrant improvised music community, in ensembles of his own (The Few with Macie Stewart and Charlie Kirchen, Kobra Quartet, Instigation Orchestra) and as a member of Ken Vandermark’s Marker among other projects. In addition to his work as a musician, he is also a founder and lead organizer of the Instigation Festival – which brings together music, movement and video artists from Chicago and New Orleans for a week of interdisciplinary collaboration in each city.

Using both acoustic and electric guitars, Marquette’s solo music explores the intersections between free improvisation, folk traditions and the guitar as “sound box”.


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