THURSDAY 10/3, 8:00 PM
Musician and composer Darius Jones presents the Elizabeth-Caroline Unit on Thursday, October 3rd performing select etudes from his piece ‘Over-Soul Manual’ for a capella voice. The Elizabeth-Caroline Unit is a set of four female vocalists: Amirtha Kidambi, Sarah Dyson, Kristin Slipp, and Jean-Carla Rodea. Following the performance will be a screening of a short film by Randal Wilcox, Jones’s partner in the Man’ish Boy Epic.
The ‘Over-Soul Manual’ is a collection of etudes written for the vocal quartet, Elizabeth-Caroline Unit. The etudes are vehicles to teach each vocalist the linguistic and sonic vocabulary of an alien birthing ritual. In this alien culture, having a child is done with the spiritual agreement of three or more humanoids. Each female alien gives birth to some aspect of the genetic makeup that forms the child. The Elizabeth-Caroline Unit are the proud mothers of a son called Man’ish Boy. Their son was taken away from them when he was born, so now they travel the universe searching for him. The birthing ritual can take years for some units. The creation of Man’ish Boy took seven. He is very important to the cultural and spiritual development on his planet, Or’gen.
Compositionally and lyrically, the etudes in The ‘Over-Soul Manual’ are built using familiar musical elements—elements that Jones felt were commonplace even among individuals who weren’t educated in music. As humans we hear sound constantly. Many of these sounds are communicating information to us whether they be musical or environmental. With each quartet, trio, duo, and solo etude, the composer wanted to mimic the idea of communication. The solo etudes are a depiction of an individual trying to communicate something to themselves, similar to when we talk to ourselves. These etudes are based in an alien world so the syntax and speech patterns are different from ours. Listening to these etudes should trigger a similar feeling of listening to a dog bark, a bird sing, or listening to someone speaking a foreign language. True communication goes beyond words.
DARIUS JONES is a critically acclaimed alto saxophonist and composer who joined the New York music community in 2005. Nominated in 2013 for Alto Saxophonist of the Year, and for Up & Coming Artist of the Year two years in a row for the Jazz Journalists Association Jazz Awards, Jones is a musician on the rise. In April 2012, Jones released the magical third character in the Man’ish Boy Epic with his quartet album, Book of Mæ’bul (Another Kind of Sunrise). Love and Beauty map the exquisitely detailed yet fluid movement of the music. Mæ’bul is an attempt at manifesting Jones’ spiritual pursuit of these two elements in sound. Jones has collaborated with artists such as Gerald Cleaver’s Black Host, Oliver Lake Big Band, William Parker’s Essence of Ellington, Mara Rosenbloom Quartet, Trevor Dunn’s Proof Readers, James Carter, Fred Ho, Eric Revis, Elliot Sharp, Matthew Shipp, and many more. For more information visit his website: www.dariusjonesmusic.com
RANDAL WILCOX is a graphic artist and filmmaker born and currently based in the Bronx. His work has been exhibited and screened at The Bronx Museum of the Arts, The Studio Museum in Harlem, Artists Space, Anthology Film Archives, and has been reviewed in The New Yorker. Wilcox studied painting and filmmaking at the School of Visual Arts; his work is in The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Museum of New Art (MoNA) and various private collections. He has designed several album covers for Darius Jones since 2009. The two are currently working on a series of animated science-fiction films that will elaborate on the visual and sonic language that the pair has established in their 5- year collaboration. Their first film, “I Wish I Had a Choice,” was completed in 2013. For more information visit his website: www.randalwilcox.com