:: October - December 2017 ::
Rovas recording at Guerilla Euphonics in Oakland, October, 2017. Photos by Myles Boisen

In This Dispatch:

Rova @40!

Recent Rova CD Reviews

Rova Recordings to Benefit Planned Parenthood

Local Rova Shows

New CDs from Steve Adams and Larry Ochs

Rova Member Shows

Rova T-Shirts!

Rova @40!

Rova’s working on a new recording, which will be our first CD release as a quartet since the 2012 disc, A Short History. Our plan is to get it released in 2018 to celebrate our 40th anniversary year. The disc will feature new pieces by each of the Rovas, representing the range and depth of our current conceptual interests. Watch for news soon.

We have some exciting concerts on the horizon. In November we’ll perform a quartet date at the Makeout Room in San Francisco, sharing the bill with Rent Romus’ Life’s Blood Ensemble, and Instagon. We’re really stoked about our participation in a two-day Wadada Leo Smith festival in December, which will certainly bring new ears to the magically crafted music of Mr. Smith. And please bookmark the upcoming Rova 40th Anniversary Show, featuring a collaboration with filmmaker ACVilla, as well as reworkings of two exquisite Rova pieces, featuring musicians Wobbly and Dohee Lee: one big mash-up of a birthday concert to be presented at the Lab in San Francisco on January 27, 2018.

Larry Ochs has been busy hunting for Rova opportunities to augment some confirmed U.S. dates in March (southeast) and May (northeast) next year, and we have some very promising leads. He’s also working to get a tour going in Europe in the fall of 2018, which would be an ideal way to cap off the conclusion of our 4th decade. We’ll keep you all posted as things develop.

Our two latest collaborative CDs have gotten some great notices, which we share below. If you haven’t heard these discs, be sure to check them out.


Recent Rova CD Reviews

Read the word on the street about Rova’s last two CDs:

Saxophone Special
, featuring Kyle Bruchmann, analog synthesizer, and Henry Kaiser, guitars

Rova and company sculpt brilliant improvisations of melody and noise that are honest to the core and utterly free of restraint. This is thrilling, cathartic stuff.”

-- Ed Enright, DownBeat

ROVA’s treatment of this material honors its creative example by not recreating it note for note. Stylistically, Kaiser, who is probably better equipped than any guitarist alive to imitate Bailey, opts for a different tonal effect. He and synthesizer Kyle Bruckmann adopt less confrontational roles, sounding less like dissenters from the music’s structures and more like mirrors reflecting or refracting aspects of them. #e music feels more muscular and gruff than the original, but also exploits the complex sensitivity of ROVA’s decades-in-the-making interplay.”

-- Bill Meyer, DownBeat

No Favorites
, Rova with string quartet and power trio, a tribute to Lawrence “Butch” Morris

Transcending musical categories and the outdated structures of genre, No Favorites! is more than just a tribute to Butch Morris' ground-breaking techniques, it is a democratic appeal for sonic unity that resonates with the rich history of large-ensemble improvisation, in which instruments and ensembles are no longer segregated by stylistic constraints.

-- Troy Collins, All About Jazz

Rova CDs are available through the Rova site, bandcamp, and select music shops.


Rova Recordings to Benefit Planned Parenthood

Graphic Works, Rova quartet pieces by Jon Raskin and Steve Adams

Scores for Jon Raskin’s Flower Power (left), and for Steve Adams’ #35

Available now, studio recordings of Rova performing pieces by Steve Adams and Jon Raskin, conceived and realized through graphic notation. Offer includes unlimited streaming via the free Bandcamp app, plus high-quality download in MP3, FLAC and more. You can download the complete set of recordings, and also have the option to order high quality prints of the scores. All proceeds will go to Planned Parenthood to continue their important work.



Local Rova Shows

Rova Performs New and Recent Works

Monday, November 6, 8:30 PM
The Makeout Room
3225 - 22nd Street & Mission
San Francisco

Rova will present original works on home turf, also featuring Instagon, and Rent Romus’ Life’s Blood Ensemble.

Saturday, December 16, 8:00 PM

Music of Wadada Leo Smith

A two-day festival, starting on Friday, December 15, dedicated to the music of Wadada Leo Smith, premiering new and existing works, and celebrating information through seminars, video and film presentation. Rova will perform The Ma’ad Din, a saxophone quartet composed by Wadada Leo Smith at the turn of the century.

The Lab
2948 16th Street
San Francisco


Saturday, January 27, 2018

Rova (+1): Featuring Dohee Lee, Wobbly, and ACVilla

Image by ACVilla

Rova marks their 40th season with an evening of 3 collaborations, presented in two sets:

Set 1:

Rova + Dohee Lee (voice and movement) perform Slowville, a structured improvisation composed by Larry Ochs

Rova + Wobbly (electronics) perform Luau Axe Quiz, composed/designed by Steve Adams

Set 2:

Rova + ACVILLA perform ACVilla's No Distractions

Specifically envisioned for Rova Saxophone Quartet and The Lab, video artist ACVilla has created a unique visual score that will be played in three simultaneous movements. This artistic collaboration calls upon Rova’s four decades of shared sonic exploration, intuition and surprises as well as their intrepid tours; ACVilla is curious how their past, dating up to today, will join her experiences of a decade of perpetual travel. From a collection of video footage she gathered while touring throughout the lower 48 states, she has chosen pieces that invite each audience member and musician to wander through their own cultural landscape, stopping now and then to greet their personal preconceptions and then move along together, swept up in the moment of patterns, textures, colors, movement and music.

The Lab
2948 16th Street
San Francisco


New CDs from Steve Adams and Larry Ochs

Steve Adams + Tim Perkis

Fourteen restructured improvisations for woodwinds and electronics, now available on the minuszero label - https://minuszero.bandcamp.com/

All proceeds benefit Planned Parenthood!

Larry Ochs Sax and Drumming Core


The culmination of 11 years working on music for this band, Wild Red Yellow was recorded in 2011 by an expanded version of Larry Ochs Sax & Drumming Core. With very critical help from engineer Philip Perkins, Ochs then slowly mixed and edited the two soundscapes on this new 2017 release, dedicated to film-makers Julie Taymor and David Cronenberg.

The Sax & Drumming Core was originally a trio of Ochs on saxophones and two drummers – Scott Amendola and Don Robinson. They released two CDs and toured together between 2000 and 2006. In 2007 the trio expanded to a quintet with the additions of Satoko Fujii (synthesizer, piano) and Natsuki Tamura (trumpet). The CD Stone Shift was recorded by the quintet in 2007; released in 2009. 

On that initial quintet release, LOS&D recorded a first soundscape dedicated to Akira Kurosawa. Ochs heard more, but also felt he needed 3 percussionists to expand the sound combinations and to be able to eradicate any sense of order, when the music called for that. Thus the inclusion of Willie Winant and Matthias Bossi on this CD. Bossi and Amendola had played as a duo for years. Winant had worked with both drummers for special projects, as well as working with Ochs for years in the groups Room and The Glenn Spearman Double Trio. 

Ochs: “These soundscapes are dedicated to film-makers I deeply admire and am (conceptually) inviting to create imagery for the already-created sounds. But more to the point, I’m inviting every listener to close his or her eyes and create images or a story or a place for contemplation within the context of the musical time-lapse.” 

Larry Ochs: tenor and sopranino saxophones
Natsuki Tamura: trumpet
Satoko Fujii: piano, synthesizer
Scott Amendola: drums, percussion, electronics
Matthias Bossi: thunder drum, Chinese gongs, shaky flotsam, percussion
William Winant: timpani, roto-toms, percussion

Track 1. Omenicity (for Julie Taymor) (23:13)
Track 2. A Sorcerer’s Fate (9:11)
Track 3. Wild Red Yellow (for David Cronenberg) (22:39)

This is a group of equals and a group in which the implied hierarchy of horn / harmony / rhythm has been suspended. – Stuart Broomer

Available from:
Rogue Art
Larry Ochs’ Bandcamp site
Downtown Music Gallery


Rova Member Shows

Thursday, October 12 @ 8:00 pm
Lisa Mezzacappa: Glorious Ravage

Rova’s Steve Adams is featured in this all-star band in their east coast debut:

Fay Victor – Voice
Kyle Bruckmann – Oboes
Steve Adams – Woodwinds
Cory Wright – Woodwinds
Aaron Novik – Contrabass Clarinet, Bass Clarinet
Darren Johnston -Trumpet
Alan Williams – Trombone
Mark Clifford – Vibraphone
Tim Perkis – Electronics
John Finkbeiner – Guitar
Myra Melford – Piano, Harmonium
Jordan Glenn – Drums
Crystal Pascucci – Cello
Lisa Mezzacappa – Acoustic Bass, Conductor
Eli Crews – Sound Design
Suki O’Kane – Projections

Film and Video:
Alfonso Alvarez
Janis Crystal Lipzin
Kathleen Quillian
Konrad Steiner

509 Atlantic Avenue
Brooklyn, NY 11217


Tuesday, November 14, 7:30 PM

Duos: Bruce Ackley and Spirit / Spirit and Willie Winant

A rare opportunity to hear the legendary Bay Area percussionist, Spirit, in two special duet settings, including a rare interaction with master drummer, Willie Winant.

Tom’s Place
3111 Deakin Street


Sunday, December 3rd, 7:00 PM

Ackley w. Danishta Rivero Castro and Jordan Glenn & Jason Hoopes

Great weekend collaborating with Glenn-Hoopes!

Studio Grand
3234 Grand Avenue


Larry Ochs Activity for the fall, 2017:

Larry Ochs plus Nate Wooley, Ken Filiano, Harris Eisenstadt

Elastic Arts, Chicago
October 19, 9:00 pm 
3429 W Diversey Ave, 2nd Fl., Chicago

Edge Fest, Kerrytown Concert House, Ann Arbor
October 20, time TBD
415 North Fourth Avenue, Ann Arbor

JONES JONES in Europe:
Larry Ochs, Mark Dresser, Vladimir Tarasov

Nov 16 – Pori Finland
Nov 18 – Mama Jazz festival, Vilnius, Lithuania – celebrating V Tarasov’s 70th birthday
Nov 20 - Kiev, Ukraine
Nov 21 – Vienna, Austria – Martinschlossl, 8 PM
Nov 22 – Ljubljana, Slovenia – Klub Gromka
Nov 23 – Graz, Austria – Stockewerke, 8 PM


Dec. 6 – Detroit: Trinosophes, 8 PM
Dec. 7 - Chicago: Elastic Arts, 9 PM
Dec 8 – New Haven: Firehouse 12, 8:30 and 10 PM
Dec 10 – Philadelphia: Ardmore Music Hall, 6:30 PM
Dec 11 – Pittsburgh, James Street Gastropub Ballroom, 8 PM
Dec 13 – Brooklyn: National Sawdust, 7 PM



Rova T-Shirts!!!

Check out the design below, featuring an image shot by our friend, Finnish photographer, Lauri Nykopp, which is printed on quality black tees. THE SHIRTS ARE VERY LIMITED EDITION. When they’re gone, they’re gone.

Available in XXL – XL – L - M

US: $20 + tax $1.75 + shipping $4 US = $25.75 Foreign: $20 + tax $1.75 + shipping $8 = $29.75

Click here to order your t-shirt


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About Rova:Arts

Rova:Arts, formed in 1986 to support the activities of Rova, has been instrumental in producing local projects and advancing an ongoing cultural exchange between local Bay Area artists and the international scene through its Rovaté concert series. These events, made possible by funding to Rova:Arts, have engaged Bay Area musicians and composers—as well as musicians from around the world. Rova:Arts projects are often reproduced in other parts of the world, thereby bringing the work to a broader audience. Also, many Rova:Arts events have been recorded, resulting in releases which have been enthusiastically celebrated.

Click here to find out more and to Join Rova:Arts. If you are interested in getting involved in a more hands-on-way, feel free to contact us: http://www.rova.org/contact.html. Thanks for being part of the art.

Bandcamp! Bandcamp!

We’re now offering both new and impossible to find Rova recordings and other points of interest on our Bandcamp page. Be sure to check out recordings there, including No Favorites, as well as, for example, the long out-of-print 1990 recording Long on Logic that we are making available as a CD download for the first time.

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