The Red Room is pleased to present a night of trail blazing instrumental improvisation by some of the best players in the country: the duo of trumpeter Peter Evans and tenor saxophonist Travis Laplante, who are celebrating the release of their new record, Secret Meeting; and a solo by local pedal steel guitar hero Susan Alcorn.
Travis Laplante & Peter Evans
Laplante and Evans are each devoted to creating multidimensional improvisational spaces, pushing their instruments to the edge in the service of a musical experience that travels beyond the realm of the mind. The deeply mysterious, epic improvisations on Secret Meeting points toward a seemingly ancient relationship between these two boundary-breaking improvisers.
Encompassing a vast array of sounds and an umbilical cord-like connection, Secret Meeting embodies profound exhaustion in one moment, as though the players’ collective weariness might altogether slump them over, and manages unparalleled vitality and vigor in the next. Through all of these sonic undulations, Evans and Laplante place the listener within a visceral, symbiotic torrent of beauty.
One of the world’s premiere musical innovators of her instrument, Baltimore-based Susan Alcorn has taken the pedal steel guitar far beyond its traditional role in country and western swing music. Known among steel guitarists for her virtuosity and authenticity in a traditional context, Alcorn first paid her dues in Texas country & western bands.
Soon she began to expand the vocabulary of her instrument through her study of modern classical music (Messiaen, Varese, Penderecki), the deep listening of Pauline Oliveros, Astor Piazzolla’s nuevo tango, free jazz, and world musics (Indian rags, South American songs, and gamelan orchestra). Her pieces reveal the complexity of her instrument and her musical experience while never straying from a very direct, intense, and personal musical expression.