NEWS:

Thollem McDonas (solo piano) at Barking Legs Theater, Dec. 6
 
Wayne-O-Rama is now closed! It was open from Nov. 19, 2016 through Sept. 30, 2017. Designed by Emmy-winning artist Wayne White, it's a funhouse of Chattanooga history for all ages. Wayne-O-Rama is sponsored by See Rock City, Inc. and presented by The Shaking Ray Levi Society at the Tenn Arts space, with generous support from the Benwood Foundation, the Footprint Foundation, the Lyndhurst Foundation and the McKenzie Foundation.

Founded in 1986, the Shaking Ray Levi Society is a volunteer-run, 501(c)(3) non-profit arts education organization.

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The mission of the Shaking Ray Levi Society is to nurture and support music, film, and performance art that is challenging, non-traditional, and falls outside the mainstream, in order to help nourish the cultural growth of Chattanooga.

This is done by sponsoring shows by artists recognized on a national and international level, supporting original work by area musicians and filmmakers, and engaging the community through workshops and educational outreach programs.

"Only in our country are our children not receiving the benefits of the dynamic energies taking place in our culture and in the heritage of our culture and so, the work of the Shaking Ray Levi Society in my opinion is very important because they are seeking to provide an alternative to the marketplace dynamics." - composer, saxophonist and MacArthur fellowship recipient Anthony Braxton (video)

"SRLS is a very sound organization that has made a strong contribution to Chattanooga over the years" - Dr. Thomas Wolf, WolfBrown

The Srls is a funded agency of Allied Arts.

 

TONY MOSTROM'S REVIEW OF LIVE AT LAMAR'S CD - Derek Bailey / Bob Stagner / Dennis Palmer

Free-improvisation guitar pioneer Derek Bailey's current career phase - that of elder statesman eagerly courted by and collaborating with a seemingly endless stream of young players (as well as some unlikely veterans from other musical worlds including Pat Matheny and Tony Williams) - has produced a glut of releases in the last couple of years that could seem almost daunting to newcomers curious to dive into the guitarist's angular, highly abstract music (remember Anthony Braxton's still-accurate '70s description: "the most amazing guitar player on the planet"). One good rule of thumb - if you ask this veteran listener - is to start with Bailey's solo guitar albums and group CDs featuring fellow musicians from free playing's "first generation" - men like Steve Lacy, Braxton, Han Bennink, Evan Parker (this would include the majority of releases on Bailey's own Incus Records label or the excellent Emanem - yes, the label). And yet --- what a piece of luck to have heard this excellent limited-edition EP, LIVE AT LAMAR'S (Shaking Ray Records), 27 minutes' worth of a 1999 restaurant gig in Chattanooga, Tennessee featuring DB with latter-day Southern collaborators Dennis Palmer (synthesizers) and Bob Stagner (drums) - sometimes known as the Shaking Ray Levis, one knows not why. "Fine Food - We Deliver" on the grainy cover photograph is indeed borne out, particularly at half point through the superior second set ("Catfish Night"), when a standard-issue free-improv noise climax (splang splang, thrumble rumble, wheeeooosshh) subsides and slowly lurks into several rich minutes of almost cinematically dramatic, dark atmospheres of noise: into the relative quiet of random synthesizer comets comes Bailey (on amplified big-band acoustic), chopping away at scumbly single-note runs, letting float long feedback hums while Stagner percusses with scattered, quiet but portentious all-over spangles and attacks - then the three heat up as Palmer's whirlwinds and ominous cyclones spirit around the room, cut by Bailey's dry but tasty cigar-box banjo runs; it's an atonal sound fest that makes perfect sense as music - noise that rocks, literally.

--- ANTHONY MOSTROM of L.A. WEEKLY
Los Angeles
Sept 22, 2003

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