Desert Sweets: Improvised Music at West Side Books, Friday, March 15th, 8:00 PM

The trio Desert Sweets realizes an organic synthesis of melodic invention with sound-based free improvisation, creating a balance of deep knowledge regarding extended techniques on their instruments with an overarching lyrical approach.
German-born saxophonist/flutist Biggi Vinkeloe, now based in Sweden, has been described as “subtle and smooth…her recordings have an unsentimental patience and lushness….Vinkeloe displays a remarkably sophisticated sense of harmony, while spinning complicated melodic lines,” (David Cook, SF Weekly). She has performed and recorded with Barre Phillips, Peter Kowald, Peter Uuskyla, Cecil Taylor, Gino Robair, Lisle Ellis, Peter Friis Nielsen, Magnus Rosen, Miya Masaoka, Donald Robinson, and many other significant artists in improvised music, and her music has been issued on 23 album recordings for various labels in Europe and United States.
Houston TX bass player Damon Smith “exemplifies the classic Euro-improv aesthetic of sounding at the boundary of momentum, the region where phrases hold together by the thinnest of threads, where the failures bleed into new moments so quickly they aren’t noticed, and the successes slam you in the face…virtuosic control of a huge range of unconventional sounds,” (Michael Anton Parker). Damon has performed and recorded with Peter Kowald, Frank Gratkowski, Wolfgang Fuchs, Tony Bevan, Marco Eneidi, Henry Kaiser, Joelle Leandre, Jacob Lindsey, Gianni Gebbia, and his music has been issued on 21 album recordings, mostly on his own Balance Point Acoustics label.
Albuquerque NM tuba player Mark Weaver has produced many recordings of original compositional material as well as improvised music. “Weaver really pushes the music into shape with his big, rounded bass lines and energetic improvisations,” (Richard Cochrane). “Weaver aims to correct all assumptions that the big horn is lacking mobility… he delivers bass lines with a buoyant feeling and deep tone,” (Steve Vickery, CODA magazine). Mark has recorded and performed with Dan Clucas, Harris Eisenstadt, Alan Lechusza, Jeff Kaiser, Michael Vlatkovich, J.A. Deane, and others on 20 album recordings. Additionally, Mark is founder and artistic director for the annual creative music series in Albuquerque called THE ROOST, now entering its fifth season.
Desert Sweets’ eponymous recording from 2001, beautifully recorded and mixed in Oakland CA by Scott Looney, was jointly released on BalancePointAcoustics (BPA 004) and Plutonium Records (PLU 005), featuring artwork by painter Victoria Brill.

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