Michael Mull Octet

Michael Mull Octet

Sunday, December 30, 2012

2012, Retrospectively Speaking

Since I am working all day tomorrow (and gratefully so), I thought I'd better post before 2013 comes around and gives us all a mischievous but good-natured wet willy. I haven't been keeping up on the blog as often as I'd like these past few months, hopefully something I can get back to more regularly next year. I played a fun show with Orkestar MEZE last week, and we are gearing up for a show at the House of Blues Foundation Room in February. Keep it here for details, as well as a more imminent show with Mahadev next week.

And so, I would like to conclude this year's posts with some reflections, in no particular order or manner, and interspersed with some pictures of me havin' fun. Join me?

2012 has been a musically fulfilling year for me, the most since I graduated from CalArts and entered the "real world". Great times playing with my Trio, Orkestar MEZE, and Mahadev. My fondest reflections are of the enormous amount of writing, rehearsing, practicing and prepping that went into launching the Michael Mull Octet as a functioning group. We had three well-attended, well-received, and extremely fun performances from June up to this point, and I am excitedly working on more material to push into 2013 with this group that has allowed me to reach so many musical places that I have been reaching for. I'd like to personally thank Tim, Emilio, Mike, Adam, Will, Frank, and Harrison for being the music - you guys are the best. Let's record next year!

Michael Mull Octet + Genevieve Artadi @ house party!

Two of the Octet's performances took place at what I (and many others) consider to be the hub of creative music in LA, the Blue Whale. Joon Lee has created not only a great performance space, but attracts an incredible range of talent to the venue because of his honesty and his passion for great music. I saw some unforgettable performances at the Whale in 2012, and what I saw was a fraction of what goes on there. Thank you, Joon, for truly being a champion for music in LA.

Rehearsing with a new project...coming 2013!

Who plays all this great music that we hear at the Blue Whale and elsewhere? Definitely some amazing out-of-towners, but many of them are denizens of Los Angeles. It's difficult to see or to sense the "scene" in LA because of the vast area it covers, but it's there, and it's future is bright. I'd like to give a shout out to "my generation" on the scene, so to speak, who have cranked out some great stuff this year. To name a few, Joe Santa Maria, Brian Havey (Z-1 and Trio), Chord FourDan Rosenboom, Gavin Templeton, Slumgum, Louis Cole & Genevieve Artadi and Grampus. These are just some who I can think of off the top of my head, and who have recorded this year; the live music was, of course, even more expansive and fresh. Keep it coming, guys and gals!

Michael Mull Trio @ Barclays
An overarching theme is that music increasingly allows me great opportunities; opportunities to create, to constantly better myself, to hang out with my friends, to work with and for my friends, to travel, to be inspired, and to love the unexplainable. Thank you to my wife, my family, and my friends and colleagues who all stand by me and contribute to these invaluable experiences - I love you all. See you in 2013.

No shoes at P-Nov's house. Feel the love!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Japan and Kneebody

It's been a busy month and it's past time for an update. Happy December, get ready to roll all the way through to 2013!

After a fun and well-attended show with my wife Ami at Barclay's Coffee and Tea in Northridge, Ami and I hopped on a plane and spent the next two weeks in Osaka, Japan. It was a much-needed vacation, a chance to see her family again, and we even got to play a show sharing the bill with Mayu Wakisaka.

Recovering from jet lag is easier if you have fun things to do - fun things like seeing Kneebody at the Blue Whale. I caught them on the last night of their four-night stint at the best club in LA, and they shared the second set with electric space-funk masters Louis Cole & Genevieve Artadi. Fun and exciting are dull words for such a concert, but words are often dull compared to the experience of great music. Kneebody is the tightest unit on their side of the universe. I picked up their latest available release, You Can Have Your Moment.

Seems like it wasn't long ago that we played the 2011 holiday show at Rusty's Surf Ranch, but here we are again! Orkestar MEZE will provide the grooves and goat-fuled jams so all in attendance can get their peasant on. Saturday, December 22nd at 10pm - mark your calendars and cave walls. Let us know you're coming on Facebook.

Also, more music coming up early next year......Trio, Octet, MEZE, Mahadev, the new project with Brice Albert and Justin Janer, and another group to record led by Frank Silva. Keep your eyes and ears here!