On Thursday morning, May 9th, a driver sent from Zagreb picked me up in Budapest to drive me the 3 hours back to his hometown so I could start my first solo tour at a small cinematheque that night called, Kino Gric. I slept nearly the whole way, waking up only at the border between Hungary and Croatia to show my passport to immigration. The show was organized by Mate Skugor, and old friend and presenter who has brought me to Zagreb for more than a decade, the last time being with Lean Left about 2 and 1/2 years ago.
The concert was 60 minute of improvised music played for an audience of about 100 very enthusiastic listeners, who requested an encore (Albert Ayler’s “Love Cry”). The performance was performed without a plan. Since the concert took place in a cinema I dedicated a number of pieces to directors I’m interested in: Chris Marker, Jean Luc Godard (whose film, “Vivre Sa Vie” [“My Life To Live” is the American title], is currently my favorite movie; I am obsessed by his use of sound and image in its construction- I dream of finding a way to organize music with Godard’s inquisitive structures…), and Michael Snow. The acoustic was fairly dry and after switching back and forth between tenor, clarinet, and baritone my chops were destroyed by the end of the set. Though it was a real pleasure to see Mate again, talking to him about the current music scene was quite sobering- in the last 2 years his demographic of listeners between the ages of 18-25 years old has nearly disappeared, 30% of the audience for his shows is gone.
© 2021 Ken Vandermark – musician & composer | Disclaimer