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Siren Solstice

event LYLB-Siren2For Andrew Kunz, Siren Solstice is more than just a passion project, it is also a way for him to help shine the spotlight on some of the area’s great musicians. “I’ve lived in Santa Cruz for about four years and have come to realize how many really awesome, talented people there are here,” says the pianist. “I figured it would be amazing to collaborate with [some of them], utilize and showcase everybody’s talents, and highlight what they’re all about.” The psychedelic jazz fusion band released its self-titled debut EP in August, and its penchant for hypnotic repetition one minute and improvisation the next is a treat.

“Sierra Monarchs” has a warm, straight-ahead jazz feel in parts, but is also marked by slightly unusual time signatures and kooky Bill Frisell-style loops, whereas “Song for Today” swings with a sexy, full sound reminiscent of the soundtrack to Out of Sight. Determined to never do the same thing twice, Kunz takes his cue from the saxophonist and composer Wayne Shorter when crafting music with Siren Solstice. “He always says that what jazz means to him is ‘I dare you,’” Kunz says. “I like to have that philosophy in the back of my head. ‘I dare you to go down this avenue,’ or ‘I dare you to make this change.’” And in this regard, Kunz says that the tone and feel of a track like “Sierra Monarchs” is not what listeners can expect to hear on the band’s new album, Charybdis, set for release on Feb. 7. “[‘Sierra Monarchs’] is one I actually composed two years ago, but wasn’t actually able to record and orchestrate until just recently,” he says. “My compositional tastes have changed since then, so it definitely doesn’t reflect my current state as a musician now as much as it did a couple years ago. So it’s interesting to see how much we’ve changed since then.”


INFO: 9 p.m. Friday, Feb. 7. Kuumbwa Jazz, 320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz. $5. 427-2227.

Comments (1)Add Comment
Looking forward to the concert
written by Lynn Mannix, February 04, 2014
Congratulations Andrew and group. The music sounds wonderful and we look forward to hearing the group perform. See you soon.

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Heart Me Up

In defense of Valentine’s Day

 

“be(ing) of love (a little) more careful”—e.e. cummings

Wednesday (Feb. 10) is Ash Wednesday, when Lent begins. Friday (Feb. 12) is Lincoln’s 207th birthday. Sunday is Valentine’s Day. On Ash Wednesday, with foreheads marked with a cross of ashes, we hear the words, “From dust thou art and unto dust thou shalt return.” Reminding us that our bodies, made of matter, will remain here on Earth when we are called back. It is our Soul that will take us home again. Lent offers us 40 days and nights of purification in preparation for the Resurrection (Easter) festival (an initiation) and for the Three Spring Festivals (at the time of the full moon)—Aries, Taurus, Gemini. The New Group of World Servers have been preparing since Winter Solstice. The number 40 is significant. The Christ (Pisces World Teacher) was in the desert for 40 days and 40 nights prior to His three-year ministry. The purpose of this desert exile was to prepare his Archangel (light) body to withstand the pressures of the Earth plane (form and matter). We, too, in our intentional purifications and prayers during the 40 days of Lent, prepare ourselves (physical body, emotions, lower mind) to receive and be able to withstand the irradiation of will, love/wisdom and light streaming into the Earth at spring equinox, Easter, and the Three Spiritual Festivals. What is Lent? The Anglo-Saxon word, lencten, comes from an ancient spring festival, agricultural rites marking the transition between winter and summer. The seasons reflect changes in nature (physical world) and humanity responds with social festivals of gratitude and of renewal. There is a purification process, prayerfulness in nature and in humanity in preparation for a great flow of spiritual energies during springtime. Valentine’s Day: Aquarius Sun, Taurus moon. Let us offer gifts of comfort, ease, harmony, beauty and satisfaction. Things chocolate and golden. Venus and Taurus things.

 

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