Kendra Steiner Editions

October 28, 2012

Mondo Daytona (KSE #241), Book Two of the Florida Nocturne Poems

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:19 am

BILL   SHUTE

‘MONDO  DAYTONA’

Florida Nocturne Poems, Book Two

KSE #242 (poetry chapbook)

$5 postpaid anywhere

payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

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also available in the Florida Nocture poems series:

Book One: Shades of Night Descending  (KSE #234)

Book Three: Peach Cobbler In The Poker Room (KSE #245)

Book Four: Jupiter In The Rearview Mirror (KSE #248) 

Reviewing the blog entries for the last few months  as I was sending some links to someone interested in writing about KSE, I noticed that I never did do a write-up on the SECOND Florida Nocturne Chapbook, MONDO DAYTONA, even though I’d already written about the third entry in the series. That should give you some idea of the level of organization here—where I sometimes schedule two releases with the same number. Perhaps I THOUGHT I’d written about MONDO DAYTONA because I have discussed it here in other contexts (such as my Austin reading in September 2012, where I read MONDO).  Some of you reading this already own a copy—either purchased from KSE or scored directly from me at the September reading. In any event, for the record, let me say a few words about MONDO.

This is the second entry in the Florida Nocturne Poems series, a group of four related Florida-themed chapbooks, but each is a unique free-standing work with a different narrator in a different situation. I find interesting and illuminating the ideas of Jack Spicer and of Robert Duncan regarding the serial poem and the concept of one’s body of work constituting a kind of multi-entry long-form work whose form is ever-becoming. To some extent, those ideas are relevant to what I’m doing. However, let me give you an analogy that’s rooted in the trash culture, B-movie, exploitation-film aesthetic that informs everything I do. Let’s say that a Z-grade film company in the 1930’s (Metropolitan, or Superior, or Puritan) hires Tom Tyler for an eight-film series to be shot two at a time at three week intervals over a three-month period. The studio pre-sells the series on the States Rights market and gets some advance capital to help bankroll the series. Tom Tyler has a somewhat established screen persona—people know that he as an actor is not as edgy as Bob Steele, not as “aw shucks” as Reb Russell, not as grandiose as Tim McCoy, not as much of a clown as Hoot Gibson—but in each film he will play a different character. In one film he may be widowed; in the next he may be a ranger whose partner was killed; in the next he may be a rancher with a family whose water is being stolen by some criminal organization; in the next he may play twin brothers on opposite sides of the law. There is a consistent Tom Tyler “presence” in the films—but Tom is playing a separate character in each, someone in a different situation, with a different backstory. It’s not like a series of western films where Buster Crabbe plays Billy Carson, THE SAME CHARACTER, in every film and only the plots change. In the series of Tyler films, some may emphasize comedy, some may emphasize action, one may have a somewhat grim fatalistic feel, one may have more emphasis on beautiful photography of the land, one may be set by a river which is then integrated into the plot.  Then again, that same year Tom Tyler the actor might well appear in a non-western film playing another  kind of character entirely. He may star in a serial. And don’t forget he played the Mummy at Universal, after Boris Karloff and before Lon Chaney Jr. There is a unity to his body of work, of course, and he’s not a chameleon-style actor such as Gary Oldman or Meryl Streep where you might watch the film for 20 minutes before realizing he/she is the actor in the role. Tom Tyler is Tom Tyler—-you hire him, you get a version of him. That’s how I see the Florida Nocturne Poems series (and, I suppose, by extension my entire body of work as a poet). You buy a Bill Shute poetry chapbook, you get a version of him.

My intention was to take different parts of the state of Florida and different aspects of contemporary life as exemplified by that state and then to place a character into a life-situation and inhabit the persona as a writer (much like an actor inhabits a role), find a structure, a form that is right for that character and situation, and create an open-field poetic sculpture that will both re-create the invented experience for the reader AND be an experience in itself in terms of the reader navigating the work and thus, because of its form, feeling some of the energy frozen in its lines and stanzas, which are then melted and liberated upon reading.

Set in the general area of North-Central Eastern Florida near Daytona Beach and Ormond Beach, MONDO DAYTONA is a character-driven piece, with the narrator (a former Texan relocated to Florida) involved with a lady named Rose, and thus involved with her family: her father, her daughter (and her daughter’s boyfriend), and her grandson. In that sense, it’s reminiscent of older pieces of mine such as GROUND (KSE #15) and FACE TO FACE (KSE #101)

MONDO DAYTONA is rooted in the earth (hence the title), and roots not only provide nourishment but also an anchoring. I consider the narrator and Rose to have a relationship with beautiful and rich aspects to it, but of course, the seeming necessities of everyday life lead us to sabotage and discard beauty on a regular basis, don’t they?

MONDO is also a work with a strong narrative flow, which is one reason I read it at the Austin Salon Poetic in September 2012. It seemed to go over well with that crowd (when people laugh in the right places and gasp in the right places, I know the reading has succeeded), and reader response so far has been excellent. I hope you enjoy it. All four volumes of the Florida Nocturne Poems are now available for order–only $5 each, postpaid anywhere. Each is different and each utilizes a verse form appropriate and unique to it. Why not get the entire series—each a hand-made, hand-numbered series on different papers/cover stocks, and each in an edition of under 70 copies? It’s cheaper than a trip to Florida. If you enjoyed the cheap-jack “trip to Hawaii” in Phil Tucker’s film DANCE HALL RACKET, then you’ll enjoy THIS trip to Florida. And if you even GET that reference, then you will probably “get” this chapbook.

As always, thank you for your support…and your support of all independent artists and micro-presses and small labels, the ones that serve and belong to no clique, the ones that are not financed by Daddy’s/Mommy’s money or a trust fund (as certain Texas “alternative labels” are), that don’t accept corporate or arts-foundation money (as so many holier-than-thou “cutting edge” arts organizations do, not realizing that they’ve become spineless court jesters by doing so)…the ones that exemplify the low-fi DIY aesthetic and do things cheaply and simply in a way that honors D. A. Levy, Fred Cole, and Jandek in terms of presentation being an essential part of the aesthetic. We issue PRODUCT, and we hope that you find our product interesting and worthwhile, and to quote the Immediate Records motto, we are happy to be a part of the industry of human happiness.

MONDO  DAYTONA  (KSE #241)…only $5 postpaid anywhere…ordering details above…

reading MONDO  DAYTONA at Headhunters Club, Austin, TX…17 September 2012

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October 18, 2012

Peach Cobbler In The Poker Room (KSE #245), Book Three of the Florida Nocturne Poems

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 1:53 pm
Tags: , , ,

BILL   SHUTE

PEACH  COBBLER  IN  THE  POKER  ROOM

Florida Nocturne Poems, Book Three

KSE #245 (poetry chapbook)

$5 postpaid anywhere

payment via paypal to django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

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also available in the Florida Nocture poems series:

Book One: Shades of Night Descending  (KSE #234)

Book Two: Mondo Daytona (KSE #241)

Book Four: Jupiter In The Rearview Mirror (KSE #248) 


Unique times require a unique poetry, hence The Florida Nocturne Poems series. PEACH COBBLER IN THE POKER ROOM, composed during my July-August 2012 time in Central Florida, is another poetic core-sample of crazed and crazy America circa 2012, this time set in the state famous for the stolen 2000 Presidential election and the Trayvon Martin shooting.  A world where the fundamentalist churches and the casinos and the right-wing politicians  engage in an awkward  Waltz of the Toreadors, fooling no one but diverting attention away from what’s REALLY going on, a power shift and wealth transfer that looks to turn the state into a third-world country with an ruling oligarchy supervised by Governor Ultrasound.

This is a sparse poem in places, it’s angry in other places, and it captures a narrator stumbling through day-to-day life in contemporary Florida (kind of like a semi-tropical Texas in a minor key), trying to adapt to others’s needs and desires in the hope that that might make life go by more smoothly (it’s always easier to adapt and to turn the other cheek, he thinks)…and that smoothness helps in a nightmare world of rich people in SUV’s, Buford Pusser-esque law enforcement figures staring down from billboards, Bob Evans covering everything in thick white gravy, know-nothing politicized fundamentalist churches controlling the schools, and cloying plastic nostalgia coming at one from all directions. No wonder Myrna gets excited about the Peach Cobbler In The Poker Room.

Alice, the narrator’s on-again/off-again partner, doesn’t have time for those silly and confusing Bill Shute poetry chapbooks (after all, she says, one can only willingly suspend one’s disbelief so far!) that she quietly returns, but maybe YOU DO? And if so, you can get this one for only $5 postpaid anywhere. And while you are at it, why not get the entire Florida Nocturne poems series of four chapbooks…each is chock-full of as much detail and life experience and food-for-contemplation as a feature film or a full-length novel, but they are only six-to-eight pages each, and like rich food, a little bit goes a long way…. through understatement and selectivity and synecdoche (I liked that word better before Charlie Kaufman used it) and a collage-like aesthetic, you get the feeling of getting much more than six-to-eight pages.  People are busy today…attention spans aren’t what they once were. Your time might be better spent reading Melville’s CLAREL, I agree, but that was then and this is now. And you can’t get more NOW than this sequence of Florida-based poetry chapbooks documenting the America of 2012…true today, true next year, true next century, alas.  The more things change, the more they stay the same…only the technology and the slang change.

PEACH COBBLER IN THE POKER ROOM…limited hand-assembled, hand-numbered edition of 49 copies…get yours now…it’s better than wasting that $5 in the poker room on either gambling or on an order of peach cobbler that will just raise your blood sugar and cholesterol…

October 14, 2012

Vanessa Rossetto, “Exotic Exit” (Kye LP)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 7:51 am

VANESSA  ROSSETTO

“EXOTIC EXIT”

KYE RECORDS LP #20

Side One:

exotic exit

348315

Side Two:

de trop

With Vanessa Rossetto’s background as a string player and as a visual artist, you might expect her new LP “Exotic Exit” (her second for Graham Lambkin’s “Kye” label, after the much-acclaimed “Mineral Orange”) to have an emphasis on texture, and you would be correct in that assumption. However, these are textures of place, which Ms. Rossetto has somehow transposed into sound–and the place is Central Texas.

For me, EXOTIC EXIT is a kind of “core sample in sound.” The beautiful  bleached-out astringent orange cover, with its depiction of  a sun-baked abandoned shopping mall and rows of cars parked next to a bridge on the interstate, roots the album deeply in PLACE, the kind of place that few would take the time to investigate or ponder. The kind of place that most people spend time in while heading to another place that they feel is more significant. The kind of post-industrial, post economic-crash exit on the interstate that one can find almost anywhere on the periphery of Austin (except in the neighborhoods with money), where Ms. Rossetto lives. It’s a kind of disposable place in the eyes of many, but it’s where we are at here in Central Texas, where we live, and this album strikes me as Vanessa Rossetto’s taking such a place and not just investigating it as an artist (taking what most pass by unnoticed and viewing it with new eyes, making it fresh and exciting and rich), but somehow RECREATING it, or perhaps I should say creating an alternate version of the reality, something that someone in Massachusetts or Scotland or Russia can bathe in and get the FEEL of this Central Texas place.

By affixing a numbered sticker to the top corner of the album (the number also appears in one of the field recordings woven into the fabric of the album, its original context being an auction, I’m guessing), the artwork is also being consigned to a functional status, like a sound library album tucked into some musty stack in the back room of a radio station or commercial production house. And like the abandoned mall on the front cover, with its cracks in the asphalt, that sound library album is taken for granted and forgotten, not on anyone’s top 40 or in regular rotation.

If ever an album cried out for a vinyl release, this is it. Not just for the reason stated above, but because this haunting assemblage of musique concrete, electronics, and instrumental work needs the depth and solidity and sound-weight that only vinyl can provide. This is music that takes the listener to a place, and all of our senses are engaged here: smell, touch, taste, sight, sound, and that mysterious sixth sense that we get when in an abandoned or semi-abandoned place. You can live in and live with this album. And the end result, if Vanessa Rossetto is successful, is that the listener will open his/her eyes and ears and view his/her own environment—probably a bleak urban-suburban area full of grungy fast-food restaurants and seedy payday-loan stores and gun stores with bars on the window—and will perhaps “see” it and “experience” it for the first time, with the same eye one would view an artwork, with the sense of smell and taste one would bring to fine wine, with the kind of hyper-realism one might get temporarily during an acid trip. The rich tapestry of decontexturalized human voices and environmental sounds on offer here can’t help but ground the album in the stuff of daily life. And as a musical creation, EXOTIC EXIT is full of enough compositional technique to keep one occupied for a long time.

I’ve heard about 10 of Vanessa Rossetto’s releases, and each one is special and has the emphasis on texture one would expect from a string player and visual artist, as mentioned above, but EXOTIC EXIT is truly a unique work, and a work with a cultural specificity that one is often used to finding more in the worlds of film-making and poetry and photography than in music. Vanessa’s last album, MINERAL ORANGE, sold out quickly. Don’t let this one get past you…

Vanessa Rossetto Discography (taken from the artist’s website):
current or previous releases (in order of release):
* tmaog split cassette with apple snails (2007 dnt)
* tmaog dark lowland yields on worm comp(ost) cdr comp (2007 echo curio)
* catrider self-titled cdr (2007 mymwly)
* tmaog we could fail under the stars cdr (2007 mymwly)
* tmaog your window right, your tree duty on trees in the attics cdr comp (2007 akoustic desease)
* tmaog cdr joy of the mountain (2007 ruralfaune)
* vanessa rossetto it gets even with us on ihm 2 – olives & pancakes net comp (2007 i hate music)
* tmaog revenez a la demoiselle qui est delegue du roi du ciel on frannce 3cdr comp (2007 ruralfaune)
* tmaog fruiting bodies on the crests of the avians dance to our vibes cdr comp (2007 celestial jars)
* pulga pulga loves you cd (2007 fire museum)
* tmaog enormous gold soul on cris et chuchotements cdr comp (2007 crier dans les musees)
* vanessa rossetto misafridal cdr (2008 music appreciation)
* vanessa rossetto imperial brick cdr (2008 music appreciation)
* vanessa rossetto whoreson in the wilderness cdr (2008 music appreciation)
* wondrous horse cavallo meraviglioso cd (2008 fire museum)
* hwaet peiohr on ihm 3 net comp (2008 i hate music)
* vanessa rossetto they’re not there on ihm 3 – building & butte net comp (2008 i hate music)
* donato epiro/vanessa rossetto track on vinyl beards lp (2008 bsbta/beard of snails)
* vanessa rossetto for quiet room at compost and height (2008 compost and height)
* tmaog arnold school #1 on hand-rolled oblivion 3cdr comp (2008 mymwly)
* catrider from mirrors are oceans on hand-rolled oblivion 3cdr comp (2008 mymwly)
* vanessa rossetto gloria tejana at homophoni (2008 homophoni)
* vanessa rossetto fall at bagatellen (2008 bagatellen)
* bright duplex feigned whir on menhir double 7″ lathe (2009 root don lonie for cash)
* vanessa rossetto string quartet & lawnmower on cdr portion of second mind publication
* vanessa rossetto century oaks as part of the recreating the domain project (2009)
* bright duplex strawberry trust cdr (2009 thor’s rubber hammer)
* vanessa rossetto dogs in english porcelain cdr (2009 music appreciation)
* bright duplex a system of worlds on vinyl snails bonus cdr (2009 beard of snails)
* vanessa rossetto quoits on ihm 4 net comp (2009 i hate music)
* vanessa rossetto harmony no. 17 on only [harmony series 17] (2009 compost and height)
* vanessa rossetto without fear i go now to god on wobbling roof net publication (2009 wobbling roof)
* vanessa rossetto pdd-nos c-30 cassette (2010 period.tapes)
* vanessa rossetto bookpacking 2 at compost and height (2010 compost and height)
* vanessa rossetto mineral orange 12″ lp (2010 kye)
* hwaet self-titled cdr (2010 abrash/music appreciation)
* vanessa rossetto exotic exit 12″ lp (2012 kye)

other people’s releases that VR has played on:
* uton radio olio metaphysica (2008 om ha sva ha ksha ma la va ra yam)
* book of shadows 777 (2008 ikuisuus)
* book of shadows isadora shadow (2008 mymwly)

hmmm, I’ve got about 10 of those, but I’ve got a lot of catching up to do!!!!

Vanessa performed at the Kendra Steiner Editions 5th Anniversary Concert in July 2011  (she’s 2nd on left, standing)

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The artist’s website is at  http://www.musicappreciationrecs.com

note: Vanessa’s next album is a collaboration with Manchester(UK)-based artist Lee Patterson…it’s called TEMPERAMENT AS WAVEFORM and will be appearing on the Another Timbre label in January of 2013

I remember once decades ago driving through Western Kansas with a friend. My friend commented, “there’s nothing out here.” I replied, “no, there’s nothing to get in the way.”

October 13, 2012

Djin Aquarian and Plastic Crimewave Sound, “Save The World” (Prophase LP)

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 1:08 pm

DJIN AQUARIAN and PLASTIC CRIMEWAVE SOUND

“Save The World”

(Prophase Records LP)

Since their earlier collaboration, released on cassette by Plustapes and now sold out, I’ve been waiting for the full-length album from former Ya Ho Wa 13 guitarist Djin Aquarian and Chicago’s  Steven “Sir Plastic Crimewave” Krakow, and it’s even better than the high expectations I had for it. Aquarian is a key figure in the history of psychedelia, pioneering the higher-key “tribal psych” sound with the early 70’s recordings and performances of the Ya Ho Wa family, a raw organic music that had its roots in spiritual practice and in ritual. You can’t fake or pre-plan this kind of music. You have to get into that zone, that sacred space, and explore. It grows, slowly, it evolves, it sinks roots and extends its branches, it pulls you in and gets all over you until you are one with the music. In some ways, this is the purest kind of psychedelic music, and it’s great to say that this new album has the same dense organic tribal sound one would want from such a collaboration. Plastic Crimewave Sound are the perfect partners for Mr. Aquarian and totally “get” what the “higherkey” experience is about. If this kind of precious and rich psychedelia is what you desire, dip into SAVE THE WORLD. I hope it’s not yet sold out…if the label is out, check dealers. It’s worth finding!!!

SIDE ONE:

ASCEND, ASCENDING, ASCENSION

RIDE MY MERKABAH

SIDE TWO:

I”M GONNA TAKE YOU HOME ON 2

DINOSAURS REVISITED

ETHEREAL PASTURES

Djin Aquarian: guitar, chants

Plastic Crimewave (Pythagoras): guitar

Skog Device (Gevurah): drums

Lux (Sandalphon): bass

Hands of Hydra (Yaquin): Sitar

Djin Aquarian live in Austin, Texas, in March 2010  w/ Ya Ho Wa 13

they were on the same bill with Plastic Crimewave (and also Acid Mothers Temple), but did not perform together that night… I was honored to be in the audience that night for such an incredible triple bill

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the earlier Djin/PCW collaboration, a cassette called “Live Yod Devotions”

Bill Shute summer 2012 interview with NNN magazine

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 12:31 pm

Over the summer, I was pleased to do an interview for Nothing. No one. Nowhere magagzine, edited and published by Michael Aaron Casares through his Virgogray Press. I appeared on Michael’s radio show three or four years ago, and we have done a number of joint readings in Austin since then. He has written many first-rate poems, he operates a first-rate independent Texas-based press, and he is a human dynamo who works constantly to make poetry available and relevant here in Central Texas.  KSE and Virgogray are certainly brothers-in-arms.

I turn down most interview requests about KSE or my own work, so it’s been a while since I’ve done a print interview of this length (I’ve done some radio interviews in the last year). Hope you find it interesting and worthwhile! Thanks again to Michael for taking the time to do this. You can order a beautiful print edition of NNN #4 including the interview at the following link:  http://www.nothingnoonenowhere.com/p/purchase.html

NNN:- Bill, it is gracious of you to participate in this interview. How are you?

BILL: Melting in the 100-degree heat in your former hometown, San Antonio! Working on getting the next few Kendra Steiner Editions CDR’s ready for release…working on a new multi-part poem set in Florida…

NNN: For starters, tell VGP audiences a bit about yourself, biographically speaking.

BILL: I’ve lived and worked in San Antonio, Texas, for 21+ years, although before that I’ve lived in Colorado (where I grew up and went to high school/college), Massachusetts, Virginia, and Oklahoma. When I was still in high school in the early 70’s, I discovered the then-cutting edge poets of the 50s/60s such as Ted Berrigan, Paul Blackburn, Larry Eigner, Diane Wakoski, Frank Samperi, Robert Creeley, and the various beats. I’d already written jazz criticism and done journalism, so writing was something I knew how to do, and under the influence of the above-mentioned poets, I began to write my own poetry. I did some readings and had some small publications in the Denver of the mid 1970’s, and around 1977 or so, Allen Ginsberg (who lived up the road in Boulder–I lived in Golden at the time) read some of my poems and gave me some positive encouragement and some good critical advice.
My life took a sudden turn in 1979, when I moved to Oklahoma and found myself working multiple jobs and going to graduate school part-time. I continued to read contemporary forward-thinking poetry all the time, and I continued to write non-fiction, but I did not write poetry for a number of years in the 80’s and 90’s. Eventually, I went back to active poetry writing when I composed TWELVE GATES TO THE CITY: THE LABOURS OF HERCULES IN THE LONE STAR STATE, which was featured at a mythology conference in London and published by Word Mechanics, of California. Since then, I’ve been actively writing and publishing a lot of poetry.

NNN: How long have you been writing?
BILL: I started writing in High School, in the mid 1970’s. I remember that I brought some reviews of avant-garde jazz albums to the college newspaper of a local college that I did not attend (I was still in high school), and the editor was impressed by my enthusiasm, so she published them. That got me going, I suppose.

NNN: The KSE website is filled not only with information about KSE artist and publications, but other cultural gems of both literature and music. Who are some of your inspirations in those fields when it comes to your poetry?

BILL: Poetry is rooted in particulars, REAL particulars. It’s almost like speaking in a code, where the code consists of THINGS. That is the foundation of what I do in poetry. Also, the post-1950 poets whose work was most influential to me as I was learning my craft are those who treat the poem as a sculpted object, an object with a unique form that serves the delivery of the poem, a functional form, a poem that forces the reader to read it in a particular way.
The triadic, “stairstep” line of the later William Carlos Williams was for me the liberating force for that realization, and then the work of Paul Blackburn, particularly his later work such as “The Journals,” Ted Berrigan’s poems such as “Tambourine Life,” the poems of Larry Eigner and John Wieners, and many many others. I use the KSE blog, and more often the KSE Facebook page, to champion the writers and musicians and film-makers and painters I admire and whose work I feel would be of interest to others. Looking at the recent entries in the KSE blog, you’ll see material on various Jandek albums, vintage B-movies and exploitation films, thoughts on poetics and on my own work, discussions of free-improv and psychedelic and noise-drone music, etc. The blog seems to be a reflection of my own aesthetic and an extension of my own work as a poet.

NNN: To say you have several publications is an understatement because you really do have a vast body of work. What are some highlights of your personal chap collection?
BILL: I have two book-length poetic works, one of which is 3300+ lines (POINT LOMA PURPLE), but most of my pieces are composed for the five-to-eight page chapbook, and I’ve done over 60 of those. I’m like a painter who got a good deal on odd-sized canvases and then adapted his art to fit what he had available. KSE is a DIY press and label—everything we do is done by hand at my home—and because that chapbook size is what we do best, that’s the form I use to compose my pieces. As far as favorites go, most artists of any sort would say that the present work and the work after that would be the work most important to them, and that’s true for me too. But since you are asking about older pieces that I am particularly proud of, I’d mention a few: LAMENT FOR THE LIVING: CHET BAKER’S FINAL SESSION captured the last days of the great jazz trumpeter; TWOMBLY’S SIRACUSA, co-written with Polish poet A.J. Kaufmann (a man with whom I’ve done three collaborative chapbooks, and we’ll be working on a fourth, inspired by the music of Sun Ra, this coming fall), was an attempt to capture the technique and the themes of painter Cy Twombly in poetry; SEAWALL dealt with the BP Gulf Oil Spill, and I’ve received some strong feedback about that one; THE MOSQUITOES OF LA MARQUE seems to be a favorite among readers, and it’s my “core sample” (as a geologist would say) of contemporary America through a close-study of the town of La Marque, Texas, located between Houston and Galveston. I’ve recently been working with an old chapbook of mine from 2007, OBJECTLESS, which was inspired by the work of painter Kazimir Malevich and which included no nouns are pronouns, no OBJECTS. That is being adapted by composer Marcus Rubio to electronic music, so OBJECTLESS has come out of the woodwork recently and I’ve gained a new appreciation for it.
NNN: Tell us about KSE – how it started and why you chose to go into publishing?
BILL: It began in early 2006. I’d just had a poetry book, TWELVE GATES TO THE CITY, published by a press in California, and from submitting the finished manuscript to having the copies in my hand, it took about a year. I’d written some new pieces I wanted to get out NOW, while they were still fresh, and in the form I wanted them. So I put out myself a piece I’d written called FOUR TEXAS STREAMS, to have some copies ready for a reading I was doing at Viva Books here in San Antonio. That did well locally, copies were being sold by mail, a few distributors picked it up, and that encouraged me to keep going as a publisher, both of my own work and of other poets whose work I believed in. A few years after that we took the same approach with issuing experimental music on CDR, and that too has taken off well. Again, this is a small DIY operation. Everything is done here at my house, printing, cd replication, assembling, etc. That keeps costs low and helps to get the material out there for people to enjoy, without having high overheard and worrying constantly about money. Having a DIY approach to our books and cdr’s keeps them out of some book stores/record stores/distribution channels, but why would I want to support a closed-minded outlet that, literally, judges a book by its cover? My experience has shown me that the so-called “alternative” distribution channels are as closed-minded and lacking in taste as the majors. It’s just a matter of scale. They are smaller philistines, less successful hacks. From the beginning, we’ve had the support of outlets such as Arthur Magazine, Volcanic Tongue, The Wire, and many independent arts blogs and magazines. And the music has gotten a lot of attention internationally and in the US. So things have been going well, and we are just where we’d like to be.

NNN: You have set up several shows for KSE and its range of poets, artists and musicians who frequent Austin, aside from our annual shared read, can you tell us about some of the events KSE is involved in?

BILL: Well, as a poet I do a few readings each year. I don’t pursue that aspect very much because it does not really generate long-term interest and sales. I do it to keep my face and name out there and to keep in practice. I also choose sympathetic venues.
We’ve done three KSE events in Austin where musicians from the label have been showcased, two of these being sponsored by the Church of the Friendly Ghost. KSE has a strong line-up of Austin-based experimental musicians on our label, and I wanted to highlight their work, which is what we did at those concerts.
There was a poetry element to two of the concerts, and they all were very successful. I’m giving the KSE concerts a break for a while, though, as I’m focusing on my own music-and-poetry performances and recordings. I have done some of those shows in Austin and in New England and New York State. 
My poetry-and-music recordings and performances have been well-received, so you can expect more of those in the future…as well as our usual output of poetry chapbooks and music cdr’s.
 
NNN: Do you have any advice for up-and-coming poets?
 
I see a lot of bad poetry online and in anthologies, and while badness comes in many forms, one particular form of badness I see often is  poetry rooted in ideas and in reading, but not rooted in the textures of everyday life…also not written in a natural voice, and not utilizing an organic structure, or any structure. Poetry that’s just anecdotes or bumper-sticker observations or laughable tough-guy (or gal) posing.
I think a good exercise for an apprentice poet would be to limit yourself to a small area…the alley behind your apartment, the parking lot of the convenience store in your neighborhood, a city park…and take notes on the THINGS of that environment. The ground, the walls, the trashcans, the insects, the animals, the patterns to the discoloration of the paint, the ripped screens, the smells, the sounds, the textures.  Then use those notebooks as the raw material from which you sculpt your creation, with each particular resonating and functioning as a deep image in your well thought-out, intelligently designed construct. That’s how poetry is constructed, and it’s hard work.
If a beginning poet is not willing to do that, s/he will never amount to anything, and will remain the poetry equivalent of a bar-band. Internet poetry sites are full of bar-band level crap masquerading as poetry, except instead of covering Springsteen or Nirvana badly, they are channeling Bukowski or Raymond Carver…badly. And thinking of themselves as some kind of “outlaws” while they are doing it! Really, what you aspire to become has a lot to do with what you do actually become, and once you become that, you can then transcend your one-time goals and take off into the stratosphere and do really original and pioneering work. Why do what’s already been done?
NNN: Bill, which poem have you chosen to accompany this interview?

BILL: This is a piece called “Copper” from a chapbook called “Suspension,” from 3 or 4 years ago, which was a collaboration with a Polish artist and photographer named Mira Horvich. I’d used her artwork on some chapbook covers, and I invited her to submit a suite of related photographs, which I would then use as prompts for a suite of poems, and we’d publish the two side by side. Mira submitted a series of photographs of wind chimes, made from different metals. I then used the type of metal of each set of chimes as the “seed” for each poem. It was the poem’s title, and I also worked the metal into the poem. This is the final poem in that chapbook, “Copper.”

Matt Krefting, “Sweet Days Of Discipline” (KSE #220)…new CDR album available now!

Filed under: Uncategorized — kendrasteinereditions @ 11:46 am

MATT    KREFTING

“SWEET  DAYS  OF  DISCIPLINE”

KSE #220    CDR album

$8 ppd. in US (add $2 postage outside US if ordering only 1 item)

payment via  paypal to  django5722(at)yahoo(dot)com

When KSE moved into music releases a few years ago, western Massachusetts-based MATT KREFTING was one of the artists (along with Alfred 23 Harth) I hoped to convince to record for the label.  Matt has a long history of fascinating work that transcends genres/boundaries/disciplines, though he’s perhaps best known as part of the duo SON OF EARTH, a unit that to me always seemed to wipe the musical slate clean and build a new music piece by piece from scratch, questioning every assumption, and living in an artistic world of their own that seemed both pre-historic (you got the sense that they would enjoy reinventing the wheel their own way) and primal yet post-modern and post-Cage. That is of course fascinating territory, and when that’s added to Matt’s many other projects and pursuits (including a fascinating and deep album of deconstructed and reconstructed cover versions of some of Matt’s favorite songs—ranging from Richard Thompson to George Jones to Van Morrison—that came out on Ecstatic Peace while I wasn’t looking), it’s clear that here is a man who’s a total original, who is part of no movement and slave to no ideology, and who is one of the least predictable creative forces out there. He has a history of recording for small labels and working with small arts collectives, so I felt that KSE would be a perfect port-in-the-storm for Mr. Krefting, and we’re honored that he has given us a brand-new recording that reflects recent work he’s been doing with tape manipulation, an album called SWEET DAYS OF DISCIPLINE.

There is an elegance and classicism to these tape-based mosaics that Matt creates (and this is no mere studio concoction—Matt performs similar pieces LIVE), a patience and an understatement, a sense of hearing a semi-audible voice behind a wall that pulls one toward it while seemingly moving away as one approaches it. While this album could sit comfortably on the same shelf as TWO VIRGINS or HEATHEN EARTH, it inhabits a world where music is still in its larval phase while also having the scent of the moss-coated walls of the basement of an abandoned monastery from the middle ages. I could hear some of these pieces being used as the music for the most languid and richly textured passages in a Carl Theodor Dreyer film. It’s a rich and varied exhibition of sound tapestries, and KSE is proud to offer it to the listener who’s looking for something unique. We played this album, before its release, at the KSE 6th Anniversary Concert in Austin last April, and many folks came over and asked “WHAT is that? How would you describe that music? Where can I get a copy? “

You can get it from Kendra Steiner Editions. Now. It’s a limited hand-assembled, hand-numbered edition of 133 copies, and about half of them are gone already, so act now…

For another perspective, may I quote Swill Radio distribution, who are also selling the album: “Matt’s follow up to For A Friend. Eleven tracks (one of them a ‘version’) spread over 33 minutes, so even though the music slowly develops, the action is fast. Matt has been doing his solo cassette music for a few years now both live and in the studio.  Matt uses tapes of records and just about anything and records and rerecords these recordings using a variety of manipulations and the degrading effects of cheap half-functioning tape machines and then weaves these recordings into a tapestry, mixing a handful of said tape machines together. For A Friend concentrated on a very melancholy haze that brought to mind Gas without the muffled beats. There are a couple of those style pieces here, but Sweet Days… seems to come more from the Disturbed section of the board rather than the Great Sadness section. Excellent stuff. Fans of Graham Lambkin prick up your ears.”

and why not pick up a few other experimental music releases on CDR from Kendra Steiner Editions along w/ your Krefting album?

KSE #235 (CDR), BOOK OF SHADOWS, “Chimaera”

KSE #228 (CDR), UNMOOR, “Night Driver”

KSE #226 (CDR), DEREK ROGERS, “Born Into Systems”

KSE #223 (CDR), ALISTAIR CROSBIE, “A Campfire In The Snow”

KSE #238 (CDR), DANIEL HIPOLITO/EVA KELLY/BILL SHUTE, “Fascination”

KSE #214 (CDR), SABRINA SIEGEL,”Bottlecaps” 

KSE #206  (CDR), ERNESTO DIAZ-INFANTE, “Emilio”

KSE # 210 (CDR), HEATHER LEIGH, “Empire”

KSE #222 (CDR), MASSIMO MAGEE, “Sopranino Solo, “ cover art by MP Landis.

KSE #207 (CDR), ALFRED 23 HARTH & CARL STONE, “Gift Fig”

KSE #247 (CDR), MARCUS RUBIO & BILL SHUTE, “Only The Imprint Of An Echo Remains”

all $8 ppd. in the US (add $2 for postage if outside the US and ordering only one album—postpaid ANYWHERE for orders of 2 or more items)

read Matt Krefting’s essay on the work of WHITEHOUSE at this link:     http://www.volcanictongue.com/columns/show/7

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