Formed in 1984, Room was one of the first improvising bands to combine electro-acoustic sampling via computer with pure acoustic instruments. With compositions by Chris Brown who also designed all the computer programs, the group worked with composition and improvisation, touring and recording intensively from 1986 to 1991 often including electronics master Scot Gresham-Lancaster to handle Brown’s complex electronic design. With advances in technology and even more sophisticated software instrument designs, Brown now handles everything himself in real time.
Room concerts are far less frequent now, and 2 recording projects are waiting for a producer.
Chris Brown → Piano, Computer Electronics Visit Website
Chris Brown (b.1953) San Francisco based composer, pianist, and electronic instrument builder, currently teaches Composition and Electronic Music at Mills College in Oakland, where he is Co-Director for the Center for Contemporary Music (CCM).
Chris Brown's music is known for its unusual sonorities derived from new electroacoustic instruments he has invented ("Alternating Currents", 1983); the use of live, interactive electronics to extend the sonorities of traditional acoustic instruments ("Iceberg", 1985; "Hall of Mirrors", 1987; and "Lava", 1992); the contrast between mechanical qualities of automated electronic sound environments and the spontaneity of free improvisation ("Snakecharmer", 1986); and for applications of new technology in performance that change the roles of musicians to each other and to their audience.
Chris Brown performs as a soloist, as well as in collaboration with some of the most innovative new music composer/performers of today. Besides his work with ROOM, he is also a founding member of "THE HUB", a computer music band whose six members are all designers and builders of their own hardware and software instruments; they program their individual instruments to share musical information and to interact with each other in live performance, creating a new genre known as "Computer Network Music".
Chris Brown has performed his music throughout the U.S., Canada, and Europe, including at five different New Music America Festivals, at the STEIM Symposium on Interactive Composition in Amsterdam, the Bourges Festival of Electroacoustic Music in France, the Taktlos Festival in Switzerland, the Moers Festival, ISEA95, and for West Deutsche Rundfunk in Cologne and Danmarks Radio, Copenhagen.. He has received commissions for works from the Berkeley Symphony, the Rova Saxophone the Abel-Steinberg-Winant Trio, and from the Wallace A. Gerbode Foundation for "Lava", an evening length work for brass, percussion, and electronics.
Chris Brown's recordings include two solo CDs, "Snakecharmer" (1989) and "Duets" (1996) (both for Artifact Recordings), and as a collaborator on "The Hub - Computer Network Music", and "Wreckin' Ball" , also on Artifact. He also appeared on Wayne Horvitz' 1988 Elektra release "This New Generation". His composition "Lava" was released on CD in 1995 on the Tzadik label.
William Winant → Percussion, Vibraphone, Marimba Visit Website
William Winant, "one of the best avant-garde percussionists working today" according to Mark Swed of The Wall Street Journal, has collaborated with a diverse range of musicians, including John Cage, Iannis Xenakis, Frederic Rzewski, Alvin Curran, James Tenney, Gordon Mumma, Cecil Taylor, Steve Reich and Musicians, Jean-Philippe Collard, Ursula Oppens, Joan LaBarbara, and the Kronos String Quartet. He has recorded and toured with Mr. Bungle as well as with John Zorn, Anthony Braxton, Mike Patton (Faith No More), Oingo Boingo, and Thurston Moore (Sonic Youth). With the cellist Yo-Yo Ma, he recently performed the world premiere of Lou Harrison's quintet "Rhymes with Silver" in collaboration with the Mark Morris Dance Company.
William Winant has made over 100 recordings, covering a wide variety of genres, including music from Earle Brown, John Zorn, Pauline Oliveros, Luc Ferrari, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Danny Elfman, Souxie and the Banshees, and the Thurston Moore Trio. His recording of Lou Harrison's La Koro Sutro (New Albion) was the New York Times Critic's Choice for best contemporary recording of 1988. Some of the century's most innovative composers have written works for him, including John Cage, Lou Harrison, John Zorn, Gordon Mumma, Alvin Lucier, Terry Riley, Fred Frith, and Leo Wadada Smith. He is currently principal percussionist with the San Francisco Contemporary Music Players. Mr. Winant has performed as a guest artist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic under the direction of Pierre Boulez; the San Francisco Symphony (with the Abel-Steinberg-Winant Trio); the Berkeley Symphony; the Cabrillo Festival Orchestra; the Ravinia Music Festival, as well as at many major festivals and recitals throughout the world. He teaches at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and is Artist-in-Residence at Mills College with the internationally recognized Abel-Steinberg-Winant Trio, which has commissioned over twenty-five new works for violin, piano, and percussion.
Larry Ochs → Sopranino and Tenor Saxophones
Larry Ochs: performing with Rova Sax Quartet (1979 - present); Room (1986 - 1995); What We Live (1994 - present); Glenn Spearman Double Trio (1991 - 1998); John Lindberg Ensemble (1998 - present); Frith, Masaoka, and Ochs aka Maybe Monday (1997 - present); Larry Ochs Sax & Drumming Core (2000 to present)... Recordings with all the previous groups... Collaborations and/or recordings with John Zorn, Wadada Leo Smith, Anthony Braxton, Terry Riley, Alvin Curran, Joan Jeanrenaud, George Lewis, India Cooke, Butch Morris, Dave Douglas, Barry Guy, Henry Kaiser, Gerry Hemingway, Marilyn Crispell, among others... Commissions from Meet the Composer and Chamber Music America, among others... Writing about the music at www.rova.org as well as in Arcana, edited by John Zorn.