Somewhere Glimmer is the second album by Trio S – the acclaimed group helmed by clarinetist Doug Wieselman, featuring Jane Scarpantoni on cello and Kenny Wollesen on drums and percussion. When Trio S was formed in 1999, Wieselman wanted to create a band separate from his Kamikaze Ground Crew – the band which he co-led and was his vehicle for his compositions starting in the ’80’s.
In the mid/late 90s, Wieselman had been exploring a solo clarinet repertoire, inspired by water melodies, which extensively used live looping. He wanted to continue this idea, but in a band context, as he had a sonic vision of one of the pieces from the first Trio S album – “Majorca” – which involved a rhythm and a bass line. Rather than bass, Wieselman was attracted to the cello and thought of his good friend Jane Scarpantoni, with whom he’d been playing and touring in the Lounge Lizards. For drums, he naturally thought to call Kenny Wollesen – who had been playing in the New York version of Kamikaze Ground Crew, as well as numerous other overlapping projects in the Downtown Scene. Together and to fit the timbral necessities of this project, Wieselman and Wollesen developed a drum set which includes a very large bass drum and a timpani. Wieselman swiftly booked their first show at the much missed Tonic music venue in New York’s Lower East Side and the band was set in motion.
After releasing the first album in 2003, Trio S (Zitherine 001- CD), Wieselman continued to compose pieces for the band, based on water melodies and transcriptions of melodies he heard in his dreams. Eventually he had enough material to record a second album. Shortly thereafter they recorded Somewhere Glimmer in one evening at Danny Blume’s living room studio near Woodstock, New York.
On the first album, in addition to his signature clarinet, Wieselman used acoustic guitar and tenor guitar for some of the pieces. On Somewhere Glimmer, he uses a tenor banjo that he noticed on the wall at the Jalopy Theater in Brooklyn. He started to play it, and didn’t want to stop – so he purchased it on the spot. He’d been playing mandolin and tenor guitar for many years, both of which are tuned in 5th’s, as is the the tenor banjo.
Somewhere Glimmer features some of Kenny Wollesen’s invented instruments known as “Wollesonics” which include old wind up technology (grinders, hand held egg beaters, etc) with percussion. These are heard throughout the album, but most prominently on “Birdbath”
The first album was recorded on A-DATs , which Wieselman mixed and mastered at home. Somewhere Glimmer, recorded on pro- tools and pre- mixed at home, was eventually mixed at Figure 8 studios through vintage equipment including an old Neve board and tube outboard gear, captured at very high resolution. Wieselman elaborates: “I wanted to preserve the dimensionality of what we found as much as I could – which is why I decided to release this on vinyl.”
About the Members of Trio S:
Doug Wieselman has worked as a player, arranger and composer with a variety of artists in different fields including John Lurie, Anohni, Laurie Anderson, Lou Reed, CocoRosie, Martha Wainwright, Anthony Coleman, Hal Willner, Butch Morris, Robert Woodruff, The Flying Karamazov Brothers, Jerome Robbins and Robert Wilson. He has co-led Kamikaze Ground Crew for over 30 years, and has released a solo clarinet record From Water, based on melodies he has heard from bodies of water. His soundtrack work can be heard on the cd “Dimly Lit”, released on John Zorn’s Tzadik label. He also was co-composer for the Nickelodian cartoon show “The Backyardigans” in association with Evan Lurie.
Jane Scarpantoni is a cellist, arranger and composer who got her start on the downtown NYC scene at venues such as P.S. 122 and The Knitting Factory.
She has toured and recorded with The Lounge Lizards, Lou Reed, Patti Smith, Bruce Springsteen and the Indigo Girls amongst many others and is currently working with guitarist, bassist and songwriter Duke McVinnie on their mutual projects.
Kenny Wollesen is a drummer, vibraphonist, percussionist and instrument builder based in New York City. He is the founder of the Wollesonic Laboratories and the mastermind behind Sonic Massages and the Himalayas marching band. He has worked with Bill Frisell, Norah Jones, Tom Waits, Ben Goldberg, Steven Bernstein, Jonas Mekas, Butch Morris, Ilhan Ersahin, Hal Willner, John Medeski, Jim Hall, John Zorn.