My back pages.
All over my apartment, in boxes and in piles, are loose clippings and magazines with articles I’ve written that, for one reason or another, don’t exist on the web. For some time now I’ve been toying with the idea of posting at least some of those pieces here, partly because it’s a way of archiving them and partly because a pretty large number of them represent kinds of work I haven’t been able to do, for one reason or another, at The New York Times or Time Out New York. It’s also likely that I’ll dig up a few things predating my work with both of those outlets.
What’s finally moved me to get going with this idea is today’s full launch of Anthony Braxton’s new Tri-Centric Foundation website. Included in this spiffy new labor of love are three main areas of interest. The Tri-Centric Foundationsection offers information about Braxton and his current projects. Friendly Experiencer allows for interactive investigation of Braxton’s work and concepts. Finally, New Braxton House is a reconceived version of the Braxton House record label, where the artist and his team are selling both recent recordings and archival material as downloads in MP3 and FLAC format.
You can get a taste of what’s in store free of charge if you act quickly: Septet (Pittsburgh) 2008, an excellent performance of Braxton’s Composition No. 355, just over an hour long and featuring a first-rate band, is currently available for download in MP3 and FLAC formats for anyone who registers at the site.
Other albums are available for purchase at reasonable prices. An inexpensive subscription nets you two album-length downloads per month, a discount on additional purchases and the warm feeling of supporting Braxton’s current and future endeavors directly. There’s even a full page of bootleg live recordings, reclaimed, neatly “packaged” and available for download at no cost whatsoever.
Given the incredible effort that clearly went into making the Tri-Centric site work — and it does, though some users reported encountering difficulty with registration and downloads during early hours of operation — it seems only right that I should launch my new blog series tagged as “My back pages” with a review of “Tri-Centric Modelling: Past, Present and Future,” last June’s two-concert celebration of Braxton’s 65th birthday, which appeared in the September 2010 issue of The Wire. Can’t promise that I’ll finish that post tonight, but it’s in the works starting… now.