Across the Transom: September 2022

Ramsey Lewis, Tara Rodgers & King Britt

Gahlord Dewald :: 9/28/22 :: Kinston, North Carolina


“I think there’s something, too, about how one’s musical skills as a listener and improviser can cross over to skills as an interviewer. Timing is key! The rhythm and flow of the conversation. Knowing when to drop a question. Or how long you pause and wait for someone to continue a thought … it’s all there.”

“I was interviewing Laurie Spiegel in recent months, she spoke about the sense of community in shared studios in the 1970s, such as when she worked at Bell Labs. It was such that you might enter the studio and see the patch setup that the person before you had made. So there was some built-in knowledge sharing as well as resource sharing. I think these stories are so important for younger generations to hear. As much as we might celebrate the conveniences of affordable apps, and the mostly personal laptop-based setups that we use while connecting with other musicians and software developers online, there are other models of making community around music technology from not that long ago that we can learn from and build on.”

Tara Rogers in "‘We Cross Examine with Old Sonic DNA’: King Britt and Tara Rodgers in conversation on Blacktronika, music technology and pedagogy"

“The main information that came out of all of these interviews was the community surrounding the technology. Everyone would share 909s, 303s, etc. This helped create a distinct sound for the cities.”

King Britt in "‘We Cross Examine with Old Sonic DNA’: King Britt and Tara Rodgers in conversation on Blacktronika, music technology and pedagogy"


I've just learned that the brilliant saxophonist, composer, and educator Dr. Brian Horton has suddenly passed away. I knew him and had the opportunity to play with him informally. I'll write more on this later but for now it's heartbreaking.


“He adds that it's critical to cultivate a sense of community. "As a promoter, you're better off making what you do about the party and what makes it unique rather than Ben Klock, Jeff Mills or whatever big name you've booked," he insists. "Strong club scenes are about people and communities, not celebrities.”

Conor Lynch quoted in “What to Do in a Recession,” Resident Advisor


Ramsey Lewis has passed on. His album The In Crowd was the first jazz album I loved. Perhaps the first album of any sort that I loved. My dad had the record among the maybe one and a half feet of records he kept under the record player, all that he owned and as children we were strictly forbidden to touch the player or the records.

I learned how to carefully use the record player and since he didn't really ever use it I began listening to the records secretly when no one was home. Ramsey Lewis' album in particular caught my ear. The sound of the audience appreciating the music, the clinking of glassware, the mood of the room. All of this was so foreign to my experience of the world and exciting to hear.

Around the time I found this album I had begun playing bass. I think it was several years before I realized that Eldee Young had performed this on cello. Meanwhile it was on constant play on my little walkman as I trudged through snow on the way to junior high and back.


“Never formally charged, they were jailed in squalid conditions for forty-five days in the Leesburg Stockade, a Civil War era structure situated in the back woods of Leesburg, Georgia. Only twenty miles away, parents had no knowledge of where authorities were holding their children.”

Hidden Herstory: The Leesburg Stockade Girls


“A tool that I use to write poetry and then I’m just passing it to them and hopefully they can get something out of it. It’s pretty much how the workshops are, really like a skill-share and exchange of information. The information that is credible to the practice.”

Moor Mother in “On creating the future you want to see