All of your favorites, in one place.
75 Dollar Bill, a project by Che Chen and Rick Brown present Wood/Metal/Plastic/Pattern/Rhythm/Rock. "Che's interest in the Arabic modes of Mauritanian music has marked our sound quite a bit but I have brought some things, too. The plywood crate I play is a big factor, defining, by its positive qualities (a nice warm 'boom' sound) as well as by its simplicity, what we're likely to do in the percussion realm. Wood/Metal/Plastic/Pattern/Rhythm/Rock, this new record, differs quite a bit from the previous one, notably in the rhythmic 'tone.' Wooden Bag (2015) was all forward momentum, stomping and shaking, but the new record explores a long-standing interest of mine: odd and 'compound' meters. In most of my previous musical activities, I've convinced my partners to delve into this, but in 75 Dollar Bill it has just felt natural and I believe Che's modal investigations and melodic/harmonic tendencies enhance (and are enhanced by) this combination. The current record differs from the last in another big way: reinforcements! Over our few years together, Che and I have frequently had friends play with us at some of our gigs. There have been all sorts of permutations of instruments and some great friends/players who don't all appear on this record but here we are lucky to have a bunch of them: Cheryl Kingan (of The Scene Is Now) on baritone and alto saxes, Andrew Lafkas (of Todd Capp's Mystery Train) on contrabass, Karen Waltuch (of Zeke & Karen) on viola, Rolyn Hu (of True Primes) on trumpet and Carey Balch (of Knoxville's Give Thanks) on floor tom. Please enjoy Wood/Metal/Plastic/Pattern/Rhythm/Rock. 'Earth' saw is one of our earliest tunes and, I think, the first result of this 'compound meter' approach. It's a slow 9 beat phrase Che came up with for this odd groove. 'Beni Said' has no fixed rhythmic cycle but a roughly unison melodic phrase and a pulsing, loose feeling of 3s and 4s played using a box full of bottle caps. 'Cummins Falls' features Carey Balch on Diddley-beat floor tom and me reprising the maracas. 'I'm Not Trying To Wake Up' is another of our compound meter songs, this one using an 18 beat scheme." - Rick Brown