Each week, I get a ton of email about music, films, theater and gallery openings. So many in fact, I can't possibly read them all. Once in a while however, I'll get one that intrigues me and just I have to delve deeper. This week, it's the NYC Experimental/Neo Classical artist Kelli Rudick. I'm always amazed by women who are phenomenal instrumentalists and after watching her You Tube videos, Kelli proved she is the real deal. I must credit Adam Baer for sending me the following info on Kelli, who will be playing new material as well as works from her first album at upcoming live performances across the US this Spring and here in San Francisco, where she will headline a stellar line-up of thoughtfully virtuosic musicians at Amnesia in the Mission on June 11th.
Ahead of the curve of New York's burgeoning multi-genre intermix, Kelli's show will feature her virtuosic, complex and inimitable solo guitar work, as well as a one woman sonic immersion created with guitars, loop station, array mbira, and nail violin. The indie / neo-classical artist has played shows across the country, including New York's the Knitting Factory, Blue Note and Joe's Pub; LA's Hotel Cafe; Seattle's Triple Door; and San Francisco's Cafe Du Nord. She recently completed her second US tour as well as an appearance at the Mother Music Festival in Tel Aviv. Kelli returns to California for engagements in Los Angeles, San Diego and San Francisco.
In her ex-industrial Brooklyn loft strewn with guitars and all manner of odd instruments, Kelli creates beautifully crafted and intensely driven compositions. Born in the states but raised in Israel, she spent endless hours playing in the echoing sound of the bomb shelter just outside the family’s house on the outskirts of Tel Aviv. After fulfilling her mandatory military service, Kelli moved back to the US and worked to create alternate playing styles through inventive fingerwork and variant tunings, creating a unique and inimitable musical style. In Brooklyn Kelli continued to develop her unusually powerful and expressive techniques. Using every timbre the instrument has to offer by slapping, tapping, bending, restringing and de-tuning, she causes the instrument to morph and transcend possibility in her hands.
In 2007 Kelli released ‘No One Knows You’re Foreign’, a distinctive work introducing her unique way of accentuating emotionally complex compositions by drawing percussive rhythms from the fretboard and body of the guitar while coaxing chordal melodies and harmonics from the strings. The cumulative effect of this soundscape reveals transcendently beautiful dimensions in an anomolous approach to guitarwork. Live shows in support of this record include intricately crafted arrangements for solo guitar as well as looping beats, bass lines and string driven sound progressions, creating captivating atmospheres though multi-layered melodic structures.
Kelli has collaborated with notable artists including Nick Zammuto of the aleatoric electro-folk duo The Books, Alon Leventon of the project Drops of Conciousness and the electro-indie group Zigmat, and recorded and toured with internationally acclaimed guitarist Kaki King. She’s scored music for Queer Eye For The Straight Girl, Showtime’s hit series ‘The L Word’, and the independent films ‘A Night in the Sunlight’ and 'Absolutely I Do'. Kelli has toured throughout the United States and Europe, and has played extensively in her adopted hometown including shows on the main stage of The Knitting Factory, Galapagos, the Cutting Room, a month-long residency at the Living Room, and fronting her seven piece band at the Blue Note in New York City.
Supporting Kelli at this show is Sean Smith & the Present Moment. Guitarist, composer and improviser Sean Smith has produced several masterful solo-guitar albums since 2005 with his powerfully emotive instrumental songs. He is heavily rooted in the school of Takoma and John Fahey, but never limited to it. Like Kelli Rudick, Sean Smith’s music always pushes the boundaries of instrumental songcraft and technique, speaking profoundly in wordlessness. Sean shows two very different sides of his oeuvre at this show, with one set on solo guitar and another together with his new trio, The Present Moment.
Diego Gonzalez, another stunningly exceptional instrumental artist, joins the bill to perform a solo set on Bass and Oud. He is best known for his work with the noted experimental indie band Citay, as well as the indie / neo classical act The Dry Spells. Gonzalez is an astoundingly talented multi-instrumentalist, who will perform a set of solo material for this evenings show.
Kelli continues writing and recording for her upcoming 2nd release, which adds new dimensions to her work and is a definitive evolution from her earlier record. Accelerating the delicately complex terrain of her first recording, the new songs add precise string arrangements, driving basslines, steely layers of variant guitars, array mbira, nail violin, and powerful drums to her distinctive chordal compositions. Don't miss this one.
Kelli Rudick with Sean Smith & the Present Moment and Diego Gonzales
Amnesia in the Mission
June 11th @ 9:00 pm
853 Valencia St., San Francisco, CA 94110
$8 21+ to enter