You're Reading: The Inconstant Sun (Volume 5, Edition 4)
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The Goings-On

June–July 2019

Since I last wrote to you all, I was staring down a (for me) daunting amount of calendrical commitment, including a reunion gig with Great On Paper, two premiere performances of Kevin Laskey's Almanac in NYC and Philadelphia, a weeklong trio residency in Beijing, and two recording sessions. 

That has all come to pass, and I'm still here and finally feeling rested—just in time for the summer, which is looking relatively lighter and should leave more time to practice, compose, reflect, check things out, and hang. Lately, I've miraculously and unintentionally found the endurance to sit through slow(er) foreign films, and at the recommendation of friends, I've been digging into the films of Tarkovsky and Kurosawa (via Criterion Channel), which has more or less been my new pastime in lieu of seeing live shows.

(Now that I think of it, part of this newfound interest was probably due to all the movies I've been watching on airplanes to/from Beijing; I can safely say at the midpoint of 2019 that this will be the year of movies for me. Top recent picks include Andrei Rublev and The Mirror (Tarkovsky), as well as Ikiru and Yojimbo (Kurosawa).) 

At this juncture, the big projects on the horizon are primarily related to the recordings of last month--getting the recordings through the remaining stages of production (mixing being handled by the wonderful Juanma Trujillo; see sidebar), and getting started on the new composition project: new music for the same quartet, which played The Middle of Tensions last month at the Gallery.

I'm still updating the blog with notes on the month's gigs, but looking further out into July, I'll be co-leading a sextet with the fabulous multi-instrumentalist Levon Henry; he reached out to me about collaborating upon his recent return to NYC, and we put together an all-star line-up that has never played together: Kalia Vandever on trombone, Christian Li on piano, Devin Starks on bass, and Buz Donald on drums. It'll be my first time playing at the Owl Music Parlor in Lefferts Gardens, BK, and we'll be doing my and Levon's arrangements of lesser-played songs in the jazz continuum. 

I'll also be leading the Blue Note big band in a concert of original pieces by pianist Mark Bai, one of the leading creative voices in jazz in China right now. I'm also looking forward to reprising my role in the three-tenor juggernaut, JOGGERKNOT, a band by bassist, songsmith, and soon-to-be-former neighbor Andrew Schiller, who'll be pursuing an advanced degree come fall.

That's all I've got to share with you for now. Thanks for reading and thanks for listening.


Coming Soon:

Wednesday 6/5
—  9:00 PM  —

David Zheng Quartet
at Red Room (KGB)

Monday, 6/17
—  5:30 PM  —

Happy Trio
at Lowlands Bar

Thursday, 7/11
—  evening  —

at Owl Music Parlor

Sat-Sun, 7/27-28
— evening —

Music of Mark Bai
at Blue Note Beijing

Wednesday, 7/31
—  8:00 PM  —

Andrew Schiller's JOGGERKNOT
at Bar Bayeux


—Videos from the trio's week in Beijing:

—"Bad Lady"

—"Find Your Pose"

—"Mr. Day"


—Spotify and others are creating fake artists to exploit streaming services revenue?

—In Defense of Ugly Paintings

—My dear friend Juanma Trujillo has a new trio album out: "Set It Up As Silence"

—I spoke about my quartet piece for The Jazz Gallery's blog last month
Pretty things
Copyright © 2019 Kevin Sun, All rights reserved.

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Kevin Sun · 155 15th Street · Apt 1D · Brooklyn, NY 11215 · USA

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