BRIDGE 61 is a new improvised music cooperative formed in Chicago during December, 2004, by Tim Daisy (drums), Nate McBride (acoustic and electric bass), Jason Stein (bass clarinet), and Ken Vandermark (reeds). All four members contribute to the ensemble by submitting compositions, considering arrangements, and working through material equally.
The band is focused on utilizing its existing histories as a source for new potential in musical exploration (Daisy has worked with Vandermark in the VANDERMARK 5, SOUND IN ACTION TRIO, CRISIS ENSEMBLE, and with both Vandermark and McBride as a sub for Paal Nilssen-Love during the first North American Tour by FME. In addition to that trio, McBride has worked with Vandermark in SPACEWAYS INC. and TRIPLEPLAY). They are also attempting to develop the widest possible range of rhythmic and melodic approaches to contemporary improvisation and composition.
The combination of instruments at their disposal- clarinets, percussion, acoustic and electric bass, saxophones- allows the ensemble to utilize a startling range of sound and tactics with the material, easily moving from the character of an austere chamber ensemble to that of radical electric noise or to a kinetic energy hymn in any given set during a performance. Most important, however, is that the band makes the connection between these varied aesthetics and gives them formal sense.
Starting with an intense performance schedule in the winter of 2004-2005, European and North American tours organized for later in the year, and plans to also record a first album in 2005, BRIDGE 61 seeks to be a major entry point into the investigation of contemporary music during our time.