DAILY MAGPIE – April 4th – A Tribute to Arthur Russell at Le Poisson Rouge (N.Y.)

On the 17th Anniversary of his passing, original collaborators and friends of Arthur Russell will be playing his songs in a tribute to his life’s work. Performances will span from dance tracks such as “Go Bang!” to more experimental and minimal compositions for cello and other instruments. Read more below.

Date & Time: Saturday, April 4th, 10:30PM (Doors at 10PM)
Venue: Le Poisson Rouge
Location: 158 Bleecker St. / New York, NY 10012
Price: $12 in advance / $15 at the door (This show is 21+) Buy tickets here.

Le Poisson Rouge presents a tribute to the composer Arthur Russell, who established himself in New York’s vibrant downtown music scene of the 1970s as an eccentric chameleon, creating across and playing his cello in a wide variety of experimental and popular genres. When Russell died in 1992 at age 40 due to AIDS-related illness, his most celebrated output was the collection of leftfield disco records he produced under monikers such as Dinosaur L and Loose Joints, although he left a huge body of work behind him—minimalist chamber music; country-tinged rock from his band the Flying Hearts; meditations for solo voice, cello, and electronic effects—much of which has been posthumously released on record labels such as Audika, introducing Russell’s brilliant, gentle sound to new audiences across the globe.

This concert of live music, held on the anniversary of Russell’s passing, will bridge the gaps between the extremes of his practice, and will include instrumental works, dance tracks, and songs played by an ensemble of Russell’s original collaborators in addition to a few special guests. A dance party follows with DJs and a special late-night performance.

Arthur’s Landing was formed by Russell’s closest friends and musical colleagues: Steven Hall, Ernie Brooks, Peter Zummo, Bill Ruyle, Joyce Kirby, Elodie Lauten, Mustafa Ahmed, and John Scherman. It is frequently spoken that Russell worked with the crème de la crème of New York’s downtown music community. Here they are, as one collective, performing Russell’s songs as no one else can. Sitting in with Arthur’s Landing will be musician-composers Nick Hallett and Alex Waterman.

They will be joined by special guests, including Nomi (of Hercules and Love Affair). DJs Lee Douglas (Rong), Justin Vandervolgen (ex-!!!), and Dan Selzer (Acute) play Russell’s disco classics, while artist Rafael Sanchez caps off the evening with a special performance to Dinosaur L’s “Go Bang!”

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About Jay Babcock

I am an independent writer and editor based in Tucson, Arizona. In 2023: I publish an email newsletter called LANDLINE = https://jaybabcock.substack.com Previously: I co-founded and edited Arthur Magazine (2002-2008, 2012-13) and curated the three Arthur music festival events (Arthurfest, ArthurBall, and Arthur Nights) (2005-6). Prior to that I was a district office staffer for Congressman Henry A. Waxman, a DJ at Silver Lake pirate radio station KBLT, a copy editor at Larry Flynt Publications, an editor at Mean magazine, and a freelance journalist contributing work to LAWeekly, Mojo, Los Angeles Times, Washington Post, Vibe, Rap Pages, Grand Royal and many other print and online outlets. An extended piece I wrote on Fela Kuti was selected for the Da Capo Best Music Writing 2000 anthology. In 2006, I was somehow listed in the Music section of Los Angeles Magazine's annual "Power" issue. In 2007-8, I produced a blog called "Nature Trumps," about the L.A. River. From 2010 to 2021, I lived in rural wilderness in Joshua Tree, Ca.

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