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New York Rock Ensemble

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 Dorian
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Posted: Jul 07, 2005 10:25:50 pm    
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I'm opening this topic on Mike's website, sadly at this late date. This is due to questions posed me to my home recently by a "gsphoto4u" who chose to remain unnamed... He/she asked that I answer either privately, or on this site. My choice to open this here is purely out of respect and love for Mike, since actually there is no better place to stroke the memory of the NYRE. It is of course a real pity that many otherwise interested people will not be taking part, for understandable reasons.

For those of you interested in the history or, or activities or, (or whatever...!) of the remaining members and/or associates of the NYRE, please feel free to post your questions. I'll answer as best as I can, even if not as soon as maybe some of you would like--but that's due to life's demands...! But please at least do me (us) the courtesy of naming yourself... Thanks! Dorian (formerly/always member NYRE)

 Apapane
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Posted: Jul 10, 2005 5:00:16 am    
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Dorian,

I just finished listening to Roll Over. Mahalo, I needed that.

Saw you as NYRRE at Carnegie-Mellon MANY years ago. I still remeber it vividly. I was always hoping for a brief reunion, just to play the songs from Roll Over. Sadly, that can no longer occur.

I'd surely like to know what the three of you are doing these days. Please stay in touch.

Aloha,
Richard Palmer, AKA Apapane'

 Dorian
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Posted: Jul 11, 2005 11:13:18 pm    
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Hi Richard (Apapane)
Delighted "Roll Over" still makes people feel good!
Along with you, I had also hoped and strived for years for an NYRE reunion. It almost happened, in Athens for the Olympics --which would have been a fantastic reunion stage! Mike was working on it when he died. Terrible loss, in every way.

Marty Fulterman worked for a short time as a writer/producer in NYC after the Ensemble broke up, and then as you probably know moved to Hollywood to seek his fortune. He changed once there--his name as well--and became Mark Snow. Put in his name in Google and you'll see how impressive his resume as a TV composer is.

Clif Nivison never stopped playing the guitar. He attempted one more "original band" after the NYRE in the late 70's, "Borzoi", a hard-rock band that had considerable success in the New Jersey-Pennsylvania club scene before becoming more and more of a cover band. I was in that band with him for a short time at the end of its run (and from that point on swore off ever again playing cover material). Afterwards he continued playing in the central Jersey area in many different cover bands, but always leaning to the metal styles he loves the most. Currently he lives on the west coast of Florida and in between ducking hurricanes keeps on rocking. He in my opinion is still a world-class rhythm guitar player.

Brian Corrigan (you might not have known him from the Carnegie-Mellon time you knew us. He left the band just before "Roll Over" was recorded. It's quite possible that "Roll Over" was as good an album as it was because we 4 who were left had decided to try continuing as a foursome although we had originally begun making our name as a 5-piece band. That was why we changed our name from "New York Rock and Roll Ensemble" to the shorter version.)--Brian had as one may say "problems" after leaving the band and outside of a short-lived attempt to record a single with (I believe) Mercury Records never again surfaced in any way as an active musician. And it is a great pity, and personal sorrow for me since he was the guy I started my whole rock career with. For many reasons--and many I do not know--he withdrew into the Pennsylvania hills and severed contacts with his old friends. He and Clif and I came from the same hometown in New Jersey (Toms River)--we played in bands prior to the Ensemble together. Brian remained in touch with Clif for some years, on and off, but then truly vanished for all practical purposes. All we know is that he continues working as he has for many years as a house painter and contractor, and has slipped in some way into the Christian Music scene, although none of us know whether or not he has ever performed or attempted to release any songs in that scene. We know that he had contacts with Michael in the last more recent years, but we do not know about the substance of those meetins.
The last "recording session" that had anything to do with the Ensemble members took place in (I believe) 1991, in Clif's basement where he had a small studio set up. Clif and I backed Brian for a Christian song he had written and recorded this, with Clif on bass and guitars, Brian on guitars and vocals, and myself on keyboards. The result was far more historically interesting than of any real demo value, since the song sounded identical to many of the early Ensemble songs we had done around the time of our first and second albums with Atlantic. Afterwards, there was only one more "reunion" of sorts with the 3 of us, and also present at that jam session was Noel Redding. This must have been in 1994 or so. Since then the only contacts between the former members as far as I know were occassional meetings of Michael and Mark Snow out in Hollywood, and Clif and myself in New Jersey, until he moved to Florida several years ago.

As for me, I lived true to my musical dreams and remained as active as I could, playing in numerous unsuccessful original bands as a bass player, but also continuing my classical work as a cellist, playing in orchestras and even once in a more rare while, as a soloist. I attempted several times to "re-create" an Ensemble, but this was simply impossible, and I stopped trying. People with not only the musical capacities that we had, but also the spirit and (might as well confess...!) our good looks, and our intelligence as a whole, simply don't come together when one wants it. It happens all by itself, unexpectedly. And that this happened to me is something I am forever grateful for.
In the early-to-mid '80's I worked with Mark Snow (Marty) in LA as a cellist for the TV and film industry, and during that time put out an unsuccessful solo mini-LP titled "Alien", on which Marty played drums (this might have been his last time in a recording studio as a drummer...).
Since 1995 I live in Germany and compose quite a bit for theater productions. I play bass in musicals at times, and have been very active as a cellist as well, and so am far more content here than I have been in the States for decades. You can find out lots more details if you're interested by spelling my name right and "Googling" me, but it would help if you could read German!
This is a lot--but it might be of interest to others as well who might have retained a warm memory of the NYRE, as you have. It makes me feel really very, very good to know that what we did "mattered". I wish Mike were reading this along with me and you... All best. Dorian

 wyer
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Posted: Jul 13, 2005 2:35:40 am    
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Hey Dorian,

I hope I am not intruding here, but thought I would join in.

First of all it seems strange to hear Michael refered to as "Mike" as in public he is always known as Michael. "Mike" makes me wonder about the shannigens he and his buddies might have gotton into in the young rock and roll days. Care to share?

And was it awesome creating music with him or what?

Also I saw that you live in Germany. Isn't that the most marvelous place? My husband is from there and so I have had the opportunity to visit several times. We try to go at least once a year. Last year we went twice . I did my post chemo/radation rehab by hiking in the foot of the alps at Ramsau around Hintersee Lake. It did wonders for both my body and my soul.

We may not make it over this year as we have many projects here at home and his parents are coming here in September. If we do go it will be for Christmas. And speaking of that, what is the record number of Kartoffelknödel you have eaten in one setting? Accompanied by goose and red cabbage and a good red German wine, I managed three one Christmas!

Auf Wiedersehen

Ruthie

 Dorian
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Posted: Jul 14, 2005 11:20:49 pm    
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Hello Ruthie,
If anyone is "intruding here", it's me. I see your name all over various discussion boards, and in fact would like to know what your connection to Michael (or his family) was, so I know who I'm communicating with.

The use of "Mike" might seem disconcerting at first, but that's how I knew him from the very beginning when we were at Juilliard together and then throughout our life. Maybe I'll share some "shinnanigans" one day, but not yet.

Was it "awesome" making music with Michael? Of course--but please understand that when strong young men come together in their 20's, one thinks very differently than your question implies. It was awesome to be in that band together. We laughed, loved, fought, rehearsed, performed, cried, got stoned, sullen, joyful, nasty--you name it. It was a love affair in which we were all equal partners. We knew each other's strengths and weaknesses, and respected them all. And we knew when it was time to call it quits as well. Yes--it was awesome. All around, it was most awesome! And continued to be awesome with what then followed, as you know for one from Michael's incredible and wonderful and all-too-short story.

Life in Germany is very good. I prefer the white Franconian wines and do not like the reds over here, nor do I like gluhwine or würsts. I think I also managed 3 one X-mas...

Bis Bald. Dorian

 wyer
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Posted: Jul 16, 2005 3:39:39 am    
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My connection with Michael you ask.

Hmmm..well actually my "relationship" with Michael was very breif, way to breif for my liking, and I never met him in person.

I grew up on country music, old country music and classical rock.As I met various people through out my life that introduced me to "their" favorite music I learned that I liked a lot of different kinds of music. But having no musical background, I do not know how to explore new music, as I have no clue what something is until I have heard it. I remember the first time I heard Neil Diamond on a modular portable bright red 8 track player! Blew my socks off and I wound up seeing him in concert years later.

I learned to love Regge' and zydaco, blues, jazz, a little of this and a little of that.

My husband (I only met him in 1999) introudced me to classical and to Metallica, specifically S&M. It was awesome and I could not believe my ears. I forbade my young sons to listen to heavy metal as it was the spawn of satin (I've opened up since then, okay?) and here I am years later, a grandmother loving it! Well at least I loved S&M and in particular the Kamen touch. ( I am younger than you though )

Thomas told me the background to the music and off I went searching the internet for more on this magical Michael Kamen fellow. I found his official website. At that time he did not have a message forum. He had a way for his fans to email him, but not much more in the way of communication.

Well me with my attention deficit disorder, always saying exactly what I think and not giving a rats patooty about fame or importance, decided to write and tell Michael his web site was coming up short. I told him he needed to have a place for his fans to come together not only to talk with him, but to meet and talk with each other about him and all the music they love. He emailed back asking who I was, and we exchanged a few emails back and forth.

Not long after, I was browsing through Michael's website again and found this forum in it's early stages. I appointed myself advisor to Sam Barton in things regarding it and what I thought would make it better and pushed right in here and made myself at home as official welcomer. I greeted all new comers. Michael put in apperances as he could and had exchanges with many of the members, myself included. ( I am still notified by email every time a new member signs up.)

Then there was a young man from Africa that somehow I had an exchange with and also he posted on the forum. I do not remember what my connection was exactly, but he told a very moving story about how Michael's music had touched him and changed his life. Michael wanted to get in touch with this young man and both he and Sam tried to reach me by email to illicit my help.

At the time I was in the hospital having surgery for colon rectal cancer, but none of the regulars on the board, nor Michael nor Sam knew this. My husband, who was checking my email for me emailed them and told them what was going on. They kept my confidence on the board although some of the regulars were asking where I was.

But Michael sent me an email through Thomas that said I should know that I did not go through what I was going through alone, and not without his love. I was deeply moved.

At the time Michael had not gone public with his MS although he had it planned to do so in the near future.

When I came back from the hospital and was able to sit in front of the computer again, I told everyone where I had been with the light hearted humor I use to face and get through the pearls of life. Michael acknowledged this and praised my strength. He was generous with his praise, but I think sincere. Right after that Michael posted on the forums about his MS. He had already gone public in Los Angeles at a benefit I think.

My suregery was in September. One day in November I came to the board and read where someone had posted that Michael was dead. I was so angry at that poster for what I thought was a joke in very poor taste. I searched the internet and discovered it was true.

I broke down into tears and sobbed. I told Thomas I felt so silly, because I had never even met this man. He held me and said to me "Baby, you had a friendship with him, and you didn't need to meet him to love him." He was right.

A few days later my husband handed me the S&M DVD he ahd orderd for me the day I got the bad news and for the first time I watched Michael perform, and I wept openly for my loss, for his family's loss and for the loss the world had suffered. I cherish what I knew of him. I sitll cannot watch that DVD without crying.

So you see, I am really a nobody, but I am a nobody Michael Kamen took the time to acknowledg and to love. And that is good enough for me.

I smiled as I read your reply in regards to Michael and playing with him. This is very much the awesome I had in mind! Reminds me a bit of my circling the sonic days and squealing tires, and turning the radio up loud! Nothing but fun in the sun. Bell bottom hip huggers and zip front body suits. Cherry lime coke and foot long hot dogs. Rock in roll music and skinny dipping in the lake. Living and loving it. This is the kind of awesome I imagined! *grin*

 wyer
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Posted: Jul 16, 2005 3:44:19 am    
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P.S. I love glühwine, but am not allowed to drink it right before we go to the art galleries...long story.

And I love white sausages with sweet mustard and soft pretzels. Hate pils beer though.
Ciao'

 Millard
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Posted: Jul 20, 2005 5:04:32 am    
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Dorian,

It is so fabulous that you have opened this discussion. I happened upon it in a roundabout way. First, though, please indulge a few of my reminiscences about NYRE:

I first came to know of New York Rock Ensemble in 1971 or 1972 when my sister came home from William and Mary College raving about this band she had seen, and how they blended classical and rock music together, and their magnificent and good-humored stage presence. The concert had been held in a gymnasium called “Blow Gym”, apparently after some luminary or benefactor named “Blow.” She told me that this band, New York Rock Ensemble, opened the concert by saying something like “We’re glad to be here in Blow Gym, and we hope Jim’s having a good time.” Great stuff. The word is you rocked the house down, and the “headliner” band, Paul Butterfield, was somewhat overshadowed. When I heard “Roll Over” I didn’t doubt it.

I saw you later that year when you came to Philadelphia (headlining this time) and I loved the show – the beauty of “Fields of Joy”, the killer rock of “Running Down the Highway”. And one of the best moments of all, when Michael stepped away from the RMI piano, you put down the bass, Marty stepped away from the drums, and the band took up acoustic guitar, cello and two oboes and did “Beside You.” Wow.

I have continued to enjoy New York Rock Ensemble’s music in the years since. I incorporated “Anaconda” into my high school garage band’s repertoire – I actually think we did it pretty well, for a bunch of kids. I introduced my wife-to-be to “Beside You” and it remains one of her (and my) favorite songs.

So – how did I end up here? I gather with musical friends to pass songs around a circle almost every Friday night. This last Friday, the circle got to me, and I was holding the bass at the time. There aren’t a lot of songs that I can lead a group through on the bass, so I said (borrowing a line from NYRE), “This is a song about necrophilia”, and started into the signature lick of “Gravedigger.” Nobody else played, but I continued through a reasonable rendition of the song, just singing with the bass. Everyone really enjoyed the song. One of the folks there recognized it, saying, “Oh, yeah, New York Rock Ensemble - I saw them at The Electric Factory.” And we talked a bit about the band.

I went home, and resolved to find the full lyrics to “Gravedigger” (yes – I stumbled a bit… It’s been a while). So I used my favorite tool to find lyrics – Google. Unfortunately, I didn’t find any lyrics, but I did find a couple of places where I could get a CD of “Roll Over” – my copy is on well-worn vinyl. But – I also found a link to your discussion topic. And as I said at the outset, I was so pleased to see the discussion blooming.

Many thanks for so many great musical moments (and killer bass lines, too.) And thanks for opening this topic.

Regards,
Millard


- Edited by Millard on: Jul 20, 2005 5:30:24 am

 wyer
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Posted: Jul 20, 2005 1:18:36 pm    
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Hello Millard and welcome to the forums!
Hope you stick around. Dorian will be back in time. Ke3ep checking back. In the meantime, pull up a log, pour yourself a cup of java and do some reading!
yours,
wyer

 Gregg2
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Posted: Jul 21, 2005 9:44:49 pm    
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Dorian, To start with, I'm the person (gsphoto4u) that originally sent you an e-mail regarding what the members of NYRE have been doing. I hope it didn't upset you. It's just simply that my computer skills are VERY primitive. (I don't even know if I'm doing this right.) Hopefully, I am. Thank you so much for your lengthy update on what the members of NYRE have been doing these past 30 years or so. Every time I play one of your albums or CD's I wonder, "theese guys were sooooo talented, I wonder what they're doing these days." Thanks a million, now I know. In about 1972 or so, I bought (for I seem to remember 99 cents) a promo album where about 15 Columbia recording artists each did one song. There was this song called "Fields of Joy" which blew me away. The next day I bought the album, and I was hooked. In the summer of 1972 you headlined a free benefit concert for the Cleveland free clinic, and I managed to squeeze my way to the front of the stage. A few years later, Michael spent a week at a place in Cleveland called the "Smiling Dog" , shortly after the release of his solo "New York Rock" album. I went there 3 times that week, and on Sunday finally got up the nerve to try to talk to you guys, and was impressed at how down to earth you were. I mean, you guys were to me what I guess Elvis was to some people. I still think you were the most musicaly talented band that ever existed. I do have two questions which hopefully you can answer. The first is, I love the songs that Michael co-wrote for Bryan Adams, and would have loved to have heard them sung by Michael. He had the greatest voice I ever heard in rock music. The first time I heard him sing "All my Trials" it gave me chills. Anyhow, did Michael lose his voice, as many singers do when they get older, or did he just choose not to sing anymore? The second question is, someone mentioned that at the time of Michael's death, he was working on re-mastering his "New York Rock" album. Do you have any information if this will ever be available as a CD? After playing it 17 million times (plus or minus 2 million) it kind of doesn't quite sound as clear. Hope to hear from you soon, and I hope I did this right, this time.

 wyer
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Posted: Jul 24, 2005 12:53:59 am    
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Welcome Gregg!


quote:
It's just simply that my computer skills are VERY primitive. (I don't even know if I'm doing this right.)



Appears as if you are doing just fine. And if all else fails hit the comp with your club! *grin*

Pull your boots off and stay a while. We are glad to have you!

-wyer

 Zoe
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Posted: Jul 25, 2005 2:58:25 pm    
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its really interesting to see this topic here! i like the idea of knowing more from the bands touring days from audience members and band members alike!

thank-you Dorian for opening this one up

i agree about hearing more of michael's voice - i hassled him to sing more of his own songs, but he told me that its not really how it works- at the end of movies they like to have a current band or voice singing the theme song
i'm biased but i thought dad's voice got better- always soft it became a little mellower-but still with strength, clarity and emotion

the remastered NYR album did happen- i'm not sure where it is now or plans but i will look into it...

 Dorian
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Posted: Aug 04, 2005 3:22:51 pm    
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Hi Ruthie,

Thanks for the explanation of your connection with Michael. I assume since I often see the name "Sam" as a moderator on various discussions on this site, that this is the Sam Barton you refer to.

How modestly you say--"So you see, I am really a nobody, but I am a nobody Michael Kamen took the time to acknowledg and to love. And that is good enough for me...." If there were more "nobodies" like you around, we would all be very, very much better off! Real "nobodies" are those who stopped (or never were able) to think, or to act, or to feel or function, or those who simply stopped (or were never able) to live life for whatever reasons. Empty, sad humans. Individuals like you who take the time to act, to "do something"--are the really valuable people, and that Mike saw this in you and reacted the way he did is no surprise to me at all. Keep it up, and stay well. Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Aug 04, 2005 3:46:37 pm    
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Hello Millard,

Believe me it's great to be reminded once in a while about past events with the NYRE long forgotten--such as the "Blow Gym" incident. Also, there remains a tactile memory of some sort that makes it possible to close my eyes and still "feel" the moment of putting down the bass and pulling out a chair, picking up the cello, sitting down, messing around a bit with the mike, and then playing "Beside You" (or "Whiter Shade of Pale", which we also often played back then). Those are treasured memories, never forgotten. I'm so happy our music stays with you the way it does.

...and it's really neat that you have this Friday music circle. Love the idea! And as for "stumbling about with the lyrics...", believe me, so would I, today.

All best to you--say "hi" to your circle mates and to your wife who likes "Beside You". Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Aug 04, 2005 4:28:46 pm    
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Hi Gregg2,

Your first experience with us must have been buying "Different Strokes"--the promo album you referred to. And interestingly enough you mentioned the "Smiling Dog" where Michael Kamen and New York Rock played--I happen to own a T-shirt from there and only recently saw it again in a drawer. Fun gig. I'm sorry to say that I have had no contact with the other members of that New York Rock band after that tour with Michael and therefore have no idea what's happened to Larry Packer (guitar) or Dennis Whitted (drummer). What I know of Dave Sanborn is public knowledge, and also I know Hank De Vito continued making and writing music and was very successful to the present day in the Nashville and country music scene; last year at some point (and maybe continuing into the present?) he was a member of the band "Notorious Cherry Bombs". Michael remained in close personal contact with Dave Sanborn, and possibly his close friendship with Dave Woodford stems from that time.

As for your questions...I see that Zoe answered them, and she would know better than I. Just guessing and based on the little I did know, Mike did not lose his voice--it probably simply made "commercial sense" to use a known name/voice for the films--and objectively speaking was the correct decision. And I, too, would be happy to see a re-mastered "New York Rock" album out. From the first time I heard the "final mastered version" of that album just prior to its release, I have struggled with the problem that to my ears, Adrian Barber's final mix had a wonderful "sheen" to it--a "glorious patina". It sounded really very, very impressive and modern, and hip--sensuous, even. But--this high-tech mix seemed to come at what I thought was a fatal price, and that was that the energy I felt in the recording sessions in that studio in Boston was lacking. This whole album was quite low-key, and I felt that if anything was important to "leave in", it was the energy! And there was a lot of it with those players who made that album.

Shortly afterwards, there came a review of this album in Billboard, and I must say it was one of the finest, glowing album reviews I've ever read and therefore I kind of crept off and shut up (you know what I mean!). But, the album did not sell and did not get the airplay Michael and the rest of us of course had hoped for, so maybe with a remix at least those who were "doubting fans" can get a new version which reflects more of that exiting original energy in those sessions.

Keep up the good computer work. You're doing fine. Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Aug 04, 2005 4:49:42 pm    
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Hi Zoe,

Glad to hear this is good for you! And even more happy that there are many people with very, very good taste out there who still warmly remember one of the (and it doesn't matter that I'm saying it!) greatest bands of all times. Just seeing that those folks are staying in touch makes the whole thing a real pleasure. I wish your dad had started this topic and not I. I could have joined in and embellished various memories, but that's not the way thing turned out, and I'll do my best to answer questions as best as I can, hopefully without making too many mistakes. All best to you, Sasha and your mom. Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Aug 05, 2005 11:07:45 am    
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To "Ken" who wrote me at home,

I'm copying your message here openly on the discussion board because I believe your comments and questions might reflect the general interest other partakers of this group seem to have. Hoping you don't mind, here is your message...


Hi Dorian, Speaking to you brings me back to some of my fondest memories growing up. Although I have tried over the years to keep on the lookout for anything new any of the members put out (I noticed you did some cello work with Graham Nash on his songs for beginners album) I only last week purchased a computer that was half decent)any was pleased to see you answering many questions that many of us fans had longed for. Anyway I wondered whether you are aware of any new material available or video (I first saw the band on PBS) that us fans could purchase.

Thanks for the memories

PS I still remeber telling my best friend I actually think I have found a band that i like better than the beatles!!!!!!!!!!!!!




Thanks for the kind words! The only available material I am aware of at this time is still the copy of the film "Zachariah" in which the NYR&RE puts in a brief appearance (but a good one!). Also, I am aware that with a great deal of difficulty Clif Nivison was able to get a protected copy of the Young People's Concert the NYR&RE did with Leonard Bernstein in (I believe) 1969 (unfortunately not publically available). If I hear of any other that is available, I'll let you and everyone else know, happily.

A live recording of the NYR&RE from Fillmore West in Feb. 1970 recently surfaced... you can find out about it in another of the discussion topics here on this site. Although incomplete and not well recorded, it nevertheless is a joy to hear. Of special historical interest is that not long after this recorded gig we flew to Mexico to film our segment of the film "Zachariah", and shortly after that Brian Corrigan left the NYR&RE. That was a difficult time for us, and we considered very seriously replacing Brian with another rhythm guitarist/lead singer before deciding on what seemed to be the "riskier choice", which was to proceed as a 4-piece band with Clif taking on a heavier load as the second lead singer easing the load on Michael. The direct result of this choice was the shortening of our name to the New York Rock Ensemble, and the release of what proved to be possibly our best album "Roll Over" (although this has not proved to be the best selling album over the long run. That honor goes to "Reflections").

I fill in this time line to underline the historical importance of that live recording--it is among the last concerts of the New York Rock & Roll Ensemble as a 5-piece group, playing a set that included music from our earliest time together to newer songs that then later appeared on "Roll Over". For us, a major change. This period of time in mid-1970-early-1971 was perhaps the most creative and "together" times we lived through other than at the very beginning of our life as a band.

As for the question posed not only by you, Ken, but others as well about other releases by the former members... Michael of course has a tremendous catalogue of material which you can all find here on his site, and possibly there will be more of his music available at some point (he always was marvelously prolific!), although I cannot know this. If this happens, I'm sure you'll all find out via the appropriate channels.

Marty as Mark Snow will continue I'm certain to produce music and I can only recommend checking out his site periodically for whatever releases he might have planned. Several years ago a dance version of his X-Files theme was a certified hit in France.

As I mentioned earlier, Brian has dropped out of sight and therefore I cannot know whether he has recorded anything or has plans to do so. Clif continues to play regularly, but as far as I know his current band in Florida does not have recorded music available. I'll check on this and let you all know.

Perhaps the only possible new music from former members might (with luck!) come from me and my "Costa Blanca Suite" for cello solo, orchestra and rock band, premiered in Siegen, Germany April 22 this year. This is a symphonic work originally written for cello solo and electronic orchestra, but then I was commissioned to re-write it for live players, which I did. At this very moment I am in the throes all composers get into of "What happens next?" with a large work almost 50 minutes in length, requiring 42 musicians to perform, a soloist, a conductor, and all the peripheral people and equipment needed to put on a concert of this magnitude. Yes, a recording (and video) exists, but only for demo purposes. I myself took part in the concert on electric bass in the band (yes--on my black Fender Jazz Bass from NYRE times). As of this writing, a possibility exists that this piece will be performed again at some point in the Munich area, possibly also in Hungary, and possibly in Spain on the Costa Blanca itself (this is the area between Valencia and Alicante, where I often vacation and love). If and when a recording of this work becomes available, I will gladly notify all.

All best to all. Dorian



- Edited by Dorian on: Aug 05, 2005 11:22:47 am

 ldb
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Posted: Aug 05, 2005 10:28:59 pm    
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hi folks,
Dorian mentioned the Fillmore West '70 recording recently, and he was also very kind to send a final tracklist for this. it's a pity that more of the set wasn't recorded, but the taper was trying to save tape and needed to preserve the other 45 min side for Delaney & Bonnie with Clapton later that evening.

here's Dorian's listing:

1. ...free jam into what we always referred to as.. "The
March" (2:26) (This was our signature show opening
"theme" from our earliest days)
2. Gravedigger (7:16) (with a short rhythmic jam at the
end)
3. Sing Lady Sing (3:01)
4. City (3:28) (with a short keyboard intro from Michael)
5. Traditional Order (10:42) (the extended jams version)
6. Suddenly (3:42)
7. Aria (0:57) (short vocal version, followed by trio
version)
8. (5:40) opens with end of Noble Dame, into Mother Fortune
9. Sugar Eyes (3:14) (never recorded by the NYR&RE)
10.Studeo Atlantis (8:19) (with extended improvisations
at end)

i added the song timings to what Dorian listed as a guide to those that received earlier versions of this disc, where several of the songs were combined into single CD tracks.

i'll give a slightly different opinion of the recording quality: by audience recording standards i'd rate it as solid very good, with all instruments reasonably audible and most vocals fairly up-front. it's not a pro soundboard, but among all audience recordings i have it's in the fairly small percentage i'd listen to more than once or twice.

when transferring the box of tapes of which this recording was a part, there were a number of recordings for which i couldn't identify the performers (there are still a few i don't know). The NYRRE was one of these, but i enjoyed the music so much that i made it a special goal to track this one down. in the process i discovered the group and picked up the first 3 LPs. i've listened to them a lot lately,
and i can thank these circumstances for introducing me to some very enjoyable music.

i'm primarily a hendrix researcher, so an unexpected treat was the cover version of "Wait until Tomorrow" on the 2nd LP, and "Sing Lady Sing" that Buddy Miles pilfered and re-wrote into "Them Changes", a hendrix standard during the Band of Gypsys period. now Dorian mentions a latter-day reunion in the 90's that Noel Redding attended... many connections.

if Dorian has any recollections specifically about that Fillmore West stand 19-22 February 1970, i'd be very interested!
all the best,
-Doug

 Dorian
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Posted: Aug 06, 2005 12:28:47 pm    
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Hi Doug,

Sorry I was too "professional" in my comment about the recording quality. The live tapes are indeed as you say, very much "listenable", and probably are of better-than-average quality for live tapes from the 70's.

For others who might be reading this, it was Doug's postings on the General Discussion groups earlier this year about a live NYR&RE tape he had in his possession that attracted my interest and response--which led to a surprise e-mail to my home asking questions about the group from a fan--which led to my deciding to open this topic here on Michael's site. So, openly, a special thanks to Doug. I'm enjoying this as well.

Regarding Jimi Hendrix... The NYRRE had a gig in a New York City club called Steve Paul's Scene (can't give you the date, sorry) and one night, Hendrix and Buddy Miles, and also Sly Stone were present. At some late hour a jam session took place with Hendrix on guitar, Miles on drums, Clif Nivison on my bass (I don't recall if Michael played keys as well, or if others were on stage). Sly Stone wanted to play bass--Clif refused him. I stood to the side of the stage, moderately impressed more from the names on stage, less so from the music of that jam.

We also attended what is now considered the "historic concert" of Hendrix with the Band of Gypsies at Madison Square Garden. This was an awful experience, watching such an honored musician collapse publically on stage (drugged, it seems) after starting the concert at maybe 2, or 3 AM after numerous delays. Buddy Miles tried his best to keep the spirit alive somehow, but to no avail and they excused themselves from the stage. Nevertheless, the signature Hendrix sound was there in the little he played.

The much-later connection with Noel Redding arose from an unmusical cicumstance... A very close friend of Clif's wife was a friend of Noel's and through her we chanced to meet. If memory serves, he was at that time on tour with Fat Mattress, a concert of which we then attended as his guests.

Best to you. Dorian

 wyer
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Posted: Aug 19, 2005 2:24:14 am    
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Dorian,

Could you please email me at ruthie@pfueller.net.

I need your help with something if possible in regards to scores to Michael's Music.

Thanks,

Ruthie aka wyer

 xarlos
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Posted: Sep 04, 2005 9:34:13 pm    
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Greetings, and intro. My name is Carl. I saw New York Rock Ensemble open for Paul Butterfield at William & Mary in Williamsburg Virginia in 1970 - 71(?) - Help me Dorian! I'd never heard of them before - but they completely blew Butterfield off the stage and I ran out next day to get Roll Over. Few people appreciate what a seminal album that was! Not only was the combination of classical instrumentation with rock-electric instruments new and different, the entire approach to music, period! I was stunned. It remains one of my favorite albums to this day.

I am very interested in the live tape if it is at all available. Please email me at xarlos@cox.net

 robinbailey
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Posted: Sep 13, 2005 11:26:44 pm    
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Hi everyone,
What a pleasant surprise this forum is. i was watching tv the other night and stumbled onto a Hendrix documentary, in which, of course, buddy miles began talking about "Them Changes". It has always upset me that the song was basically stolen. I used to play in a band in Northeast Ohio, and we would play Sing Lady Sing and I'm too Busy from the NYRE. I used to enjoy the look on peoples' faces when we didn't sing the words they thought we were going to sing. I attended Youngstown State for a year when I was in the band, and our lead guitar player studied cello there. I can't remember his teacher's name, but one of the piano teacher's name was, I believe, Roman Rudnytsky, who I remember as being Dorian's brother or some relation. Dorian? Our guitar player's brother attended Julliard during the late sixties/early seventies. Maybe you knew him, a pianist, by the name of Joe Smith. Actually it was Joe that turned our band on to you guys and was probably a major reason for our guitar player to take up the cello, his name is Wayne by the way. Anyway, it's nice to see so many people talking about a band I really liked and who were a large influence on our band and over the years on my tastes in music. You know, I always thought it would be neat to do a rock version of the Boccherini Cello Concerto. Take care all, robin

- Edited by robinbailey on: Sep 14, 2005 10:02:23 pm

 wyer
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Posted: Sep 15, 2005 2:26:10 am    
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A big warm welcome to our two newest members xarlos and Robin!

Pull up a log by the fire and roast some marshmellows with us guys!

(smiling realy big at the new life being breathed into this forum and send s virtual hug to dORIAN!)

 Dorian
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Posted: Sep 21, 2005 8:03:20 pm    
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Hello everyone! Sorry I'm travelling at the moment and therefore am out of touch... Home again in several weeks and promise answers to everyone. Thanks to all!
Dorian

 Jim
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Posted: Sep 22, 2005 10:56:41 pm    
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Hello: I just found this forum after I saw (and quickly purchased) the CD of New York Rock and Roll Ensemble. I saw the band in 1971 or 2 for the first time at Mansfield State College in Pa. It was and still is a small town and campus and we used to go to a party after the concerts at someone's house out in the country and the guys from the band would always be there and everyone had a great time. This was all so long ago we used to listen to Faithful Friends on an 8 track tape in a classic VW van just 'rollin down the highway. I also remember watching the band with Leonard Bernstein on TV in that show Dorian mentioned on a previous post. How I would love to see that again!
Anyway, just thought I would add to the collective history here. NYRE is still one of my all time favorite groups to this day. I've enjoyed reading the posts and filling in bits of history from what I've read so far. Look forward to hearing more.

Jim Coulson

 Dorian
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Posted: Oct 24, 2005 10:01:41 am    
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Hello Xarlos,

You should get in touch with Doug about getting a copy of the live Fillmore CD. You'll find his postings on this discussion forum and I think he'll be able to help you out.

Thanks for the kind words about the band! All best, Dorian

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Posted: Oct 24, 2005 10:07:13 am    
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Hi Robin,

I hope it was as much fun for you to play those Ensemble songs as it was for us! Sounds like it was...

The name "Joe Smith" does not directly ring a bell for me, but I'm glad he liked the band as well, for the echoes of his liking are still here today.

...and yes Roman is indeed my brother. Small world! Rock version Boccherini? Find me the players (please not "studio musicians"!), and there's a real band in the making...

Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Oct 24, 2005 10:11:13 am    
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Hi Jim,

Thanks again for the memories! Stay with this site--questions will come, answers as well. I try to be accurate, and again I must say how sorry I am Michael is not with us to run this thing.

I'm trying to see if it's possible to get a video copy of that Young People's Concert and will let you know what happens.

Best! Dorian

 mhertzbe
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Posted: Oct 28, 2005 2:50:01 am    
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I first saw the NYRRE on the advice of my mother, who noticed that the Great Neck (NY) Arts Council had booked the boys to play at the South High School. I believe this was one of the first R&R concerts I ever attended. It must have been around 1970. I sat in the first row and shot a few rolls of black and white photos (which I may be able to dig up one of these years). My memories are spotty... I'm sure they played "Brandenberg" and fairly sure they also did "Kite Song" and "City." And definitely "Wait Until Tomorrow," which I loved. Cliff seemed to be channeling Hendrix with his strat, marshall stack, and feedback solo. I was hooked.

Saw them again at Carnegie Hall. By this time, I was quite familiar with the material and thoroughly enjoyed the show. Funny what we remember... I'm sure I had an aisle seat in the left hand group of seats.

Saw them at Town Hall... was this the NYRE or NYRRE? I don't recall.

They came back to my home town as the NYRE and played a concert at the North High School. I managed to get into the gym during the afternoon. Dorian was on stage noodling around with his bass. I so wanted to ask him my question but I was too chicken. He was just too famous. That night, they did an absolutely ripping show. I was so jealous that the other popular band in the high school (Pinhead Hootiker) opened for them. My band (Road) would have loved to have shared the stage, but then again we played quite a few Rock Ensemble songs, so probably that wouldn't have been such a great idea in hindsight. Plus, we would have been shaking up there.

What NYRE did we (Road) play, you ask? Mostly songs from Roll Over. We did Runnin' Down The Highway, Fields of Joy, The King Is Dead, Traditional Order (with a medley into and back out of an original jazzy/modern segment), and possibly City, although I have no evidence of this last one.

Another favorite NYRE show I saw was at the Bottom Line in Greenwich Village. An unknown folkie named Jim Croce opened for them, backed by his incredible guitar player. Must have been just months before they died. I clearly remember him playing "Operator," which I hadn't heard before. And he most certainly had a pack of cigarettes rolled up in his t-shirt sleeve. The Rock Ensemble were incredible in that small club atmosphere... we were right on top of them.

One of the most amazing things about the NYRE show was when Michael started incorporating the synthesizer (An ARP 2600). Not only was he an incredible musician, but I can tell you the he must have been very technically savvy to get such musical sounds out of that thing in a live setting. I grew up to be an engineer and was pretty geeky back then. The first time I got my hands on an Arp 2600, it took several hours to get it to make a peep. I mean it was SILENT for the first several hours. I can't imagine trying to actually *play* it live, but he did!

Well, I've babbled on pretty good. OK. Maybe I saw them a few more times. They've been with me ever since that first time, leaving me with great memories and not a few musical influences.

See elsewhere in this forum for info on the FM radio concert recording I have. Contact me if you'd like a copy.

One more story.

Last year, there was a mini-reunion of my old high school band at a Bar Mitzvah in Raleigh, NC. Me, the bass player, and a few of his sons jammed out a couple of tunes, including "The King Is Dead." Afterwards, someone from the party came up and said "I couldn't believe my ears... you guys played a New York Rock Ensemble Song!"

Bless the WWW that I can personally thank Dorian for being part of the Rock (and/or Roll) Ensemble and bringing us such great music... music that holds up quite well today.

OK. Here's the question I've been holding for almost 35 years.

Got this little girl who lives on the corner
Remember how she used to laugh
On the way in to the president's office
WHAT IS THIS LINE????

 KEN
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Posted: Oct 28, 2005 3:49:13 am    
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To Mark, I just received your copy of the WLIR concert & wanted you to know what a thrill it was to hear the band live. I have several friends & family that are fans of the group that will be thrilled to hear this. In response to your question about whether they were NYR&RE or NYRE at Town Hall it was the NYRE and I am positive Brian was in the audience. Do you remember them playing a comical tune called I believe Hector & the Dentist? Anyway "Thanks" again for the CD, it comes highly recommended!!!

PS in case you didn't recognize that keyboard Ditty after Mr Tree it was Nobel Dame from the reflections album which I bellieve Dorian co wrote (lyrics). Maybe Dorian can confirm this?

 Dorian
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Posted: Nov 01, 2005 9:58:49 pm    
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Hi Marc,

Amazing to be reminded of those gigs! Thanks! When a band is on the road and playing multiple times per week, of course one forgets individual shows. The ones you named are not among the forgotten ones. Wonderful to have these echoes from that past. And thanks for being such a loyal friend!

Yes--Michael started using that ARP almost immediately. His instincts served him superbly and he was able to make music with whatever noises came out of that synth. Of course there was a learning curve for him as well..but most of the learning was done live and on stage.

And now for "THE QUESTION"...

Ah, but there are so many I wish I could get "THE ANSWER" for! So many questions I've carried life-long, waiting, waiting..hoping for that one moment, that one answer...! Lucky you. Here's "THE ANSWER"!

Nice little girl who lived on the corner...
Remember how she used to laugh?
Shoved her way into the President's office, and
Threw him down the airway shaft.

Used to believe in the Traditional Order...

All best to you. Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Nov 01, 2005 10:11:42 pm    
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Hello Ken,

Yes! "Hector and the Dentist"! I had forgotten about that... Shades of Marty there... I'll have to see if a live recording of that exists somewhere...

Brian in the audience...could be. I wish I could get him to come on line here and join us...

Noble Dame--yes, confirmed.

Incidentally, for those interested in the "Reflections" album, there is a new, recent release of that album by a group called 'Raining Pleasure' out of Greece, following the original version almost exactly. Interesting, and well done.

All best. Dorian

- Edited by Dorian on: Nov 06, 2005 12:19:21 am

 ldb
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Posted: Nov 05, 2005 11:38:49 pm    
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i just wanted to send a public 'thank-you' to Marc for
sharing his fine tape of the NYRE at Ultrasonic Studios.
anyone that hasn't heard this yet, you're in for a treat
:-)
let's hope this forum springs more of these recordings
loose!
-doug

 tom
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Posted: Nov 09, 2005 6:55:03 pm    
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hi dorian and everyone else i am a huge fan of nyrnr ensemble also i saw them at greenwich high school greenwich ct in or around the late 60-to early 70's...
i have a little record label which had matthew fisher of procol harum fame on it he is also my friend. i had the opportunity starting several years ago to email michael kamen regarding a one off reunion studio cd album with the band. michael seemed interested enough to give me his lawyers contact info and also said if i had any problems with them to let him know as "he had ways of convincing them" !! he said it was my job to find the rest of the band. i think he was enjoyinh the idea of it and maybe more so making me work at finding the band. obviously he didnt need me or my little indie label to have a reunion but he did seem not to mind my emails regarding such. he told me matthew fisher was one of his musical heroes and as we all know did a version of matthew fisher/procols song whiter shade of pale on freedomburger. maybe thats why michael took a little interst in my idea. sadly it never happened but in the interm i sent michael some of my cd's and an antique/vintage book on orchestral leaders. by that time i started to see any emails between us dwindle. looking back i guess he was getting busy and maybe ill. in anycase i enjoyhed the emails we had . he told me mr. tree was marty fulterman !? he had run into matt fisher at i think cbs studios at one time or another . he mention "sweet sweet baby girl"one of 1st recordings on the " the next man" with sean connery was for his daughter. in fact if anybody hasnt heard it try to get the record or maybe the movie as michael sings at least 2 song on it including "sweet sweet baby girl" i think. fun music!!
i have a question dorian : i have an album called " former members of the new york rock ensemble" i think it is with marty and cliff but cant tell if anyone else is on it. i wanted to get permission to have it released to cd market but dont know who is legally involved with it. michael had given me martys cali studio # but i managed to lose it but did get to talk to martys father. a very nice man to chat with!
is that the same album i hear referenced as " flattering foes" that supposedly had you marty and brian?
i can tell cliff sings on former members album and particularly enjoy "on my own" and "monkey jungle".
any help getting to the bottom of this album would be greatly appreciated . also any video and or audio tapes that anyone would like to swap/trade etc with rare nyrnr ensemble on it i am real interested.
besides zacariah new york rnr ensemble also put their music to a black and white arty film made in the 1960's i assume. doing music other then whats on the albums.. i forget the name of the movie but i actually have a copy of it. dorian can you fill me in on the history behind that too? sorry to be so long winded but this is so exciting to see people that still care and keep the memory alive.
i wish the kamen family all the best and you dorian and naturally everybody else related and otherwise. best tom endangered records

 tom
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Posted: Nov 09, 2005 6:59:10 pm    
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hi all again i just wanted to repeat that i am really interested in any live/studio soundboard etc audio and or video of the band. this interest is not for anything commercial as besides having a tiny label i am also a huge fan! i do have a rare former members recording album and a rare b & w art film with the band on it for trade. best tom

 Dorian
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Posted: Nov 09, 2005 11:58:06 pm    
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Please Everybody!

"Tom" from "Endangered Records" has posted a wish to gather/trade tapes, films, etc of the Ensemble, along with his kind and warm words about Michael and the band, for which I am very thankful.

We live in digital times...while the musicians themselves remain extremely "analog". I do not know Tom, nor Endangered, and therefore for the moment until I know more about him and his label, I request that all of us here please be cautious in responding to his wish. Initially, I have opened a dialog with him privately.

Dorian



- Edited by Dorian on: Nov 10, 2005 1:25:48 pm

 tom
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Posted: Nov 10, 2005 2:15:26 pm    
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HI ALL I FOUND THE MOVIE THAT APPARENTLY HAS THE NYRNR ENSEMBLE PERFORMING ON CALLED "OUT OF IT" MADE IN 1967 AND RELEASED IN 1969 WITH A YOUNG JON VOIGHT ABOUT TEENS GROWING UP IN LONG ISLAND NY. PAUL WILLIAMS IS MUSIC DIRECTOR AND NYRNR ENSEMBLE PERFORMING THE MUSIC. MAYBE THIS WAS DONE WHILE THE GROUP WAS FORMING AND NOT ALL MEMBERS INVOLVED BUT THERE IS CELLO WORK AND I HEAR MICHAEL SING A LITTLE . MY COPY CAME FROM A FAIR BOOTH A GUY SELLING DVD'S . I DO NOT THINK IT IS READILY AVAILABLE ON VIDEO. POSSIBLY IT IS PUBLIC DOMAIN. IN ANYCASE I HOPE DORIAN CAN SHED SOME LIGHT ON THIS. HOPE THIS HELPS BEST TOM http://www.amctv.com/show/detail?CID=9974-1-EST THIS LINK SHOWS THE AMC MOVIE CHANNEL WEB PAGE GIVING YOU INFO ON THIS MOVIE

 tom
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Posted: Nov 10, 2005 3:48:33 pm    
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hi heres another intersting link to info on movie "out of it" http://www.filmscoremonthly.com/articles/2003/05_Dec---Film_Score_Friday.asp best tom

 tom
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Posted: Nov 10, 2005 5:06:54 pm    
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hi again i know i email too much but i really am excited to find this forum and the people who help keep the sprirt if the ensemble alive!
i do not know if michaels family sasha , zoe or sandra look at this forum but if they do and do not have and would like a copy of "out of it" i would be pleased to make sure they get a copy. i really think it authentically has at least michael and marty on it. [ still waiting for dorians response]. i thought if his children have not had the opportunity to see/hear it , it would be a good thing to do for them. maybe dorian or someone i could trust could forward it to them if they so desire. again best to all tom

 whoopster
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Posted: Nov 10, 2005 11:09:15 pm    
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Press Release-- 10. November 2005

Dorian Rudnytsky, cellist and bassist for the legendary band, The New York Rock and Roll Ensemble, will join host Mark Stenzler as his live-in-studio guest on the next Blues Zeppelin. Band members Marty Fulterman (now Mark Snow) and Clif Nivison will also join the discussion via telephone to reminisce about the band, their music and the late film composer, Michael Kamen, who was also a founding member of the NYRRE.

Please join Radio LoRa on Saturday, 19. November at 2200-2400h CET (4-6pm EST) to celebrate the ground-breaking music of the New York Rock and Roll Ensemble.

This program can be heard live at Radio LoRa--Zürich Alternative Radio www.lora.ch

 Dorian
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Posted: Nov 11, 2005 9:19:19 pm    
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Hello Everybody!

Some special points about Whoopsters announcement of the forthcoming interview on Radio LoRa in Zürich Saturday November 19...

I am especially excited to announce the very, very strong possibility that Brian Corrigan will also join us for that interview. If he does--and as of yesterday he has agreed to--this will be the first time since 1971 that four of the five founding members of the NYR&RE will "meet" again as a group, and it is very fitting to today's times that this should happen "virtually".

We can all thank Michael for this, as well as for so many other things. It is here on this, his site, that the connections leading to this interview were established in the first place. This celebration will be held honoring Michael on this 2nd anniversary of his leaving us.

You will be able to hear the webcast live and, as it will be archived, you will be able to hear it again anytime later. Zürich Alternative Radio LoRa -- www.LoRa.ch

Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Nov 11, 2005 9:29:47 pm    
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Hello Tom,

The NYR&RE did indeed record music for "Out of It". As was fairly common in '67, we had a variety of offers to do projects outside of just our own music--and playing some music by Paul Williams for this film was one of them.

I do not have a copy--nor remember it at all, but I checked with Clif Nivison who does, and he told me "you would remember what we played if you heard it. At first, I also did not. Mike sings one song, and Brian another." Clif was fairly certain we did only 2 songs on that film. It certainly seems we did not hang our hearts in it!

Clif told me this film can be found in eBay now and then..

Thanks for bringing this up, Tom. All best. Dorian

 Dorian
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Posted: Nov 12, 2005 10:04:25 pm    
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Repeating what Whoopster announced...


Press Release-- 10. November 2005

Dorian Rudnytsky, cellist and bassist for the legendary band, The New York Rock and Roll Ensemble, will join host Mark Stenzler as his live-in-studio guest on the next Blues Zeppelin. Band members Marty Fulterman (now Mark Snow), Clif Nivison, and--an addition to the first announcement--also Brian Corrignan will join the discussion via telephone to reminisce about the band, their music and the late film composer, Michael Kamen, who was also a founding member of the NYRRE.

Please join Radio LoRa on Saturday, 19. November at 2200-2400h CET (4-6pm EST) to celebrate the ground-breaking music of the New York Rock and Roll Ensemble.

This program can be heard live at Radio LoRa--Zürich Alternative Radio www.lora.ch
-----------------------------------------------------------

For those who have computers, this can be heard via webcast live, and for those who have no idea how this works, it is very simple to set up. Ask one of your more computer literate friends...the software required is available free. I promise--those of you who never heard a "webcast" before will be fascinated with this relatively new technology and the possibilities it offers up.

One more thing...if you don't have it set up by the time the show airs, no problemo! It will be archived and you will be able to hear it as often as you wish in the future. It will be located in the archive area of Radio LoRa.

Enjoy! Dorian

 solukmavi
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Posted: Jan 20, 2006 8:43:07 am    
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Hi,
Could anybody send me the lyrics of Noble Dame and Kemal?
Cheers..
Levent Varlik
solukmavi@yahoo.com


 Glosoli
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Posted: Jan 24, 2006 12:50:08 am    
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Hey, i just found out that the release of Reflections by that Greek band called 'Raining Pleasure', can be purchased from amazon.com

This the link: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000BYRAYO/qid=1138063482/sr=8-1/ref=sr_8_xs_ap_i1_xgl15/102-8800644-8165723?n=507846&s=music&v=glance

I just ordered it, and i can't wait till it comes..

Mark.

 Dorian
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Posted: Jan 24, 2006 10:35:15 pm    
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Hi Mark (Glosoli)

You'll be very pleased with Raining Pleasure. Their version of 'Reflections' is excellent...and impressive in that the band's version is much simpler than the original one but still retains the character. And Vassilikos (the lead singer who goes by that name alone) is a great guy. His band--Raining Pleasure--has been on the Greek top 10 charts since 2001. Check the band out on the web. According to Vassilikos, their 'Reflections' should be going gold by March. It's been in the Greek top 10 since last fall.

I would be very interested in your (or anyone else's) opinion of their version of the album!

One very intersting outcome of the contact between Vassilikos and myself, is that there is a germ--and mind you I mean only the very vaguest whif of a distant thought--of a "something like a meeting, or (now the word) reunion" of either members of the NYRE, or, or, or...along with Raining Pleasure...possibly in Greece....possibly already this coming June...???????

Oh well. It's the dreamers who set things in motion...?

All best. Dorian

 ken5849
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Posted: Feb 25, 2006 10:51:01 pm    
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Hello everyone. Just reviewed all of the postings and really enjoyed it. Was looking up NYRE on Wikipedia and there was a reference to Dorian's recollections so I looked you up.

I too am a big fan. I first saw the band at Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA during its Bach to Rock days--1969 maybe? Loved the music--all of it. But Michael was my favorite.

Then I saw them several times, with and without Brian, at Temple College's music festival in Ambler, Pa every summer. It was in a big tent, and acoustics were great. One time, I believe Clif was sick, so the band played with Hank Devito on guitar and I believe pedal steel. Michael played more solos, I believe a song called Winter Child that was on New York Rock, Whiter Shade of Pale, and others. It was a great show. Lots of Big Fender speaker cabinets I seem to recall for PA. Also, cowbells on Running down the highway--I think Michael played them. Also talked about the New York gravediggers strike and Gravedigger, but that might not have been that show.

Heard recently about Flattering Foes album but have never heard it.

The band was always best live.

Later, I heard that Michael was backing David Bowie--I think it was the Diamond Dogs tour (after Ziggy Stardust). They were coming to the Tower Theatre in Philly, but sold out by the time I learned Michael was backing on keyboards and vocal. Sent a fan letter to the Tower, bemoaning the fact I was shut out. A day later I got a call that Michael had gotten the letter, and left two passes for me at the front door. It was excellent. What a kind thing to do.

Did not know about Michael's passing until my college roomate e-mailed me. Then I read about it in a book by one of the Pythons--Michael Palin, maybe? Very touching.

Didn't Lenny Kravitz or someone else do a NYRE song recently?

Still no CD of Faithful Friends. Always thought it was a shame there was no live album.

Well, enough. Enjoyed the postings. Would love to get a copy of either the fillmore or radio tape.

Thanks. Ken


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Posted: Feb 26, 2006 4:44:24 pm    
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One more thing. The band did a great version of Who do You Love-the Bo Diddley tune.

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Posted: Feb 26, 2006 7:08:12 pm    
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re: Lenny Kravitz cover

Lenny covered "Fields Of Joy" on his 1991 release "Mama Said." I love Lenny, and Mama Said is an excellent record, but his version of FOJ didn't do much for me. Mostly I was glad that some Lenny fans might follow the "link" (so to speak... this was 1991 after all) back to the Ensemble.

Marc

 Dorian
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Posted: Mar 19, 2006 8:57:46 pm    
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Hello again friends, fans, et al,

In my last posting I hinted at a possible reunion of the NYR&RE in Greece along with Raining Pleasure...

I'm happy to say that this was a very real possibility and that a solid and excellent offer (including various specially requested arrangements) was made for the remaining members of the band to appear in Patras, Greece in June, in connection with a series of concerts being offered up by the city of Patras as this city is the "European Cultural City 2006".

Unfortunately, however, two of the four remaining members declined for differing reasons--and there was nothing to be done. Therefore I'm very sorry to announce there will be no reunion at this time, and none in the forseeable future.

I still believe that with Michael the band stood head and shoulders above most others in its time (and would today even by current standards...). A reunion without Mike? It's not the same band...but still I believe the remaining members could show themselves as an extremely musical and powerful unit. Maybe one day, we'll do it in Mike's memory.

Best to all. Dorian

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Posted: Apr 05, 2006 2:04:59 pm    
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This is specially directed to Jean Bagster, since I had written to her on another discussion area, saying I would comment here about the "reunion..."... I had written the preceding posting--the posting where I mentioned that the reunion would very unfortunately not take place--practically on the same day as this website underwent a revision of some sort, and in the ensuing days my posting disappeared. I assumed it had gotten lost in the website work, and intended in any case to replace it again shortly... After answering you, Jean, I came over here and saw that my last posting had miraculously re-appeared. Not wishing to repeat myself, I'm leaving this note for you...along with thanks again for your kind words about the band. Best to you. Dorian

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Posted: Apr 05, 2006 2:22:24 pm    
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To "Ken5849"--hello,

Interesting how you remember the Ambler gigs... I believe your description of Hank on guitar in place of Clif is correct--but if we played Winter Child, then this was very possibly already the Michael Kamen New York Rock band you last saw and no longer the original Ensemble.

There never was a "Flattering Foe" album. This is a mistake coursing around the net for some time... It's the second half of the full title of the song Marty wrote "Faithful Friends and Flattering Foe". The misunderstanding most likely arose because "Flattering Foe" appears written on the back side of our "Faithful Friends" album.

Yes--we knew/know we were "great live" and were/are proud of that. Often we regretted we didn't put out a live album--but at that time live albums were not quite the thing to do...

...and thanks for adding the note about "Who do you love". I had forgotten we used to play that--and it was one of my very favorites. If we ever have a reunion, I'll try and convince the band to play that tune again.

All best to you. Dorian

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Posted: May 08, 2006 1:00:47 am    
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Thank you, Dorian, for opening this Web space for all of us who felt so close to the NYR&RE/NYRE for so many years.

Gosh, where do I begin? It was 1969, and there I was, a geeky high school student and very mediocre oboe player, when suddenly there appeared from out of nowhere this amazing new rock group that took Bach (and Handel and Saint-Saens) and melded it so beautifully with the exciting rock sounds that were still flowering all around us. There were many nights at the Bitter End -- I still have a pair of Marty Fulterman's drumsticks, which he tossed into the audience after a July 1970 show. There was Carnegie Hall, where I somehow wandered backstage and kind of hung out with the band for a while before the show started. And there was so much more. Like others who have posted, I"ve worn out more copies of "Faithful Friends" than I can even remember, and my two sons (ages 9 and 14) actually know the words to "Brandenburg." So the tantalizing hints about a forthcoming CD reissue are very gratifying. And so on, and so on. What a blast to be able to join this cyber-reunion. Thanks again, Dorian!

All the best,

Mike

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Posted: May 26, 2006 5:58:42 pm    
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To all
I have been reading the postings and am glad to see that i am not alone in my love of all things NYRE.
I would LOVE to find out how to get copies of the live recordings talked about above.
please let me know

thanks
Ken

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Posted: May 27, 2006 1:26:18 pm    
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Hello Mike,

Anyone who has kids who know the lyrics to "Brandenburg" must be a very special person (or one of 2 very special people?) You can't imagine how nice it is to find new/old friends of the band over and over again. It's moving, you know...

You were a "geeky high school student" in '69? Well, we weren't much different ourselves, really--just a few years older--but floured lucky to have found each other and formed our band. Glad you were at some of the Bitter End gigs--we especially enjoyed them ourselves and lots of our so-called "special-ness" developed from our improvisations and live variations on that stage. Some of Marty's greatest moments of insane humor happened there, and to this day I'm convinced had Marty opted out to become a stand-up comic instead of a composer later on, he could have become as successful in that field as Mark Snow currently is in TV music--maybe even more so.

No word yet on "Faithful Friends". There are illegal copies out there, I know...

All best to you. Keep sanding down the reeds. Thanks for joining in. Dorian

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Posted: May 27, 2006 2:12:32 pm    
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Hello Ken,

I'm copying a portion of your message to me here, since it asked a question that might interest others who join in on this site...

>Dorian
>>first i need to say what a thrill it is to read your postings. I had the opportunity to hear and see you play with Michael Kamen when you two where rehearsing for New York Rock album tour. This was up in New Hampshire at a
camp call Lime Kiln Camp. I was a young one way back then (around 9) but i have the fondest memories of sitting by the pond or in the recreation hall listening to you all play. It made me realize that there was so much more to the world of music than jut the top 40. ever since then i have been open to all forms of music and when people look at my albums (yes albums) and CD and wonder how i could have such an eclectic range i tell then The New York Rock & Roll Ensemble. thankyou for this.

>>I do have one question....I can find no refrence anyware on the web or elseware to an album i have called "Former member of NYRE" Is this a ligit recording???? I have this and it has baffled me since i got it.

>>thanks again
>>ken

I'm very happy about the reference to Lime Kiln, since it was a fantastic place in which to rehearse and simply hang out. This was where Michael rehearsed his "New York Rock" band prior to our first live appearances. It was a rustic camp, where horses wandered about, with rough cabins in which we stayed--very much the best of atmospheres for creative work! There was a covered bridge nearby, with a waterfall underneath (cold water!) where one could swim...

Why there, one might ask...? Because the camp was run or owned (no longer sure...) by a friend of Adrian Barber (who co-produced Mickael's solo album along with Michael). There was a large community room, as I remember it dark with a huge fireplace, deer antlers above the mantle, and in it we rehearsed. This was in the fall--still hot out but the camp was relatively empty and most likely you, Ken, and your family were among the few people there as guests at that time. How nice that you were!

Now to your question about the album "Former Members of the NYRE"... Directly after the breakup of the Ensemble, Michael and I continued with his "New York Rock" band, while Clif and Marty went to work as a production partnership for Opal Productions in New York City (in conjunction with Specter Records). They wrote, produced, sang on many different songs, putting out quite a number of singles under different names, and also did quite a bit of work with other artists. They did this for almost 2 years. None of the work they did made the charts or had any real significant success in the U.S., the one exception being perhaps a single called "Brooklyn" which proved in an Italian language version relatively successful in Italy. Their work at Opal ended when Marty decided to make the move away from New York to Los Angeles and the TV/movie industry. A result--quite common in the recording industry--was that the master tapes of the work Marty and Clif had done for Opal remained of course in the Opal vaults, and at some point the owners of Opal "sold them"--a common practice, with the also-all-too-common result that the "rights" got sold along with that sale--regardless of the wishes or legal standing of the writers/producers, etc etc. Whatever--these master tapes eventually ended up in the hands of strangers who then released the various songs under titles such as "Former Members of...." etc, under dubious record label names, the intent being quick sales, quick bucks and then gone.

I'm being purposely a bit hard here--but neither Clif nor Marty ever saw any royalty payments for that album, regardless of who released them under what Record label name.

As far as I know, most of the guitar and bass work, and the vocals, were by Clif. The keyboards and drums were Marty, and additional instruments were brought in as needed. I can get you more details if you wish.

...and so, the album(s) was (were) legitimate, but not decently released. But interesting nevertheless historically.

Thanks for joining in. A pleasure to answer! Dorian

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Posted: May 27, 2006 8:54:40 pm    
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Dorian
Thanks for the info i thought it was something like that but had no real idea.
I assume that after this period and after the New York Rock album that is about when Cliff did the Borzoi band in New Jersey (which i beleive you did some work with on and off)

Just so you know the camp was sold to two people that used to vacation there often in the early 1980's After the ouners sold the camp (John and Keith O'Shaungnessy) they moved to Hawaii. My family kept in touch with them for some time. they both passed away in the late 80's early 90's. (not the exact history but in general). I did my architectural thesis on that site so i went back in the deep winter to "survey" the area in the mid 80's. I will always love that place and time.

As I said before i have way too many questions and will try to ask them very slowly as not to overwhelm anyone let alone you.

I have read the transcript or script from Bernstiens concert for young people (i think that is the correct title) that you all did. Do you know if this was ever recorded and if it is available in some way?

thanks again for the reply and all the great information
I have forwared the information to my brother and the rest of the family since i know they will all be intersted.

thanks again.
Ken

 Dorian
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Posted: May 28, 2006 10:14:27 pm    
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Hi again Ken,

Yes, Clif left New York and returned to his (my also) hometown Toms River, New Jersey after he and Marty stopped working for Opal. He quickly became active in the local Jersey Shore band scene (1974 or so?) and Borzoi was an outgrowth from those years. I joined Borzoi in 1976-78 after the original group broke up and Clif and lead singer Kim Jenkins rebuilt the band. As a footnote perhaps of interest to those with "historian tendencies" regarding the NYR&RE, as recently as this past New Year's there was a reunion of the original and later members and friends of Borzoi in the Orlando, Florida area. Clif was present and quite a bit of great jamming took place (I was told. I was invited, but could not attend).

Your mentioning the O'Shaungnessy couple (I might have a photo of them around from that time) triggered off a memory... I believe they had a daughter, and she had a friend (boyfriend?) named Buddy, and he was a very close friend of Adrian Barber's. That, I believe, was the real connection to Lime Kiln. Furthermore, you say they sold and then moved to Hawaii... Perhaps this is the answer to a puzzle I've had for decades...why Adrian moved to Hawaii and quite literally disappeared from sight since then. I heard now and then that his friend Buddy was also there. Then most likely they followed the O'Shaungnessy family, which would make sense. Thanks for this possible clue!

And regarding the Young People's Concert... Yes, there is a recording, and a video. However, Leonard Bernstein, his people, and CBS (?) controlled the releases of those concerts, and ours was unfortunately very badly recorded and not well filmed, and on these grounds they refused to have it publically released. Clif got a personal copy several years ago, but it is not available for the general public.

What by the way did you mean by "read a transcript or script"?

Again, best to you and thanks for the clues. Dorian


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Posted: May 29, 2006 8:43:47 pm    
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Hi Dorian;
thanks again, As for the script to the young pepoles concert. i was surfing the net about a year ago and looked it up. If i can find it again i will send on the link.
It is scaned images of the script with timming and corrections.

thanks again for your willingness to share your momories with all of us.

Ken D.

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Posted: May 30, 2006 1:57:54 pm    
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Dorian
For all those interested
the link to the script for the New York Philharmonic young people's concert #3
is
http://memory.loc.gov/cgi-bin/ampage?collId=lbcoll&fileName=lbypc/0483/0483page.db&itemLink=D?lbcoll:3:./temp/~ammem_RsFe:

if this does not work it can be fownd on the Library of congress site and search for
"Bach Transmogrified"

note that the concerts are in alphabetical order NOT chronological.

Also Dorian i May have some pictures of you, Michael and the others at that camp if I or my family can dig them up I will forward to you.

thanks again

Ken D.


 Dorian
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Posted: Jun 13, 2006 10:54:28 pm    
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Hi again Ken,

Thanks for the link. I will happily check it out. If you have photos from Lime Kiln, of course I would be very happy to see them. Anytime! Dorian

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Posted: Jun 14, 2006 12:39:44 am    
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A general comment...

On June 4th Raining Pleasure (mentioned before on this discussion site) headlined at the Immeke Open Air Festival (Germany). I was present at that concert at the invitation of Vassilikos, lead singer of the band.

The band is very good. They have a couple of outstanding songs, with hooks that linger long after the show's over. Vassilikos is "the show", so to speak, since Raining Pleasure reflects the traditional format of lead singer/sometimes guitar player with supporting band players--2 guitars (one who doubles on synths), bass, and drums. Vassilikos handles most of the vocal work (very well)--not much happens with background vocals. And so the focus is mainly on Vassilikos (who also is the main songwriter--is this a surprise?). I would call this band more a "pop band" than a "rock band", but without any of the negative implications that might be suggested there. They are musically interesting, innovative, energetic and Vassilikos has a real charm and a catchy, inviting charisma with the audience.

At this concert, the band did not play any songs from "Reflections". They reserve the Hadjidakis songs for Greek audiences, especially for the older audiences who are more familiar with Manos Hadjidakis's music and also with our original "Reflections".

And, by the way, according to Vassilikos, the Raining Pleasure version of Reflections went "gold" in Greece this past spring, and also for a short time, the original New York Rock & Roll Ensemble version also re-appeared in the Greek charts as an "echo" of their re-issued version.

An additional observation... At this concert, I saw a Greek band trying its best to capture a new audience--this time a German one. They played well, played an interesting and varied set. The audience was responsive and the night was by all standards "a success". Nevertheless, as I stood there and listened and watched, it was clearly a re-play of what went on 35-40 years ago, with almost no notable differences. The band sound was the same; the chord structures basically unchanged (beats of course "todays"); the posing and positioning on stage unchanged; the band/audience relationship unchanged. The band still played guitars, bass, keys, drums, with songs that had verses/bridges/choruses. All songs tried to be "catchy", some with more success than others. What actually has changed, I asked myself? Yes, the technology of the amps, the band's other gear, the PA system--these things were more advanced and refined than in the past. Sure, the clothes, the haircuts, the "attitude". I'm certain that the musicians themselves knew more about what "one should play and how" than in the past, since the rules of the rock 'n roll game are boringly established by now. Positively seen, this means the musicians could arrive at a "current standard" far more quickly today through mimicking and learning, than through trial and error (as was more the rule 35 years ago).

And the result was--as in the case of this concert--an interesting and good show. But, I could not help but ask myself as I left long after midnight, what is the future for this band, and in fact, for music in our time? Here was a good band--far better than average; a band that deserves a wider audience and hearing, but will most likely not get it simply because I believe we are drowning in music and cannot make quality judgements any longer. What do we judge by? Sales figures (always a strong argument)? Good critiques (everyone seems to have this...)? A "record deal" (everyone seems to have this as well...)? A "released CD" (everyone, including your neighbor, has this as well)? All this and much more--and the result being that even the major labels don't find the time nor the interest to check out new bands and to promote them--which takes time and money nowadays.

I will not wander further with random thoughts about such things any longer. But--since I saw and liked Raining Pleasure and since that band is now connected to the New York Rock Ensemble history--I felt this was the right forum to express some personal thoughts regarding the current music scene. I wish Raining Pleasure well. But--I wonder whether or not we have, generally speaking, really run the whole gamut of possibilities of rock music in this traditional format. Without a definitive answer to my question, I continue to look forward to the future with great, endless anticipation...

Feel free to join me! And also--if you have the courage, the ambitions, the interest, the energy, the connections, the money, whatever...do find out a bit more about Raining Pleasure, listen to their songs, and help them get into the wider world. Dorian

 Zoe
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Posted: Jun 16, 2006 5:05:12 pm    
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an answer to Dorian's musings-

"I believe we are drowning in music and cannot make quality judgements any longer. What do we judge by?"

drowning seems a sad way to imagine it, perhaps i could suggest that we are swimming in music- its definately a less depressing tone!
i think that the only way to judge music, maybe my bias, is on how it makes you feel. a gut reaction to the emotion expressed in it and whether you like it or not. surely that can be the only way to judge music?
do there even need to be quality judgements, or can it just be to go with your natural response- if you like it, listen more, if you don't, let it wash past and hope a new wave comes along soon

sorry if ive taken your comment out of context- it is frustratingly difficult for musicians to get themselves heard above the din of promoted bands, but at least there are more avenues for getting it out there to the people who do respond?

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Posted: Jun 23, 2006 3:11:20 pm    
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A warm response to Zoe's answer to my musings...

"Without a definitive answer to my question, I continue to look forward to the future with great, endless anticipation..."

That is "the real me"! "Drowning in music" sounds negative, compared to "swimming in music", of course. But when musing, one is limited by time, space, circumstance, etc etc and so an idea gets voiced without all the depth and detail one can give it in other circumstances. In my small musing, I was indeed voicing a negative view which I continue to hold about certain aspects of what has happened in our relationship to music over the last couple of decades. So--with time limitations--a little further musing...

No question at all that we have found and been given vast new sources and treasure troves of wonderful and exciting music to enjoy and pick out and keep or discard. But, for this new-found availability of variety there has been a price... Too much variety; too much of it variety for variety's sake alone. Too many bands; all perfectly equipped and honor graduates of "jazz or rock academies". Too many readily available avenues of presentation (radio, TV, film, internet, print media, etc). Music--and especially music--has become all-of-it-available at any time, in any place...and (for better or worse) one can get it today for free with only the smallest effort. Because of the (yes, wonderful!) developments in recording technology, music making has become an everyday event pursued by very everyday people--not only by the trained or most capable. Music midi and audio programs today even do a great part of the creative work "along with you". No wonder, as a good example, "sampling" (I still call this in the first place "borrowing" if credit is given, or "stealing" when not) has become so widely popular. How much easier it is to use or combine the ideas others created or worked out over a long period of time then to create them oneself! And please don't misunderstand me...sampling as an art form is something I have no problem with. It has precedence...colage in art comes to mind first. But in both cases, one is speaking about a niche art form, and not a mainstream form. My "negativism" reflects among other things a suspicion that in the case of music, sampling has indeed become a mainstream form, and one has to ask oneself what this might indicate. For me, that the "mass musician"--one without the talent or skills to compose or create-- has taken over the control of the standards that for a long time established what was good or not. And the result--inevitably--along with the astonishing amount of music available to openly hear and enjoy (i.e--especially via the internet), an inevitable ensuing drop in the level of quality. Even the school-trained jazz and rock musician cannot compete with this change in standards. Simply keep in mind that a good beer at one time did not mean "Miller's" nor "Bud Lite". Nor did a good hamburger mean McDonald's... (Incidentally I also had no problem with the idea of graffiti as an art form--but I had and continue to have great problems with the amount of that type of art form we have "in our faces" in practically every city in the world today! A similar problem there as in sampling...no quality control mechanism. "Everyone is an artist...").

One more comment for now... The "glass half empty or half full" thing... We've been taught that "half full" is the "correct way" to see things. It is "good"; it is "optimistic". We obviously want a "good, optimistic" world (and in part seem hell-bent on forcing it to become one!). It's nice and safe and soft that way while to see the glass "half empty" is "bad". It is "pessimistic" (oh, oh. Turn away from this. It could be trouble for us... We could find ourselves in a psychological morass here...). I believe that like pain, pessimism and depression play a very important role, since both reflect a problem or some sort of lack and draw ones attention to an area under stress that needs relief. One cannot have optimism without pessimism. No good, without bad. No positive without a negative. And so a glass with an equal cubic amount of liquid and air in it always remains either half full or half empty, and can be seen either way at any moment, or both ways at the same time, or avoided altogether. (Not to mention, one can swallow up whatever is in it and end the subject very quickly!)

Yes, I'll accept swimming in music, but more like the frog that floundered up a clot in the cream and saved itself. I do believe that floundering is necessary... If one simply sits still and accepts what there is, we might find ourselves replaying the old records more often than we might like...and they do wear out...

 Dorian
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Posted: Jul 27, 2006 5:27:25 pm    
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Hi again friends!

Just wanted you to know that Collectors' Choice Records will be re-issuing "Faithful Friends" and "Reflections" sometime this fall. Keep your eyes out on Amazon--most likely the CD's will make their first appearance there. All other versions of or including "Faithful Friends" being advertised on the net are not sanctioned by us.

Still no word regarding "Michael Kamen-New York Rock"...

Best to all. Dorian

- Edited by Dorian on: Jul 30, 2006 11:48:07 pm

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Posted: Sep 04, 2006 9:22:35 pm    
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I have never been able to replay the broadcast from Radio LoRa from last November. Does anyone have it in another format that I could get, a CD or something? Any other ideas? I would very much like to hear it...Thanks

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Posted: Sep 20, 2006 12:37:26 pm    
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Hey Dorian,

the first time I came in touch with the NYRE was when I heared Michael's song "Beside you" on the film "What dreams may come". Afterwards I ordered the CD including the two albums "Freedomburger" and "Roll over" because I wanted to hear the original version of this song. I was absolutely fascinated not only with "Beside you" but with all songs. Although I like all the songs a lot, there are a few, that are my favourites. Of course "Beside you", "Anaconda" "I'm sending a friend to you", "Carry me up" and the cover-version of "A whiter shade of pale"! I love your version of this song sooo much! I gues it is even better than the original. The classical arrangement is brilliant. Does anywhere exist a avaiable notation of this arrangement? It would be a graet pleasure for me to cover this song in this way.

It what a surprise for me to read, that you live in Germany! I'm from Dresden. If you haven't been to Dresden yet, you are welcome to visit this beautiful city!

Love, Daniel

 Dorian
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Posted: Sep 20, 2006 9:43:11 pm    
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Hello Daniel,

I visited Dresden about 6 years ago--good memories. "Piccolo" by the Elbe...Semperopern, Zwinger Art Museum...Grosse Garten Park and the Hygenic Museum, Blaues Wunder...not to mention the Kuchen in the "Cafe Toscana" in Loschwitz...and also a few Euros of my wife's and mine are in the renovation of the Frauenkirche. A visit to this one-time-DDR city is highly recommended to all American travellers--one sees a very different approach to city planning and architecture along with the gorgeous bits and pieces that survived the WWII bombing.

No, there is no existing notation for our "Whiter Shade of Pale". We were a band that did mostly "head arrangements", and as far as I can recall, the arrangement for this piece was so obvious to us that we simply did it. Mike was on keys and sang--the part was known and he played it more-or-less like the original. The cello part was a no-brainer... Bringing in the oboe made sense musically and also "theatrically"--and so Marty covered that. And since he left his drums to come stage-front and play the oboe, Clif simply walked over with guitar in hand, sat down at the drums, and played a basic bass-drum and hi-hat rhythm while playing his guitar. And the effect live was great!

Our arrangement is very simple and clear. You can easily copy it without notation. If it helps, we did it in B flat Major (B Dur).

...and now something very odd! As I was writing, I realized that I was writing about the many, many times we played this song live, practically from our earliest days. It's so ingrained in me, I can still physically feel myself leaning my Fender against my amp, pulling up a chair, sitting down with my cello, and starting the cello line with the spotlights slightly blinding me... and somewhere in the memories it slowly occured to me that maybe I ought to listen to the recorded version again. I just did, and was surprised at what I heard, having forgotten we had re-arranged the song for "Freedomburger" and filled it out with bass, and overdubs and background voices and strings, and so of course my apologies about the "simple arrangement"! I had been automatically referring to the original live version which, by the way, I always thought was far superior to this recorded version.

...and now that we're on the same track...the recorded arrangement was also a "head arrangement" for the most part and we would not have notated it. For example, I figured out a bass part during the recording session on the spot that worked with the cello part and wasn't only a doubling part. Maybe Mike wrote out string parts for the background players?? A most significant difference in this recorded version and our live version was that Michael never played acoustic piano on stage and normally his basic sounds were far more electronic--and those sounds he used were very much a part of the special personality of the band.

But why "cover this song in this way"? Do it in your own way! There's enough copying in the world as it is... But thanks for saying you wanted to. It's always nice to hear, and if you ever do it, let me know and I'd love to hear your version. Glad you enjoyed the rest of the CD's. And by the way, Mike's "Carry Me Up" was an underrated song that deserved far more attention than it received...

All best to you. Dorian

 kend.
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Posted: Oct 06, 2006 12:10:51 am    
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Sorry
I posted this message in the wrong place on this site. Sorry to be repeating myself but i am interested to find this song.

Hello Dorian and all
I have not logged on for some time due to well life.
I am interested in knowing about some of the lesser known songs by the NYRRE.
I know where to get most of them like Suddenly however i have not ever seen a copy of Mother Fortune. This is the one i am most interested in (probably because i cant find it) but afeter hearing it on a live recording i fell in love with it. I also appears that Michael used Mother Fortune as a publishing entity. Can anyone help me? or is this yet another "lost gem". Thanks for your help.

Ken

 brazilfan
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Posted: Apr 06, 2007 6:44:40 pm    
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Hi Dorian. just discovered this forum and topic. Can you or anyone else tell me if NYRE or Michael K. had any involvement with the Geoff Muldaur version of "Brazil" used in the Terry Gilliam movie? I'm talking prior to its use in the movie. I think Muldaur's version was recorded in 1969. TIA for any insight you can give.

 Zoe
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Posted: Apr 07, 2007 11:56:15 pm    
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In answer to your question about the song Brazil- I found this quote from Michael in an article by Dan Goldwasser- so no, he had no involvement in the song beforehand.

Is it easier or harder to write a score when the director has a particular song in mind to be used as a theme?

Well, in the case of BRAZIL, I tried to talk Gilliam out of using the song. I didn't like the song. When he wound up insisting on it, I wound up using it and turning it around and around and around, until I felt I had written it and loved it very dearly. Then I discovered a haunting nature to that melody which I hadn't realized was there. I found out, only after I did the movie, that it's practically a religious experience in BRAZIL - it's an icon. They love that song.

He did love the song and would often sing it. He re-recorded the song on two albums “smile” with Julia Migenes and also on his “opus” album.

Hope this helps…

 Dorian
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Posted: Apr 14, 2007 11:33:05 pm    
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Hello again friends. Glad to see that the site is up and running once more. For some time it looked like it had shut down. Therefore--sorry to anyone who had hoped for answers and had not gotten them earlier.

Zoe I happily see is back online. I also will be happy to answer questions again if and when I can. For example there was a question last year about a tune of Michael's, "Mother Fortune". The band used to play that once in a while, but we always had certain difficulties with the song and therefore never recorded it on an album. Hearing it today (it appears on a live tape), I think we simply did not know how to get into it, since today it sounds much better than it did in those years. Perhaps, it was one of those pieces "ahead of it's time".

In the life of a band, timing also plays a role in the success of one song or another. For example, in that critical moment when Brian Corrigan left the Ensemble and we considered what we should do, we decided to try and continue as the 4-member "New York Rock Ensemble" instead of the 5-member NYR&RE. This meant we did our very very best to come up with the best possible songs we could for our first Columbia album. All of us wrote individually and in combinations, and everything we composed was then recorded by Columbia, and then the decisions were made as to which songs were to be on that album. The decisions were not made by the band alone--John McClure, our producer from Columbia had a hand in the process, as did our manager and the various Columbia A & R people at the time, and the final result was our album "Roll Over". But the point is, that many otherwise potentially very good songs were left out and never again appeared in the Ensemble repertoire because they did not fit in with the concept that resulted in "Roll Over". It is quite possible that the song "Mother Fortune" was one of the songs from that period. At least, this song did get some live play by the band.

Best to everyone. Dorian

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Posted: Apr 15, 2007 7:14:20 pm    
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Today is your birthday, Michael. Many of us out here think of you and continue to feel you. I for one sang you a song and played you a cello piece today. You are missed, friend.

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Posted: Apr 16, 2007 7:52:27 pm    
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A public statement regarding "Tom, or "TMC" from "Endangered Records"...

In November 2005 Tom appeared on this site as a fan, and among other things stated a wish to share tapes, or videos, or any live recordings of the NYR&RE. I responded openly requesting that everyone on this site be cautious with such a wish from a studio owner, since I did not know who this person was, nor anything about his label.

I know now he is a straight and honest friend and has no intentions of taking "digital advantage" of the NYR&RE. Anyone who would like to contact him or share stuff with him, please feel free to do so.

 kenDuBois
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Posted: Apr 17, 2007 9:19:20 pm    
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Dorian
thanks for the information on the song.
I hope you got the pictures i sent of michael and you at Limekiln camp in the early 70s.
thanks again to you and Zoe for all your answers to the questions posted.




 tom
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Posted: Apr 18, 2007 5:46:09 pm    
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hi all i have been away from this forum for quite awhile but i would like to ask for help as a huge fan of nyrnre to aquire any live recordings of the group also would love to see again the concert they played with arthur fiedler and the boston pops.
i dont have much to trade except the following:
video of "out of place" nyrnre 1967/released in 1969 art ny long island movie about the coming of age nyrnre did partial soundtrack starring a very young jon voight
recording on vinyl title "former members of the new york rock ensemble " with marty and clif done after original group breakup . i also sould like to throw this question out to all of you : is there any word yet if michaels solo album "new york rock ensemble" has a chance of seeing cd release in the near future?
best tom

 tom
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Posted: Apr 27, 2007 2:59:03 pm    
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thanks so much to you know who ! what a wonderful joy to hear the boys live.
its amazing those tapes even survived . clif excelled as a rhythm/lead guitarist all at the same time. and the bass player ain't so bad either! nice to hear dorian get a little solo going .
wow if it was still this way today . real musicians , real talent and real songs . sure is hard to find that now . was hard enough back then .
just wanted to thank that person for letting me enjoy a fantastic trip back in time and to dorian for his kind emails to me.
still hoping for some of the "boys" to get it together for a revival. if i can help in anyway with this , i throw my hat into the ring!
best tom

 stevemulcahy
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Posted: Apr 29, 2007 3:24:07 am    
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Hi,

I'm a big fan of the group though I'm too young to have seen them in concert. I have all of the cd's except for "Reflections." I think my favorite is "Roll Over" but I love the debut too. Some of "Roll Over" is pretty heavy in comparison to the other stuff, almost proto metal in places, I sometimes wonder why that is. I'm from Boston originally, but live in the Midwest now. I saw an old newspaper advertisement from a Boston paper once, showing a 1971 Hatch Shell concert with the NYRE and the Ill Wind. This made me wonder if the NYRE was more appreciated on the East Coast than other parts of the country, and how they were regarded in my hometown. I'm curious to know where the NYRE had more of a following..any information will be greatly appreciated..

- Edited by stevemulcahy on: Apr 29, 2007 3:25:14 am

 Dorian
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Posted: Apr 30, 2007 10:08:43 pm    
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Tom, thanks for wishing the NYRE a reunion. I had wished that for many decades, and will forever regret we were not able to meet again in Athens in 2004! Clearly it was not meant to be; the gods had other plans for Michael and the rest of us. Often and especially lately I have weighed the thought of a new quasi-Ensemble formation and/or recording...but how to make it worthy of the band and its history is a load I don't think I can carry. Michael could have done it. Perhaps Marty could also, but he's far too busy in Hollywood. Clif I'm sure would join such a project. Brian, very uncertain... I'm the only one left who actively considers trying to put it together--but I'm also the one most removed from the "music business" end, especially since relocating to Germany where I now am. And to do such a project without support is very unlikely nowadays to get off the ground, regardless of the good intentions and wishes behind it! And so... But I promise you all that if I decide to do anything into that direction, even if on my own, I'll let you know.

 Dorian
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Posted: Apr 30, 2007 11:37:54 pm    
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Hello Steve,

Pity you didn't see us live; you would have liked us. That's what you get for being too young! And thanks for being a fan--it's always good to hear.

You posted 2 messages. I'll answer both here. First, yes you should hear "Reflections" at some point. Then, about "Roll Over" and being "almost proto metal" and your "wondering why"... That album was the final result of our changeover to a 4 piece band (see in discussions above). We were very much concerned about our image and how we should present ourselves; at that point actively moving away from the "tails/Bach-Rock/beautiful-people/East Side New York" image and trying to present ourselves more as ordinary guys who could play really good rock and roll--as well as play our classical instruments. And we could! Clif, who was a big Hendrix fan and our main "metal player", was also maturing very quickly as a writer and singer at that point, and his influence is heavily visible in "Roll Over". Somehow, we all felt "freer" working on that album, powerful, convinced of our strengths--and maybe an inherent metal side of us emerged, regardless of Juilliard, or of Brooklyn, or Ukrainian parents, or Queens, or Toms River, or Music and Art High... It became our most popular album because it represented the best of us in the best of our time. We worked hard on that one--but there was a fatal price to pay for the experience. We did not know it at first...but within a year it was clear we still had no hit record, and then we who had experienced the personal growths we had individually experienced that year were no longer willing to submit ourselves to the usual formulas we had learned to live with as a group, and began to mistrust each other in terms of unified directions. The visible result was the unhappy "Freedomburger", and ultimately, the demise of the band.

As for Boston... We played that concert on June 16th or 17th, 1971 (no longer sure--but I think it was a Thursday night) in the Hatch Shell on Boston Commons. At that time, a record-breaking crowd of 20,000 people showed up. Totally unexpected--for us also. I believe it was the day all the universities shut down for summer, and a gorgeous day at that, so maybe the combination did it? Whatever--a great event. Yes, we had a strong fan base in Boston.

We of course had our main fan base in the Tri-State (NY, NJ, PA) area where we appeared most often. But we were nationally popular, and so it is not easy to pinpoint where exactly the "hot spots" were--but a few of course I can. We were always very successful in the "college circuit" throughout the country, so cities such as Boston with many colleges and universities were excellent for us. Denver was a special "hot spot" for us. Gainsville, Florida. North Carolina generally. Atlanta. Cleveland. Boulder. Salt Lake City, just to name some off the top of the head. We did not have quite the same successes on the West Coast, mostly because we did not get out there as often. But San Fransisco quickly became a "hot spot", and in any case we loved going out there.

You asked in another topic about Ars Nova and our relationship to them. We knew each other, of course, and were at times lumped together in reviews as the "baroque rock bands", but our directions and visions were entirely different. When the "communal vision" of the NYRRE was somehow pooled, our vision was greater and wider, and this showed in the music we did and in the following individual growths. This is of course a personal opinion, but of this I remain convinced...

I found in my memorabelia a program of a concert, presented twice by George F. Schutz, first on Thursday, Dec 26, 1968 and then again on Monday, Dec 30, in Carnegie Hall. This concert was titled "An Eclectic Christmas", and the program was as follows...
1. Switched-On Bach, by Walter Carlos on the Moog Synth
2. Ars Nova
3. The Good Earth
4. American Brass Quintet
5. New York Rock and Roll Ensemble
6. Members of The New York Electric String Ensemble
...and Light by Pablo

A footnote to the program says "The five groups participating in tonight's concert were specifically chosen because their music is derived from two or more sources."

Nice mix of "baroque rock" bands...whatever that term was supposed to mean! But a nice mix for a concert.

I'm sure we played at least one more time with Ars Nova locally in the NYC area.

Thanks for the questions. Nice to have good reasons to wrack the brain! (And was that concert really 39! years ago??) Wow...

Best. Dorian




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