Bill Frisell launches a European tour featuring the music of his last Nonesuch album, Disfarmer, at NDR's Rolf-Liebermann-Studio in Hamburg, Germany, tonight. Joining the guitarist-composer on tour are two of the musicians heard on the album, steel-guitar player Greg Leisz and bassist Viktor Krauss, along with Carrie Rodriquez on violin. The 11-city tour continues to the end of the month, making additional stops in Italy, France, Germany, Austria, Sweden, and Denmark. See below for the complete list of dates.
The multimedia piece Musical Portraits from Heber Springs: Bill Frisell’s Disfarmer Project, inspired by the life, work, and subjects of eccentric photographer Mike Disfarmer, was commissioned by the Wexner Center & The Walker Arts Center in 2007. The photographs taken by Disfarmer in Heber Springs, a small Arkansas town in the 1940s and 1950s are now recognized for their hauntingly penetrating qualities, formal elegance, and stark observational poetry from major art museums who have acquired Disfarmer photographs for their collections throughout the United States. Frisell echoes their timeless, captivating qualites by balancing evocative atmospherics and traditional American musical forms to create his suite inspired by Disfarmer. These compositions draw in part on traditional Ozark fiddle music (Disfarmer was an avid fiddler himself).
During the performance, projected images of Disfarmer's portraits illuminate Frisell's musical perspectives on this fascinating character. This production features the set design of Alexander Nichols and was developed under the direction of Frisell’s long-time collaborator, Lee Townsend. Charles Helm, the Wexner Center's director of performing arts who introduced Frisell to Disfarmer's work, describes the musicians as "a uniquely American artist with a distinctive and singular musical voice like that of Thelonious Monk or Aaron Copland." Helm explains: "In his probing yet atmospheric evocations of American vistas I could hear parallels to the emotional truths of Disfarmer’s compelling photographs."
Below are the currently scheduled stops on the Disfarmer tour. For more on the tour, visit nonesuch.com/on-tour. To pick up a copy of Frisell's Disfarmer or any of the albums in Frisell's Nonesuch catalog, head to the Nonesuch Store now.
BILL FRISELL'S DISFARMER PROJECT IN EUROPE
||Conservatorio Giuseppe Verdi
||Centre Culturel Charlie Chaplin
||Espace Paul Éluard
||Uppsala Konsert & Kongress