Roger Aplon and Marcos Fernandes
Of What I've Seen
Poet Roger Aplon and musician Marcos Fernandes unveil Of What I've Seen, a powerful and gripping collaborative work. A collection of thirteen of Aplon's poems set to music by Fernandes, the album - both a culmination of their decades-long partnership and a fresh new approach to their creative interplay - engages the listener with its immediacy and its myriad moods. Though living in different continents, the two have managed to create a cohesive narrative and a chronicle of their times. Aplon, a well traveled and well published poet, offers a broad historical perspective and poignant social commentary, stating that the poems “seem to speak about the country I was raised in and the culture I wrestled and still wrestle with. I think the selection serves as a reflection on the times and character that has shaped much of my writing.“ Fernandes, himself a well traveled and published multi-instrumentalist and soundartist, brings forth his catholic compositional style to sculpt a studied yet spontaneous soundtrack for each poem. With the help of a select group of players expanding his palette, Fernandes conjures up diverse backdrops from beat driven ensemble grooves to abstract improvisations to ambient soundscapes.
The two first met in San Diego two decades ago. Aplon began collaborating with the Trummerflora Collective, eventually joining Wormhole, an improvisational ensemble led by Fernandes. After leaving San Diego, they reunited in Japan in 2011 for performances in Yokohama and Tokyo.
Born in Chicago, Illinois, Roger Aplon's early memories include Herbie Mann at the Stage Lounge, The Jazz Messengers at the Crown Propeller on Sixty-Third, Miles Davis at the Southerland Hotel, John Coltrane at McKee's on Cottage Grove, Billie Holiday at the Blue Note. He attended the University of Chicago and Roosevelt University where he began writing poems and co-founded CHOICE Magazine. Aplon moved to San Francisco where he published Stiletto and By Dawn's Early Light at 120 Miles Per Hour. In San Diego, he published It's Mother's Day. Moving to Barcelona, Spain, he published Barcelona Diary, The Man With His Back To The Room Poems 2000-2005 and Intimacies Prose Poems & Stories. He returned to San Diego to teach and write and in 2009 was awarded a two month fellowship to The Helene Wurlitzer Foundation of Taos, New Mexico. As of August 2011 moved to The Hudson Valley (Beacon, New York). Other books include It's Only TV - Poems 2005-2011, Improvisations - Poetic Impressions From Contemporary Music, Mustering What's Left - Selected & New Poems 1976-2017, After Goya, The Omnipotent Sorcerer, Burn Baby Burn.
More info at: www.rogeraplon.com
A native of Yokohama, Japan, Marcos Fernandes spent over three decades in California as performer, producer and curator. He has performed in the US, Canada, Mexico, Portugal, Hong Kong and Japan as a solo improviser, singersongwriter, phonographer and as percussionist/sound artist with various ensembles, dancers, poets and visual artists. Fernandes' work can be heard on over 70 recordings on Accretions, Bake/Staalplaat, Cobra Discos, Disk Union and others.
More info at: www.marcosfernandes.com
1. In Memoriam - Richard Avedon
2. Midwestern Christmas
3. The Woman Aaron
4. She's Chosen
5. Some Kids set Me On Fire
6. The Planting & Nurturing
7. The Shades in America
8. It's Mother's Day
9. Trailing the Army
10. The Part of theGypsy Girl
11. You Sent Me To Kill Or Be Killed
12. Donde Esta Mi Madre
13. At the Side of the Road
Roger Aplon - spoken word
Marcos Fernandes - drums, percussion, analog synth, phonography
Burnett Anderson - trumpet (9)
Yoko Arai - piano (5, 13)
Hans Fjellestad - Moog (1, 10)
Eric Glick Rieman - prepared Rhodes (2)
Jan Mah - guitar (10)
JasonRobinson - sax (6)
Jyoji Sawada - bass (6, 9, 13)
Recorded, assembled and mixed by Marcos Fernandes at West Valley except drums recorded and mixed by Shinji Kawase at Gumbo Studio.
Mastered by Shinji Kawase at Gumbo Studio.
Roger Aplon recorded in La Mesa; Burnett Anderson recorded by Carlos Arias at Onesimo Studio Productions, Chula Vista, California; Hans Fjellestad in West Hollywood; Eric Glick Rieman by Jeff Karsin in Taos, New Mexico and Jason Robinson in Amherst, Massachusetts.
Cover artwork and design by Kio Griffith.