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Nostalgia for Infinity

by Henry Kaiser

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about

Guitarist Henry Kaiser is a prolific member of the San Francisco Bay Area music scene, as well as being a globally recognized leader of the "second generation" free improvisers who came of age in the '70s. His earliest musical inspiration came from the spiky sounds of English improvising guitarist Derek Bailey and the many guitarists in Captain Beefheart's Magic Band; later on Kaiser absorbed the subtle string textures of the American blues stylists and traditional music of Asia, particularly India, Korea, and Vietnam. His initial recordings documented solo projects and spontaneous groupings with other energetic improvisers like Fred Frith, the ROVA Saxophone Quartet, pianist Greg Goodman, and vocalist Diamanda Galas. Kaiser's restless creativity unearthed many new and unconventional electric guitar techniques during these years, and he combined these innovations with a strong sense of logic and concise development, often aided by sophisticated sound-processing devices. During the Eighties, Kaiser projects tended toward the rock sound of the '60s and '70s, with a special fascination for the music of The Grateful Dead and particpation in a number of tribute albums for Imaginary Records. Just when people were starting to peg him as a "cover artist", Kaiser ditched his rock stylings, for the most part, and back to more of a free improvising style. He recorded albums with Derek Bailey and Jim O'Rourke, and did new recordings with his old duo-partner Fred Frith. The Nineties also saw Kaiser increase his profile through his successful collaborations with David Lindley and local musicians from both Madagascar and Norway. He was also involved with a number of recordings made in Burma, also for the Shanachie label.

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released April 13, 2007

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Henry Kaiser San Francisco, California

Henry Kaiser is an American guitarist and composer, known as an idiosyncratic soloist, a sideman, an ethnomusicologist, and a film score composer. Recording and performing prolifically in many styles of music, Kaiser is a fixture on the San Francisco Bay Area music scene. He is considered a member of the "second generation" of American free improvisers. ... more

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