The Confabulation – “Tunnels and Visions” CD release
With co-confabulators David Woodhead, Doug Wilde, Colleen Allen, Anne Lindsay, Bob Cohen and Rich Greenspoon.
For the new Tunnels and Visions CD, Confabulation ringleader David Woodhead has turned over a lot of stones to develop a unique voice, with compositions ranging from rambunctious romps to contemplative minimalism, plus stops at vintage song and contemporary parlour music on the way.
Evolving the playful Confabulation project was a natural move for Woodhead, combining key players and ideas from the various worlds he inhabits. It was his dream to fuse the inviting feeling of open community found in the folk festival and coffeehouse scene with the wide musical palettes available in jazz and classical music.
The album naturally features Woodhead’s trademark melodic electric bass playing, with an expressive touch on the fretless, but there’s also a long list of notable instrumentalists. Band members include keyboardist Doug Wilde (Manteca), reeds player Colleen Allen (Molly Johnson, Holly Cole), guitarist Bob Cohen (Jesse Winchester) violinist Anne Lindsay (Jim Cuddy Band) and drummer Rich Greenspoon (Betty and the Bobs, Stewed Tomatoes).
Guests on the recording include early-music keyboardist Kate Clark, violinists Jaron Freeman-Fox (The Opposite of Everything) and Yellowknife’s Andrea Bettger. Members of Rebecca Hennessey’s FOG Brass Band fulfill Woodhead’s goal of blending the timbres of brass instruments with fretless bass. Flute wizard Anh Phung contributes to the opening track, “Carnival For The Clocks,” which features only wind instruments with snare drum and bass, and Woodhead breaks out the gourd banjo for an intimate rendition of “Windy Apples.”
While there are plenty of cut-loose solos on the CD, the players are clearly listening to each other and you can hear the ideas bouncing back and forth. The Confabulation is a unit with a tight core but flexible attitude!
Truly an explorer of wide musical territories, David Woodhead has a melodic and subtle approach to the electric bass. His name appears on more than 250 recording projects and he’s worked with many influential artists including Perth County Conspiracy, Stan Rogers, Oliver Schroer, Gil Scott-Heron, and David Sanborn. He’s been gigging live with Malagasy guitarist Donné Roberts, classical-folk fusioneers Ensemble Polaris, and Tibetan multi-instrumentalist Dorjee Tsering as well as touring internationally with master songwriter James Keelaghan.
“complex, orchestrated music, complete with unusual time signatures, backed by the stellar Confabulation…There’s a lot to absorb, but the melodies get embedded in your head.”
– Penguin Eggs magazine
“Was that you playing the bass up there? Oh, you’re delicious!”