on life, music etc beyond mainstream

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Meine dreimonatige Residenz am Starnberger See hat inzwischen Fahrt aufgenommen und den ersten Höhepunkt erreicht: ein Konzert zusammen mit Björn Meyer (el. Bassgitarre und Nour Sokhon (electronics, Objekte). Ein Dreiteiler in einer Dreiergruppe und alles zum ersten Mal – eine echte Premiere. Technisch eine groBe Herausforderung, belohnt aber mit gutem Gelingen und schönem Zusammenklang mit dem Publikum. Überraschenderweise kam auch Ingo Biermann, der im Moment in einem Filmprojekt in München arbeitet, zu dem Konzert, sehr schön! 
Dreiteiler meint – The concert had three parts

  • A primal solo performance by Swiss electric bass guitarist Björn Meyer 
  • A live-remix (in the Punkt tradition) of Björn Meyer’s performance by Lebanese multi-disciplinary artist Nour Sokhon 
  • A common improvisation by Nour Sokhon and Björn Meyer entitled  

           “What are you doing here”

In all three parts Henning Bolte’s synchronous live-drawing and object manipulation was projected as a visual manifestation of his listening process given shape spontaneously, ex tempore.  

The live-remix (qua defiitionem) started immediately after Björn Meyer’s initial solo performance. In contrast to classical improvisation, a live-remix(er) reacts on a performance in its entirety transforming it according to the remixer’s own reception perspective. 

Björn Meyer is a truly extraordinary electric bass guitar player from Switzerland known from his work with Nik Bärtsch’s Ronin, the trio of Anouar Brahem and the trio Amiirah (w/Klaus Gesing and Samuel Rohrer), the bazaarpool and his solo-work on the ECM label a.o.. 


Young Lebanese artist Nour Sokhon has gained reputation through her work with Ensemble Modern and contributions to a.o. Huddersfield Festival (UK), Punkt Festival (Norway) and Gaudeamus Festival (NL) a.o. as well as cooperation with Onassis Stegi (Athens) and Henie Onstad Centre (Oslo). She studied Fine Arts in Dubai and Sound Design in Glasgow and brings in a special quality of electronic and acoustic, rough and sweet. 


Henning Bolte is a visual artist, music critic, music organizer and linguist from Amsterdam. He has been engaged in live-drawing work at a great variety of European festivals, documented in many exhibitions (a.o. Wroclaw, Katowice, Rotterdam, Kalicz, Heidelberg, Parma, Saalfelden, Dortmund). He also works with the drummers Sun-Mi Hong and Sofia Borges, bass clarinetist Fie Schouten and vocalist/cellist Sanem Kalfa. 

The concert presented higher technical demands, especially for the remix and the projection. Happily the Munich venue SCHWERE REITER, where also dance and theatre performances take place, was able to cope with it. As a speciality, the sound engineer in our case was Zoro Babel, a striking name that immediately evoked memories of a for me significant ECM album of the past “Cosi lontana … Quasi dentro” with a great cover and line-up (Markus Stockhausen, Fabrizzio Ottaviucci, Gary Peacock). There is a longer interesting story behind it. 

The picture on top shows the pulse of the music and the trio in action at SCHWERE REITER in Munich. The other pictures show some more details of the performance. 


My last contribution in 2023 dealt with the extraordinary vocalist Sunny Kim from Melbourne and her album “Liminal Silence”, apparently a new name for Manafonistas. As in the case of earlier contributions of mine last year there was not much reaction or intrinsic interest. It caused increasing disorientation and as a consequence slowed down my efforts. I became aware that my work follows different dynamics and and a different focus such that I did feel less and less connected to the flow of the blog. 


I am grateful that I got the possibility twice to contribute to this blog for a longer period and have been involved in enriching disputes. I learned a lot and enjoyed and learnt a lot. This post about my Munich residency also indicates that my activity meanwhile has been shifting more to performing and to exchange and discussion about it. That’s why I decided to stop contributing to Manafonistas. 


Thanks for all inspiration, encouragement, discovery and new insights. Keep writing, exchanging resourcefully and smiling friendly. Good luck! 


Am Freitag, den 23.Februar, wird im Dortmunder Domizil eine Ausstellung meiner live drawings eröffnet:




Ich werde zur Eröffnung improvisierend zeichnend mit dem Bassisten Antonio Borghini in wechselseitigen Austausch treten. 


2023 29 Dez

Soft Drumming

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2023 29 Dez


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Through the past seven years a lot of live drawings have been created during concerts of festivals through Europe (Aarhus, Amsterdam, Berlin, Groningen, Haarlem, Heidelberg, Katowice, Kristiansand, Ljubljana, Mannheim, Moers, Ludwigshafen, Parma, Rotterdam, Saalfelden, Skopje, Strasbourg, Trondheim, Wiesbaden, Wroclaw, Zürich). In the beginning i worked for a while with a drawing pad on my lap, sometimes even in the dark. It soon evolved, i got invitations and expositions, my workplace and materials broadened and my working was projected on a screen during the musical performance (a.o. Rotterdam, Amsterdam, Mannheim, Wiesbaden, Berlin, Parma). My first major expositions took place in Katowice (Gallery Engram), Heidelberg (Tandem Art Space), Rotterdam (Goethe Institut) and Kalisz (Centrum Kultury). 





The most intense working was at The International Piano Festival in Kalisz (Poland), at the Trondheim Jazzfest and at the Parma Frontière Festival in Parma in an old Abbey (Abbazia di Valsarena) with the 19piece Chironomic Orchestra. In Kalisz i did live drawing for four nights and covered every night three concerts in a row. After each concerts the drawings were presented in the exposition space of the venue. 





There were also cases of direct interaction with musicians (in Rotterdam in duo with drummer Sun-Mi Hong, in Berlin with Austrian group Synesthetic 4 and in Wiesbaden in the trio Whispers&Cries with percussionist Sofia Borges and vocalist/cellist Sanem Kalfa). More of that work is upcoming. 











SUNNY KIM  <<Liminal Silence>> Earshift Music 


The music of this Australian album hovers between delicate manifestations of mundane song formats and spiritual spaciness of  eternal ghosts’ spheres. Together with New York guitarist Ben Monder and Los Angeles pianist Vardan Ovsepian, Melbourne vocalist Sunny Kim created the exceptional cosmic music of her album  <<Liminal Silence>> by means and around a voice that is challenging the air and thereby enters  i n t o  as well as emerging  f r o m  a deeper space on the vibrations of light and sound. It never gets lost in suggestively rustle and sough, it always reaches down to the very ground of the matter, to the essence with great intensity. Or, as Peter Knight, the former Artistic Director of the Australian Art Orchestra put it: „it is ethereal and yet always utterly visceral.“  Kim herself is a quite active member of AAO meanwhile. 


In almost an hour containing 10 pieces, the music draws listeners into liminal sound experiences from different angles, groundworks and breaths of life. For Sunny Kim silence is the origin of the living and houses the inner truth of ourselves. As a human being of sharp and clear mind in congruence with her body and soul, she formulates and speaks out: “Liminal Silence is a communal meditation on the nature of silence, the cycles of birth and death, and our innermost aspiration for change within.” 


The album comprises a diversity of pieces from the blissful “Living Within the Ocean” to the transcendental “Liminal”,  the balladesque “Fall” or the dramatic “Poland, 1948”. None of the album’s pieces resolves harmonically in conventional way. The pieces are kept open, are stretching, wandering/wondering with and along the underlying current of heartbeat, blood circulation, imagination and consciousness, sensing expansions, thresholds and the glow of light, concentrating on these and illuminating them through the shades and intensities of their connecting voices. They masterfully cover a range from deep dark to brilliantly bright with the manifold fractures and transitions of light and sonic color in between and have trance-inducing potential (but is no ambient/mood music). The triangle of Kim, Osvepian and Monder is a heavenly match. Armenia born Osvepian from Los Angeles might be less known in Europe. Being part of the Peter Erskine Trio and having recorded with Berlin violinist Biliana Voutchkova indicate his range, that’s worthwhile to explore. 


There are joint and individual compositions as well as a lovely interpretation of Brian Shankar Adler’s composition “Living Within The Ocean”. Lyrics are taken from William Blake, Rumi and Sun Do Kim.  





„Ethereal yet utterly visceral, Sunny Kim begins with three notes, repeated and picked up by her sampling device. The darkness around her seems to breathe.“

(Peter Knight, former Artistic Director of Australian Art Orchestra)



2023 27 Dez


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„DIE KARTOGRAFIE sollte endlich zu den poetischen Gattungen und der Atlas selbst zur schönen Literatur gezählt werden, schließlich wird er seiner ursprünglichen Bezeichnung Theatrum orbit terrarium – >Theater der Welt< – mehr als gerecht. Das Konsultieren von Karten kann  zwar das Fernweh, das es verursacht, mildern, sogar das Reisen ersetzen, ist aber zugleich mehr als eine ästhetische Ersatzbefriedigung. Wer den Atlas aufschlägt, begnügt sich nicht mit dem Aufsuchen einzelner exotischer Orte, sondern will maßlos alles auf einmal – die ganze Welt. Die Sehnsucht wird immer groß sein, größer als die Befriedigung durch das Erreichen des Ersehnten. Ich würde einen Atlas heute noch jedem Reiseführer vorziehen.“ (Judith Schalansky im Vorwort zur Erstausgabe von Atlas Der Abgelegenen Inseln


Der Atlas trägt den Untertitel Fünfundfünfzig Inseln, auf denen ich nie war und niemals sein werde 

2023 25 Dez


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2023 24 Dez

Fenneszistan #

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listen watch dies ist ein sogenannter REEL, ein kurzes Video mit Musik von Christian Fennez unterlegt (achso)


2023 23 Dez

Looking back 365 #1

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was man so macht und nicht unbedingt immer so merkt …. 






Raluca Baicu (Rotterdam) – Christiane Böhnke- Geisse (München) – Sofia Borges (Berlin) – Pedro Costa (Parede/Lisbon) – Vincent Courtois (Paris) – Ivana Djukic (Amsterdam) – Jos Demol (Turnhout/B) – Nadin Deventer (Berlin) – Giuseppe Doronzo (Amsterdam) – George Dumitriu (Amsterdam) – Alessandro Fongaro (Rotterdam) – Christian Fuchs (Saalfelden) – Sun-Mi Hong (Amsterdam) – Naïssam Jalal (Paris) – Guus Janssen (Amsterdam)- Matthieu Jouan (Nantes) – Sanem Kalfa (Amsterdam) – Peter Knight  (Melbourne) – Raimund Knösche (Wiesbaden) – Fuensanta Mendez (Amsterdam/Los Angeles) – Björn Meyer (Zürich) – Bernd Müller-Jacquier (Bayreuth) – Jonathan Nagel (Amsterdam) – Cristina Nan (Heidelberg) – Martyna Nieuwland (Nijmegen) – Alistair Payne (Amsterdam) – Waldo Riedl (Dortmund) – Fie Schouten (Amsterdam) – Nour Sokhon (Beirut/Berlin) – Michelle Wilderom (Rotterdam) – Ourida Yaker (Paris) – Kateryna Ziabliuk (Krakow) 





Klaeng Festival – Footprints – Jazzahead! Bremen – Magnet Festival – Music Meeting –

Jazzdor Berlin – InJazz Festival – Northsea Roundtown Festival – A L’Arme Festival –

Saalfelden Jazzfestival – Punkt Festival – Gaudeamus Festival – Enjoy Jazz Festival – 

Jazz Festival Skopje – Jazzfest Berlin – Jazztopad Wrocław 






February Trio WHISPERS&CRIES – Kreativfabrik Wiesbaden Sanem Kalfa (voc, cello, electr), Sofia Borges (perc, field rec, electr), Henning Bolte (live drawing)
March Trio VOSTOK+  – Orgelpark Amsterdam Fie Schouten (bcl, basset horn, leader), Vincent Courtois (vcl), Guus Janssen (p, harpsichord, pump organ), Giuseppe Doronzo (bariton sax, Henning Bolte (live drawing)
March Zaal 100 – Amsterdam Giuseppe Doronzo (bar-sax) Wilbert de Joode (b), Fie Schouten (bcl), Henning Bolte (live drawing) 
June Televizyon | Cicular Bed = Jorrit Westerhoff (g), Austeja Zvirblyte (tr, voc) | Trio Guiseppe Doronzo/Andy Moore/Yannis Kyriakides | Mabe Fratti – WORM Rotterdam Sanem Kalfa (voc, electr), Marta Warelis (synthesizer), Ingebrigt Håker Flaten (b), Sun-Mi Hong (dr)
August Melting Pot | Tesserae Trio | How Noisy Are The Rooms – International Jazz Festival Saalfelden Mona Matbou Riahi (cl), Louise v d Heuvel (b), Camila Nebbia (sax), Tuva Halse (vln) – Hubert Zemler (dr)

Tilo Weber (dr), Elias Stemeseder (harpsichord), Petter Eldh

Almut Kühne (voc), Joke Lanz (turntables, sampling), Alfred Vogel (dr)

November Trio Vostok+ | Marta Warelis solo | Trio Tobias Klein – Relative Pitch Records Night, BIMhuis Amsterdam Fie Schouten (clarinets), Vincent Courtois (vcl), Guus Janssen (p)  Henning Bolte (live drawing projection)

Tobias Klein (bcl, contrabass-cl), Marta Warelis (p), Frank Rosaly (dr)









January February March  Artist Residency in München/Feldafing
January  Hörwege – Schwere Reiter, München  Björn Meyer (el bass guitar), Nour Sokhon (electronics, field rec, objects), Henning Bolte (live drawing projection) 
February   Hörspuren – domicil, Dortmund  Joe Hertenstein (dr), Michael Moore (sax), Antonio Borgini (b), Henning Bolte (live drawing)







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