Theo Travis continues his 'Transgression' tour into 2016 with his Double Talk Band with added dates - see Live Dates page for details.
(Photo by Andrew Simpson)
Theo had the honour and great pleasure of playing saxophone, flute, clarinet and keyboards with guitar legend David Gilmour during his European tour dates in September 2015. Theo featured on such tracks as 'Money', 'Us and Them', 'Shine on you crazy Diamond' and tracks from the new Rattle that Lock album including 'Faces of Stone' and 'the Girl in the Yellow Dress'.
(Photo by Jill Furmanowsky)
It has been decided that Soft Machine Legacy shall drop the 'Legacy' tag from 2016. Legally it is entitled to do this as the Soft Machine name resides with those who were last in the band - ie John Etheridge, John Marshall and Karl Jenkins. Karl has indicated he has no objection to this and Johns EtherIdge and Marshall are of course still in the band. There will be a UK tour in March 2016 re-launching the band. See Live dates page for details.
New album! Theo Travis' Double Talk – Transgression.SPECIAL PACKAGE PRE ORDERS NOW OPEN
On 6 July 2015, Theo releases his ninth solo album and his first solo album in eight years, with his band 'Double Talk'.
Transgression was recorded in January 2015 at Koolworld Studio in Luton and Steven Wilson applied his studio skills to the album as he mixed and mastered it in his own No Man's Land studio, just before launching his own 'Hand Cannot Erase' world tour.
Theo says "It is an instrumental, bluesy, progressive jazz album. It reflects many of my influences and inspirations and I think it is both personal and of broad appeal – at least if you are into melody and powerful bluesy electric jazz with a strong 1970s influence. After a recent gig by the band, a member of the audience said to me 'This was the first time I've ever heard you play in your own band. Having heard you live before with Gong, Soft Machine, The Tangent, Steven Wilson, I knew it was going to be excellent - and it was' which was a very pleasing response to the music.
The line-up includes Nic France on drums, Mike Outram on guitar and Pete Whittaker on Hammond organ. "It is very much a live band and the album was recorded in the studio but all playing together live and watching each other intently. I think that immediacy and excitement comes across. I've written most of the music and much of it reflects my love of music from the late 1960s and early 1970s when the boundaries between Jazz, Rock and Experimental music were more fluid, though I think the music we have recorded still sounds contemporary. You might be able to hear the influences of King Crimson, Mahavishnu Orchestra as well as late Talk Talk, and ECM artists such as Terje Rypdal and my friend Palle Mikkelborg."
The album also includes an instrumental version of a track co-written with keyboard player and composer Andy Tillison – the title track from the Tangent's third album A Place In The Queue. There's also a cover of Robert Wyatt's tune Maryan and a track written with Dave Sturt of Cipher and the recent Gong line-up called Everything I Feared. The track Smokin'at Klooks is a tribute to Klooks Kleek the North London Jazz and Blues club open in the late 1960s, which was in a pub near where Theo used to live. A small club – it used to host such names as Keith Richards, Peter Green, Eric Clapton and Jimi Hendrix! A real melting pot and springboard for so many great musicians and so much great music.
Nic France played on Steven Wilson's Grace For Drowning album and also on David Gilmour's Live At The Royal Festival Hall DVD. He also was the original drummer with Loose Tubes and has played with Kate Bush, Robert Wyatt, Alan Holdsworth, and Working Week.
Mike Outram played on two of Steven Wilson's albums as well as with Herbie Mann, Carleen Anderson, Jacqui Dankworth and with poet Michael Rosen.
Pete Whittaker plays regularly with guitarists John Etheridge and Nigel Price and was a touring member of The Wonder Stuff and Catherine Wheel.
The album is released on CD on July 6 on Esoteric Recordings and there will be a vinyl edition on Tonefloat records – a 12 inch album, plus for the first pressing a bonus 7 inch of the remaining tracks.
The release will be followed by a UK tour in the Autumn of 2015.
An early London preview gig has already been announced to coincide with the release – July 2 at The Vortex 11 Gillett Square, London N16 8AZ (020 7254 4097) http://www.vortexjazz.co.uk/events/2015-07-02/
Travis & Fripp - Discretion (Now on Vinyl and CD)
There are now copies of the Vinyl edition of 'Discretion' available from this site, which can be signed on request. The exquisite vinyl edition comes in 3 colours - purple, mint green and clear. The complete set can be bought at a discount.
If you would like any dedications written on your copies, just send an e mail to email@example.com with your requested dedication and it will be done.
There are also some CD/DVD-A versions of 'Discretion' available from the webshop - the second disc being a high resolution disc playable on any DVD player OR computer.
On 15 September 2014, Theo's new CD with guitar legend Robert Fripp will be released. Travis & Fripp - 'Discretion' is their fourth album of duets. The album comes as a 2 disc set - CD and high resolution DVD-A. As well as a set of mainly original pieces, the album also includes versions of King Crimson classics 'The Power to Believe' and a rhapsody on the theme from 'Starless'.
Released on the Panegyric label it is available through Burning Shed and can be ordered from burningshed.com/store
TWICE AROUND THE WORLD: Steven Wilson Tour Blogs 2012-2013
This is a glossy 136 page limited edition book of the 2012 Grace for Drowning and 2013 The Raven That Refused to Sing tour blogs written by band member Theo Travis. The book includes all of Theo's fly-on-the-wall diaries written on the road, many of which first appeared on Facebook.
The entries are revised and expanded for this unique souvenir and additional entries appear for example for the Loreley Festival 2013 and the Australian tour of October 2013. The tours travelled to 21 countries in all, and the book also includes Theo's exclusive, previously unpublished account of recording with the band in Hollywood, Los Angeles, U.S.A. in September 2012.
The book features over 180 photos, by top photographers Lasse Hoile, Diana Nitschke, Joe del Tufo and Claudia Hahn, with others from the personal archives of Theo and other members of the band. Many of these photos have never been seen before.
The Steven Wilson 2013 tour was voted Event of the Year in Prog magazine. In this unique and limited edition book written in Travis' candid and relaxed style, he takes you on this amazing road trip, giving unparalleled access to one of the greatest Progressive bands in the world today.
Release date 8 September 2014
Limited Edition - only 1000 copies available!
Pre-ordering now open
Readers' comments -
"I read it cover to cover over the weekend. Absolutely enthralling and such an insight. I feel like I'm a member of the band (in my dreams) !" - Gary
"Thank you Theo Travis. The book is perfect. Very happy !" - Patricia
"Received yesterday and enjoying it -- many thanks Theo, it's a triumph !" - Ben
"Awesome job Theo. Your book looks gorgeous. Great job !" - Matthew
"A nice precious unique souvenir for these breathtaking shows" - John
"The book looks simply amazing" - Tomas
TRAVIS & FRIPP - 'Follow' 2LP Vinyl edition
'Follow' is the 2012 Travis & Fripp studio collaboration mixed and mastered by Steven Wilson. This limited vinyl edition on the Dutch Tonefloat label comes with a numbered gatefold sleeve, innerbags with full colour photos and 180 gm coloured vinyl. The album contains an entrancing collection of melodies, textures, soundscapes and compositions, and also features 'So There' which includes a guitar/saxophone call and response stomp featuring some of the most ferocious Fripp guitar soloing of the last decade. The album also includes a very special and exclusive track previously unreleased. Side 4 contains the studio track 'Rhapsody on the Theme from Starless' - a beautiful guitar and alto flutes duet in which Robert plays the haunting liquid guitar line that opens the famous track from the King Crimson album Red, with the harmonised alto flutes performing the bass part under the famous guitar tune and the pair then develop this melodically and harmonically in an atmospheric and dark piece, before the guitar melody returns to conclude the track.
All albums sold through this website can be signed personally by Theo Travis (though not by Robert Fripp). These will be available from the ordering page from Sept 3rd.
SOFT MACHINE LEGACY
Soft Machine Legacy perform 2 exclusive shows at the Pizza Express, (Dean St, London, W1) with piano legend Keith Tippett on Thurs Sept 12 2013 and Fri Sept 13. These 5 piece performances reunite Keith Tippett with his Centipede and Keith Tippett Sextet colleague and drummer extraordinaire John Marshall for 2 very special performances. With John Etheridge (guitar) and Roy Babbington (bass). Not to be missed!
The new Soft Machine Legacy album 'Burden of Proof' was released in late March 2013 on the Esoteric label and it has been receiving excellent reviews.(see somethingelsereviews.com and amazon.co.uk )
The Moonjune website describes the album as follows-
'Soft Machine Legacy makes their most powerful statement to date, delivering an album of epic proportions and their first studio output since 2007's Steam. Infectious grooves, undeniably hip vibes and sizzling performances dominate the outing, as the veteran progressive music masters continue to break new ground and offer listeners yet more previously-unseen facets of their dynamic musical persona.
Featuring some intriguingly-inviting new writing, the album is a breath of fresh air for progressive music and a bold furtherance of the true adventurous essence that is the legacy of the great Soft Machine. It doesn't just offer the suggestion of venturing through ground previously untread -- by any of the Soft Machine incarnations -- it levels everything in its path on the way!
Broad in its scope and ambition, but sensitive, probing and playful in its delivery, Burden of Proof provides more than ample evidence that the legends remain at the top of their game, both individually and collectively. The group's two lead voices -- guitarist John Etheridge and saxophonist Theo Travis -- are in exceptionally fine form, whether gracefully enunciating a melody line in the pocket or dancing madly on the fringe.
Also evident is the rock-solid anchoring of drummer John Marshall and bassist Roy Babbington, who keep proceedings tight and flowing throughout. Whether tip-toeing or stampeding, Soft Machine Legacy are as unified, focused and finely-honed as they've ever been -- delivering their crispest, most sparkling new material to date, in an undeniably inspired, unrelenting session.
This is a fabulous, vital effort: a potent, impacting album encompassing the great spirit and aggressive pioneering approach championed by their namesake predecessors. For all fans of progressive music, the Canterbury scene, and the Softs, this superlative studio session is immediately 'essential' -- and easily the Legacy's finest, most high-reaching outing.'
Sound samples and more info is available here - moonjune.com
STEVEN WILSON ALBUM
Theo is featured soloist on the new Steven Wilson album 'The Raven Who Refused To Sing (and other stories)' - which has just charted at No 3 in Germany and No 28 in the UK. (see Theo's tour blog and Live Dates for full European and USA tour schedule)
A clip of the Setup and Recording of 'Luminol' the recent recording in Los Angeles with Steven Wilson.
TRAVIS & FRIPP - FOLLOW
Reviews have been coming in for the new Travis & Fripp CD 'Follow'
All About Jazz, Record Collector, Jazz Wise, Prog Magazine
"Like all great instrumental albums, it reveals new secrets with repeated listening"
**** Ian Shirley. Record Collector
The track listing for the album is -
1 Soaring and Gliding
2 Dark Clouds
3 When the Rains Fall
4 Hear Our Voices
6 Open Land
7 Return to Saturn
8 Rotary Symmetrical
9 So There
Plus - Bonus tracks - Forgotten Days - Vivid 17 - 1979 (Alternative Edit)
Live Video Tracks 1 The Power To Believe / Pastorale
2 When The Rains Fall
3 Blue Calm
4 Rotary Symmetrical
The album was recorded from 2010 to 2011 in various studios in the UK, and some of the recordings were also made in Spain. It was mixed and mastered by Grammy-nominated producer extraordinaire Steven Wilson. The album is a development from previous Travis & Fripp releases in that it is not only mixed in 5.1 surround sound - it was largely conceived in surround sound. So for example, on 'Hear Our Voices' the four part flute choir with the lead soprano sax voice is mixed with one flute in each corner and the soprano sax front middle. 'Open Land' has different woodwind textures around the 360 degrees listening space, and some movement too eg the pair of clarinets which slowly move behind the listener. 'Return to Saturn' has the cascading clarinet chords and they are voiced so that each part of each chord is placed separately around the 360 degrees listening space and each chord completes one full circle. On the track '1979', I recorded my parts on top of some archive 1979 Frippertronics recordings recorded in New York City. I do not think there has been any previous release of Robert Fripp's Frippertronics in 5.1 Surround sound, so this in itself is very exciting. Robert's guitars generally are all recorded in full quadrophonic sound, so mixing in 5.1 was a natural development of this. Personally, I think the album sounds absolutely amazing in surround sound and I hope you will too!
Pre-orders are now being taken (via ordering page) and I will be happy to sign these copies too. Simply send a request for a signature to firstname.lastname@example.org, or you can write to me on facebook.
Because I will be away recording with Steven Wilson at the time of the release these copies will take a few exra days to send out to you.
There's a brand new interview with Theo at the ever-excellent Innerviews website. innerviews.org Theo talks about his career, the release of his new anthology and working with Robert Fripp.
It's also live on the Innerviews iPad and iPhone app (and looks great on it). If you have the said devices, you can get the app here: itunes.com/apps/innerviews
SOUND ADVICE, WISE WORDS.
Every so often Theo comes across an article on the net or a blog that resonates deeply and he considers worth telling others about. This one by USA banjo player (a guest on the latest Herbie Hancock - no less...) is one. It is some advice about "How to make a living in music". If this is your area, or just of interest, do read it - here! dannybarnes.com/blog
THEO POD CAST
Theo has recently made a 3 part podcast interview covering his influences, the new Travis & Fripp CD, his formative years, and approach to playing generally.
You can hear it here - Part 1 - Part 2 - Part 3
ALL ABOUT JAZZ
Theo is the subject of an extensive interview at All About Jazz. Covering his background, musical influences and his thoughts on the worlds of prog rock and jazz,it is one of the most comprehensive and up to date interviews around - allaboutjazz.com
He is also interviewed in the specialist Polish Web Magazine "Vajrayana" about his involvement with Steven Wilson's Bass Communion project. You can read it here
Theo now has his own official download store at Burningshed.com. You can downolad Theo's albums both in mp3 format and high resolution Flac format. There will also be exclusive download tracks only available there. This will include EP type length releases, live performances and other tracks. Theo fully endorses Burning Shed and please be aware that if you buy downloads from there as opposed to any other site, Theo will actually get payed for them!
Theo is now accepting pupils in and around the London area for individual tuition for regular, occasional or one off classes. He would be happy to hear from any saxophone and flute players who are looking for some direction or advice in music.
A book of sheet music is available of Theo's compositions. Parts are both in concert pitch and Bb pitch for Tenor/Soprano saxophone or trumpet etc. Tunes included are Lulworth Night, Shore Thing, The Book, I'm Coming Home, Freedom, Out of Sight Out Of Mind, Three People, Full Moon Rising, Sex Food and Money (pt 2), Fish and Waterlily Boogie.
The book costs £11 including postage.
ON THE ROAD
THEO TRAVIS - JOHN ETHERIDGE LIVE IN GERMANY 2004. Filmed by Dave Cook in Wuppertal
RICHARD SINCLAIR - THEO TRAVIS LIVE AT THE CANTERBURY FESTIVAL 2003.
Scottish Islands tour 2002
(see also SCOTLAND TOUR DIARY) In October 2002, the Theo Travis Quartet undertook a 13 date tour of Scotland, including a trip to the Islands of Orkney, Mull and Iona. The band line up was Theo on tenor sax and flute, Phil Peskett on piano, Andy Hamill on bass and Marc Parnell on drums. Some of the gigs were return visits after the quartet's triumphant Scottish tour of 1998 and some were new venues for the band. Audiences were very appreciative and friendly and the band was made to feel very welcome wherever it went. The whole band was blown away by the incredibly beautiful scenery around the Highlands and great hospitality. Island crossings were trouble free except for a booking on a ferry that did not exist! Although it was late October, the band saw schools of dolphins and seals which is a rare treat on the way to a gig! An interview/feature was printed in the Inverness Courier and the quartet got a four star review in the Scotsman. The tour was a great success and the band hope to return in the not too distant future.
Gong World Tour 2000/2001 see list of GONG TOURS
GONG with THEO TRAVIS. Live at the Subterania. London 2000.