Born: 1965 Primary Instrument: Cello
Vic Rawlings (Boston- amplifier/ prepared cello, speaker elements/ exposed circuitry) employs a still and unstable sound language that traverses from the visceral excess of the Laurence Cook Disaster Unit to the extreme austerity of undr quartet. He has designed and built 2 separate instruments to realize this aesthetic, including extensive and invasive cello preparations- some directly based on obscure baroque instrumentation. The amplified cello is used as a resonant wooden microphone. He also continually develops an electronic instrument from the exposed circuit boards of sound processors, effectively producing an analog synthesizer with a highly unstable interface. This electronic instrument is realized by a flexible array of exposed speaker elements, chosen for their often unpredictable and idiosyncratic acoustic qualities. His solo performances deny conventional assumptions about the use of time and refuse alliance with dominant trends in improvised music.
Longtime active collaborations include Laurence Cook Disaster Unit (Laurence Cook, Jason Lescalleet, Greg Kelley), undr quartet (Greg Kelley, Liz Tonne, James Coleman), and the BSC (improvising octet led by Bhob Rainey), as well as duos and trios with Michael Bullock, Mazen Kerbaj, Tim Feeney, Tatsuya Nakatani, Ricardo Arias, Bryan Eubanks, Chris Cogburn, Jaime Fennelly and many others. He has performed with a diverse group of major figures of improvised music including Ikue Mori, Eddie Prevost, Jaap Blonk, Daniel Carter, Donald Miller, and Andrea Neumann, among many others. He has also performed the works of Christian Wolff (with the composer), Karlheinz Stockhausen, John Cage, and Cornelius Cardew.
Vic has toured internationally and appeared at the following festivals: Victoriaville International Festival of Improvised Music (Victoriaville, Quebec), Vision Festival (NYC), Improvised and Otherwise Festival (NYC), Festival of New Trumpet Music (NYC), Boston Cyberarts Festival, Seattle Improvised Music Festival, No Idea Festival (Austin, TX), Fringe Festival (Charleston, SC), High Zero Festival of Improvised Music (Baltimore, MD), Autumn Uprising Festival (Boston, MA) and the Musique Action Festival in Nancy, France.
Rawlings appears on an international sampling of record labels, including Grob, RRR, Sedimental, Absurd, Emanem, Boxmedia, Audio Dispatch, H+H, Chloe and Rykodisc, among others.
He has performed as a soloist/ composer with Nicola Hawkins Dance Company and has composed scores for internationally distributed films by Catherine Pancake, Alla Kovgan and Jeffrey Daniel Silva as well as sound design for original experimental theater productions. He has taught collective improvised music at venues ranging from improvised music festivals and community centers to Harvard University and Rivers Music School. He developed and implemented music curricula at The Uphams Corner Charter School in Boston and Tinicum Art and Science High School in Pennsylvania. He teaches fretted instruments privately in the Boston area.
Keith Moline, The Wire
The listener, once caught up in Rawlings' art, is taken undersea not knowing when he can catch a breath. This arbiter of sonic chance and opportunity blesses us with a mad and illuminating adventure.
Gordon Marshall, AAJ
Vic Rawlings et al., Refrain (creative sources, 2008)
Mawja, "Studio One" (Al Maslakh, 2007)
Mawja, "Live One" (Al Maslakh, 2007)
Tim Feeny & Vic Rawlings, In Six Parts (Sedimental, 2006)
Donna Parker, Reaches Out...Winter Tour 2005 (Not On Label, 2005)
Masashi Harada, Enterprising Mass of Cilia (Emanem, 2004)
United States of Belt, Pancake Alley (Champ, 2004)
Vic Rawlings & Mike Bullock, "On that which is best..." (fargone, 2003)
Vic Rawings & Mike Bullock, Fall of Song (Chloe, 2003)
N.R.A., untitled (HH, 2003)
N.R.A., S/T (Audio Dispatch, 2003)
The BSC, Good (GROB, 2003)
Stelzer/Talbot/Rawlings vs. Anastasis Grivas (Editions Zero, 2002)
Andrew Liles, Miscellany--Deluxe (Pipkin, 2001)
Due Process, Fin De La Voix (RRRecords, 2001)
James Coleman, Zuhihitsu (Sedimental, 2001)
Saturnalia String Trio with Daniel Carter, S/T (Sublingual, 1999)
Tatsuya Nakatani & Vic Rawlings, Green Report 7 (Not On Label, 1999)
The Lune, On The Cutting Room Floor (Aesthetics, 1998)
Laurence Cook Disaster Unit, LCDU (Not On Label, 1998)
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Willing to teach:
I play and teach music professionally. I enjoy working with students at all ages and levels, and I have been teaching professionally since 1989, full-time since the late 1990’s. Beginners are encouraged at any age. I have extensive experience working with children. What I do/ have done: I am a multi-instrumentalist fluent in many styles on the guitar, bass, banjo, mandolin, ukulele, and tenor banjo. I have played in live bands and on recordings ranging from rock, classic country and blues to various forms of pop, metal, punk, noise, and free improvisation. In addition to the music I have made as a member of bands, I have recorded both as a credited composer and a for-hire multi-instrumentalist for television, radio, film, and theater productions. I have close to three decades of experience in the real world of creating, rehearsing, performing, and recording music. My original recordings are on domestic and foreign labels. My Education: My formal education includes a B.A. in Psychology from Boston College, Magna Cum Laude. Much of my musical education has been from renowned musicians/ private teachers (including Zane Baxter (WWVA Jamboree) as well as senior faculty of Berklee College of Music (Jon Damian), Boston University (George Neikrug), and master musicians such as Tony Trischka, Lee Sexton and Chand Khan (Varanasi, India). That said, the bulk of my musical knowledge has been the result of informal lessons learned while playing with the great musicians I have had the good fortune to work with, and the listening I have done over the years. I’ve also been lucky to have had access to great music collections and friends who could guide me through them. References available on request.