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Mary Lou Newmark | Room to Breathe

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United States - California - LA

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Electronic: Experimental Avant Garde: Musique Concrète Moods: Type: Experimental
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Room to Breathe

by Mary Lou Newmark

A safari through the urban wilderness of Los Angeles with electric violin, original poetry, electronically processed sounds, beats, and bird songs - there's a lot going on here!
Genre: Electronic: Experimental
Release Date: 

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  Song Share Time Download
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1. Five Birds Alighting
3:55 $0.99
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2. Restless Tiger
5:30 $0.99
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3. Bossa Coyote
3:52 $0.99
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4. Oceanica
4:10 $0.99
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5. Bed Bath and Bird
3:13 $0.99
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6. Renew Regrow Repair
3:17 $0.99
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7. La Loba Wolf Woman
8:31 $0.99
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8. Ready to Run
5:27 $0.99
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9. M.T.V.
3:06 $0.99
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10. Natural Love
2:29 $0.99
Downloads are available as MP3-320 files.

ABOUT THIS ALBUM


Album Notes
Music and Words by Mary Lou Newmark,
Vocals on Tracks 6, 9, 10 by Blake Howard and Tricia Tahara - Vocals on Tracks 6, 9, 10 recorded by Scott Gordon
Electric violin and Everything Else by Mary Lou Newmark
CD Mastered by Jonathan Beaudette, Photography by Natalie Ford

Mary Lou Newmark is an electric violinist, composer, and poet/playwright living in Los Angeles. Her music combines live violin performance, original poetry, electronically processed sounds, beats, and even bird songs. Mary Lou creates unique compositions that inhabit their own musical ecosystems.
Mary Lou began her career as a classically trained musician. She holds Masters degrees from USC (violin performance) and UCLA (music composition). In her late twenties Mary Lou began to compose music. As her compositions soon stretched the limits of the acoustic violin’s techniques, she discovered a passion for electronic music. With an unlimited palette of musical colors, she began to specialize in performing her own work for solo electric violin and e-violin with soundscapes.
Her first CD, “Green Angel,” was released in 2000. This debut work included electronic sound compositions and original poems, as well as instrumental pieces that reminded reviewers of Bach, Jimi Hendrix, and Robert Rauschenberg. Writing in 21st Century Music, David Cleary found the CD “soulful and highly charged.”
As Mary Lou continued to write both music and poetry, she expanded her creations to the theater. Her hybrid theatrical work, “Street Angel Diaries,” premiered in December 2006, in a full theatrical production at the Boston Court Performing Arts Center, Main Stage in Pasadena, CA. With original text, poetry and music, “Street Angel Diaries” looked at homelessness from the perspectives of the homeless themselves, based on first-hand accounts Mary Lou gathered from current or formerly homeless people. Philip Brandes of the Los Angeles Times hailed the work’s ‘haunting score” and went on to applaud Mary Lou’s “modernistic musical sketches on her neon-lit electric violin—picture Laurie Anderson on a good hair day, but aiming more at emotions than intellect.”
Mary Lou’s second CD, “Music From Street Angel Diaries,” drew music and text from her stage play.
In October 2015, Mary Lou’s latest theater work, “Breathing Room,” premiered in a full theatrical production at the Greenway Court Theatre in Los Angeles. In “Breathing Room,” two neighbors—Marilyn, an artist, and the Professor, a science teacher with a mysterious past—negotiate living with hummingbirds, meatball eating bears, backyard chickens, and “modern technologic vertigo.” The Los Angeles Examiner acclaimed “Breathing Room” as “a noble effort to re-engage the human spirit with the broader natural world.” In his Best of Los Angeles Theater 2015, critic Ernest Kearney called it a “joyous dance!”
Some of the tracks on Mary Lou’s new CD originated with this theater work. But clearly she has spent considerable time in the studio, shaping and distilling theater moments into music experience. “Coyote” was originally a monologue with introductory music for an actor on stage. Now it is “Bossa Coyote,” with heavily processed e-violin, a one word lyric, and a Latin beat. “Bed, Bath…and Bird” combines music from two very different scenes – Marilyn’s encounters with hummingbirds and her dizzying experience at a large housewares store. The electric violin’s graceful melody is interrupted by soundscapes of sirens, computers, money and vocal utterances. Picture a wild bird flying over a supermarket mall.
“Room to Breathe,” the new CD, retains the soaring electric violin solos and imaginative word play of Mary Lou’s past work. But there is much more here. Mary Lou notes that she has been listening to the rhythms and pitch of animal sounds and finding the music in them. She is seeking a kinship between the sounds of nature and electronic music.
Mary Lou says, “I am trying to create a conversation between natural sounds and electronic sounds, on a much deeper level than I had in the past. I am fond of paradox. I like putting together disparate sounds and finding common elements among them.”
Sometimes the music is ambient, sometimes it is cinematic, and sometimes the sounds contrast. You hear the electric guitar of early Led Zeppelin with the bawl of coyotes, and you hear a soulful cello sound with the howl of wolves. It all ends with “Natural Love,” a peaceful poem of hope.
“Room to Breathe” is a passionate, personal work, from a creative artist whose spirit is truly a “restless tiger.”

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