Brittany Anjou

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Brittany Anjou (born 17 May 1984) is an American musician based in New York City, originally from Seattle, Washington. She directs many ensembles, works as a sideman, and leads several bands and projects as a composer, multi-instrumentalist and songwriter.

Bio[edit]

Anjou studied jazz while growing up in Seattle, performing in award-winning big bands and small jazz ensembles in the competitive vibrant jazz educational scene. She performed with Clark Terry and Wynton Marsalis before graduating high school. She graduated from New York University, where she obtained her degree in jazz performance and philosophy. She studied with Stefon Harris, Don Friedman, Gil Goldstein, George Garzone, Sherrie Maricle, Jason Moran, Ralph Alessi, Vijay Iyer, and Rudresh Manhanthappa. She lived in Prague, studying with Emil Viclicky and Milan Slavický, and in Ghana, studying traditional Gyil repertoire with xylophonists including Bernard Woma, Jerome Balsab, and Alfred Kpebsaane. Upon returning to the USA she began working as a keyboardist, pianist, vibraphonist, and session musician.

Music[edit]

Anjou has composed nine albums of original music ranging from modern big band jazz, experimental improvisation, electronic experimental vibraphone, hardcore, punk, death metal, spoken word, and jazz piano trio.

The Shaggs & the Dot Wiggin Band (2012-2017)[edit]

In 2012 Anjou began performing the music of legendary 1960s outsider girl group of sisters, The Shaggs, and The Dot Wiggin Band,[1] of which she is the co-vocalist. She is frequently interviewed about her work with the Shaggs.[2] At the invitation of American band Wilco, The Shaggs performed at the 2017 Solid Sound Festival at Mass MoCA. Anjou performed as the stand-in bassist and vocalist with Dot and Betty Wiggin for their second time onstage together in over 46 years. The backing band consisting of Dot Wiggin Band members guitarist Richard Bennett (Friendly Bears), drummer Laura Cromwell, and guitarist Jesse Krakow (Time of Orchids, Shudder to Think). Anjou performs with Dot Wiggin Band members in the experimental punk group, Bi TYRANT.

LARCENY Chamber Orchestra's Tribute to Portishead, live at Le Poisson Rouge, NYC, 2017

LARCENY Chamber Orchestra[edit]

In 2013 Anjou founded the LARCENY Chamber Orchestra (Lethal Activists Revitalizing Creativity Enaction in New York), a 25 member ensemble which performs Anjou's arrangements. Instrumentation includes trumpet, trombones, flute, alto flute, saxophones, violins, viola, cello, turntables and rhythm section. The LCO is known for creating an annual concert of Portishead's Roseland NYC Live album at Le Poisson Rouge in NYC.[3]

Enamiĝo Reciprokataj[edit]

Enamiĝo Reciprokataj, an Esperanto phrase meaning "Unrequited Love" is the title of Anjou's piano album inspired by Igor Stravinsky's Petrouchka ballet. The album combines the tradition of the acoustic jazz trio with modern electronic manipulations, reminiscent to the early 1960s. The album draws influences from Ahmal Jamal, Bill Evans, Vince Guaraldi, Oscar Peterson and Nina Simone, and features Greg Chudzik, Nick Anderson, Ben Perowsky, and Ari Folman-Cohen.

Theater[edit]

Anjou workshopped an original live score for piano, flute, percussion and electronics for In the Eruptive Mode: Hijacked Voices of the Arab Spring, a modern theater piece of six monologues written by playwright Sulayman Al Bassam. In the Eruptive Mode premiered in Kuwait, Beirut, Tunis, and Metz, France, and was reviewed positively by French and Arab press reception abroad.[4]

Sideperson[edit]

Anjou has toured as a pianist, keyboardist, vibraphonist, and background vocalist for US singer-songwriter Sophie Auster, the Dot Wiggin Band, The Shaggs, Ravens and Chimes, and Oren Bloedow. She appears as a multi-instrumentalist on records by Ravens and Chimes, Elysian Fields, the Dot Wiggin Band, Michael Eaton, Okkervil River, Doyle Bramhall II, Emanuel and the Fear, Mary Bragg, and Stick Against Stone.[5][unreliable source]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "How to Solve a Riddle Like The Shaggs". pastemagazine.com. Retrieved 23 November 2016.
  2. ^ Klein, Eric. "Dot Wiggin of the Shaggs is Back". Medium. Medium. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  3. ^ Interview, LPR. "Brittany Anjou shares her thoughts on Portishead". LPR. LPR. Retrieved 21 November 2016.
  4. ^ Al-Bassam, Sulayman. "In the Eruptive Mode". Sulayman Al-Bassam Theater. Sabab Theater.
  5. ^ "Brittany Anjou Discography". Discogs.com. Discogs. Retrieved 22 November 2016.