The Ken Shorley Trio
This project is very close to my heart. It’s a feature for my drumming and my composing, and it’s a chance to work with two of the very finest percussionists in Canada – Adam Campbell and Dan Morphy. We launched this one together in 2012 to perform at the Sound Symposium in St John’s NF, and are now planning ways to share it in different venues across Canada.
The Ken Shorley Trio is a dynamic world-percussion group, with a sound that is energetic, intimate, acoustic, and groove-centric. Based in Canada, the trio performs original compositions for hand drums and percussion instruments from around the globe. Led by percussionist-composer Ken Shorley (Nova Scotia), the trio also features the percussive talents of Adam Campbell (Toronto) and Daniel Morphy (Toronto).
Check out the KS Trio playlist on YouTube.
I’m really excited about this new series of video profiles featuring some of Canada’s finest percussionists. This is my first foray into documentary-style filmmaking, and I’m enjoying the process – interviewing, filming, recording, editing… My YouTube channel has all the episodes up until now, and I have more in production. Is there an outstanding Canadian percussionist I should know about? Let me know! #CanadianPercussionists
Since 2005, I have been fixated, obsessed, and in all possible ways entranced by the sounds, rhythms and textures of Indonesian Gamelan. I have been studying Sundanese gamelan degung intensely with invaluable guidance from Simon Cook (London, UK) and Ade Suparman (Bandung, Indonesia).
In 2006, along with my partner Heidi, I imported a set of gamelan instruments, in order to gain more hands-on access to this beautiful music. In 2007, I recorded the CD Sekar Alit, which contains a selection of my own compositions for gamelan. In the spring of 2008, I had my first professional gamelan “gigs”, as a temporary member of Toronto’s Evergreen Club Gamelan, when they performed in Halifax at the Scotia Festival of Music.
In the fall of 2009, I began teaching an Introduction to Gamelan course at Acadia University, as well as leading the newly-formed Acadia Gamelan Ensemble, on the instruments of the Mindful Flower Gamelan (a Sundanese gamelan degung which is currently in residence at Acadia). In addition to presentations of traditional Sundanese music, my ensemble has premiered an exciting new work for gamelan and 6-voice choir by Nova Scotia composer Peter Togni in January 2010. In 2011, the ensemble gave the North American premiere of Ade Suparman’s dynamic work, Babalen, and in 2012 we gave the world premiere of a specially-commissioned work for gamelan degung by our friend and guru, Ade Suparman, entitled Gending Saba Rasa.
If you’d like to see and hear more about Gamelan at Acadia (including a few YouTube performance clips), click here.