Helen Gillet: What is a Motico?

Saturday, May 4, 2024
Performance at 8:00PM | Doors at 7:30PM
VIP (front 2 rows of cushioned chairs) – $40 **available online only!!!
General Admission – $25
Student, senior, etc. – $15

Helen Gillet—a whirling dervish of the cello—takes the cello on a joy ride, weaving a textured electronic tapestry of acoustic chamber jazz, inspired by the music of Ray Johnson.

Helen Gillet – cello, live looping, French & English vocals, electronic valve instrument
James Evans – clarinet saxophone, clarinet, bass, trombone
Nir Felder – guitar, effects
Luke Brechtelsbauer – harp

Helen Gillet – Singer-songwriter and surrealist-archeologist exploring synthesized sounds, texture, and rhythm using an acoustic cello, Helen was born in Belgium, raised in Singapore from the ages of 2 to 11, and routinely shuttled between the homelands of her Belgian father and American mother. Over the years — working in New Orleans with musicians of all stripes, from avant-garde jazz and classical to pop and funk — Gillet has developed a singular polyglot style. The core of her work is solo performance with live looping, layering cello parts and vocal lines. Rhythmic figures emerge with bowed or plucked ostinatos or a variety of rubbing and slapping on the body of the cello, then enhanced with melodies played or sung in her haunting alto. Her mixed musical vocabulary is commensurate with her disparate travels — French chanson of the 1940s, Belgian folk tunes sung in Walloon, a mix of rock and punk from the likes of PJ Harvey and X-Ray Spex, and her own affecting originals, like audience favorite “Julien,” sung in a mix of French and English. Gillet’s solo performance is known for its enigmatic quality as she fabricates each song with innovative use of the cello and true mastery of live looping technology.She has recorded, performed and toured with musicians like Smokey Robinson, Doctor John, Marianne Faithful, Hamid Drake, Cassandra Wilson, Nels Cline, James Brandon Lewis, Iron & Wine, Soul Asylum, U2, Clint Maedgen, Aurora Nealand, Leyla McCalla, Steve Earle, Psychedelic Furs, Mardi Gras Indian Orchestra, Louis Michot & Lost Bayou Ramblers, James Singleton, Johnny Vidacovich, Nikki Glaspie, Frank Gratkowski, Wayne Horvitz, Jason Marsalis, Leroy Jones, Mike Dillon, Steven Bernstein, and many more. She has opened up as a solo act for Les Claypool in New Orleans in 2023 and Jeff Tweedy at Lincoln Center in 2019.She plays annually at the New Orleans Jazz and Heritage festivals and has toured the world with her critically aclaimed solo performance, has been twice nominated a ‘Rising star’ in Downbeat Magazine’s Critics Poll, and most recently was invited to play at The Big Ears Music Festival in Knoxville, TN in 2024.

James Evans – Multi Instrumentalist, singer and composer, James was born in north Wales in 1971 and took up reeds and brass at a young age, turning professional in 1990. He moved to London in 2000 and toured extensively around Europe. James moved to New Orleans in 2013 to pursue his lifelong love of the city and its music. Since his arrival he has played regularly with many local luminaries such as Leroy Jones, Gregg Stafford, Tuba Skinny, Steve Pistorius, Kevin Lewis, Seva Venet, Lucien Barbarin, Gerald French and the Original Tuxedo Jazz Band, Shannon Powell, Orange Kellin, Duke Heitger, Lars Edegran, The Shotgun Jazz Band, The Smoking Time Jazz Club, Storyville Stompers, Cotton Mouth Kings and many more. He is also a regular member of James Singleton’s groups, and is a band leader with multiple diverse projects to his name, including original music for larger bands and a project for jazz band and chamber symphony. James plays the widest possible variety of musical styles, from classic early jazz to avant-garde, and in his own compositions these styles coalesce into a unique voice.
“One of the top reedmen in the world today…” – The Syncopated Times

Nir Felder – Grammy-winning American jazz and session guitarist, composer, and music producer, bandleader Felder has performed and recorded with a diverse array of artists across the jazz and popular music genre spectrum, including Diana Krall, Brad Mehldau, John Mayer, Rina Sawayama, Ben Platt, Chaka Khan, Keyon Harrold, Robert Glasper, Chris Dave, PJ Morton, Snarky Puppy, Terrace Martin, Kamasi Washington, Erykah Badu, Common, Anderson Paak, Dave Chapelle, Dave Matthews Band, Benson Boone, Gov’t Mule, Ben Stiller, Vulfpeck, Hiromi, Fred Armisen, Cory Wong, Christian Scott, Brockhampton, Cautious Clay, Faith Evans, Skylar Grey, Pigeons Playing Ping Pong, Terri Lyne Carrington, Vijay Iyer, Blood Sweat and Tears, Chuck Mangione, Greg Osby, Jordan Smith, Amy Schumer, Victor Wooten, Shoshana Bean, Jack DeJohnette, Esperanza Spalding, Bobby McFerrin, Meshell Ndegeocello, Dianne Reeves, the New York City Opera, and others. In both 2021 and 2023, he won Downbeat Magazine’s Critic’s Poll for “Rising Star Guitarist.”

The event is finished.


Saturday May 04 2024


8:00 pm

More Info