Mike Cooper

“The icon of post-everything music” – Lawrence English (::Room40::)

For the past 50 years he has been an international artistic explorer constantly pushing the boundaries.

Mike Cooper’s output of the past half century has been described as ‘post-everything’. It’s a fitting phrase really when you consider he has been at the beating heart of so many critical musical moments. From the development of the blues touring circuit in the UK, through the growth of the folk scene and into the explosion of free improvisation that came to define a generation of UK musicians. Amidst it all, working at stitching these disparate forms into some kind of deterritorialised zone, was Mike Cooper. - Lawrence English Room 40 Records.

“Cooper, 75 this year, is making the most adventurous music of his life… incredibly rich and evocative, and as a live performance, it’s utterly flawless. Cooper takes live guitar processing and sampling as his raw material, using it to build something complex and substantive, full of ideas and surprises, not just abandoning it half-formed.” – (Jonathan Dean – Brainwashed)

He plays lap steel guitar and sings, he is an improviser and composer, song-maker, a visual and installation artist; film and video maker and radio arts producer.

www.cooparia.com

Featured releases

"At each concert that I have ever given ( quite a few) at Cafe Oto I have tried to do something different or at least with a different line up.This concert in 2017 I was lucky enough to be able to call on two long time collaborators in Pat Thomas and Tim Hill, one that I have never played with before, Orphy Robinson and Michael Thieke with whom I have collaborated with both in Rome and Berlin on a few occasions in recent years. This concert was another version of my Spirit Songs collection of text made by cutting up Thomas Pynchon’s two novels, Gravity’s Rainbow and V, and singing them over a freely improvised score. There are a few versions, obviously all different and it was a great pleasure for me to have this group to help me help indulge in yet another version. Thank you and thanks to Cafe Oto for being. The text/poem ‘Rum’ is by the great poet trumpet player Shake Keane and is from an edition of his collected poetry work titled The Angel Horn published by The House Of Nehesi, that I picked up in St.Lucia. I particularly liked this poem because it reminded me of The Caribbean Club in Reading where I learned to love many things including the sound of dominos being played on sunday in the back bar by the elders. William Burroughs said something like ‘Cut into the present and the future will appear.’ The future will be improvised and the subtext will be cut up, re-arranged and tweeted I am sure." -Mike Cooper -- Mike Cooper - Lap Steel Guitar / Electronics / Vocals and All Song Text Apart from Lord Franklin (traditional)Pat Thomas - Keyboards / ElectronicsOrphy Robinson - Midi Vibraphone / ElectronicsTim Hill - Baritone and Alto Saxophones / ElectronicsMichael Thieke - Clarinet. -- Recorded by Tom Mudd at Cafe OTO on 29.9.17 Mixed and mastered by Oliver Barrett

Mike Cooper / Pat Thomas / Orphy Robinson / Michael Thieke / Tim Hill – 29.9.17

Past events