Mike Cooper – Reluctant Swimmer / Virtual Surfer

"Mike Cooper returns to Discrepant with a recording of a live set recorded at the Controindicazioni Festival of Improvised Music in Rome in 2003

The music moves very slowly through four movements: ‘’Reluctant Swimmer’’, ‘’Movies is Magic’’, Virtual Swimmer’’ and ‘’Dolphins’’. 'Floating in out of the exotic ether and disappearing like smoke, engulfed in the alien hugeness of nature... a very elegant set by a visionary artist.'

Mike Cooper says 'the first half is played on my old 1920s National tri-plate lapsteel guitar and the second half on my vietnamese electric lap steel. I also sing two songs along the way. ‘’Movies is Magic’’ by Van Dyke Parks and “Dolphins” by Freid Neil. It was the first time I had ever sung the last song.'"

With beautiful artwork collage by Evan Crankshaw.

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