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Marc Ribot's Ceramic Dog
Join Ars Nova Workshop for a night of music at Johnny Brenda's as unrivaled guitarist Marc Ribot brings his Ceramic Dog trio for an incredibly rare Philadelphia concert.
Ceramic Dog is a post-everything band combining the energies of three masters of downtown New York City mayhem: guitarist-vocalist Marc Ribot (who has collaborated with Tom Waits, John Zorn, Robert Plant, T-Bone Burnett, Marianne Faithful, the Lounge Lizards, and Elvis Costello), bassist Shahzad Ismaily (an accomplice of Laurie Anderson, Bonnie "Prince" Billy, Jolie Holland, and the Secret Chiefs 3), and former West Coast experimental genius drummer Ches Smith (seen often with Xiu Xiu, Secret Chiefs 3, and Trevor Dunn’s Trio Convulsant).
Ribot's a widely recognized original on the guitar, with influence across multiple genres of music, including rock, jazz, punk, Latin, soul, 80s No-Wave, avant-garde and noise, and Ceramic Dog unites all of this, along with Ismaily and Smith’s unique and diverse abilities for sonic experimentation. The trio grew out of a post 9-11 bucket list, when Ribot decided to find out what would happen if he did away with the hyphens haunting his earlier projects: the punk-Latin “Cubanos Postizos,” the punk-experimental “Shrek,” and the punk-Albert Ayler “Spiritual Unity.” It took several years of searching before he found, in Ches Smith and Shahzad Ismaily, the rhythm section with the energy for The Thing itself.
“This is the first time since high school I’ve been in a real rock band," Ribot says. "We actually get together to rehearse just for the fun of it, even when we don’t have gigs!”
The name Ceramic Dog is from the French expression “chien de faïence,” meaning frozen with emotion – like bristling dogs the moment before they fight, or lovers immobilized in one another’s gaze. In the live moment, the band aims at that intensity, creating hypnotic moments of ecstasy, violence, idiocy, beauty; in other words – pure Rock and Roll.
Ars Nova Workshop is a Philadelphia nonprofit jazz and experimental music presenting organization. As a facilitator between artists and their audiences, Ars Nova Workshop works to inform, inspire and challenge listeners in order to elevate the role of jazz, improvisation and experimental music in contemporary culture.