The Offering of Words… RIP the only Bob Ashley
I met Robert Ashley in January 2009. I can remember this because it is the same year I was married, not unrelatedly. I drove from Montreal to NYC twice during a 10-day run of a number of performances of Dust, Celestial Excursions and a version of Concrete. There I had many visceral experiences during the performances themselves and a really great time at a dinner talking in depth with Bob’s wife Mimi Johnson, singer Tom Buckner, and Bob himself. I remember at this time hearing that his salesperson at a music store told him he must be the oldest person using Ableton Live.
A couple years later when in New York again my wife and I met Mimi again and spoke of the role of Bob’s music in our relationship rekindling and marriage [a pivotal one], and our efforts to raise funds to bring the crew to Montreal for a performance. I’m happy to say that erstwhile friends of mine were able to do so last year for what looks like Bob’s last tour. Now that I’ve moved to New York, I could only wish I could see friends Marie Brassard and Alexis O’Hara doing that. While in New York that time Mimi gave us an early draft of the script of DUST, pictured above, as well as some CDs of operas we don’t have yet. We were honoured and spoke of what a beautiful, graceful and kind person Mimi is.
I always wanted to see Improvement, some of the depth of the philosophical analysis is so profound. I took a piece out of context and paid homage to as a textual web audio experiment, it’s worth a listen & read — check out The Offering of Images.
RIP a great man, peace to those who survive him.