<< back to schedule The Improvisation Summit of Portland 2016

Date: Thursday, June 2  |  Time: 11:30pm  |  Stage: Stage 2

Ava Mendoza’s eclectic guitar playing that draws on elements of classical, blues, Jazz, metal and noise had earned her recognition as the fret board and stompbox wizard in the Oakland noise and free-improvisational music scenes. Since then, Mendoza has relocated to Brooklyn, New York where she plays in her trio Unnatural Ways and has extensively toured the USA and Europe. Mendoza brings an everlasting fluxus moods and energies to her performances. Mendoza does not hesitate to jump from blues finger picking to abrasive metal and walls of noise all with seamless transitions to make the wide variety of sounds very cohesive and personal which a listener can identify as an authentic expression of a musician that does not believe in the boundaries of classification and genres.

Andrew Jones is a Phoenix-born musician living in Portland, OR where he writes, arranges and plays in a wide variety of musical contexts primarily on electric and double bass. He’s played, toured and/or recorded with LA drummer and performance artist Corey Fogel, Tokyo-based pianist Jacob Koller, jazz vocalist Dennis Rowland, downtempo electronica artist Coppe and Brooklyn Art-rockers Barbez. Since moving to the NW he’ continued to work in ridiculously disparate settings such as “modern jazzers” Ian Christiansen Quartet, Blake Lyman trio, Andrew Durkin’s Protohuman, Cameron Morgan Trio and Scott Cutshall’s Phraseology- experimental rock bands like AU, U-Sco and Pinkish as well as more “mainstream PDX” acts like Portland Cello Project and Boy and Bean. He also writes, sings and plays double bass and electronics alongside drummer Chris Johnedis in his own project called The Crenshaw.

Mike Gamble is an adventurous guitarist and multi-instrumentalist whose work with electronic modes of composition are integrated endlessly into his setup. Gamble has spent the last 15 years immersed in the creative jazz, experimental rock and improvised music scene primarily in NYC, with close ties to New Orleans, Burlington, Boston, San Francisco and the Pacific Northwest. He has had the pleasure of recording over 20 albums and touring the states, Canada, and Europe with his critically-acclaimed guitar trio The Inbetweens, Counter Record’s Cougar, and alongside doom-metal originators Earth. His more recent collaborators have been prestigious drummer Bobby Previte, bassist Todd Sickafoose, guitar virtuoso Nels Cline, and PNW cellist Lori Goldston. Since relocating to Portland Mike has been running a monthly Audio/Visual series featuring local and touring artists, encouraging them to play rare solo, duo, and trio sets with his own audio-reactive projection setup. Among working on soundtracks, web-series, and branded content for small businesses, Gamble currently holds a position as an Audio Production instructor at Oregon State University.