Baker's Brew is an experimental music ensemble dedicated to total improvisation as its method of performance. The result is a brew of jazz, modern classical, and electronica as well as many other influences.
Maury Baker began his musical career as a founding member of Ars Nova , a classical-rock group on the Elektra Records label. In 1969, he went on tour with singer Janis Joplin, performing at Woodstock and several other classic festivals. He played on her first solo album, I Got Dem Ol' Kozmic Blues Again Mama! . Maury can be seen playing with Janis on videos of the Dick Cavett, Tom Jones and Music Scene TV shows.
Maury toured in the 80s with Tim Buckley and Frank Zappa and played drums on Buckley's highly acclaimed Starsailor album. Maury is featured in an entirely improvised 24-minute live recording Little Dots with Zappa and his Petit Wazoo Orchestra. The piece has been released on the Zappa Records label.
From there, Maury continued his journey through the Pop music world, dipped back into his jazz roots, and satisfied his lifelong interest in renaissance and baroque music by hosting "Choirs and Consorts", an early music show on KPFK radio, Los Angeles.
In the course of his career, Maury has performed, toured and/or recorded with such luminaries as Jimi Hendrix, Carlos Santana, Ron Carter, David Benoit, Jimmy Haslip, Johnny and Edgar Winter, Tom Jones, Jackson Browne, Van Morrison, Seals & Croft, Judy Collins, Phil Ochs, Trini Lopez, R.B.Greaves, Booker T. Jones, Tom Paxton, Bobbie Gentry, Theodore Bikel, Zoot Money, Scott LaFaro, Pepper Adams, David Amram, Henry Franklin, Otmaro Ruiz, Austin Peralta, and Zane Musa among many others.
Currently, Maury is timpanist for several period-instrument orchestras on the west coast and composes for film and TV. Baker's Brew is the realization of his long-standing goal of channeling his eclectic experiences into an electro-acoustic ensemble that is entirely improvisational.
Daniel Coffeng hails from Amsterdam, The Netherlands. An 'honors' graduate of the prestigious Guitar Institute of Technology, he is an in-demand performing guitarist in NYC and Los Angeles.
Since his move to the West Coast, Daniel has played, toured, written, and recorded with Doug Lunn, Steve Tavaglione, Mike Barsimanto and Phil Chen among others.
As a guitarist in Baker's Brew, Daniel combines his dynamic technical fluidity with an avant-garde, post-bop jazz sensibility.
His affinity for 20th-century classical compositional techniques serves to reinforce the group's concept of Spontaneous Composition.
Besides performing worldwide, Daniel continues to be a music educator specializing in modern, contemporary guitar.
Contrabassist Carl Royce spent his early years listening to salsa, bolero, merengue, and mambo on the island of Puerto Rico. A disciplined, dedicated musician, Carl moved to NYC and worked professionally for the next 25 years as a sideman on guitar, bass, and Puerto Rican cuatro.
He has composed experimental music for film and modern dance choreographers. He has served as artist-in-residence at the Atlantic Center for the Arts and has received numerous grants for creative projects from the National Endowment for the Arts.
Carl has performed in the Teatro Nacional de Cuba, New York's Apollo Theater and CBGB club, and in the Palacio de Bellas Artes in Mexico City, among many other venues.
Carl uses electronic signal processing on his meticulously amplified acoustic contrabass. In Baker's Brew, his live-looping system allows him to layer contrasting tonalities within the group's improvisations. More info on Carl at carlroycecontrabass.com .
Jim Goetsch began his music studies under legendary jazz theorist & composer George Russell in St Louis, Missouri. He then went on to serve as band-leader in groups on the local scene. He gained valuable experience opening concerts for big-name (jazz) acts such as Gil Scott-Heron, Billy Cobham, Tom Scott, and many others.
During the 80s, Jim became fully immersed in St. Louis' lively avant-garde music scene. He collaborated and performed with the Black Artists Group and the New Music Circle, a collective dedicated to new classical works. He played concerts with Senegalese drummer Mor Thiam and completed a coast-to-coast tour with blues legend Albert King.
After a move to California, he began a long-standing friendship with keyboardist/composer Joe Zawinul of Weather Report fame. Jim considers this alliance to be his most significant musical learning experience.
In the 90s, Jim segued into the vibrant electronic music scene in Los Angeles. He performed locally/regularly with the electronic duo Biomechanique and recorded with another electronic duo, Demolition Squad . The group's album 'Hit It' received a 9-out-of-10 rating from Alternative Press.
For several years Jim has been releasing records of a solo project he calls Subversive Element on his Psychosomatic Records label. In these works, he blends his signature processed soprano saxophone with abstract electronic soundscapes into a wild dub mix over beats and bass. He has recently created a new solo project he calls Double Image that is more of an ambient mix with synthesizer sequences providing the rhythms rather than drums.
Recently Baker's Brew has been integrating several of Jim's current 4 channel surround sound electronic compositions into the band's improvisations.