The 2006 Edgetone Music Summit Comes to Oakland’s 21 Grand Gallery

by E. "Doc" Smith on July 28, 2006

Tonight, I’ll have the priviledge of performing at the Edgetone Music Summit, an artist organized event founded in 2001 with fiscal sponsorship from 21 Grand Gallery, a 501(c) (3) non-profit organization in Oakland. The Summit exclusively features independent artists most of whom are practitioners in music and sound of improvised and or experimental nature. In association with the Summit there are two year-round music series’, The Luggage Store Gallery New Music Series and the S.I.M.M. Series at the Musicians Union Hall. Both series serve as local stages for residential artists as well as for touring artists from all parts of the globe. The summit opened last night at the Luggage Store with the amazing Pamela Z, and moves to 21 Grand Gallery in Oakland tonight. Billed as a “Night of Inventions Played by the Inventors”, I’ll be joining Boston trumpeter Eric Dahlman, on his most unusual “Trident Trumpet”, and inventors Bob Marsh, Steven Baker, Tom Nunn, Krystyna Bobrowski, and Larnie Fox’s “Crank Ensemble”.

The Edgetone Music Summit began as a festival event to support the D.I.Y. artists of Edgetone Records, an artist operated recording label for improvised and experimental music. Edgetone Records was founded by saxophonist and concert producer Rent Romus. Edgetone began as a place for artists who needed a home for their recordings while finding support and growth within a community. In their fourth year, the 2005 Edgetone Summit was held at The Luggage Store Gallery, 21 Grand Gallery, and The Oakland Metro Theater, three Bay Area venues known for supporting independent experimental music throughout the year. The next Summit will be held July 27-30, 2006.

The Edgetone Music Summit reflects the Bay Area multicultural diversity of discovery and new ideas associated with the region. Historically dating back to the inception of the Barbary Coast of San Francisco in the early 20th century, the S. F. Bay Area is one of the multicultural, politically and socially aggressive, artistically experimental centers of California.

The festival also pays homage to local as well as California’s central role in the development of invention and cutting edge ideas. The San Francisco Bay Area has been and still is the location where many of the founders of new ideas in sound live and have lived including Ives, Pauline Oliveros, Glenn Spearman, Lisle Ellis, and Terry Riley to name a few. Today The SF Bay Area, in the heart of California, is home to one of the most bustling and expanding new music scenes fostering the next generation of music pioneers.

The Curators

Musician and producer Rent Romus is the mastermind behind Edgetone Records, an artist-run new music label and its umbrella organization the Ultra Independent Recording Coalition, an artist-owned and operated distribution portal for new music. Rent also curates the San Francisco-based Luggage Store Gallery New Music Series, the SIMM Series, and Outsound Presents…, an artist collective for live performance. Rent sat on community advisory boards for the SF-ALT Festival, the Big Sur Experimental Music Festival and currently works on numerous other production events here and abroad.

Musician and sound installation artist Suki O’Kane plays locally in punk and experimental genres and was nominated for a 2004 Bay Area Theatre Critics Circle Award in Sound Design and Original Score for her work with the Theatre of Yugen. In collaboration with Edgetone Records during the 2005 Summit Suki brought her latest incarnation of curated live music and film ensembles to Night Three of the Edgetone Summit: a panoply of Edgetone recording artists and other outstanding Bay Area musicians and performative projectionists using every available interior and exterior surface of the Oakland Metro in a night of public art, live music and performative projection. She continues to work with the Summit to bring her special style of curation for 2006.

The 2006 Edgetone Music Summit
Friday July 28th
Sonic Foundry
‘a night of inventions played by the inventors’
21 Grand Gallery
416 25th St. @ Broadway
Oakland, CA 8pm
$12 general $8 students/seniors @ the door
$10 advance general only

E. “Doc” Smith is a musician and recording engineer who has worked with the likes of Brian Eno, Madonna, Warren Zevon, Mickey Hart, Jimmy Cliff, and John Mayall among others. He is also the inventor of the musical instrument, the Drummstick. He can be reached at

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