BirnCORE to Release Kaki King Live at Berklee on September 22

Kaki King Live at Berklee features the renowned guitarist performing new arrangements of her songs with the Porta Girevole Chamber Orchestra, composed of Berklee students and faculty.

August 16, 2017

Renowned guitarist Kaki King announces her first release in more than two years, and once again she gives her fans something completely unexpected. Kaki King Live at Berklee with the Porta Girevole Chamber Orchestra will be released on Friday, September 22, on birnCORE, the Berklee Internet Radio Network's (BIRN) independent record label.

The album, recorded live at the Red Room at Cafe 939 in April 2017, features King performing new arrangements of her solo guitar compositions, reimagined with the addition of strings and woodwinds. King, Tom Hagerman of Devotchka, and Berklee students Takuma Matsui and Shereen Cheong wrote the arrangements specifically for the recording. The Porta Girevole Chamber Orchestra is a 12-piece ensemble composed of Berklee students and faculty, conducted by student Gabriela Sofia Gomez Estevez.

Kaki King Live at Berklee is birnCORE’s first release to feature Berklee students and faculty collaborating with a visiting artist. King visited campus several times last spring to rehearse with the ensemble, culminating with the live performance and recording. The album was recorded by student Andres Gonzalez Cardona, mixed by Aaron Bastinelli ’09, and mastered by faculty member Jonathan Wyner.

The Porta Girevole Chamber Orchestra features students Cansu Ozyurek, Sam Draper, and Sumeet Sarkar on violin; Aida De Moya on guitar; Gerson Eguiguren Martinez and Jennifer Frantz on viola; John O’Hara on bassoon; Kaya Meller on trumpet; Li Yin Cheok on cello; and Christopher Allison on clarinet/bass clarinet. Helen Sherrah-Davies (violin), assistant professor of harmony, and Kari Juusela (cello and music director), dean of the Professional Writing and Technology Division, are also featured on the recording.

“The primary goal for the project was to make a great record. That goal was accomplished due in part to the incredible work of the conductor, Gabriela Sofia Gomez Estevez,” said Tony Brown, birnCORE label manager. “I hope the record becomes an invitation to other great artists to come and create with the students here.”

Watch King perform "Fortuna" with the Porta Girevole Chamber Orchestra in the Red Room at Cafe 939:

Hailed by Rolling Stone as “a genre unto herself,” Brooklyn-based composer and guitarist King has released eight albums over the past 13 years. She has performed on every continent over the course of multiple world tours and has presented her work in a variety of prestigious arts centers, including the Kennedy Center, the Museum of Modern Art, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. She has created music for numerous film and TV soundtracks, including August Rush and Sean Penn's Into the Wild, for which she received a Golden Globe nomination for Best Original Score.

Her previous release, The Neck Is a Bridge to the Body, is King at her visionary best: deconstructing and redefining the role of solo instrumental artist though virtuoso technique, insatiable imagination, and boundless humanity. The groundbreaking multimedia performance uses projection mapping to present the guitar as an ontological tabula rasa in a creation myth unlike any other, where luminous visions of genesis and death, textures and skins, are cast onto her signature Ovation Adamas guitar, which has been customized specifically for this production. In addition to her solo work, King has collaborated with N.Y.C.-based string quartet ETHEL and has performed at Carnegie Hall, premiering a classical piece commissioned by Pulitzer Prize–winning composer David Lang.

BIRN Cooperative Recordings (birnCORE) gives students the opportunity to learn the ins and outs of operating an independent record label and emphasizes performance, musicianship, and collaboration at one of the world's premier music institutions. BirnCORE records and releases live music from some of today's best independent artists. The label’s releases have included Club d’Elf, Matador, Brooke Waggoner, Damn Tall Buildings, and Jesca Hoop.

Kaki King will be touring throughout the fall.

Preorder Kaki King Live at Berklee here.