From the Servant Jazz Quarters, Oct 23 2014






Interview: Leah Kardos speaks to James Black at St Pancras Old Church

photo by Naresh Kaushal

Click the photo above (or the link below) to read a conversation I had with James Black about music and sound and what it might all mean...


Music and/as Process 2nd Annual Music and/as Process Conference

On the 1st of June, I will be presenting some of my work at the 2nd Annual Music and/as Process Conference at Canterbury Christ Church University.

The title of my talk is "Exploring The Temporalities of a Musical Idea", and it's all about a particular philosophy related to generating new ideas, sounds and variations linked to a single composition. If you can stomach it, the abstract is included below:

"Drawing from personally situated knowledge derived from creative practice research, I will illustrate some approaches to the generation of compositional materials bound to a creative philosophy centred around technology, economy and derivation. This philosophy broadens the view of authored materials to include not only the final performance of the music, but also draft and incomplete or unedited versions, inaccurate versions played by sight, adapted versions that are played in sections during rehearsal, unused recording takes and mistakes, incidental sounds from around performance, rehearsal and recording environments, even the sounds generated from travelling to and from the recording session - all of the music and sound resulting from situations, actions and incidents that occur as a direct result of the composition existing can be captured and potentially used to make more music. This approach maximises the amount of materials generated from a single musical composition, providing both an economical approach to theme and creation of a sound world, and a diverse, yet finite framework within which to explore possibilities and experiment. In terms of music production, it also functions as a device for the creation of original and authentic sound worlds for musical ideas to inhabit. This philosophy also acknowledges the collaborative nature of performance, and I will share examples from practice of experiments in human filtering, where intuitive responses from individuals form, inform and reform the creation of musical materials. The score is seen as the starting point of a creative process, the raw materials that are activated by people. In such cases the final recorded production offers a version of the work and a document of this process."

The whole conference schedule can be found
Registrations/tickets can be ordered



New Appointment

I'm really pleased and excited to announce that I will be joining the Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences at Kingston University as a Lecturer in Music, starting in September.

Can't wait to meet the students and get stuck in!


Last few tickets for Shhh! are going fast


I have been reliably informed that tickets are selling quick for this thing, so if you haven't booked yours yet, you can via these links:
and here:
(Apparently Billetto has lower booking fee)

Vital Info:
SAT 24TH MAY, 2014 Doors 12.00pm
We're on at 2.30 upstairs

See you there :)


Jim Perkins & Leah Kardos play the Shhh Festival

I haven't performed my music since the Feather Hammer shows in 2012, so this is a bit of a big deal for me!

Bigo & Twigetti label-mate
Jim Perkins and I will be collaborating on a show that will include re-arrangements and new interpretations of our original work for live ensemble. Laura Wolk-Lewanowicz will be singing some of my songs from Machines as well as a few new things.

I'm excited! If you're in London that weekend come out and say hi!





Memory Machine

I have three new tracks on Bigo & Twigetti's Spring 2014 sampler, dropping later this month.


Butterfly Kite

A little ditty to enjoy the warm air to (featuring George Hinchcliffe on ukes, myself on omnichord and a few uncredited birds).


B&T Winter Sampler and 'Name Your Price' Day


May I draw your attention to this beautiful little compilation from Bigo & Twigetti. Click the artwork to go to the Bandcamp page, where you can stream the tracks. Listen to it while you watch the rain through the window.

If you like what you hear, you might be interested to know that the label is holding another "Name Your Price" day. It works just like it sounds, you can pay anything (even zero*) to download anything in the label's catalogue. Starting at 12.00am the 11th of February, for 24 hours you will be able to decide what you wish to pay for any and all of Bigo & Twigetti's releases on
Bandcamp. Set yourself a reminder to check it out, you could get a whole heap of brilliant music for a bargain.

*if you decide to pay 'zero' to download my stuff, can you promise me that you'll listen closely, all the way through at least once? thx

Finally, I feel like I need to share this great
review of Three Preludes by R. Andrew Lee, that has just been posted on I Care If You Listen. Obviously it means so much when a pianist you admire greatly praises the piano music you have created. BTW if you're a fan of piano music and minimalism you should drop what you're doing and check out his recordings, if you haven't already. I recommend it all, but especially Duckworth's Time Curve Preludes and Dennis Johnson's November.