JP Jazz Police Advertisement

Hotel Search by Jazz Police

Adults: (age 19+) Children:
Room 1:
Main Menu
New and Notable
Photo Galleries
CD/DVD/Book Reviews
SF Bay Area
Los Angeles
New York
Twin Cities, MN
More Cities
dakota top
 Monday, 30 November 2015
The Fantastic Merlins Return to the Black Dog on Friday, February 17th, Tim Kaiser Opens PDF Print
Written by Don Berryman   
Wednesday, 15 February 2012
Brian Roessler Andrea Canter

It has been a while since the Fantastic Melins performed in the Twin Cities, and may be a while before they do again. Born at the Clown Lounge in 2004, the Fantastic Merlins features founders Nathan Hanson on saxophones and Brian Roessler on bass with Daniel Levin on cello and Pete Hennig on drums. Performing compositions and improvised pieces of astonishing beauty, these extraordinary musicians play with warmth and passion, sometimes pushing the boundaries of their instruments to extract unexpected sounds that blend into a satisfying, savory mix full of spice. They will be performing at the Black Dog Cafe in Lowertown St Paul on Friday, February 17th. Preceding this acoustic ensemble, there will be a performance of electronic music by inventor/artist/musician Tim Kaiser, who creates experimental electronic instruments that are also works of art, many with a retro-futuristic or steampunk look that are as much fun to see as to listen to. Tim will have his functional artwork and associated paraphernalia assembled for performance around 8:00 p.m. and the Fantastic Merlins will perform around 9:00 p.m. until 11:00. This promises to be a night of musical magic and the Black Dog Cafe with its warm, bohemian vibe, is a perfect place to experience it.


Nathan Hanson Andrea Canter
Daniel Levin Andrea Canter
The Fantastic Merlins' most recent album, How the Light Gets In, is mostly composed of interpretations of songs by Leonard Cohen. The package of the CD is amazing -- a 50-page booklet of paintings by the wonderful artist Stephane Levallois depicting a scenario by Jean Simon about the band, the Black Dog, Leonard Cohen, Federico Garcia Lorca, and others. The CD is not available in the US yet - except at the Black Dog Cafe in St. Paul, but the music is available for download at You can also listen to their music on their website:

Saxophonist Nathan Hanson has performed with legends such as Dizzy Gillespie, Cecil Taylor, Mark Dresser, and Douglas Ewart, as well as rising stars including Chris Potter, Tony Malaby and Liberty Ellman. He has been called “probing” (Jazziz), “an extraordinary performer, with a beautiful tone and concept” (Cadence), and “unexpectedly tasteful and dignified” (ImproJazz-France).

Daniel Levin began playing the cello at age six.  He has performed and/or recorded with Billy Bang, Borah Bergman, Tim Berne, Anthony Braxton, Rob Brown, Whit Dickey, Mark Dresser, Joe Morris, Joe McPhee, William Parker, Warren Smith, Ken Vandermark, and many others.  Daniel has recorded as a sideman for Clean Feed, EMANEM, Not Two, and RogueART.  His records as a leader are on Riti Records, Hat Hut, and Clean Feed.  Daniel is the recipient of a 2010 Jerome Foundation Award.

Brian Roessler is a bassist, composer, and long-time student of double bass virtuoso François Rabbath.  His composition "Returning to Silence" was chosen as the subject of a master class with Henry Threadgill at the MacPhail Center for Music.  Brian has recorded and performed with artists such as Tony Hymas, Didier Petit, Carei Thomas, Dan Navarro, Peter Mayer, Speaking in Tongues, Storyhill, and Spymob.  Brian is currently a member of Fantastic Merlins and a collaborator in Community Pool with Nathan Hanson and Peet Fetsch.

Pete Hennig Andrea Canter
One of my favorite drummers, Peter Hennig is a magician of time who makes any group he plays with sound better. Hennig is a graduate of McNally Smith College of Music who has studied under Dave King (The Bad Plus). He has performed alongside vocalists Renee Austin, Debbie Duncan, and Sophia Shorai, as well as with the Atlantis Quartet, Greybox, and Charlie Devanna.

Tim Kaiser, photo by Steve Ash
Opener Tim Kaiser has been producing experimental art at various venues for the past 30 years. His video, installation and performance art projects have been presented in Germany, Brazil, Sweden, Hong Kong, Cuba, Canada, Philadelphia, New York and Chicago.Tim has toured his live musical performances throughout the US including New York, Chicago, Washington DC, Philadelphia, Detroit, Tulsa, Pittsburgh, Cincinnati, Baltimore, Providence, Columbus, Asheville, Portland, St.Louis, Nashville and Duluth.  Tim Kaiser has received grants and awards from the Arrowhead Regional Arts Council, the Duluth Art Institute, the Tweed Museum of Art, the Minnesota State Arts Board, the McKnight Foundation, the Jerome Foundation and the National Endowment for the Arts. See and sample some of his work at

The Black Dog Cafe is at the corner of Prince and Broadway Streets in downtown Saint Paul. Parking is available to the East of the Northern Warehouse, in lots along Prince Street, and in the lots on the corner of Kellogg and Broadway. Parking is available on the street, in the adjacent Farmer's Market or in the city lot on Kellogg. For more information, visit

Add this page to your favorite Social Bookmarking websites
Digg! Reddit!! Google! Live! Facebook! Slashdot! StumbleUpon! MySpace! Yahoo! Ask!
< Prev   Next >

Twin Cities Live Jazz Calendar

Follow Jazz Police on Twitter
Like Jazz Police on Facebook
Today's top ten jazz downloads
JP Archive
Add Jazz Police button to your google toolbar
Latest News

Lost Password?
Jazz Ink
Go to top of page  Home | New and Notable | Photo Galleries | CD/DVD/Book Reviews | Interviews | SF Bay Area | Chicago | Los Angeles | New York | Twin Cities, MN | Festivals | More Cities | News |