g l e n n b r a n c a

the ensemble
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the ensemble

L-R Arad Evans, Libby Fab, Brendon Randall-Myers, Reg Bloor, Greg Mc Mullen, Luke Schwartz (not pictured Scott Collins)

Glenn Branca Ensemble Concertmaster Reg Bloor was at Branca's right hand for all of his projects since 2000, including their duo Branca/Bloor, Symphony Nos. 12 through 16, The Ascension: The Sequel and the Third Ascension and continues to run SYSTEMS NEUTRALIZERS, the record label that they founded together. In addition to her work with Branca, she founded the bands Twitcher and THE PARANOID CRITICAL REVOLUTION, before going solo. Over the years, she has worked with David Bowie, Page Hamilton, Thurston Moore, John Patitucci, Annie Clark/St. Vincent, Mike Watt, Ty Braxton, tomandandy, visual artists Tony Ourlser, Lindo Sibio, and Olek as well as on the soundtracks to the films "The Mothman Prophesies" and "Terror Firmer". She can currently be seen playing intensely dissonant solo pieces from her latest release "Sensory Irritation Chamber" and in a cataclysmically unhinged duo with legendary Free Jazz drummer Marc Edwards.

ARAD EVANS has performed and recorded with the Glenn Branca Ensemble since 1984.  Branca’s electric guitar concerto ‘The Smoke’, a commissioned work, was written for Evans and premiered by him with the Ensemble in 2013.  He is the leader and primary writer for the art rock band Heroes of Toolik.  He has been heard on series such as BAM’s Next Wave, Bang on a Can, San Fran. Symphony’s New and Unusual Series, Lincoln Center’s Serious Fun and with Ben Neill’s Mainspring, John Myers’ Blastula, The SEM Ensemble, The New Music Consort, the Wharton Tiers Ensemble, Virgil Moorefield’s Ensemble, Rhys Chatham’s Merry Band, and many other groups.  He has performed international premieres of works for solo guitar by Branca, Chatham and John Bertles, and west coast premiers of solo works for guitar by Babbitt and Elliott Carter.   “Arad Evans. . . seems to have played with everyone of note in New York in the last few decades, is a truly inventive and surprising guitar player.” (Rick Moody/The Rumpus)  

Gregory James Elroy McMullen is a multi-instrumentalist based in Manhattan, NY. Primarily a guitarist and sideman that prides himself on an ability to morph, adapt, and add unique color and texture to disparate musical situations. McMullen has performed with Chris Whitley, Me'shell N'degeocello, the Twilight Singers, Trixie Whitley, Reeves Gabrels, The Bentmen and most recently contributed banjo to the score of the Matthew Barney and Jonathan Bepler film "River of Fundament", as well as making an appearance in the film. 
McMullen can typically be found performing solo guitar pieces around New York City or happily stuck between a Telecaster and a pedal steel as a member of Los Angeles-based alt. country band Speedbuggy USA, New York honky tonkers Wood, Wires and Whiskey, or soulful rockers Lizzie & the Makers. McMullen is currently working on a second collection of solo compositions and improvisations, which he hopes to release at some point in 2019. McMullen's first performance with Glenn Branca was the premiere of Symphony #13 at the World Trade Center, New York City in 2001, and has been a member of The Glenn Branca Ensemble since 2006 with the premiere of Lesson #3 (Tribute To Steve Reich). 

Libby Fab is a drummer, electroacoustic composer and video artist based in NYC. She completed an M.Phil in Music and Media Technologies at Trinity College Dublin in 2004. In 2005, Libby became a founding member of noise-punk duo, The Paranoid Critical Revolution, in which she played drums until 2011. From 2006-2008 she was the technical director and rehearsal drummer for Glenn Branca’s Symphony 13: Hallucination City. In 2008 Libby played drums for the Glenn Branca Ensemble, performing The Ascension: The Sequel in the US and Europe through 2013. Currently Libby lives and works in NYC. Her electroacoustic compositions have recently been presented at the Mise En Bushwick Open Studios (2018) and the International Computer Music Conference / NYC Electroacoustic Music Festival (2019). Her experimental video works have been included in festivals in Ireland, Cuba and the US.

Ensemble member since 2014, Luke Schwartz is a NYC-based guitarist who produces music for film, concert halls, and everything in between. He has received multiple awards from ASCAP, in addition to New Music Forum, Queens Council of the Arts, the NYC Arts Studio Funding Grant, and the Grammy Foundation. Schwartz has been recognized for his experimental works that fuse improvisation with determinate music. He is the co-founder of Sawtooth, a NYC-based post production music and sound company specializing in guitar-centric sound design. 

Ensemble member since 2016, Brendon Randall-Myers is a Brooklyn-based composer and guitarist whose work reflects a fascination with how sound is physically produced and perceived as well as a deep love of music’s function as source of human connection. His music has been described as “endlessly compelling” (San Francisco Chronicle) and "massive in its impact" (Sarasota Herald-Tribune), has been performed by the Bang on a Can All-Stars, the Omaha Symphony, and Dither, and received support from the Jerome Foundation, the New York State Council for the Arts, and the Foundation for Contemporary Arts. Brendon is the co-founder of cinematic chamber-rock group Invisible Anatomy and avant-rock band Marateck, and has performed in clubs, concert halls, and basements around the world, including the Barbican Centre (London), the Kennedy Center (Washington, D.C.), and the Forbidden City Concert Hall (Beijing). 

Scott Collins' first performance with Glenn Branca was the premiere of Symphony #13 in 2001, and he first played with The Glenn Branca Ensemble in 2013. The Upstate New York based guitarist's playing on fretted and fretless instruments draws from a wide range of western and non-western music. Scott holds degrees from Berklee College of Music and California Institute of the Arts. In addition to various national and international tours, he has performed and recorded with numerous artists including Wadada Leo Smith, John "Drumbo" French, Vinny Golia, Carmina Escobar, Iranian tar virtuoso Sahba Mottallebi and Butoh dancer Don McLeod. In addition to providing live improvised accompaniment for more than a dozen silent films and multiple stage plays, Scott was a featured performer on the "God of War II" and "Trials Evolution" video games and played “stunt guitar” for the Cartoon Network 2017 Powerpuff Girls television episode, "Electric Buttercup". He is a frequent interviewer for Guitar-Muse.com and has authored multiple pedagogical books for guitar. Scott currently performs with the Bentmen, Embe Esti and I Come From The Mountains, an acoustic duo that incorporates Silk-Road sounds into original instrumental music. Outside of music, Scott has a deep passion for film and was the artistic director for Festival Cinema Invisible which brought unseen films from the Middle East to upstate New York.

Past Members
Sometimes it seems like every musician in New York has played with the Glenn Branca Ensemble. That's not entirely true, but it's close. Here are some past ensemble members, and their non-Branca work.

Steven Antonelli Jonathan Bepler Page Hamilton
Eric Hubel Brannon Hungness Algis Kizys
Phil Kline Carolyn Master Miriam McDonough
Thurston Moore John Myers Lee Ranaldo
Dave Reid David Rosenbloom Wharton Tiers
Ellen Watkins    
STEVEN ANTONELLI was with the ensemble since 1995, playing on Symphony Nos. 8 & 10. He is currently playing with the New York Mandolin Orchestra. His previous bands include S'Go, The Difference, the Virgil Moorefield Ensemble and the Jeffery Lohn Ensemble
JONATHAN BEPLER played guitar on Symphony No.5 and Symphony No.6 between 1985 and 1996. He was the instrument tuner in 1985 and helped make some of the instruments with 32 and 64-note scales. John is a composer who has been involved in numerous collaborative projects including dance and film scores. Recent recordings include: Soundtrack CD for Matthew Barney's Cremaster 5, RCA Red Seal (BMG), 1997 featuring Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, Music for Cremaster 2, Jonathan Bepler, 1999 featuring Norian Philharmaonic Orchestra, Tabernacle Bass Choir, Organ at Riverside Church, Dave Lombardo, drums. Jonathan's comments on working with Glenn: "I've always been influenced by Glenn's awesome energy and lovely sounds."
PAGE HAMILTON played guitar on Symphony No.6. He has also played with Band of Susans, David Bowie, Ben Neill and Elliot Goldenthal. His previous band was Helmet and he is currently working on a new project, as yet unnamed. Page's comments on Glenn: "One of the most important periods in my musical life was playing with Glenn....it has influenced everything I've done since 1988".
ERIC HUBEL played guitar on Symphony No.6 and Symphony Nos.8 & 10. His other projects include The Hallicrafters (Shortwave radio mixmasters with Algis Kizys)
BRANNON HUNGNESS played guitar on Symphony Nos.8 & 10. He is now playing in Kill Myself On Monday, which he describes as Tool meets Radiohead with a splash of early Talking Heads and Slim Whitman thrown in for good measure.
ALGIS KIZYS played bass on Symphony No.6. He was formerly in Of Cabbages and Kings and The Hallicrafters (Shortwave radio mixmasters with Eric Hubel)
PHIL KLINE has been an ensemble member since 1988, playing guitar on Symphony No.6 and Symphony Nos. 8 & 10. He was a member of the Del-Byzanteens in the early 80s. He has a solo CD out, 'Glow in the Dark' on CRI. Every year since 1992 he has presented Unsilent Night, an outdoor ambient music piece for an infinite number of boom box tape players. Check the calendar for upcoming gigs. Phil's comment on working with Glenn: "With a life as dull as mine, the occasional opportunity for extreme surfing on 20 foot waves of molten steel is always appreciated."
website - e-mail
CAROLYN MASTER played guitar on Symphony No.6 and Symphony Nos.8 & 10. She was formerly in Of Cabbages and Kings.
MIRIAM MCDONOUGH played with Glenn on Symphony No.5 through Symphony No.10. She has also played with the Wharton Tiers Ensemble, Phil Kline, Ether, and Surf Report and is currently working on a new project with Paul Stevens, formerly of Bald Headed Jesus.
THURSTON MOORE played on Symphony No.1, Symphony No.2, and Symphony No.3. He currently plays in Sonic Youth
VIRGIL MOOREFIELD played drums on Symphony Nos.8 & 10, and toured with the Ensemble (1987-88, 1992-1999). His past projects include the Virgil Moorefield Ensemble (brainy yet bloodthirsty - Guitar Player Magazine), playing drums with Swans on The Burning World (1989) and collaborating with Emily XYZ on Electric Magistrate (1999).
website - e-mail
JOHN MYERS played guitar on Symphony No.6 and Symphony Nos.8 & 10. His other projects include Digitalis (Melodic industrial metal) and Blastula (Blissed out, all guitar chamber rock). He formerly was in Rat at Rat R
LEE RANALDO played on Symphony No.2, Symphony No.3 and The Ascension. He currently plays in Sonic Youth
DAVE REID has played bass in the ensemble since 1992 (Symphony No.8). His current band is Sea of Cortez, and his previous band was Wider (1992-1995). Dave's comments on working with Glenn: "It has been an incredible musical experience and has changed the way I look at music. Nice people to work and play with as well, I wish it was more often."
DAVID ROSENBLOOM was an early member of the ensemble (The Ascension, Who Are You Staring At/Bad Smells, Symphony No.1). He played guitar on the first European and American tours. David's other projects include: Chinese Puzzle, Dark Day (with Robin Crutchfield), Meltdown (with Rhys Chatham, Glenn Branca and Wharton Tiers), Electric Chorus, Experimental Chorus & Orchestra, and Outlanders. David's comments on working with Glenn: "It's been a real treat, albeit a complex one."
website - e-mail
WHARTON TIERS is currently in The Wharton Tiers Ensemble (Mega guitar instrumentals with references to Beethoven and the Beachboys). Check the calendar for upcoming gigs.
ELLEN WATKINS has been a member of the Ensemble since Symphony No.6 (1988) and is the webmaster of this site. Other projects include The Wharton Tiers Ensemble, Blastula, and The Virgil Moorefield Ensemble.