Q2 2021 Funded Artists Announcement!
Oh my do we have some exciting artists to share with each and every one of you today in our newest round of Funded Artists. A holy trinity of wholly different and equally exciting musical projects! Multi-talented though is an accurate description of each of these artists. Thank you as always for each and every donation, each of us here at the Church are volunteers so that nearly every penny donated goes to our mission of funding Adventurous Art! Without further ado, please check out our newest trio of funded artists below:
Nominated by Macie Stewart
Quinn Tsan is a songwriter and composer based in Chicago. She has collaborated or performed with artists including Ohmme, Clay Frankl (Twin Peaks), Serengeti, Liam Kazar and Gia Margaret. She released her debut EP Good Winter in 2014, and her second EP London, KY in 2016.
In 2015, she collaborated with filmmaker Alex Thompson and choreographer Erin Kilmurray in creating Bedrooms, a dance film set to her original compositions. Bedrooms screened nationally and internationally, receiving multiple awards including the Best Dance Narrative from the Flatlands Film Festival and Audience Choice at the Polish Dance Film Festival.
In 2017, Tsan composed the soundtrack for Saint Frances, (Oscilloscope) winner of the SXSW Audience Choice and Special Jury Award, going on to receive multiple prizes in the United States, Brazil, France, Turkey, and others. Saint Frances was released in theaters in 2019. Tsan recently completed the score for Rounding (MarVista Entertainment) with Macie Stewart, set for release in 2022.
In 2016, she entered the fields of policy and community organizing. Working first in community outreach for Illinois State Representative Will Guzzardi, she eventually co-founded State Matters, an educational organization that seeks to make state and local government an accessible part of daily life.
Tsan is a founding cast member of The Fly Honey Show, an annual 6 week production that integrates dance, theater and music, in which she appeared as a dancer and musical artist from 2012-2019.
Tsan is currently recording her debut LP Once I Had a Picture of Us with Ziyad Asrar, and plans to release it independently in 2022.
From nominating Elder Macie Stewart: "Quinn is a really great musician! She has been making music in Chicago for a while, and has such big ideas. She is a very multitalented person- she has directed videos, written songs, composed for film, dances, produces, and has been involved with some cool political organizations!"
Ben Dylan Sloan
For years, as a drummer and hired gun, Ben provided an appropriately unhinged rhythmic bed for other’s music. Meanwhile the cross section of his loves - recording, producing, animating, and building began to coalesce into unique projects, installations, and performances.
To date, Ben has performed and recorded with The National, Moses Sumney, Mouse on Mars, Rozi Plain, Serengeti, and WHY?, many of whom appear on his upcoming debut record ‘muted colors’ as a part of an ever expanding constellation of collaborators. Beyond touring, his artistic practice continues to evolve through participation in a variety of Artist Residences; The National’s Homecoming Festival (2018), 37d03d Berlin (2018), and BANFF Arts Center (2020).
Ben describes his upcoming album project "muted colors" as: "something of an abstracted diary; a shape-shifting exploration not tethered to a particular style or sound. Each of the ten tracks act as a brief vignette; colorful, sensational worlds to indulge, but never for long. These scrap-book collages betray a deeper emotional core - a personal exploration of confusion and depression, external sharing of an internal shuffle, internet culture, family relationships and of thoughts felt but not expressed. Still the deeply personal themes are hidden below the surface, left to be uncovered and recontextualized by the listener. “The record as a whole was always meant to be open to interpretation. I didn’t impose strict limits on emotion or meaning, but instead used the creative process as an emotional scan; a search for undefined feeling. The result left me with something intimate, hidden in some internal rhyme scheme only apparent to me, what’s available to the listener is up to them.” ‘muted colors’ is a swirl of memory, sonic experimentation, propulsive rhythm, field recordings and cyclical thoughts trying to be heard."
From nominating Elder Karl Hofstetter: "Ben Sloan is an unsung hero of Midwestern experimental music. Even though most people have not heard his name yet, he has contributed meaningful work to the band WHY?, The Ophelias, and many other incredible bands here in our neck of the woods. We first met Ben when he was touring with WHY? around 2015 or so when the band came through Indianapolis and he performed a surprise show at our office in Fountain Square. We’ve stayed in touch ever since, and Ben has just continued to get better and better as a creator. This is his first solo album, and I think it’s one of the most amazing things I’ve heard in a long while."
This project is something that we here at the Church of Noise are really excited about, one of those rare opportunities to unearth a relatively hidden gem and provide a greater audience. Which is really the whole point of the Church, we aim to bring a spotlight and new support to these curated gems, our highest form of worship!
Software was an Indianapolis all-female rock band active 1983-1985. They played all-original music that is hard to categorize. The band was known for their instrumental skill, exceeding that of other female bands at the time, and eclectic but melodic songwriting.
The founding members were Kara Barnard, Lē Isaac Weaver (then known as Marg Herder), and Dianne Steinmetz. Kara played guitars, Lē played synths and guitars, and Dianne played drums. Before too long Julie Huffaker joined them on bass.
Though venues that booked all original acts were few and far between at this time in Central Indiana, the band managed to play quite a bit at Indianapolis clubs like Labyris, The Hummingbird, and Second Story in Bloomington. The Go-Gos were just topping the charts, but even so, all-female rock and roll bands were much more unusual than they are today.
Tammy Decker joined the band in 1984, replacing Julie, playing bass and guitar.
The band’s first album, Software, was recorded at Hit City in Indianapolis by Dave Langfitt and Tim Brickley (released on cassette in 1984). It featured ten guitar and synth tracks written by the three founding members.
In 1984 Software was selected to appear on the Performer Showcase at the National Women's Music Festival. It would be an understatement to say there was little interest in rock and roll in Women's music at the time. Even so, they packed the room and played a great set.
When Kara Barnard left the band late in 1984, the music became more synthesizer focused, and early in 1985 Susan Colin (then Susan Lowell) was added to the band as a vocalist. While the instrumental focus of the music changed, the quality of musicianship stayed excellent. Their second and final album, Future Is Now, was recorded at Metro Sound by Chris Rich and released on cassette in 1985, with nine tracks penned by Weaver and one by Steinmetz.
Late in 1985 the band performed their last live gig. Some recording work continued in the next few years, but nothing else was released.
From Software on the Church Grant: "Software will begin the process of digitizing and remastering the music they created and recorded almost 40 years ago, with an eye to re-releasing some of the material in the near future. The hope is to not only make Software’s music available to a new audience but to help awaken people on what is lost when members of culturally marginalized groups are not provided the same opportunities and access to audiences within the music industry."
From nominating Elder Karl Hofstetter: "My friend and music archivist Kyle Long brought this band to my attention. They were called Software, and existed in the early 80's Indianapolis lesbian scene. This (is) important, both in terms of audio and the potential cultural significance... The story of this group is a big part of their appeal. The fact they existed in Indianapolis during the early '80s is pretty crazy.”
Thank you as always for your continued support to the Church, we have some really exciting new projects that we're looking to announce in the coming months, and more funded artists to announce soon!
xoxo, Church of Noise and the Elders