Charles Arthur Russell, Jr. ) was an American cellist, composer, singer, and disco artist. While he found the most success in dance music, Russell’s career bridged New York’s downtown, rock, and dance music scenes; his collaborators ranged from Philip Glass to David Byrne to Nicky Siano. Relatively unknown during his lifetime,a series of reissues and compilations have raised his profile in the 2000s.
Russell was prolific,but
was also notorious for leaving songs unfinished and continually revising his music. Ernie Brooks said Russell “never arrived at a completed version of anything.” Peter Gordon stated, “his quest wasn’t really to do a finished product but more to do with exploring his different ways of working musically.” He left behind more than 1,000 tapes when he died, 40 of them different mixes of one song.
A completed a feature-length documentary on Russell called Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell, premiered at the Berlin International Film Festival was released in 2008.
Tim Lawrence, an author and academic at the University of East London, has written a biography of Russell, entitled Hold On To Your Dreams: Arthur Russell and the Downtown Music Scene, published in 2009.
Elita 2010 dedicates the first day of the festival to Arthur Russell as significant forecaster of contemporary way of thinking to music: a sort of mix of styles and attitudes.
Full event program includes
h.17:00 “Wild Combination: A Portrait of Arthur Russell“ by Amos Lassen (2008)
h.18:15 Reading-audio performance by Tim Lawrence and Jo Thomas based on “Hold On to your Dreams ‘ Arthur Russell and the Downtown Music scene , 1973 -1992″
h. 18:45 Fabio de Luca (Rolling Stone) interviews Tim Lawrence, with Lele Sacchi