This concert sees a rare pairing of two musical entities divided by the Atlantic but united by a mutual love for obscure musical outpourings from under-heard sections of diverse cultures.

Ian Nagoski is a radio presenter and musicologist based in New York who has received great plaudits in recent months for the 3cd package he compiled for the excellent Tompkins Square label, To What Strange Place : The Music Of The Ottoman-American Diaspora, 1916-1929. Along with the extensive notes contained within the package, Nagoski has produced a tantalising treasure trail relating the stories of the countless intertwined lives of people originally from Anatolia, the Eastern Mediterranean, and the Levant who migrated to the US in the early 20th Century and the music they brought with them.

‎”Comparisons with Harry Smith’s anthology or Revenant’s American
Primitive are in order, not least because this is American music with
a capital A, animated by the same feelings of desperation, nostalgia,
the quest for cheap kicks and the agony of loss. Like Smith, Nagoski
is a Walter Benjamin visionary, using his collection of 78s to
hallucinate a history that actually happened but which remains hidden
beneath official dogma and nationalisms.”
-The Wire, August 2011

“”I was entranced; I was FASCINATED. It is one of the most worthwhile
purchases you will make this year. I went and got mine; I think you
should, too.”
 – Henry Rollins, KCRW

“Ian Nagoski’s To What Strange Place is a work of great beauty.”
- Jace Clayton / DJ/rupture, WFMU

“It feels as essential to an understanding of American music as
anything else.”
- Pitchfork

Ian will play and discuss a selection of tracks from the collection and relate stories of migration, the embryonic record pressing industry, cultural dispersal and interweaving – he’s delivered several such presentations in the US, where the musical mix of deep contemplation, utter tragedy, blazing jams and some hilarity has left deep impressions on his audiences.


Nagoski’s playback and discussion will be followed by a performance from The Family Elan, the ongoing project of renowned multi-instrumentalist Chris Hladowski, who you might know from his work with A Hawk And A Hacksaw, Nalle and The One Ensemble.

Delving into the same mine of influence as To What Strange Place, and dipping musical toes in Uzbekistan, Eastern Europe and elsewhere, the current formation of The Family Elan as bouzouki/bass/percussion power trio has inspired involuntary dervishes in audiences across Europe on recent tour dates