Six years ago Matt Shadetek & I (DJ Rupture) decided to start a record label. Madness. We’d returned to New York City the same season, after spending time in Berlin and Barcelona respectively. Dutty Artz began as a vehicle to release music that we were working on. Since then the DA family has grown, branched out, run, stumbled, and – thanks in large part to your support  – keeps on going.


Auto-Tune Matriarch Cher, age 13
[Auto-Tune matriarch Cher, age 13]

On Friday May 17th, I will be speaking at Performa’s LOUDSPEAKER: A Symposium on the Voice. I will discuss Auto-Tune — check my 2009 Frieze essay — as well as Gbadu and the Moirai Index, my upcoming performance for four vocalists and the stock market. LOUDSPEAKER is free with email reservation.

They say:

An Experimental Event on the voice in contemporary performance featuring artists and musicians Joan La Barbara, Jace Clayton, Florian Hecker, and Alex Waterman.

Friday, May 17, 2013
4:00 – 6:30 pm

The Cooper Union
Frederick P. Rose Auditorium
41 Cooper Square
New York City

Free admission with reservation,

more info

Last Mudd Up Book Clubb, the Naked Singularity meetup, was a great one, as Sergio De La Pava and his wife made a gracious appearance. Sergio was a passionate, funny, and generous guest, sharing insights which made our experience of his excellent novel even better. There was discussion of moral concern, conservatism of the publishing industry, drunk Russians wrestling bears and the plight of the farmers, what trials really read like and lots more, including Lee Ann’s homemade cardamom & pistachio bread. Delicious.

And now, as Endless Winter reluctantly starts to consider Spring — and now that I’ve got my personal piano month out of the way– we turn to our favorite hilarity-inducing Austrian misanthrope, rhythm master, one-paragraph-book-writer par excellence and italicist of exquisite conviction: Thomas Bernhard!
– – –
shirtless Thomas Bernhard, our favorite Austrian misantrope hilarity man

On Sunday June 2, we’re meeting in Manhattan to discuss a splendid pair of losers — Thomas Bernhard’s 1983 novel The Loser, about Glenn Gould and two failed virtuoso pianists, and Gay Talese’s 1964 Esquire essay “The Loser”, about boxer Floyd Patterson. Talese published 37 articles on Patterson — THIRTY SEVEN! — which makes him arguably as obsessive as Bernhard’s unnamed narrator. (more…)

[reposted from Jace’s Mudd Up]– Here at Dutty Artz, we talk a lot about Colombian culture and the immigrant experience, almost always from a musical perspective – yet there is all this amazing writing happening right now! The 2012 English-language translation of Santiago Gamboa’s Necropolis comes to mind, or closer to home, the phenomenal debut novel of New Jersey’s Sergio De La Pava, the April book clubb selection –

Sergio De La Pava - A Naked Singularity

This Sunday, April 28th, we’re meeting to discuss Sergio De La Pava’s wonderful, humane, laugh-out-loud funny, 689 page novel involving a public defender in New York City: A Naked Singularity (2008 ex libris, 2012 U Chicago Press). (more…)

Jace Clayton - Julius Eastman Memory Depot cover art

My new album — the first under my own name — was released last week! The Julius Eastman Memory Depot. There’s been a wave of great, thoughtful press: an action-packed feature on my work in The Guardian, a 7.8 Pitchfork review, a spot on NPR, and lots more. If you’d like to buy the album, Bandcamp offers downloads & physical CDs for the best price/money-to-artist ratio, or you can use iTunes | Amazon etc. This WQXR album-of-the-week profile is an excellent introduction to the project.

I’m doing 5 performances of The Julius Eastman Memorial Dinner this April, accompanied by a dream team of talent: pianists David Friend and Emily Manzo, vocalist Arooj Aftab, and special guest Sharifa Rhodes-Pitts. Arooj wrote the closing song with me, and it gives you a taste of the additional scenes included in the live performance version. These shows are not to be missed! Two grand pianos and electronics makes for lovely sonics, the musicians are top-notch… plus my actorly debut?! April dates below:


This Saturday I’ll be playing a very special show with Zs as part of the Ecstatic Music Festival here in NYC’s lovely sounding Merkin Concert Hall. (I recorded the twin pianos on my upcoming album, The Julius Eastman Memory Depot, at the Merkin.) Saturday will open with 2 half-hour solo sets from the Zs & I. Then — after an intermission! — comes an hourlong collaborative piece. This is where thing’ll get really interesting. Some notes from our brainstorm/plotting session:



The Mudd Up Book Clubb exists increasingly offline, but I shouldn’t let us flesh-and-blood meetup ghosts have all the syllabi, so — time to announce our next two selections, novels by Rita Indiana Hernandez (yes, that Rita) & G. Willow Wilson.

The Mudd Up Book Clubb’s first selection of 2013 is G. Willow Wilson’s remarkable debut novel, Alif the Unseen. Hack3rz & djinn & a white american lady called ‘the Convert’ suspensing through a composite Emirati city contemporary with Arab Spring. Allah-ex-machinas abound but Alif is much more about the ideas and well-observed societal nuances than any action. Gender relations and visibility, class striations defining urban space, the liturgical music of the djinn… Plus there’s a lot in here about coding, computer languages, spirituality, and control — very much in line with Sufi Plug Ins, not to mention the Clubb’s occasional subtheme of old school Islamic geomancy.

Wilson, like one of her characters, is a white american who converted to Islam and lived in the Middle East for awhile. The world is big; I hope this gets translated into Arabic.

We’ll meet in Manhattan on Sunday Feb 3rd to talk Alif The Unseen.

And I’m very excited to say that in late March we’ll read the second novel of Dominican superhero, Rita Indiana Hernandez. Papi is written in Spanish. We got enough Spanish-language readers in the clubb that I figured it’d be fun to do this.

I see your Junot and raise you a Rita. For real. Rita is a brilliant force; if you’re unfamiliar with her music, check out the El Juidero vid below, or read this breathless-but-its-true! introduction post I wrote back in 2010 when I released her first single, a few months before she signed to a major label.

Juan Duchesne Winter describes Papi: “Una niña espera y espera a su padre hasta el delirio, Papi no falla en aparecer. Aparece y reaparece, repitiéndose sin pudor, encarnadno el neomacho global de los trópicos. . . narrada en prosa que inocula el ritmo del perico ripiao en el pulso tecno, que inyecta la bachata en la sonata.” (I wonder if Juan Pablo Villalobos read Papi?)

Alif is the only book club selection which you can buy in mainstreamy bookstores (I saw it in Penn Station the other day) and Rita is the only book club author whose (musical) output every Dominican in NYC has an opinion on. Yet few who found about her through the music have experienced her literature — so let’s change that. Dos mil trece!

Keep these books burning.



Dutty Artz has a lot coming for you in 2013. We decided to kick off things nice with a golden monster from the West Coast. Rafi El lives in LA but he’s been known to walk on water in El Salvador as little pieces of sunlight shimmer around him. You’ll be hearing more from Rafi El in the coming months — if not from us, from DJs bumping next level tunes like this one, which is the best Dr.Dre homage we’ve ever heard. En serio. No joke. Spanish-language rappin’, Xzibit boots, and a 95BPM bounce guaranteed to reignite that all-powerful connection between ears & hips. Who is this man?! Questions take second seat to these rays. Vibe with la diferencia…


HELLO MY NAME IS DJ RUPTURE and if you like my music, you are in luck: This week I’m recording a new album with an incredible team including musicians David Friend, Emily Manzo, and Arooj Aftab. Think pianos. But before we get to that, I decided to give away a dozen of my mixtapes for free.


The incoming year is all about radical optimism and revolutionary love. OK? OK! Let’s get it.

9+ hours of my mixes… From 2001’s highly influential Gold Teeth Thief to hard-to-find ones like the Bidoun Sessions and Porque Soy Sonidero Y Voy A Muchos Lugares.

Head here for the heat. And a note to all you lazy DJs out there: try harder.

Sufi Plug Ins, currently on display at the Istanbul Design Biennial, are touching down at the Aicon Gallery in New York City! This Thursday is the opening for the ‘Fact|Fission’ group show and you are invited to come catch Bill Bowen & I performing a 25-minute drone (using our DRONE plug-in, naturally) as live soundtrack to a new video by artist Nitin Mukul. Come melt with us… If you can’t make it on Thursday, Sufi Plug Ins prints & ‘how-to videos’ will be on view for the duration of the show, and the drone audio will be incorporated into Nitin’s video piece. Info | FB invite

[originally posted at Mudd Up]

This Thursday, November 29th, I’m presenting SUFI PLUG INS at a special session of Wayne Marshall’s Harvard course on ‘Technomusicology‘. Taking this unusual sound-software-art project to Harvard University! Amazing – thanks to Wayne for the invitation.

I expect we’ll cover a lot of ground, from Morocco music research stories to interface politix to considerations of software-as-art and the relationship between non-western knowledge systems & creative expression in our digital era.

The two-hour afternoon event is free & open to the public, so come along and let your Boston/Cambridge art-sound-tech friends know. Check out Wayne’s post for background on the class, and head here to read more about (& download, for free!) Sufi Plug Ins.

[screenshot: Sufi Plug Ins Bayati synthesizer]

Music 190r: Technomusicology presents… SUFI PLUG INS a conversation with Jace Clayton (DJ /Rupture) Arts @ 29 Garden (corner of Garden and Chauncy Streets) Harvard University Thurs, Nov 29, 3-5 pm.

[crossing la frontera in a van, all photos from my Instagram]

We drove into Mexico at the San Diego/Tijuana border last night. We’re in TJ for Norte Sonoro, a weeklong musical event that I’ve curated this year.

The idea behind Norte Sonoro: bring a half-dozen international producers to Mexico to work with several regional musicians, culminating in a free fiesta and keeping the energy afloat by releasing a free EP of the collaborative works a few months later. Getting an on-the-ground sense of contemporary Tijuana, and of the contexts that gave rise to the sounds we’re working with is key (and includes a strict dietary regimen of only delicious food).

[weathered musicians, Playas]

Who’s here? Poirier, Sun Araw, Venus X, Cardopusher, Psilosamples… Norte Sonoro’s bilingual website has full information; the project is run by Monterrey’s NRMAL, and Los Macuanos are producing it. Friday’s party has a Facebook page — it’s free (come on down, L.A.!) but RSVP is mandatory.

This is the 2nd edition of Norte Sonoro — I participated in the first version, which was held in Monterrey last year. You can read my writeup + download the 2011 EP.

I’ve written a fair amount on Mexico, this complicated land I love. A good place to begin is this recent essay for Frieze on the music of Javier Estrada as it relates to Aztec-inspired ideas of cyclical time or this account of tribal guarachero (3Ball MTY) from 2010 for The Fader.

Last but not least, I can’t stop listening to Ofrenda Al Mictlán, an incredible (& free) 2010 album from Mexicali’s Juan Cirerol. Guitar, lyrics, voice.

Whole thing is stellar, pulsing with a dark & hopped up lifeforce. Here’s a song:

[audio: Juan Cirerol – Mi Rostro.mp3]

Juan Cirerol – Mi Rostro

“it’s so easy to believe yourself blind in order not to look… the storm’s a perfect time to take a stroll”

[graffiti in Hamra, Beirut DJ Rupture]

I’m pleased to announce that the special guest on tomorrow’s radio show is James Bridle, in town from London, full of provocative ideas & playful manifestations of our current digital-IRL moment, where the very definitions of memory, visibility, tangibility, etc are glitching out/fraying together in fascinating ways then physicalizing in fashion, advertising, interface design, architecture…. (When I saw the above piece of pixelated grief-graf in Beirut a few days ago, I instantly thought of James Bridle’s New Aesthetic.)

So. On Wednesday October 17th from 8-9pm EST we’ll be talking about the role of sound in all that with James sharing an ear-opening audio selection.

[from Paul Hagon’s Flickr]

In case you don’t know, James’ work made the internet explode last April when Bruce Sterling wrote a WIRED essay on The New Aesthetic as a kind of new art movement/weltanscshauung with James as “the master of the salon… the guru there.” Because of how the internet works, within days Sterling’s article had sparked roughly 1,000 other articles debating and reflecting on ‘The New Aesthetic’ — most of them written by people who didn’t really have an idea what was going on but felt excited to meme-dive and bend the discussion to whatever they were already thinking about. So, noise aside, Bridle is zeitgeisty in a good, contagious way, and this show is not to be missed.