Sexton Ming & Jason Williams
Sexton Ming (born 1961) Kentish man. artist, poet and musician who was a founding member of The Medway Poets and Stuckism art movement.
That Sexton Ming is only really possible to explain in terms of other artists does not mean he lacks originality. Far from it. The fact that any conversation about him to a non-initiate has to start with a list of more familiar names is simply a recognition that his work is so far out there that you need something to grasp hold of as it drags you in. The simple explanation goes something along the lines that he sounds like Captain Beefheart, writes poetry like Ivor Cutler, draws like David Shrigley and paints like, well, a mixture of all three. You can also throw Vivian Stanshall and Ian Dury into the mix, though these crude comparisons hardly do justice to Ming’s individuality.
Ming would be the first to admit that he is a jack of all trades and, technically at least, master of none, having received no training in any of the disciplines that he pursues. There is not a focus group, A&R man or art dealer on the planet who would advise Gravesend-born Ming to carry on ploughing his furrow, which is exactly what makes him such a breath of fresh air. His poems often lack grace and meter, his music is ham-fisted and his paintings are very much those of a man who lacked even the qualifications to get on a foundation course. Yet they still enthral.
Ming’s recorded output features badly tuned cheap guitars and ditties about everything from dead donkeys that help old ladies with their shopping to the secret life of scarecrows. Like his poems, his songs mix innocent, childish fables with stream of consciousness rants and outrageous sexualisation of popular cartoon characters, often with Ming giggling at his own jokes as he sings. Ralph Steadman. The cartoonist was more than used to bizarre excess when working with Hunter S Thompson, but he once drew the line at Ming reading poems about Virginia Woolf with his underpants at half mast commenting ‘You’re not a poet, you’re a failed intellectual’
Jason Williams (born 1970) Sussex man. Multi-form incalitrant Entertainer.
No formal training has just made it easier for me to make uncompromising music and art with a non-careerist attitude for over thirty years now. Being central to the lo-fi junk noise explosion of the early nineties. My superannuated post-music project Deepkiss720 was summed up in IDWAL FISHER magazine thus – “Jase’s contribution to the UK noise scene may be small when looked at in terms of released output (tapes, CD-Rs and one ahead of its time LP on Harbinger Sound now home to the Sleaford Mods) but that is no reflection on his influence and input. Those few releases would suggest the mind of a man for whom side long tranches of noise aren’t the excuse for periods of reflection but a chance to wreak havoc with your ears. With his long running solo project Deepkiss720 Jase has managed to create a monster that makes noise that is genuinely unlistenable and I mean that in the most respectful of ways. Its not everybody who can put something into the noise trough that is so totally off centre as to be totally off whatever scale it is you want to measure it by.” my cut up, in the old sense – no samplers or computers involved ‘music’ became more like ‘collage’ and I was further drawn to that genre when I collaborated on some collages and one oil painting with the contemporary German artist and new steam musician Albert Oehlen for the “I will always champion bad painting” exhibition. Albert had previously given me two important ideas to wrestle with during this period of contact. “Too pornographic” regarding the modified Polaroids of my testicular cancer which sadly helped get an Eastbourne gallery closed down, and “I hope they are proud?” while perusing some of Dusseldorf’s more vulgar graffiti. However one of the results also ended up in the “I Will Always Champion a good painting” show at the Whitechapel Gallery. An ongoing fascination with artists ‘ego’ and links to self-esteem, pride etc and then the flipside emerged in my work with the desire to sometimes make art / music as meaningless and perhaps as beguiling / wrong / unartistic in its choices of colour, shape, structure etc as possible or just by thinking of it more as mere decoration / background ? even the choice of the deepkiss720 moniker being as cringeworthy all round as possible. Later I co wrote the article ‘Dipsomanic theory and cancer chew’ with Dylan Nyoukis for Bananafish magazine the influential San Francisco fringe culture magazine. And was taken on as ‘Silver-head’ by godfather of graffiti Jeff Keen whose rapid-fire animations, multiple screen projections and raucous performances redefined multi-media art in Britain. A detour into the more occult side of the arts lead me into years of research, film making and xerox mail art exchange with the Welsh “cult” OKOK Society, now Ordo Innominate. Chance meetings lead to live work with Foxtrot Echo of COUM Transmissions and the Coum Flakes exhibition at the Start Gallery, Brighton. And helping out on the Muddy Clearing event with the Binnie Sisters. After recently befriending Jonathan Kenneth William Pettitt and helping curate a show for him at the Hastings Carbon Arts Gallery as part of his rehabilitation from a mental health section and running Anti-art and Broken music workshops for Coastal Currents festival at the the Old Chemists, St Leonards and Supernormal Festival, Oxfordshire and more recently a mechanical Drink and Draw session I have realized I am a catalyst in any workshop situation than facilitator as I can never remain “neutral” and find nothing about art ever really therapeutic anyway, It’s merely managing a struggle. Amusingly I was recently described by fellow local artist Jeffrey Louis-reed as a “one-man avant garde steamroller” but I have slowed right down and now make less, having just finished a performance based displacement experiment with Charlotte Hailey Watts called Hysteresis. Current creativity is sparse as i am technically homeless while nursing my sister back to health after cancer op. but includes a
New ritual project5
Dolly Dollycore is an all together flowing chaos musician, sporadic transformer, reality interloper, excellent home cook, writer, all night dancing vigilante, the flight of ducks.
Dolly is mad-cap in love with the universe. Dolly might be a seething tangle of leaves and caterpillars. Dolly is against odds and either/ors. Dolly suspects that the best way to make change is inciting play and transformations in people.
Current/upcoming projects include Four Manatees with Verity Spiders, 3 EYE DISKO apocalypse blowouts with Daniel Mackenzie and friends, a monthly BANG show on Totally Radio.com, Thee Hairee Kuntz and so on.
Some Some Unicorn
Big Band from The North
Some Some Unicorn is a large collective of like minded musical magpies under the laid back eye of composer and improviser Shaun Blezard. The band began during Shaun’s time as a New Voice composer with the British Music Collective and pulls in players from across genres that focus on improvisation and experimentation in their work.
The band has featured members of Hugs Bison, Breathing Space, Pere Ubu, Beats and Pieces Big Band, Roddart, Ripsaw Catfish, Wire Assembly, Inclusion Principle, World of Fox and many more and is never the same twice.
The sound of Some Some Unicorn is improvised around loose ideas from Shaun to create a big band free drone soundscape. The music flows around and between players, the audience and the room to become a journey in that particular time and space – though there are markers in free jazz, ambient electronics, free improv and the electric jazz experiments of the early 70’s all players bring their own influences to add to the melting pot.
Though players and poets come from a variety of backgrounds the heart of Some Some Unicorn is everyone’s belief in community.
Thursday 2nd June | 8pm – 10.30pm | £5
@ The Green Door Store
Undercroft, Brighton Train Station, BN1 4FQ Brighton