The Second Family Band-Twelfth Night Reunion


Many of our chronic listeners know well who the Second Family Band is, at least in name and reputation. The Second Family Band is a leaderless collective of improvising musicians, based out of Madison Wisconsin. What unites this group is the shared background of meeting and playing together in improv units around southern Wisconsin, between the late 90s and the grand jubilee of Pasture Music Festival in 2004. All members of Second Family Band have once been or are intimately related to members of The Davenport Family, Drunjus, The Grass Magic, Zodiac Mountain, All Do Gather, Organon, Candiru, A Mercury Ensemble, The Midwestern Mudslide Hootenanny and Free Pentecostal Family Jams, Outlet, Jesus Balls, Maths Balance Volumes, Mirror Man and th’ Oshun Oxtra, as well as dozens of unnamed gatherings and lost memories. The Family does have a completely free improv policy, and their sessions have a very open community vibe about them, though this hardly makes them accessible to outsiders. Since most of the regular members cut their improvising skills in this brilliant flood of psychedelic improv units that flourished through Wisconsin at the time, the musicians of Second Family Band find themselves in a uniquely exclusive reality where this music is tread on intricately cut local paths and it’s elementals are speaking only in the familial tongue. The oldest members of Second Family have learned from nearly fifteen years of jamming like this, that the more intimate and old the association of the people in a Second Family jamming unit at any one point, the stronger their psychic musicianship bond together, thereby manifesting a clearer portrait from which we can understand the highly organic order of the forms within Second Family’s unique structure. This is a paradox of the Second Family Band, highly misunderstood from both those without and within. What is not mysterious is that the Second Family exists much like any other family. Despite having a never-ending pile of memories to sift through, it always seems that the best moments are never really captured. Despite knowing eachother better than anyone else on earth, there is still all the more room for miscommunication. Despite being together all the time, it is so easy to be too stuck inside your own head and completely out of tune with the rest of the house. So many familiar problems mount in such situations that it is easy for the music to implode more often that not. Yet this same tense and personal territory is also exactly where some of the most brilliant magic is born. We are so thankful that Brave Mysteries has so often been blessed with recordings that exhibit Second Family Band at the height of their paranormal potential. There recordings seek to show the public what happens when the Second Family Band have the focus and energy to rise together and lift eachother up to play this music in true harmony. Last season we were able to present the enchanting Veiled Gallery cassette and now we here have the honor of presenting Twlefth Night Reunion, a collection of vivid recordings from the Winter of 2010, culminating in the miraculous Twelfth Night Reunion party on New Years Eve; an exciting annual party that hosts as many of that eldest family members that can be gathered in this area.

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