Ben Neill Biography (Wikipedia)
Ben Neill (b. Winston-Salem, North Carolina, 1957) is an American composer, trumpeter, producer, and inventor of the "mutantrumpet", a hybrid electro-acoustic instrument. Neill's music has been recorded on the Universal/Verve, Astralwerks, Thirsty Ear, Six Degrees, Ramseur, New Tone and Ear-Rational labels. A former student of La Monte Young, Neill spent seven years as the music curator for The Kitchen in New York. He has collaborated with DJ Spooky, David Wojnarowicz, Page Hamilton, Mimi Goese and Nicolas Collins, and performed on albums by David Behrman, John Cale and Rhys Chatham.
Neill invented the "mutantrumpet", which is a trumpet equipped with extra bells and valves, and electrical modifications that allow him to control computer variables with his playing. The first mutantrumpet had three bells, six valves, a trombone slide and an analog processing system. At the STEIM Studios in Amsterdam, he then developed a MIDI-capable mutantrumpet, which contained more switches, knobs and pressure-sensitive pads so as to allow greater control over the sound and visuals of his sound installations. Robert Moog designed its original electronic processing system and David Behrman designed a computer program to facilitate live performance. In 2008, Neill completed a new version of his instrument during another residency at STEIM. In 2014, he returned to Amsterdam to design another updated version of the mutantrumpet.
Ben Neill Tracks