ARTIST FEATURE: Callum Mintzis from ‘The Dream: Monash Sessions’

Continuing our series of artists features on artists from our recent Dave Douglas release, The Dream: Monash Sessions, performed in collaboration with musicians from Monash University in Melbourne, Australia, we’re highlighting Callum Mintzis.

An artist, trombonist, pianist, composer, and electronic musician, Mintzis is based in Melbourne, Australia. Interested in the ways in which consciousness can be affected by musical stimulus, Callum maintains a compositional practise relating to how people perceive atmospheres internally. He has been the recipient of the Pat Corrigan Award (2017), the Brian Brown Award (2017), the Geoffrey Whitelaw Scholarship (2018), the Allan Zavod Runner Up Award (2018) and the Future Leaders Award (2020). He has performed with Ambrose Akinmusire, Vijay Iyer, Linda May Han Oh, Julia Reidy, Andrea Keller, and many others.

What instrument do you play and can you describe the room you recorded in?

Trombone, and I recorded in a medium sized bedroom with wooden floorboards and bookcases covering two walls.

What was the biggest challenge of remote recording and how did it differ from challenges to in person playing?

The biggest challenge was surely adapting my sound to other players, and achieving a state of listening whereby the ensemble was interacting. These are much less prominent obstacles in real live recordings, though they can depend heavily on the musicians and the context of the recording.

How will the musical interactions you’ve had via remote stay in your practice when the lockdown is eased, if at all?

Recording has been a great tool for practice because it allows a more accurate reflection of sound and craft. Of course, it will never be the same as hearing yourself from the other side, but it’s definitely a technique I’ll be using more in refining my sound and technique.

Where do you see yourself and your music fitting into the community of musicians?

I’m an improvising musician based in Melbourne, and I suppose I share a lot of the same musical interests as artists in the community. I’m very interested in the phenomenology of listening, so I’m in the same field as many in terms of how perceptions of sound can affect the experiences we have with them.

Where can people learn more about your work?

My website is here and I also have a Bandcamp page here.

The Dream: Monash Sessions is available exclusively on Bandcamp here.