Cellist Erik Friedlander is a composer, an improviser, and a veteran of NYC’s Downtown scene. Friedlander started studying music at an early age, beginning at 5 with guitar, and then at 8, cello lessons. He grew up in a house filled with music, as his father is an avid music lover, and made countless mixtapes which played daily in their home. Erik spent his twenties honing his skills as a player and an improviser and quickly became a sought after studio musician, performing with artists as diverse as The Mountain Goats, John Zorn, Dave Douglas and Courtney Love. Erik’s desire to actively participate in the swirl of music styles he was surrounded by led him to find new ways to play the cello and drives his solo work which is varied and unusual.
Friedlander’s recent projects includes Oscalypso, a grooving tribute to bassist and sometimes cellist Oscar Pettiford; Illuminations, a magical solo cd that weaves inspirations from ancient book making with ritual dance movements and Renaissance vocal forms. Nighthawks is a project that was conceived during the blackout in lower Manhattan caused by Hurricane Sandy. The CD features his Bonebridge Band, a slide-guitar, cello, bass and drums quartet; Claws & Wings, the elegiac work dedicated to Erik’s late wife, featuring laptop percussionist Ikue Mori and pianist Sylvie Courvoisier; and a limited edition LP with photographer Mitch Epstein entitled American Power.
New for 2016 will be Dream Foto a project with Erik’s Black Phebe trio and Arrullo de la Noche Honda, a deluxe, LP-only preoject with Colombian singer Lucía Pulido. Friedlander has composed music for ads, dance works, documentaries including the score for Nothing on Earth, a documentary about the work of landscape photographer Murray Fredericks’s dangerous visits to the Greenland icecap. Erik scored the feature film Future Weather, released in 2013.