This film is a snapshot of the life of Fred Frith, an English-born multi-instrumentalist, composer, and improvisor. It finds him in Europe, Japan, and the US, working and playing with a variety of avant garde artists.
There is no narrative, or narrator. The images blend with his music, and visa versa, creating a narrative all their own. His performances, widely varied, reveal a light hearted intensity. In one scene, he uses his violin to 'sing' with seagulls and, in another, he conducts a quartet. Most of all, it shows him as a human being whose being is infused with music. It pours out of him in all its varied forms, and he welcomes it all.
Just prior to its west coast screening, I saw an elegant older woman at one of Mr Frith's solo performances. She seemed completely out of place, and so I asked her why she was there. Turns out that she was Sheila Benson, LA Times Film critic. She said that she'd seen the film on VHS, and felt so intrigued that she had to come and see him in person.
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