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Studio Recording of Bobby Previte’s TERMINALS

Recording of TERMINALS: five concerti for Percussion and Soloist, with SO Percussion, Nels Cline, John Medeski, Zeena Parkins, Bobby Previte

The Latest Update

TEST PRESSINGS are GOOD…final product coming soon…

Posted on September 18, 2014 by Bobby Previte

I almost forgot how to do this entire vinyl process.. Seems ancient now. But yesterday I was at Masterdisk to listen to the test pressings for the vinyl LP. The pressing plant sends you four copies of each side so you can determine whether the inevitable clicks and pops (but hopefully no skips) are on the metal mother they used to stamp them, or are just dust etc on that particular copy. You have to A/B all of them. Exacting work, but thrilling to hear the virgin vinyl. What a sound.

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Posted on July 16, 2014 by Bobby Previte

I am with Scott Hull at Masterdisk in midtown Manhattan at this moment, putting the finishing touches and cutting the lacquers for the double LP set that will be Terminals.  And I am extremely happy to announce that Terminals has found a home – it will be released on October 28 of this year by Cantaloupe Music.  Cantaloupe has a long and respected history, and I’m honored to be a part of it.


Posted on June 24, 2014 by Bobby Previte

TERMINALS will now be offered as a double vinyl record.   I am extremely excited about that. It will be mastered by Scott Hull at Masterdisk, one of the great mastering engineers out there. Artwork will be by the fascinating Corban Walker. More soon.

PARTY this FRIDAY, that is…

Posted on May 28, 2014 by Bobby Previte

good thing I can play the drums, because it seems that I can’t spell very well.

Perty this Ftiday in New York City!

Posted on May 28, 2014 by Bobby Previte

Join Bobby Previte and SO Percussion in an exclusive, limited attendance event this Friday May 30 in SO’s Brooklyn navy yard loft!  There are still a few tickets left…


Nels Cline recording Bobby Previte’s TERMINAL 3

Posted on April 30, 2014 by Bobby Previte

Here is a video of the great guitarist Nels Cline recording his parts on TERMINAL 3, the guitar concerto movement of TERMINALS. 

The recording is now complete, and the CD will be released in Fall 2014. A huge thank you to NEWMUSIC USA.

mixing mixing mixing

Posted on March 11, 2014 by Bobby Previte

Recording is done, all the soloists just played spectacularly. It was a little tense getting Zeena here from the West Coast with the snow, but it all worked out. Now I’ve been holed up for 2 weeks upstate in my studio, Three Horses in a Wood, finishing an exhausting (but exhilarating) mix of TERMINALS with samurai mixer Fabian Rucker. Not done yet, but it is sounding rich and massive. Thank you again to New Music USA for the support. This is the first time I have had more than 4 days to mix a project and it is a real luxury.


Bobby Previte, composer, and SO PERCUSSION, with guest soloists, are planning to record TERMINALS, Part 1: DEPARTURES for a September 2014 CD release.

TERMINALS is a thrilling and prolific meeting of the classical and the improvised worlds. The work exists in five discrete movements in the tradition of the concerto form – one movement for each of five master improvisers supported by a classical percussion ensemble.

Airport terminals have fascinated the composer for as long as he can remember. As a young boy, Previte used to sneak out onto the  runway of his hometown airport in Niagara Falls  and would lie down on the grass for hours as the jets thundered their take-offs directly overhead.

Flipping through an in-flight magazine one day in 2002, Previte, struck by how the shapes of the Terminal Maps pictured in the back suggested set-ups for percussion pieces, conceived TERMINALS.

The complete 90-minute piece places standard orchestral percussion instruments (timpani, snare drum, triangle) alongside those that were codified into 20th Century percussion literature (brake drums, anvils, almglocken), regional instruments highly associated with folk music (cuica, spoons, talking drum, timbales), electronic percussion (drum machine), and other unclassifiable elements (bullwhip), to fashion an indelible landscape. Pitting the precise percussion ensemble against the uncontrollable improviser, the inherent paradox in the concerto form is dramatically heightened in an attempt to reconcile the ever-fascinating comic book conundrum: What happens when an irresistible force meets an immoveable object?

TERMINALS is designed to create a landscape suited to each improviser. The concerto for Zeena Parkins’ harps features a lyrical steel drum section and a pitch shifted, processed vibraphone. John Medeski’s concerto splits the percussion into a huge composite trap drum set, matching the power of the Hammond. And the piece for Trap Drums engages the theatrical. It is a kind of homage to everything associated with the modern drum set – from making music out of the mistake of a dropped stick, to a development of the traditional drummer count-off,  and even including a real time set up and soundcheck of a drum set onstage – a  ‘see the blueprints’ moment – while the other percussionists continue playing the piece. In TERMINALS, motifs and orchestrations re-occur and are re-orchestrated and transformed from concerto to concerto, unifying the separate sections into one meta-form.

The studio recording of TERMINALS will allow us to control all of the many sonic forces at play in this piece, and will be the definitive version of this work.


Project Media

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An edited selection from each of the five movements of TERMINALS: PART 1 DEPARTURES, from the premiere at Merkin Hall, March 28, 2011. A joint production of the Ecstatic Music Festival and WNYC New Sounds Live. Featuring SO Percussion and soloists Zeena Parkins, Jen Shyu, DJ Olive, Bobby Previte, and John Medeski. Composer: Bobby Previte.

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TERMINAL 2, the complete movement from Bobby Previte’s TERMINALS, PART 1: DEPARTURES, Live from Merkin Hall, March 28, 2011, Ecstatic Music Festival/WNYC New Sounds Live. Featuring JEN SHYU, vocal and Er Hu fiddle.

Start and End Dates



New York, New York

7 updates
Last update on September 18, 2014

Project Created By

New York, New York
Bobby Previte began his life onstage at the 1956 Niagara Falls Talent Show, belting out a solo rendition of Elvis Presleyʼs ʻHound Dogʼ while draped in an over-sized suit. Thinking music might be a way to attract girls, he fashioned a drum set from a rusted garbage can, aluminum pie plates, a wire coat hanger…

In Collaboration With

Brooklyn, New York


2 responses to “Studio Recording of Bobby Previte’s TERMINALS”

  1. Stephen Lockwood says:

    I listened to almost all of Part 1.
    A very entertaining and sometimes intriguing piece. There are moments when certain sounds are very captivating, but overall it was hard to get a sense of an overall arc to the piece. I kept feeling his interest in just sound itself. I know that’s where experimental music is at to a great degree of course. Who else would lay down on the ground at an airport?
    The challenge is to make it all move a listener just as if it were any other genre from anywhere else in any time frame. All in all though, a valiant effort.
    Steve Lockwood

  2. Man I cannot wait to hear this thing.

    I just did the Vinyl thing myself. Scary, so many more variables.

    Good luck.

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