WATERSAW is a group of musicians from the San Francisco Bay Area. They are inspired to write music for modern dance choreography, film scores, or in conjunction with other art forms.
Creating layers of sound through loopers (recording devices), their music utilizes a modern minimalism approach. The rumination of textures, rhythms, or root chords creates a simple foundation from which to build melodic and rhythmic transformations.
WaterSaw’s work is evocative and strives to blend audience and artist, so that the audience becomes an extension of the music.
The group has received an Isadora Duncan Award for Outstanding Achievement in Music/Sound/Text.
WaterSaw is: Cello, bass, guitar, Ipad, percussion, drums, and female vocals.
Vocals & Percussion
Nicole Laby’s formative training as a vocalist began in her early 20’s. She utilized classical skills to create a solid foundation for the development of alternative vocalizations. Additionally, Nicole’s travels to Africa, Asia, and the Middle East inspired her nonconventional approach to singing; nature, environment, people, and native music were/are great inspirations.
Currently, she continues to focus on music, and develop her skills in painting and art installation. Nicole’s artwork can be found here: www.NicoleLabyArt.com
Nicole formed Bay Area bands and wrote original music on guitar for the past two decades. She recorded 13 albums during this period and performed in the SF Bay Area, Los Angeles, and New York, with some live radio performances in SF. Her respect and adoration for modern dance informed her transition into collaboration with choreographers. Other influences and respected artists include: Bjork, Cesaria Evora, Kristin Hersh, Beth Gibbons, Habib Koite, Etta James, Thom Yorke, Juana Molina, Aphex Twin, Cibo Matto, Erykah Badu, Cat Power, Annie Lennox, PJ Harvey, Tom Waits, Meredith Monk, and David Bowie.
Michael Tornatore is a self-taught drummer of 32 years. His passion for the instrument has kept him consistently involved in musical projects ranging from Jazz to Metal. Michael spent 7 years in the Los Angeles music scene & the last 14 in San Franciscos’ which has exposed him to many different opportunities & challenges. His thirst to grow & love for the profession has him currently involved in nine projects with varying styles, personalities & commitment levels. Michael possesses a solid meter while presenting creative parts to serve the song while channeling his love & energy for the music. Michael recently left the corporate world to enjoy a more family & musically oriented life balance.
Upright bassist and guitarist, Mark Fassett moved to the bay area in the 80′s. His short attention span has led him to perform in many musical styles, from 80′s shred-metal to funk, indie rock, and ambient chamber music. He has released several independent CDs as Particle Salad, 42 Shades of Grey, and as part of the duo Liquid State. He performed and recorded with ambient classical pianist Kevin Keller as part of the Kevin Keller Trio. In addition to WaterSaw, he currently plays lead guitar in jam band and is working on a new collaborative experimental project in his home studio.
Mia Pixley is an Oakland-based cellist, singer, songwriter, on-stage mover, and lover of collaboration. In addition to making music with artists in the Bay Area and in her previous New York City home, Mia and her cello move together on stage with the help of cellist Mike Block’s Block Strap. Mia, her voice, and her cello have acted in a New York City Off-Broadway musicals and in experimental theater productions in the bay area.
For more information contact: Nicole@WaterSaw.org
Photography by Kelly Johnson