The ground-breaking musical project Cwmwl Tystion III / Empathy will visit The Lost ARC as a part of its Welsh tour on Wednesday 5th June 2024.

Exploring Welsh history and identity accompanied by live interactive visuals, Cwmwl Tystion III / Empathy will perform original, unique Welsh music.

Trumpeter Tomos Williams has once again assembled an incredible band of Welsh and international talent for Cwmwl Tystion III / Empathy. Mared Williams and Eadyth Crawford are two of Wales’ most in-demand vocalists, Nguyên Lê is an internationally renowned electric guitarist from France via Vietnam, while Melvin Gibbs, from New York is a giant on the electric bass, and has been called ‘The greatest bassist in the world’ by Time Out New York. Tomos will once again be on trumpet and has composed a new suite of music, while Mark O’Connor is in the drum seat alongside creative live visuals from Simon Proffitt.

Melvin Gibbs and Nguên Lê have international reputations and it’s some ‘coup’ to attract these two musicians to Wales – an indication of the quality and serious intent of the ‘Cwmwl Tystion’ project.

The band will perform original music (commissioned by Tŷ Cerdd) incorporating elements of jazz, heavy rock, the avant-garde and Welsh folk music. The name ‘Cwmwl Tystion’ (Cloud of witnesses) is derived from a poem by the great Welsh poet Waldo Williams and the music will deal with events and themes of identity from Welsh history.

Doors 7.30pm. Tickets £10 in advance. £14 on the door. This event will be SEATED.

*Supporter price tickets include a discretionary £2, which supports the work of The Lost ARC and the headline performer.

The tour is made possible by financial support from The Arts Council of Wales and Tŷ Cerdd.

Tomos Williams – trumpeter, composer and leader of the Cwmwl Tystion project which reflects on Welsh culture, history and identity. Tomos leads the bands Burum, Khamira and 7Steps which have performed internationally. His ‘Riot Suite’ – from Cwmwl Tystion II was nominated for an Invor Novello Composers Award. He also presents a jazz show on BBC Radio Cymru.

Mared Williams – is one of Wales’ leading vocalists. She recently starred in the lead-role of the Welsh language musical Branwen:Dadeni, and has featured in Les Miserables in the West End. Mared won the Welsh album of the year in 2021 with her debut album Y Drefn.

Eadyth Crawford – is an electronic soul pop music producer and singer songwriter from Merthyr Vale. Eadyth has established a reputation as a collaborator with many artists and was a member of the previous Cwmwl Tystion tour – Cwmwl Tystion II / Riot! – her vocals in these performances were central to the work and garnered rave reviews.

Nguyên Lê – is an electric guitarist of international repute who’s been a leading light on the European jazz scene since the 1990s. He’s explored his Vietnamese heritage in his music and he’s also worked with many giants from the jazz world: John McLaughlin, Herbie Hancock, Joe Lovano, John Schofield, Kenny Wheeler, Dave Douglas to name a few. He is a virtuoso guitarist with an armory of electronic effects at the tips of his fingers.

Melvin Gibbs – “The greatest bassist in the world” according to Time Out New York. He’s a founding member of the avant-rock power trio ‘Harriet Tubman’ and he’s performed internationally since the 1980s. He’s performed with giants like Vernon Read, Sonny Sharrock, Ronald Shannon Jackson, John Zorn, Bill Frisell and many more. He was also the bass player in Henry Rollins’ ‘The Rollins Band’ in the 90s. He co-founded the ‘Black Rock Coalition’ and he has performed recently with Arto Lindsay. A giant on the bass he is well known for his plethora of electronic effects.

Mark O’Connor – is one of Wales’ most creative drummers. He is to be heard on numerous albums from all genres. He performs regularly with Tomos in Burum, Khamira and 7Steps, and Mark is the only other musician to be involved in all three Cwmwl Tystion iterations.

Simon Proffitt – has created live visuals to accompany the music for every iteration of Cwmwl Tystion. The live visuals have developed into a central element of the Cwmwl Tystion live experience.

Praise for Cwmwl Tystion I and II:

“From tender, Welsh-sung hymn to intricately orchestrated ensemble segments, and from pared-back lyricism and bluesy balladry to collective maelstrom, the music covers extensive territory…Politically provocative and musically engaging… its overarching theme of human rights, and human rights abuses, speaks to the world at large.”

– All About Jazz

“This music stands up superbly in its own right and no knowledge of Welsh history is required to admire it but it really gains power from its political context”

– UKVibe

“With Cwmwl Tystion/Riot! Tomos Williams further consolidates his reputation as one of the most restlessly creative and seriously gifted musicians in Wales.”

– Jon Gower,

“As a Welsh answer to Wadada Leo Smith, Matana Roberts and the late Don Cherry the Cwmwl Tystion project succeeds brilliantly and this represents another major artistic statement from Tomos Williams.”

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