Category Archives: Newsletter

Sweet, pretty, saucy and raunchy

I have to admit, I’m not particularly good at taking the time to write to you and let you know about all the things we have going on in the Fundamental Forces camp. Here is ample evidence of that… that I have so much to talk about in this update. The title is “Sweet, pretty, saucy and raunchy” because, well…

For the SWEET, we’ll be having a pre-release party for Fundamental Forces’ next CD on September 17th at Egan’s in Ballard. It’s been a few years since we played Egan’s, and many of you have asked when we’ll be there again – so the answer is next Saturday. If you haven’t been to Egan’s before, it is a wonderfully intimate club with seating for only about 40 people. We have sold the room out several times in the past. So if you’re interested, I highly recommend you call or email the club to make a reservation.

Fundamental Forces pre-release party for “Subtle Energy”
Egan’s Ballard Jam House
Sat. 09-17-16, 7 p.m., $10 cover charge includes a copy of new CD
1707 NW Market St, Seattle WA 98107
For reservations call (206) 789-1621 or email

W166Next up, for the PRETTY, on September 19th we will be officially releasing “Subtle Energy”, a collection of tracks we recorded back in January, when we went into the Jack Straw Cultural Center studios to perform on the Sonarchy Radio program. I have an affinity for how the clarinet and electric guitar sound in unison, and so Jim and I decided to transpose and rearrange many of our tunes from alto and baritone saxophone to clarinet and bass clarinet. We had so much fun playing these darker, quieter versions for the Sonarchy show that we went back into the studio the next day and recorded the material straight through a second time. That session became this new CD “Subtle Energy”.

“Subtle Energy” should be available via iTunes, Amazon, CD Baby, Spotify, Google Play, etc. on September 19th. However, you can get an early release copy for free by coming to the Egan’s show on the 17th. Or, you can actually grab a pre-release download off of our BandCamp site.

Speaking of downloads, for the SAUCY we have another release coming this month as well. In the spring of this year, Fundamental Forces was approached to do a spring residency at Substation, a new venue in Seattle. The band was given free rein to present whatever music we wanted to perform, with no stylistic expectations or restrictions. We took the opportunity to step outside of our typical boundaries and give a freer, heavier, more psychedelic performance.

ff_continua_coverWe do this occasionally when we are able, we use lots of effects on the reeds and perform more rock-oriented versions of our heavier tunes. This time around, Steve Kennedy-Williams was at all three shows to record the proceedings. He’s now released the best tracks from those shows as “Continua”, available exclusively as a digital download from his Scoobie Tracks web site. You can hear and purchase them here. In fact, just because you took time to read this, you can get 30% off of the price of the album by entering the code “SeptemberCart30%Off” when you check out.

Next, for the RAUNCHY, on September 21st we’re celebrating the release of the “Continua” concert recording with an all-out party at Substation, where we originally recorded it. Joining Fundamental Forces will be the mighty Moraine and the wonderful Diminished Men. There will also be some psychedelic video art, and we’ll be shooting video of the whole thing to post at a later time.

Scoobie Tracks celebration featuring
Rik Wright’s Fundamental Forces, Moraine and Diminished Men
Wed. 09-21-16, 8 p.m., $6 at the door
Substation, 645 NW 45th St., Seattle, WA 98107
(206) 397-4053

Finally, I have to say that after all this, I’m looking forward to a mellow winter. I’ll be hopefully slowing things down a bit and we’re likely to be performing less outside of our “house band” gigs at Vito’s and Capitol Cider, where you a get a bit of a “watered down” Fundamental Forces mixed with odd standards. So if you’d like to catch us in a full blown concert setting, I highly recommend you attend one of these shows. I don’t know the next time we’ll do a showcase set like these. It’s not likely to be soon.

It will be lovely to see you this month.


Personal Reflection and Summer Shindigs

choochokam2I’ve been thinking a lot about Fundamental Forces lately. In just five years we’ve released three records, hit the top ten of the CMJ Jazz chart twice, and played close to a hundred shows. It’s been quite a ride, and so far this year has been one of our busiest. And so I have to admit I’m really looking forward to slowing things down a bit over the summer.

When I think of summer I think of sharing barbecue chicken and corn on the cob on the patio. Kayaking around the San Juan Islands. Biking the Burke-Gilman Trail. People watching on the beach at Golden Gardens Park, and local festivals. Lots of local outdoor festivals… and we’re playing a few, as well as a few of our regular haunts.

choochokamIn fact, Fundamental Forces is kicking the summer off at one of our regulars- Vito’s on Capitol hill. Then we’re happy to join the folks up in Shoreline for their annual arts festival. After that, we’re hooking up with some friends for a summer night at the Vermillion Art Gallery. Next up is the Bite of Seattle, and then Hempfest. Finally, we’ll cap the summer off back at Vito’s

Our full summer calendar is below, and for more details click through to the calendar page on my website. If you have a chance to catch us at one of the outdoor shows, please stop by after our set and say “hi”. Or if our paths happen to cross at one of the clubs, just ask and I’ll show you the joy of a good mint julep.

Wed. 06-22-16, 9 p.m. – Vito’s Restaurant & Lounge
Sun. 06-26-16, 2:30 p.m. – Shoreline Arts Festival (Shoreline Center)
Sun. 07-17-16, 6 p.m. – Bite of Seattle (Seattle Center)
Thu. 07-21-16, 8 p.m. – Vermillion Art Gallery & Bar
Sun. 08-21-16, 6 p.m. – Seattle Hempfest (Centenial Park)
Wed. 08-24-16, 9 p.m. – Vito’s Restaurant & Lounge

Have a great summer and I hope to see soon!


New Happenings

Rik Wright Earshot Ad 02-17-2016After an extremely busy start to 2016, things have finally slowed down a bit here in the Fundamentalist camp and we’ll be taking a mellower approach to the summer. Before we go full-on chillin’ though, we have a couple of things in to be chattin’ about.

First up, TONIGHT! May 1st, we’ll be featured on Sonarchy Radio performing a full one hour set that we recorded live a few months ago. It got a little weird on this one, and I decided to narrate as if it were a Terry Pratchett novel or something. Tune into KEXP at midnight to hear it on the radio, or check it out later via KEXP’s streaming archive. And if you totally miss out on that, you can also find most of the last several years of Sonarchy podcasts streaming online.

We actually went into the the studio the next day to record the same set again – where Jim and I arranged the set to feature the clarinet and much of our softer prettier material. Our adopted fifth member, Doug Haire and I are currently mixing the sessions with the idea of it all becoming some sort of future release.

Next up, on May 18th, is the final installment of our residency at The Substation in the “Freelard” neighborhood of Seattle. Back at the beginning of the year, the club approached me about doing some sort of monthly show for the spring, and so we invited Jason Goessl, Samantha Boshnack and Gregg Bilisle-Chi to bring their groups to join us. Last month Sam’s group blew the doors off the place, and this month we expect no less from Gregg.

Attendance has been growing at these shows, and we’ve been invited to do them again in the fall. Whether we do or not will depend largely on how this last show goes. So come out and support this new endeavor and I promise you I’ll line-up some interesting acts to join us later in the year as well. I already have some killer ideas!


Time for some Hippie Dancing

IOld Hippie - Dancing with flutet’s that time of year when the music festivals start happening, and that means a chance to see some high class hippie dancing! Seriously, there’s usually at least one guy with a mullet, jogging shorts, tie-dye socks, sandals, and no shirt  dancing off to the side of the stage completely oblivious to anything but the music. And what can you say to that guy? You go, middle aged hippie dancing dude, move whatever way the music inspires until you and the universe become one.

First up for Fundamental Forces is the Jackson Street Jazz Walk on April 2nd. We almost couldn’t play this year due to conflicting gigs, but we were able to find a time slot between other commitments that allowed us kick off the day event’s at 4:30 at Wonder Bar.

Sat. 04-02-16
Jackson Street Jazz Walk
Wonder Sports Bar
Seattle WA 98144
(206) 538-0044
4:30 pm, No cover

Next up in April, we’ll be performing at Capitol Cider, which is actively challenging  Vito’s for my favorite gig in Seattle. You seriously need to check this place out.

Sun. 04-10-16
Capitol Cider
818 E Pike Street
Seattle WA 98122
(206) 397-3564
5:30 pm, No cover

And our final gig in April will be the second installment of our Substation series, where we host a guest band and then Fundamental Forces closes out the evening. This month our special guest is the Sam Boshnack Quintet.

Wed. 04-20-16
(with Sam Boshnack Quintet)
645 NW 45th Street
Seattle WA 98107
(206) 403-8883
9 pm, No cover

And once again, all of these shows are free!

We’ll also be playing several other festivals late this summer, including the Shoreline Arts Festival and the Bite of Seattle… stay tuned for more information.