nouvelles & work

bowl, cat, and broomstick and dracula

First Published on August 26, 2008:


The first track below was composed for Wallace Stevens’ Bowl, Cat, and Broomstick. I found Harris’ note stating “This piece is comprised of three looped layers of music, which were mixed in and out live during the performance. This recording progresses through just layer 1, then 1 + 2, then 1 + 2 + 3 followed by just 3.

The next series of tracks were composed as the incidental music for Mac Wellman’s Dracula which was directed by David Levine and presented by the Mark Theatre Company at the Ohio Theatre, 66 Wooster St., NY (11/14 – 11/29, 1997)

Other recent notes from Dave Levine: Track 1 is actually: Transylvania [reprise]–I think we might have used it at intermission. Track 7 is Curtain [Transylvania #3]

01 Music for Wallace Stevens' Bowl, Cat, and Broomstick 1:59
01 Transylvania 2 1:18
02 Vampyrettes 0:30
03 Transylvania 2:19
04 Mina and Lucy 2:27
05 Lucy's Seduction 1:29
06 Transfusion 1:09
07 Transylvania 3 1:04

Updated August 3, 2009:
I found and converted Harris’ DAT recordings of Dracula and also found some sheet music sketches. Conveniently, Harris left a track list that seems to align with the sheet music. Harris names are slightly different from the ones David provided above. Curiously, the tracks are listed from 2 to 11, not 1 – 10.

The first 4 tracks below were on one tape and other 10 on another tape. They may actually be duplicates. For sure most of these tracks are duplicates from the ones I posted above with some minor exceptions and the addition of Carfax.

01 Sketch Mina 1 2:26
02 Sketch Mina 2 2:31
03 Sketch Lucy 1:25
04 Sketch Trans II 1:16
05 TransII 1:15
06 TransII Alt Mix 1:14
07 Mina 2:26
08 Lucy 1:29
09 Transylvania 2:17
10 Vampire 0:31
11 From the Gutter 1:09
12 Gutternoise 1:07
13 Carfax 2:07
14 Transylvania Better Mix 2:16

I’ve scanned and posted the sheet music notes that I found in the order I found them in. They’re still a bit of a puzzle.

three rap collaborations

During the later part of the Harris n’ Dave era, the guys got interested in funk, rap and mixing. This is probably about the time when Harris started formulating ideas for his future band creation, H-Bomb.

Dave will hopefully fill me in since I know I’m leaving a lot out here but I believe the following pieces were influenced by Parliament and The Beastie Boys, with samples from Paul Simon, Tom Lehrer, Benny Goodman and the Soundtrack from The Taking of Pelham 123.

I apologize that track 01 cuts off because the tape I had it on ran out. I’m still looking for a more complete version of this recording.

01 In The Pocket 3:25
02 The Herring Song (or The Pelham Jam) 3:36
03 funky kipah 4:59

n2k: jazz central station

Once upon a time – sometime around 1993 – Harris said to me, “Michelle, you should really learn Photoshop.” And I (who was at that point mostly computer illiterate) looked at him dumbly and asked “Why?”

Jumping ahead to 1996, I was working in Photoshop daily as a website designer in Los Angeles and my boss turned me on to this really cool company in NY. I emailed it to Harris with a note that he should submit his resume there when he graduated. He responded via email, “Why?” and promptly lost the information. Roughly six months later, Harris was working there anyway.

My friend, Paul, who never met Harris but was a frequent visitor to Jazz Central Station back in those days, wrote the following on his blog in a tribute to Harris:

In addition to composing and performing music, Harris was also a software engineer. One really cool thing he did was coming up with the The Hidden Chair. At Jazz Central Station (a really good music BBS I used to visit), there was a drawing of a chair that was part of the graphic in the left nav without any indication that it was a link of any sort. It totally just blended into a larger graphic. Clicking this chair took you to a hidden discussion board that became an integral part of the core of the community. As somebody on a bulletin board said upon learning of Harris’ passing:

I was thinking about The Chair yesterday, I really was. That was a cool concept that was pulled off so successfully. Harris didn’t tell anyone about it, he just let users find it and have fun. Well it was a gift he gave us.

Booking Passage Through Jazz Central Station: A Community Study
Harris Wulfson from JCS

N2K Inc., New York, NY 8/1996 – 3/1998
Technical Project Manager
Redesigned high-profile music web site, Directed site development from concept to launch as lead technologist in a team with marketing, design, and editorial staff. Managed a group of four programmers and HTML writers. Designed database schema and information architecture. Dramatically reduced labor-intensiveness of site production by creating web-based authoring tools. Created and nurtured heavily trafficked (> 500 posts/day) message board community.

the berklee bluegrass boys 1990

“Live from the Grand Ole Opry, this is the Berklee Bluegrass Boys…”

  • The Berklee Bluegrass Boys were:
    Harris, fiddle and mandolin
    Dave Sollors, guitar
    Alex Raab, bass
    Porter McClister, banjo

I’ve found two recordings so far. One was a practice tape with songs repeated, and the other (August 9th, 1990) sounds more “finished.” I’m posting both of them here, finished tracks first.

01 Sittin On Top Of The World 2:27
02 New River Train 2:40
03 Using My Bible As a Roadmap 3:42
04 Bonus1 Sittin on Top of the World 2:38
05 Bonus2 Sittin on top of the world 2:26
06 Bonus New River Train 2:41
07 Fox On The Run 3:38
08 Nine Pound Hammer 3:17
09 Im using my bible as a roadmap 3:32
10 Salty Dog Blues 2:20
11 Bonus1 Salty Dog Blues 0:39
12 Bonus2 Salty Dog Blues 0:35

pitfalls: brooklyn bluegrass, january 24, 2001

I found these four recordings last night. Can anyone tell me anything about them? It sounds like a project demo. Is Harris playing all the instrument parts or are there other players? Who is the female singer? Help?

**Edit: Thank you, Freyja! I’m reposting your comment from below up here:

freyja balmer gallagher
August 29, 2008

Hey Mishka — this is a Pitfalls demo. I’m singing with Harris and playing bass, Juliana and Harris playing fiddle (Harris traded off fiddle and mandolin, Matt on Drums and Brad Shanks on guitar. It was recorded in my basement at 347 Grand St. in Brooklyn by Rob Viola.

01 Banks of the Ohio 4:09
02 Footprints in the Snow 2:31
03 House of Gold 3:07
04 Rose of Old Kentucky 2:39

harris wulfson’s all star klezmers december 3rd 1994

The recordings below are from This Was Chanukah Live December 3rd 1994. I’ll need some help identifying the tunes on some of the tracks and confirming the players because as you can see, the poster I have is from a different year.

I BELIEVE it is Barak Tulin singing.

Track 03 is a klezmer version of Tom Waites’ Rain Dogs

01 romania 4:41
02 hava nagilah hora 9:20
03 rain dogs 5:29
04 svivon sov sov sov 6:31
05 Bei Mir Bist Du Schon 5:28
06 tzena tzena tzena Bashanah Bashanah Haba'ah 8:11
07 partial 1:40
08 unknown 4:50
09 Bei Mir Bist Du Schon 6:10
10 svivon sov sov sov o ti vay 10:43
11 welcome 0:14
12 jerusalem of gold 4:58
13 tzena tzena tzena 6:22
14 unknown 5:44

three new acoustic compositions

Harris wrote these three pieces while in high school, probably around 1990 after The Telluride Sessions came out. I recall he titled one piece “Stone’s Flower” because his friend, Annie Stone, had given him a flower in school one day.

He is playing all the parts on these recordings. Yes, that is a tin whistle and harmonica on Coming Home.

01 arizona highway 4:49
02 stones flower 4:20
03 coming home 2:39
[audioalbum title=”Three New Acoustic Compositions” detail=”  Details” date=”1990″] [audiotrack title=”Arizona Highway” mp3=”″] [audiotrack title=”Stone’s Flower” mp3=”″] [audiotrack title=”Coming Home” mp3=”″]

harris n’ dave demo tape 1992

demo tape cover

01 Hurricaine Jane 4:22
02 Wake Up (and Greet the Dawn) 3:47