ANTHROPO-FAGIA equals CULTURAL CANNIBALISM 
 
Anthropo - greek for 'human being' 
Phagy, Fagia - greek for 'to eat' 

 
Antropo-Fagia as a band, is a musical manifestation of the process of  eating, swallowing, and digesting all the tendencies that are part  of the sonic landscape and our environment. Our music is the product of all sounds that we've consumed over the years; some of them we digested and others we threw up right back. After that, it has been difficult to identify what belongs to what country, culture, or religion.

ABOUT ANTHROPO-FAGIA as a cultural movement made immortal in Brazil after the Modern Art Week of 1922 
 
"In the early days of the Portuguese conquest of the land that would one day be Brazil, a Catholic bishop named Sardinha won a place in the nation's history simply by being the guest of honor at an unusual dinner. In fact, he was the dinner--for a tribe of cannibals. 
 
"It was a menu that has resonated throughout 20th-century Brazilian culture. In 1928, Brazilian writer Oswald de Andrade extrapolated the concept of "antropophagism," or cultural cannibalism--taking the offerings of Europe, consuming them, assimilating them, and using them for Brazilian ends. Sometimes the process has been undeclared and subtle, as with the bossa nova hipsters' merging of samba and American cool jazz. Sometimes it has been explicit: The Tropicalistas of the late 1960s cited de Andrade's concept as a direct inspiration when they took the music of the Beatles, Bob Dylan, and European avant-garde composers and pulped it with Brazilian musical forms and their own rebellious energy, creating a wholly unique culture explosion. Tropicália movement mouthpiece Caetano Veloso later went so far as to claim that "Brazil was born the day the Indians ate Bishop Sardinha." 
 
- by Lee Gardner 

The musical cannibals are: 

  • Cyro Baptista - on percussion, vocals 
  • Brian Marsella - on piano, keyboards, balafon 
  • Tim Keiper - drums, percussion 
  • Shanir Blumenkranz - on acoustic/electric bass, oud, gimbre 

 
TIM KEIPER met Cyro Baptista in New York City in 1999 and soon after, joined Beat the Donkey. Since then, realizing that music is the only way to live, Tim has focused on touring, recording, and making instruments. He has worked with Anthony Braxton, John Zorn, Andrew D'Angelo, Reid Anderson, Erik Friedlander, and hasidic reggae artist Matisyahu. Besides touring with Beat the Donkey, Tim has toured extensively with Skeleton Key, Caveman, and The Dirty Projectors. 
 
In the fall, Tim worked with Africa empowerment organization Modiba Productions on a father/son recording by Mali blues guitarist Ali Farka Toure and his son Vieux Farka Toure. Also, Tim made his film debut in Julie Taymor's new film, a Beatles musical called Across The Universe. 

BRIAN MARSELLA - Keyboards, surdo, rayong - Pennsylvania, USA 
 
Brian's first contact with music was through his father, an amateur multi-instrumentalist, who exposed Brian to jazz, disco, and the bossa novas of Antonio Carlos Jobim. What started out as a love of Tchaikovsky and ragtime quickly grew into a love of all music. Throughout his school years, Brian performed frequently in a myriad of settings from chamber music, opera, and musicals, to jazz, blues, and r&b. Brian went on to study piano at The Juilliard School and the Peabody Conservatory. Brian earned his BA in jazz performance from the New School University. After having eaten, swallowed, and digested the classical and jazz schools, Brian decided to devour and regurgitate himself. The process led Brian to find cultural cannibal John Lee who taught Brian cavemusic. In the caves, Brian met drummer Tim Keiper who said, "Your papa has been looking for you." And it was in early 2004 when Brian met his long lost father - Cyro Baptista! Brian, Italian-Jew, was now Brian, Brazilian-Italian-Jew! Since being adopted by Cyro in 2004, can now almost afford milk and has learned much about cockroaches and lonely nights... And, of course, about being a cannibal. 

Shanir Ezra Blumenkranz - bass, oud, gimbri - was born in Brooklyn, NY to Egyptian/Polish parents. He was given his first instruments, the pots and pans from the kitchen and a three string guitar at the age of two. Shanir is featured on over 15 releases on the Tzadik record label, recording/performing extensively with many bands, including "Satlah" - featuring Danny Zamir, "Rashanim" - featuring John Madof, "Pharaoh's Daughter" - featuring Basya Schecter, and "Edom" - featuring Eyal Maoz and John Medeski. Shanir has performed in countless clubs and festivals around the world, including a concert for BBC Radio in London with John Zorn. Shanir is also a featured performer in the May 2000 issue of Bass Player Magazine.

Shanir has recorded/performed with Anthony Braxton, John Zorn, Marc Ribot, Ravi Coltrane, Ikue Mori, Kenny Wollesen, Mark Feldman, Satoshi Takeshi, Roy Campbell Jr., Jazz Mandolin Project, Lemon Juice Quartet, George Garzone, Brad Shepik, William Winant, Anthony Coleman, Mark Dresser, Charlie Burnham, Sonny Simmons, Ned Rothenberg, Marty Ehrlich, Trevor Dunn, Sylvie Courvoisier, Jason Kao Hwang, Susie Ibarra, Min Xiao-Fen, Michiyo Yagi, Yoshida Tatsuya, Makigami Koichi, Joey Baron, Anton Fier, Eric Friedlander, Roberto Rodriguez, Bill Laswell, Masada String Trio, and Electric Masada.

"I got to know Cyro while recording John Zorn's Filmworks XV, XVI, XVII, and XVIII. Cyro is a master storyteller. He has an amazing way of communicating and elaborating on an idea. He provides the extra 'non-musical' component that makes the ANTHROPOFAGIA magical."

 
 

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