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Eli Namay

Chicago / Pittsburgh, IL         

Eli Namay (He or They) is a Lebanese/Syrian Chicago and Pittsburgh based upright bassist, writer, & community organizer. His work focuses on affirming creativity as a fundamental human need, and illuminating the intertwined and always moving nature of human minds, musical traditions, and socioeconomic realities. This is accomplished through improvisation and experimental notation; a critical embrace of eclecticism; and writing and composition that is informed by scientific studies of acoustics, perception, political economy, and the brain.

Master classes include at DePaul University, the Art Institute of Chicago, and Southern Illinois University. Performances include at venues, and with ensembles and artists such as Northwestern University, DePaul University, Chicago Symphony Center, Constellation, Experimental Sound Studio, Fonema Consort, Mocrep, Adiaphora Orchestra, Jessica Aszodi, Yeyha Khalil, Michael Ibraham (National Arab Orchestra), Ronnie Malley, Katherine Young, John McCowen, Phil Sudderberg and more. Eli has been a part of The Bridge – a transatlantic network for creative music and Homeroom Chicago’s 10×10 (2015). Eli has a BA in music from Columbia college where he studied under Dennis Luxion, Chuck Webb, and Dan Anderson. He has also studied upright bass with Anton Hatwich and Greg Sarchet (Lyric Opera of Chicago), and classical music from the Levant with Ronnie Malley. Eli regularly curates comedy and improvised music shows with Gilded Records at Cafe Mustache, works with musicians associated with Amalgam Records, and performs with the hip-hop/avant-jazz group Jə’raf and American folk group Can I Get an Amen, amongst many other periodic formations.

As a community organizer, Eli has worked with the Chicago Democratic Socialists of America contributing to the development of their Socialist Night School program, coordinating political education for the 2019 Chicago teacher and staff strike solidarity campaign, and as a full time organizer with SOUL contributing to the campaign for Medicare for All on Chicago’s South Side.

As a writer, Eli has contributed to Cacophony Magazine, Midwest Socialist, various Chicago DIY publications, as well as developed pamphlets for Chicago DSA and Southsiders Organized for Unity and Liberation (SOUL).

An Object that is Not Oriented

Alex Grims’ An Object that is no Oriented. Graphically indicated decoupled physical parameters & improvisation. w/ Phil Sudderberg.

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Objeto/Espcio no. 2

Objeto/Espacio no. 2 by Luis Fernando Amaya – Solo upright bass. Graphically indicated decoupled physical parameters & improvisation.

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Sound Mass [3]

Sound Mass 3 by Eli Namay at Elastic Arts w/ (L-R): Anton Hatwich, Jakob Heinemann, Wilson Tanner Smith, Peter Maunu, & Billie Howard.

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