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Collaboration with Breakfast

A new collaboration with my friend Tom Dennehy (AKA Breakfast)

One fateful night in the early 90s, at an open mic in Bloomsburg, PA, I met Tom Dennehy. His mix of Dr. Demento-style originals and Weird Al Yankovic covers immediately endeared him to both me and, my future wife, Audra.

Life was never the same after meeting Tom. His combination of humor, musical smarts, and global vision have been a pleasure to observe throughout our friendship. Every interaction has been an education (as well as a lot of fun).

Careers always took us in completely different physical directions. But whether Tom was writing to me from India while taking khayal singing lessons, or (more recently) chatting on Zoom, we’ve always tried to stay in touch. Our last major collaboration was in 2003-04 with tabla player Bulu Rahman in a short-lived fusion experiment called Moonlight Masala. Somewhere in WVIA’s archives is a Homegrown Music performance of that group.

For many years, Tom has lived on the West Coast, adopting the moniker Breakfast. He also plays with improv groups The Wyatt Act and Mission Delirium. He’s a thoughtful multi-lingual wordsmith, multi-instrumentalist, and also teaches music and English.

During lockdown, Tom wrote 10 new instrumentals in his living room on his laptop (in Garageband no less, though you wouldn’t know it). At the same time, I was studying Touchdesigner and various visual techniques. I was starting to build what eventually became my JDRenderEngine, and I really wanted to put it through its paces. While I also do music, I wanted to collaborate with someone else on this experiment. So we decided to join forces – his music, my visuals. The result is Yellowcake, now available on Bandcamp and YouTube.

The brilliant, complex music centered around saxophone, electronics and odd time signatures, stands on its own. The visuals add another later of strangeness that we both had fun creating. Check out the playlist below and enjoy!

YELLOWCAKE YOUTUBE PLAYLIST

Music by Breakfast, Visuals by Jeremy dePrisco

YELLOWCAKE YOUTUBE PLAYLIST

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Band Moonlight Masala Project

Moonlight Masala

Performing at Phillips Emporium - Photo by Audra dePrisco

Moonlight Masala – was an offshoot of the Bloomsburg to Bangladesh duo, with the addition of humorist and multi-instrumentalist Tom Dennehy (from Danville). I first met Tom in the early 90s while attending BU part-time, playing with the orchestra and working the open mic scene. Over the years we’ve become good friends, and it is always a pleasure to perform with and learn from Tom.

Highlights of our set included humor, Hindustani instrumentals (drawing from Tom’s time in India learning khyal singing), off-the-wall covers and originals, raag and taal explorations, tarana and folk songs collected from Tom’s many travels abroad (India, Morocco, Japan, Spain). At times I played flute, bass, guitar and percussion while Tom played tamboura, guitar, harmonium, Saxophone & Uke.

Moonlight Masala performed in the Bloomsburg/Danville area through 2003-2004 whenever Tom was available, and also added flutist Maiko Ferro from Berwick for a couple shows. The trio recorded for Homegrown Music in 2004 to support the Bloomsburg to Bangladesh album project between Jeremy and Bulu.

Those who know him understand that Tom doesn’t stay in one place for very long, so this was lots of fun, but short-lived. A sudden flash of something special that will never be the same again. Great while it lasted!

Other photos:

Performing at Magnolia 2004 - Photo by Audra dePrisco

Performing at Sakuntala 2004 - Photo by Audra dePrisco














Sakuntala 2003 - Photo by Audra dePrisco

Tabla man at WVIA - Photo by Jeremy dePrisco