Travis Bird (b. 1984) is an American instrumentalist, composer, and writer. He is concerned with developing organic songcraft based largely around the guitar, incorporating elements of jazz, classical, and avant-garde music as well as more familiar styles. In the context of both writing music and improvising, he pursues an individual musical language involving complex harmony, action, repetition, and the well-placed accident.
Active in Chicago from 2007-2011, he worked in a variety of musical environments playing guitar, drums, and bass in addition to various electronic sources and synths, having played at most noted venues in the city as well as elsewhere across the U.S. Highlights included coordinating and accompanying the Super 8 films of Amsterdam-based filmmaker Jaap Pieters on Pieters’ inaugural U.S. tour.
In the winter of 2011, he relocated to New Orleans, where he continues his songwriting, sound work, and writerly activity.
He has played on bills with artists as varied as Illusion of Safety, David Daniell, Jon Mueller, Xela, Mark Shippy, Ben Miller, Z’EV, the Dirtbombs, Killer Moon, and Thomas Function. Influences include the deep wells of songwriter-guitarists Mark Kozelek and Richard Thompson, jazz architect Gil Evans, and the perceptive and mysterious writings of Anne Carson, all influential in spirit if not in execution.
In addition to his musical activities, he co-curates Notice Recordings (est. 2010), a boutique cassette label that has released his own work in Dense Reduction as well as the music of Illusion of Safety, Jon Mueller, the North Sea and Godseye (Brad Rose – Digitalis), Organ of Species (Scott Cloud), and Ben Owen (Winds Measure).
He is also a freelance writer who co-edits the Foxy Digitalis blog for Digitalis Industries. He regularly writes reviews for the site.