MasterMinds 2011

Foodways Texas is among our three winning arts groups.

Former "students" have gone on to — and are currently — playing in bands such as Grandfather Child and Yucatan; they've graduated to work at NPR and to become music therapists.

"We had our tenth anniversary (including the time with Deep Listening Institute), and we're known nationally and internationally," Dove says. "No one else is doing this in an organized way. I don't think this could've worked if I had gone to any other city."

Dove works with about 150 students and helps put on two concerts, never in nightclubs, each week. He also puts on workshops all over the country, and he does some in Mexico and Canada, and overseas in Vietnam and Germany.

Foodways Texas is determined to preserve the Texas food history and culture. (L-r) Randy Evans, Robb Walsh, Bryan Caswell and Chris Shepherd.
Jeff Myers
Foodways Texas is determined to preserve the Texas food history and culture. (L-r) Randy Evans, Robb Walsh, Bryan Caswell and Chris Shepherd.
Executive Director Marvin Bendele is busy collecting oral food histories for Foodways Texas.
John Anderson
Executive Director Marvin Bendele is busy collecting oral food histories for Foodways Texas.


VIDEO See bios of 2011's three winners.
BLOG MasterMinds, One Year Later: Opera Vista
BLOG MasterMinds One Year Later: Reginald Adams and MOCAH

As far as the next step, Dove truly doesn't know what it is, or if there will be one. Everything with Nameless Sound has always kind of happened on its own, and Dove wants to keep that spirit as the group moves forward. He's thought about trying to get Nameless Sound its own building, for its own classrooms and performance spaces, but he hasn't even started putting out feelers to find funding for that.

"We want each musician to have a voice; each musician is creative," Dove says. "But the common theme that's shared is not language; we try to teach them to listen. If someone can develop that range of listening, that's what we want."

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Still waiting for poke salad and woodpecker eggs on ya'lls menu.

Jason Nodler
Jason Nodler

Thanks, Houston Press! It's an honor to be in such great company.

David Dove
David Dove

I'm thrilled for Nameless Sound to be recognized with your Mastermind award. Nameless Sound is an organization truly unique to Houston (and an organization who's development is directly connected to its city's culture). I'm very proud of the efforts/participation/contribution of everyone in our community (students, musicians, audience, staff, board, members, supporters, etc). I never expected this honor. I'm very happy to receive it.

There are a few inaccuracies in the story that I would like to clear up.

Sprawl (the band that I was in from '88 to '94) was not anything close to a "noise" or improvised music band. Houston at that time had a pretty healthy "noise" scene. (I use "noise" for the lack of a better term. Houston's experimental sounds have always resisted easy categorization, reflecting a certain quality about much of our city's culture.) I would say that I was trying for something that was musically a bit different (something that I was only hearing locally from my few collaborators). Our early efforts at improvisation did exist in the context of pretty wide-ranging experimental music activity in Houston that did have a history. (Maybe it was too wide ranging to ever be called a scene.)

These details about sub genres may not mean a whole lot to most of your readers, but the clarity is important to me. I would hope that my friends and colleagues in the "noise" scene don't think that I would purposefully misrepresent that history and context in my interview

A couple of other things to clear up might be less significant. I probably wouldn't bring them up, but since I'm at it......- I don't have a former student in band called Yucatan. Juan Garcia lives in the Mexican state of Yucatan. He plays in the Yucatan Symphony and teaches creative music to impoverished children in small villages. - I'm not originally from San Diego, but Orange County (It had a MUCH more serious punk rock scene!).

Thanks so much for the attention and recognition. It’s greatly appreciated.David DoveFounding Director - Nameless Sound

Marvin Bendele
Marvin Bendele

Thank you Houston Press!! We're very excited to be a 2011 Mastermind and look forward to putting that grant to good use. I did want to mention our affiliation with the University of Texas. Thanks to the tireless efforts of Toni Tipton Martin and Elizabeth Engelhardt, we are honored to be an affiliated institute of the Division of Diversity and Community Engagement, housed in the Community Engagement Center at the University of Texas, Austin. Please see our website for more details -- Foodways Texas is a statewide organization with over 100 members (and growing) that seek to preserve, promote, and celebrate the diverse food cultures of Texas. Thanks again to the Houston Press for this wonderful honor. I look forward to Artopia this Saturday.

Marvin BendeleExecutive DirectorFoodways Texas


Jeff's photo (Foodways Texas) should reference Chris Shepherd, not Chris Henderson, although I'm sure Henderson is a likable guy as well.

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