Todd Tamanend Clark was born on August 10, 1952 in Greensboro, Pennsylvania, and is of Onodowaga-Lenape descent. He has a Bachelor of Arts in Communication from Slippery Rock University and a Master of Arts in Professional Growth from Indiana University. He is the author of four books of poetry including the forthcoming "Dark Thunder" and is also a long-time civil rights activist with the American Indian Movement and various other indigenous organizations.
Clark is an accomplished avant-garde composer whose first recording was released in 1975. He is a versatile multi-instrumentalist who plays synthesizer, sampler, theremin, vocoder, electric guitar, native flute, ocarina, and both electronic and acoustic percussion, as well as vocalizing in a deep and expressive Morrisonian baritone. His six children participate in many of his projects.
"Monongahela Riverrun" is an instrumental concept album based on sixteen towns along the Monongahela River as it flows north for one hundred and twenty-nine miles from Fairmont, West Virginia to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. Joining Todd Tamanend Clark on this album are two of his sons: X Tecumseh Clark on keyboards and Sachem Orenda Clark on electric guitar and bass guitar.
"Fairmont" features twin theremins symbolizing the joining of the Tygart and the West Fork to form the source of the Monongahela River. The bass and percussion are performed on a Minimoog Voyager. This song pays homage to science fiction soundtracks of the 1950s.
"Morgantown" is a multicultural number with diverse world percussion and atmospheric guitar over a bed of microtonal woodwinds. The city of Morgantown is home to West Virginia University.
"Point Marion" rocks like the annual regatta its namesake holds every spring.
"Greensboro" is the longest song on the album and sounds like a mutant cross between Iron Butterfly and Frank Zappa, complete with a unique drum solo. TTC created an expression pedal controlled wah-tremolo hybrid on a Johnson Millennium amplifier to process his Paul Reed Smith Custom guitar.
"Masontown" is the hardest rocking song on the album with heavy guitar and synthesizer similar to Nine Inch Nails or
"Nemacolin" has indigenous percussion instruments and various native flutes. A clay ocarina is used to simulate owl calls. The town of Nemacolin was named in honor of a noted Lenape pathfinder.
"Gates" weaves and meanders like this tiny village's winding hills and curves. Multiple guitars with varying vibrato systems were layered over a bass guitar processed through a Digitech Whammy pedal.
"Crucible" is a jazzy detective-type ostinato with echoing slide guitar and gothic organ. TTC attended three years of elementary school in Crucible as a child.
"Rices Landing" captures the feel of an active riverside docking area.
"Fredericktown" is a Minimoog bass quartet that is expressive of riding the last ferry boat left on the Monongahela.
"Brownsville" consists of techno guitar loops that flow together like a system of interconnected waterways.
"California" is a one-person electronic symphony created through sixteen multiple studio overdubs on an E-mu Morpheus. California is a small university town with excellent cultural events.
"Belle Vernon" uses six sections of increasing sequential complexity that feature electronic bells in an energetic Devo type rhythm.
"Elizabeth" is a mostly acoustic duet for guitar and grand piano with a ring modulator solo towards the end. A piezo-equipped Parker guitar was used for the unusual sound of an acoustic guitar with a vibrato bar.
"McKeesport" is an intense industrial rocker using a Digitech guitar synthesizer pedal. The pollution of the Monongahela River reaches its unfortunate apex with the factories in this area.
"Pittsburgh" is an amazing wall of sound production conveying the intensity of urban life.