"Upbeat and a little crazy." "The true spirit of improv." "Carnival-like appeal." "Impressively, singers freestyle lyrics."

How does Canoofle's 100% improvised music work?

YOU call out an original song title. WE compose that song for you on the spot. Everyone claps afterwards. Pretty good fun depending on who you are.

Sounds like?:
It's hard to say. Wonky Pop? New-Wave Vaudeville? Surreal Punk? We use our years of varied music experience to write rock, pop, new wave, punk, funk, jazz, avant-garde and traditional songs FOR YOU!

Who does this?:
Canoofle features a rotating cast of multi-instrumentalists. Most shows have a slightly different lineup, instrumentation and flavor.

What instruments?:
Canoofle makes its music primarily using a drum set, electric bass, electric piano/organ, guitar, sax, flute, percussion and voice


Canoofle Climaxes

Over 200 gigs since August 1999 including 5 tours

Over 3,000 unique songs created to date live on stage

Performances on KBOO "Night of the Living Tongue", KEXP "Sonarchy", TVCTV "Portland Community Improv", Metroeast TV "Now What?"

Members of Young Audiences teaching school kids how to Canoofle


Why Canoofle?

Canoofle exists as an experiment in entertainment. We love the thrill of getting on stage without a clue of what will happen. This is truly facing the abyss. Sometimes we fly. Sometimes we fall. Either way, after attending a Canoofle concert, people know that they've just experienced something completely unique, creative, and musical.

Unless specified, ALL the songs Canoofle creates are 100-percent improvised. We do not use stock musical patterns, other people's lyrics, or sneaky hand signals, mostly...

Canoofle Timeline

1992
Canoofle burbles into existence as a recording project in a San Francisco, CA apartment

1993-4
Purchase Alesis ADAT
Writing and recording for "Matrika" CD begins

1995
"Matrika" released on Access Records

1996
"Unorganized Flying Objects" CD released on Lazy-Eight Records

1997-8
Relocate to Portland, OR
Start recruiting improv players

1999
"Eureka" cassette released on Lazy-Eight Records
First improv show in August at The K.O.W. Theater

2000-2001
Lots of improv shows in Portland and Seattle

2002-2004
More Portland shows and three West Coast tours

2005
More Portland shows and a West Coast tour
Join The Veronica Lodge songwriting club

2006
Supply music for "Sharp Objects" play
Start providing music for The Brody Theater
More improv shows

2007
Supply music for Portland Community Improv on TVCTV
More improv shows

2008
Join Young Audiences and start to play schools
More improv shows

2009-2010
More improv shows

Photos by Patrick Riordan and Michelle D. Williams