All of the music on this page is performed with improvisation that embraces experimentation. Most selections here are raw works in that they did not exist before they were performed. The format and degree of reach beyond musical norms in these improvisations varies. When experimental improvisation that starts out with existing musical resources grows beyond them in ways that inspire people, some degree of musical evolution has occurred.


Developments in improvisation come from a combination of training, spontaneity, desire, adrenaline, and other elements. When playing with others, sharing through musical conversation builds new approaches and textures for the ensemble. In composing and performing music, I make no conscious choice to improvise music, It's simply what happens. You don't need a musical instrument to improvise, it's what you do.


Most of my songs are born of improvisation. As with my Urban Tumble album, songs started with solo improvisation that yielded enough material to call out for the rest. The songs were then shaped for presentation. Sometimes music need not be shaped after being "found" within improvisation. The raw data may make for the most complete and authentic musical statements.

"Photon Ridge" free-play section - John Penny and Rey Rivera 2014

"Photon Ridge" theme section - John Penny and Rey Rivera 2014

"Overworld East to Optimotion" - John Penny and Jay Epstein 2015

"Six Rocks" - John Penny and Rey Rivera 2014

"Crazy He Calls Me" - Riotous-N with Anthony Cox • Sarah Greer • Davu Seru • Devon Gray • J. Penny 2015

 "Jam" Riotous-N 2015

 "Blue Peppers" Riotous-N 2015