There are moments when things change in music. Something new is done. The future is revealed.
The 1980’s were about fusion. Not the pop and art fusion of the 60’s, or the jazz and rock fusion of the 70’s, but a new tension between technology and humanity.
Synthesizers were smaller and becoming digital, which would bring their price down drastically. Electronic drums were available. Digital effects units could bend signal in new ways.
Hip-hop was on the forefront of this tension because of technology. First the mixing board with crossfaders and mutes, then the sampler and drum machine. These were new technologies that the masses used to make a new style of music, a cutup of old and new.
The late 80’s project Tackhead was fearless. It brought together sampling, looping, hip-hop, and live playing like no one before. Since then several have moved into this direction, including my crew with 2MERICA, the amazing Headtronics project with Freekbass, and others.
Taking the stage with instruments and gadgets and building something relevant that night is a small but growing art form. In some ways these guys started it all. Awesome stuff.
Wimbish is currently touring the states with Living Colour.