The Original Tech Get Down

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.

Tackhead Live 1989

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.

 

Musicians Garden Growing Fast

We recorded and volunteered in the Musicians Garden booth at Ingenuity Fest 2013 this past weekend and had an amazing time. Once the weather cleared up Saturday evening the kids, the musicians, the people of the city came out and learned about MG’s mission while getting to experience it’s effects first hand. We literally had jams happening every few minutes with people of all ages and experience, and even found some time to give some first lessons to newbies.

MG posted some photos already, and since they tracked multiple spontaneous jams for a contest I’m sure we’ll be hearing more from the Ingenuity Fest experience soon.

http://musiciansgarden.com/?p=146

 

Solo Music In The Round – Live Dosh

I saw this guy perform years ago and mis-remembered his name, making it impossible to find anything by him.

I have been known to write like this in the studio but never put together a live show to this extent. Good stuff, this guy really builds amazing compositions, cresting and expiring, cresting and expiring.

Just A Touch of Magic – Bernie Worrell & Headtronics

In the summer of 2010 I loaned out this beastly 1980 synth I had at my studio for a few gigs. No one ever wants to borrow my mostly cheap, usually half-broken gear so this alone was noteworthy.

When the best keyboard player in the world is the one to play it, and is probably the only other guy on the planet that can appreciate this particular board, well things came together nicely.

That thing has never sounded better than under Bernie’s fingers, and he seems to have blessed it with a genius residue cuz it sounds much better since!

Eternal Moments

There truly are times when I pinch myself. I have seen some interesting, crazy, sad, beautiful, and legendary things unfold into my eyes, allowing me the first hand juice of being there.


Worrell


It seems that this digital sharing age still gets blasted back in place by a nice dose of reality up in your nostrils.

I found my eyes watering and my psyche tingling as I caught Headtronics live last Thursday. The show was smoking (of course). Freekbass and DJ Logic did their thing strong as usual.

Their third this night was the legendary Wizard of Woo, ladies and gentlemen presenting Mr. Bernie Worrell!!

Nice, right? How about the legend playing a killer improvisational set through my keyboards? That would be something special, perhaps even the highlight of my musical life so far.

Yes indeed.

Bernie Worrell piano