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ProjeKction members' music projects

Postby Owen on Thu Dec 23, 2004 10:58 am

Thanks to drdennis for suggesting this. Seems like a good idea to me. Throwing the door open for others to start the thread. My story will come later (very busy right now, must go offline).

Cheers,
The Point Moot one minute bass solos project is at http://pointmootsolo.bandcamp.com/
Moot-tube: http://www.youtube.com/user/pointmoot
The perfect holiday destination: http://point-moot.blogspot.com
Musicommentary: http://mootmobile.blogspot.com
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Postby Owen on Fri Dec 24, 2004 5:07 am

Ok drdennis, no-one else has commented yet, so here goes...

Be warned, I composed this offline as I was worried I would ramble... I was right.

Well…

Some background:

I am a bass player… but don’t hold that against me…

Started off with a mate in an ugly heavy metal metal band first called Azrael. We were shit. Played one gig after changing to the charming name of Afterbirth. I had a lot of fun buggering up the songs by singing EMF’s “Unbelievable� during the guitar solos. The guitarist/singer/songwriter was not impressed. He actually thought we were good. The sad, sad git.

Buggerised around with other mates in various (non-metal) bands before finding a drummer I clicked with. After a few false starts formed a band for a bit of fun playing gazillions of covers across every spectrum of music possible. Garage band, with a few gigs.

Called ourselves Jesters Planet (no apostrophe please) Started writing original material, entered my Uni band comp and realised we had potential when we made the final (don’t ask what happened there) with two 15 year olds in the band. Started getting some good work, then our singer quit. Convinced her to come back for one gig, where she turned up off her face, so drummer stepped into the breach. Never looked back from there. Ended up quite popular in our home city, playing almost 100 gigs, attracting up to 700 payers to some gigs, support slots with Pop Will Eat Itself, Head Like A Hole, Def FX, Mantissa etc (some of those names would mean nothing to non-Aussies), but mainly local headline work. We were offered a support slot with Suicidal Tendencies but turned it down. No-one supports ST well. Even Alice In Chains got heckled in Australia when opening for ST.

Recorded a couple of EPs (Thress, and A Heath Robinson Affair) but only released the first one. (which is a real shame as the second one is heaps better). One track from the second EP ended up on a dodgy compilation which we lost money on. A bit of a KC influence in our sound, particularly towards the end when we added an additional percussionist. Much “louder� though. Too loud. Think Larks Tongues crossed with Alice In Chains and you might get the idea. We did some weird arsed softer tunes though too.

The band splintered after the drummer became a professional percussionist forming Pablo Percusso, The Bird (http://www.thebirdweb.com/) and many other acts. I was shattered… I had lived and breathed this band for four years. The irony is that we received our first coverage in the international press three months after we broke up. Oh well. Guitarist dropped music and became an industrial designer (http://www.alexnoblecreations.com/) I plodded on. Ten years have gone now. Decided recently to create an archive CD that I am working on at the moment. Will let you know.

Via an aborted attempt at a Birthday Party meets MOI avant-goth-punk group (called Just Enid), I went on to join a pre-existing popular contemporary jazz fusion band called The Peruvian Pearl Divers. Ornette Coleman was a big influence on this group. We also stomped through things like Tony Williams “Vuelta Abajo�. What a song! The weird thing about this band was it was flute led, though not in any way wussy. Unfortunately it collapsed after just one (very successful) gig. They reformed later with their original bassist with no hard feelings. I went back to their gigs, once more as an enthusiastic audient.

It was around this time I developed an interest in chordal and melodic bass-playing in the style of Michael Hedges. Started playing classical finger style on my electric bass. Wrote many new songs with a vocalist, as a duo called Thar She Blew! though we only played once in public. I didn’t really care about gigging anymore. It had become about the music for my own enjoyment.

I’d also been studying ethnomusicology at Uni for a few years by then. Met a local brass player and started mucking around. Recorded some great free-jazz blow-outs and wrote some great heads and pieces, but never really completed any full arrangements due to time constraints. It was around this time that I adopted the name Point Moot for my major music projects. Point Moot is me, plus whoever else I rope in, to explore any type of music I feel like exploring. Broad, but comfortable.

I then received a request from a friend who was in a band that had broken up around the same time as Jesters Planet. He needed a live bass player for a post-hardcore group he had formed. (He played both bass and guitar in the studio) Think Fugazi meets Helmet via June Of 44. Stayed with them for six months or so. Lots of fun. Furious music in odd time signatures. We were called Fu~ba. Some articles are still up at http://www.newcastlemusic.net.au/artists.php?ID=226.

Then I moved. First to Sydney, and then rural. Sold my Ampeg 8x10 (the same type as John Wetton used in KC) and bought a beautiful semi-acoustic Washburn bass instead. Still write and play. Becoming more and more interested in avant-garde concepts such as drone, minimalism, and sympathetic resonance, along with progressing earlier interests in poly-rhythm and pulse (as opposed to time signatures per se). Thinking about trying to track down some musos to collaborate with, though that is hard in a town of 4000. Recently found out that my nearest city of Wagga Wagga has a burgeoning sound-art scene. Could be time to sink my teeth back in again.

And that’s all that lot done. Anyone else want to ramble?

Cheers,
The Point Moot one minute bass solos project is at http://pointmootsolo.bandcamp.com/
Moot-tube: http://www.youtube.com/user/pointmoot
The perfect holiday destination: http://point-moot.blogspot.com
Musicommentary: http://mootmobile.blogspot.com
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Postby vrooom on Fri Dec 24, 2004 10:40 am

You forgot to mention your sterling conttribution to the ProjeKction 2004 CD...


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Postby Owen on Fri Dec 24, 2004 1:36 pm

Sarcasm at Christmas!

Oh, it's only Darren...

Be merry!

Cheers,
The Point Moot one minute bass solos project is at http://pointmootsolo.bandcamp.com/
Moot-tube: http://www.youtube.com/user/pointmoot
The perfect holiday destination: http://point-moot.blogspot.com
Musicommentary: http://mootmobile.blogspot.com
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Owen
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Postby drdennis on Fri Dec 24, 2004 4:25 pm

A very interesting narrative about some
rich musical experiences. I'd imagine you
can span quite a range of approaches to the
bass after alll of this, from free jazz to death-metal
and back again. Cool.
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Postby MarkSullivan on Tue Jan 04, 2005 7:36 pm

I'll play. I started playing guitar at age 14, and started writing songs immediately, under the influence of the whole singer/songwriter school (Bob Dylan especially). My early rock bands tended towards folk-rock (The Byrds, Lovin' Spoonful, etc.). I've also played lots of roots rock (love that Chuck Berry), and was in a band that did a couple of King Crimson covers (21st Century Schizoid Man and Pictures of a City). I got interested in jazz and classical music in college, and took musicology, music theory, and composition classes, even though I graduated with a Psychology major. Got interested in several non-Western musics then, too: Indian classical music, African traditional and pop, gamelan, Persian and Arabic music. Gave my first solo soundscape concert with tape-delay (my marketing hook was "Electronic Mediatations") in 1976: music included a Fripp & Eno-style fuzz guitar number, and a Steve Reich-style phase shift piece. I got the New Wave bug about this time, too, and played in a band that was influenced by bands like Talking Heads and The Police. Moved to Charlotte in 1986, and nearly quit music altogether, what with the new job, working on an MBA, and a new baby. Hooked up with an eclectic free-improvisational group and got back into it. I've continued giving solo concerts the whole time, led a jazz trio, and for the last couple years I've been with a mostly original art-rock band called Ras Majuka. I started seriously playing bass, after many years of occasional doubling, and I'm having a ball. Just recently we've started incorporating improvisation into our live shows, and I'm playing a little guitar as well as bass. My sig has a link to my MP3 site (with a very complimentary bio, which was not written by me). My band is at: music.download.com/rasmajuka. I hope to upload one or two vocal selections (and maybe an improv) soon.
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Postby Owen on Wed Jan 05, 2005 6:26 am

Thanks for playing Mark. Very interesting read.

I was beginning to worry this was a dead thread. Who's next?

And let's not just stick to history (as interesting as it is), anyone working on current specific projects they'd like to discuss?

Cheers,
The Point Moot one minute bass solos project is at http://pointmootsolo.bandcamp.com/
Moot-tube: http://www.youtube.com/user/pointmoot
The perfect holiday destination: http://point-moot.blogspot.com
Musicommentary: http://mootmobile.blogspot.com
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Owen
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Posts: 1990
Joined: Wed Nov 12, 2003 7:28 am
Location: The lost civilisation of Thalan D'ow Nun-Dägh

me myself senor null

Postby rogadaire on Wed Jan 05, 2005 5:59 pm

Well I have played in various incarnations of bands over the last 20 years as a guitarist. The most recent of these was a band called the Sunbloods, which was an incarnation of a band called Ultra Curva, which was an incarnation of Xavia, which was an incarnation of ... I suppose the common thread was a liking for the Pixies, in as much as they were probably the only band we agreed we all liked. We never settled on a stable 'sound' or way of doing things - arguably a case of 'too many cooks' - which is one reason why we played less than 20 gigs in the seven or so years of existence. (Even then, we once arrived at a venue to find an audience of precisely nil - and ended up playing the gig for the sole 'benefit' of the other guitarist's girlfriend who turned up at the last minute.) Despite an all-too-obvious lack of direction we were, IMO, actually a pretty decent band, but finally succumbed to artistic difficulties and split around '98/99.

Since then I've slowly found my own voice as a composer (although I prefer 'assembler of sounds' which provides an unarguable decription of what I do - being the literal truth of the matter) of mainly instrumental tunes, which I have been recording under the name Bad Science. (The 'difficult' first album, tentatively entitled 'Everything You Always Wanted is Here' is finally due to hit the public-o-sphere later this year, with 'damn-near-impossible' second album hard on its heels next year. I hope y'all have a chance to hear them (that's ambition for you). ) At the same time I've found my interest shift from mainly rock to mainly dance music, although I really tend to think of myself as someone making music for unmade films, but very cool ones. Although, in common with everyone except the White Stripes, I use computers, I prefer to involve 'real' instruments where possible, especially guitars and drums. I am more interested in sounds than words, but collaborate on 'proper songs' with former band mates (ie songwriters!) when the Muse allows. I suppose my stuff might be described as 'rock-tronica' where that rather dislikeable term is defined as 'a bit like electronica as played by someone influenced by TV theme tunes who grew up listening to Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd, flirted with Philip Glass, rediscovered rock'n'roll and then lost it again, and is a sucker for anything with a riff, a good drum sound and a backwards sample played half-speed through a guitar effects pedal'. Then again, something a bit zingier would be nice. I am an obsessive about my work. For example, having recently discovered 'micro-sampling' a mere two years after everyone else, I am currently thinking of applying that technique to a track I originally recorded in 1989 as a multi-acoustic guitar piece for a non-appearing Guitar Craft album that Mr Fripp was considering putting together at the time. After that I may turn my attention to old Sunbloods classics, culling what I want from the master tapes and interfering with it in unspeakable ways. Should be fun.
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Postby The Doc on Thu Jan 06, 2005 1:55 pm

and from the other end of the musical scale (ho ho)

As a youngster I always wanted to be a rock and roll star - specifically a singing bass player a la Greg Lake. However it was never more than a dream and then life took over as it does.

Now older (47) but only wiser in a very narrow sense I find myself with a decent sized house, no wife to complain and (despite the cost of my separation) a reasonable amount of disposable income. So over the last year I have managed to acquire a cheap Bass and Amp, Cheap guitar and amp, a third hand drum kit (nominally for the sprog) a couple of keyboards surplus to the requirements of various relatives and a mic and stand.

I have not yet managed acquire any skills beyond a few chords, one note bass lines, and that thing with the drums where you play the hi-hat with the snare evry four beats and the bass drum every two.

This does not prevent me and a few friends having a mess around every now and again, and we hope now the holidays are over to play (in both senses) more often and knock together some covers for a performance at the summer BBQ. I doubt we will trouble the charts in the near future :lol:
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Postby vrooom on Thu Jan 06, 2005 2:52 pm

That's good to hear, Doc. There's hope for you yet. :D I cannot encourage people enough to pick up an instrument (even if they can't play) and noodle around. Music can be incredibly liberating. Bravo!

As for myself...I've probably told this story before, but what the heck - ProjeKction is the place for endless repetition, a bit like a verbal soundscape, really.

So it started when I was about sixteen or seventeen. A lot of my friends got guitars when they were twelve/thirteen, but we didn't have much money in the house, so getting an instrument was out of bounds till much later. But when I starting my A-levels, some of my friends were interested in starting a band and as they were all guitarists, the position of bass player was available. My friend Warren, who was the BEST guitarist I have ever met, a guy who could literally play along to anything by ear on the first listen, taught me a few bass things on an old semi-acoustic guitar with four strings that he had. So anyway, I nagged my grandmother and she duly gave me the money to purchase this bass guitar. It was an Encore, which I still own (how could I part with my first guitar?) and I began to learn the rudiments. But in the meantime, the guitarists decided that they didn't want to continue their studies and dropped out along the way, leaving muggins here with a bass but no band. In fact, I don't think there was even a band to begin with. I think a lot of it was boy-ish chat and I got swept along with it.

Two years later, I bought a £65 Columbus Les Paul copy from the local music shop and started learning on that. I've been trying to learn how to play ever since. However, it wasn't until 1993 that I had the urge to start recording stuff and I got my first four-track recorder. I just used to goof off playing and that's where my interest in producing an album's worth of material came from.

I stopped playing between 1994-98, but when home computers got fast enough to process audio around 1998, I took the plunge and dumped my four track and went multitrack digital on my home PC...and that's what I've been doing ever since. CD-burners, the Internet and MP3.com (sadly missed) fuelled my interest further.

I am not sure why I do what I do, but I get a great sense of satisfaction from producing a CD of music. I enjoy the process of starting with nothing and then having something at the end of it. I then listen to it a couple of times and file the CD away and forget about it. The process then starts again. It's a nice hobby to have and I get a lot of pleasure from it. For me, I find music a challenge because I don't think I am a particularly natural musician. I came late to the game at 17 and don't think I have a ear for it. I just enjoying messing around and trying to find stuff that sounds "right".

At the moment, I have finished my 20th such recording "I am Not Your Enemy" which needs to be released. As usual, producing the cover artwork is a major bind - but once that's done I guess I will put it on CDBABY with the rest of my stuff.

So what's the future? Well I always feel a bit like Spinal Tap when I talk about future ideas:

Derek: We were talking about a rock musical based on the life of Jack the Ripper...
David: Yeah,'Saucy Jack.'
David: "Saucy Jack, you're a naughty one, Saucy Jack, you're a haughty one, Saucy Jack."

I would like to produce an acoustic type album - though I need to get a twelve string to pull that off. I would also like to go down the electronica route a bit more too and ditch the guitars. I also have an urge to play live. But being a nervous, quiet, shy retiring fellow, I don't even know how to bring this process about. And is there even an audience for the tepid guitar instrumentals I produce? Not in England...I'd be bottled off stage in 30 seconds.

To sum up, I would like to give you a quote from the late Simon Jeffes, whose philosophy on music I share:

"I'm not the kind of person who writes music that is stressful or about vigourous concepts. I am more looking for things that work emotionally, because somehow it leads to more life. Compared to Stockhausen, there's not a lot going on in our music. Our music isn't very complicated."


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