Category PyroPlasticFlow

The Rockula Update- A small slice of Validation

I was making final preparations for the San Antonio Loop Festival and my anxiety was creating reasons why I shouldn’t be going
First and foremost is money
I was literally spending money I didn’t have with a zero balance in my bank and a credit card
It is very lucky that my sister has allowed me to use her Mini Cooper for the trip because my other option is a van with terrible mileage
There was no guarantee of any kind of pay and I don’t have any kind of merch to sell
I was not even sure if I would have a place to stay

So why did I go?

I contacted Noah Peterson who ran the SA Loop fest and asked him to consider me
He wrote back that I wasn’t exactly conforming to the official parameters of the festival but he thought I was interesting enough to merit a spot so he asked me to perf...

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PyroPlasticFlow has been invited to San Antonio Loop Festival

I have been invited to perform at the San Antonio Loop Festival on November 9th
It is nice to be recognized for something I do that I feel has been under-appreciated for years
Plus, it is nice to be included when I am so different from all the Live Loopers
In the words of Fest Founder Noah Peterson “That’s some pretty wild stuff, what you do is pretty cool and a great use of tech. I think you’re more than interesting enough and clearly different enough for a slot.”
I hope to see my San Antonio friends at the show

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The Rockula Update- The Necro Tonz Reunion Blues

The prospect of The Necro Tonz getting back together gave me mixed feelings
When Colleen first broached the subject, it was that I would sit in on a few songs but I felt like I wanted more involement
I set about looking for ways to use my skills to do a variety of things
The first thing that came to mind was that I could provide backup vocals and harmonies
This was soon followed with the idea that I would use my Roland SPDS as a percussion pad (bongos, timbales, triangle etc…)
The ideas that I have been brewing for Tiki Torture would also come into play with video
This would give me a real world application for my ideas concerning backgrounds
In addition, I also recognized the chance to handle compromise more effectively
After all, these were all musicians with egos and quirks equal to my ...

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The Rockula Update -or- Street Busking Mark 2- Electric Boogaloo

Street performance has become more and more of a priority
Up until last weekend, I had just played my drums on the street but last weekend, I got to bring a full elelctronic configuration
I got permission from July Alley to use their electricity
I was expecting to set up over at Kettle Art (run by the eternally cool Frank Campagna) which had a different set of parameters to consider so I didn’t plan on getting electricity to MY SPOT
I had to locate some tape at the last minute to tape down the electrical cord
Saturday I brought some rubber slip mats

This was the first time I have ever gotten to put my electronic ideas to the test and I think I did fairly well
The setup consisted of the SPDS looping pad, a Kaoss pad and the BR864 multi-track as well as the Brock Spock electric Harp guitar (...

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The Rockula Update 12/19/11 -or- A large number of small victories instead of one all encompasing triumph

The last few weeks have been productive
A few weeks ago, I decided to get off my ass and pull my drums out on the street in Deep Ellum
Laziness was one of the factors that kept me from doing it but the biggest one was fear of all the negative variables that were swirling in my head
Would the cops hassle me?
Would someone try to rob me or start a fight? (this is Ellum)
After getting out there and doing it, I saw that none of those fears were correct
Not only that, but I never would have thought that I could play drums for 5 to 6 hours
My recent drumming-stamina issues have been a huge issue and I succeeded in adapting my playing for the long haul
I have an idea where I want to take this and will address it in a sec

Speaking of drumming stamina issues, I have isolated two of the main causes ...

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100% Positive busking experience

My negative experiences with busking in Minneapolis were pressing heavily on me as I lugged my gear to Deep Ellum to claim the spot I had scoped out
I was worried about the noise of the drumkit
I was worried about getting a ticket

I found a parking spot very close to my spot
It was around the corner but not so far that I would have to spend more than 15/20 seconds with my eyes off my equipment
The parking lot across the street wanted ten dollars
I asked one of the businesses next to the spot if they would allow me to plug in an extension cord for future electonic drum explorations but they were afraid of getting a ticket from the city (which is fair)
I REALLY need to figure a way to get portable power on the street

I set up and started playing at about 8pm and it didn’t take long until Tur...

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PPF Gig Recap 3/16/2011 Ground Zero

This would be the second time that I have played Ground Zero so I was a lot less stressed out about the gig
My last gig was plagued by my biggest obstacle to date
Lack of appropriate space to set up my show
Time isn’t so much of a factor anymore because the new simplified setup
I still have difficulty pulling the performance off if I have to move the setup to a different location
* Change of outlook moment
-I just had an idea that would slightly affect the amount of pieces in my drum rack but greatly increase the flexibility of the rig
This is an opportunity for me to trade a nitpicky focus for a more efficient solution

Back to the gig

I was a bit dissapointed that the catwalk had not been assembled for the show so I had to default to the side of the screen again but at least I had tons ...

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PPF Gig Review 2/24/2010- Club Ug (plus some personal music philosophy)

Last night’s gig at Club Underground was a total fiasco but a valuable lesson nonetheless
First the gory details
I had set up on the drum riser and then pulled down the video screen to hide the clutter
I was pretty cavalier about it and set up just the skeleton of my configuration (no wiring of the electronics)
My last few gigs have made me a bit cocky because the newer setup was less complicated Once it came time to set up, I had noticed that changeover was taking a bit of time and Ether came up and hinted at it by asking if he could help
After getting set up, the video projector wasn’t cooperating so I just panicked and did the set without it
My anxiety got the best of me as I resolved to stick to the basics, do a short set and get off stage
The result was a less than stellar show in my ...

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PPF gig recap 2/10/2011

I was asked by Oni of Shinto records to play this gig with them at the 400 Bar
The first thing that came to mind is that the venue was not exactly my first choice for the types of bands on this lineup
If you have ever been to the 400 then you know it is a Rawk club plain and simple
The next red flag as when we showed up to get advanced tickets for the event and were told that each act was expected to bring in at least 25 advance sales
I knew right away that I wasn’t going to get those numbers but decided to keep my mouth shut
The final part of the bad experience was when the 400 cut our set times and made me go on at 8:30pm
There’s a lot of things I could talk shit about but suffice it to say that I am none too concerned if the 400 would ever book me again because I cetainly am not interes...

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Gig Recap 12/23/2010

I had not played Dallas for quite a while and was eager to show my friends the new advances that I had made in the performance
I even brought the video projector to show off the new video that has been synched up to the music
Lots of my friends showed up and there were 20 or so people at the Phoenix Project

The set was the usual one except for the fact that I had taken out “American Zombie” due to the fact that it is way too convoluted to perform all by myself
Things were going well until I got to “RU High? ”
That’s when two things happened
1- I was cue-ing up the audio tracks when I noticed that they were not missing from the multi-track program (I must have moved them to a different folder)
2- The video projector went blank (not from being broken but from a connection problem)
I decided ...

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