How did you get started with all this??
My father played guitar when I was really young and I picked it up at about age 9. I'm pretty sure the first song I learned by ear was a song that I heard him playing when I was about 8 years old. He had a guitar that he had built himself and I was playing in a playground about 200 yards away and he cranked the amp, and I sort of stared at our house, a little stunned that the music was coming from him. I discovered The Beatles in high school and learned a bunch of their songs on acoustic guitar, and then started writing songs and recording them when I went to college. I studied music in college, and started playing in bands at that point. I played bass in a couple of bands and released some cds, and then switched back to electric and acoustic guitar for my latest cd. I've written and recorded well over 150 songs at this point and I'm in the process of finishing a new album that I hope to release by the end of the year. I've also recorded drum tracks for the album after that and I have a friend of mine in Portland recording drums for an album that I never finished before the Kaleidoscope's End cd.
What's the message to transmit with your music??
I try to write around a common theme when I release a cd. They are not concept albums in the conventional sense, an example being Pink Floyd's The Wall, but I am usually focused on a certain issue when I'm writing, and I write songs from various points of view in relation to that central theme. In the case of Kaleidoscope's End, I was initially inspired by all the talk about Y2K and the end of the world, and I wrote an album that examined the various reasons why that might actually be happening. It's also about life as a sort of amusement park ride, and the end of innocence, about growing up and giving up the illusions of youth, so it has various layers. In Buddhism, there is the concept of Samsara and the wheel of karma, and Kaleidoscope's End as a song and as an album was about the wheel of karma visualized as an amusement park ride metaphor, and how all rides inevitably come to an end, as the one that we are all on will. Now everyone is talking about 2012 and I see the same faces that were warning us about Y2K screaming about doom and gloom on the History Channel on TV, and sometimes in the movies, so I find it humorous that so many have warned about the end of times but it never seems to come to pass. If you look at the artwork on the cd, it tells a little story about a carnival, and a little girl who finds an alien doll, and that's a small story about karma - what happened after that? Did she take the doll home? Did she watch ET? Did she ask her mom about aliens? The alien doll in a way is a temptation, a portal into another point of view. On the back cover is a ferris wheel and in the background is an eclipse, which is not usually a good sign in the history of the world. On the lyric sheet is a picture of the same ride as the front cover, with different people on the ride, and less of them too. So there is usually a lot of thought put into the music and how the songs relate to one another. Also, on this cd, the songs bridge together like a traditional concept album.
What's your method at the time of writting a song??
I can start one of several ways. I can start with a series of chords and then start improvising lyrics, or I sometimes come up with a theme, and then find a way to communicate it musically. Sometimes I get a new guitar or a new piece of gear, and that will inspire me to write some sort of idea that will spur a new song. In San Diego, a friend of mine named Cathryn Beeks puts on something called The Game. She puts out a song title, and 14 people will write a song based on that title. One of the songs on my new album features a song that was written for The Game, which usually happens about once per month in San Diego. On rare occasions I will dream up a melody and then find chords to support it.
Which is your music influences??
The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, Nirvana, Jellyfish, Stereophonics, NIN, and Jimi Hendrix, among others. I'm also a fan of Jason Falkner, who played with Jellyfish on their first cd in the 90s.
What plans do you have for the future??
I'm in various stages on three different albums at the moment. I would like to finish them as soon as I can, and I'd love to tour the U.S., and possibly Europe. I also make videos for the songs so that is something I'm always exploring. Here's a link for my YouTube site:
Which has been the funniest prank you have been or took part while on tour or after a show??
I was touring in Europe and we flew into Schipol Airport in Amsterdam, and my guitar player left his passport on the metal detector. I grabbed it and watched it slowly dawn on him in the airplane that he didn't have his passport and start to get really freaked out that he was going to be stranded in Europe and might never get home. I ended that pretty soon because I don't really enjoy watching people suffer, so in general I haven't pranked people since I scared the crap out of my sister when I was a little kid.
If you were stranded in the middle of nowhere after a show or while on tour. The help is 65 miles away from where you and your band (If any) are, ¿Who would you send to look for help? And if while the rest wait, there's no food and the only way to feed yourself is by eating each other, ¿Who would you eat first?
Because I live in earthquake country, I always have a very small emergency kit in my car, so there would be some water. I could probably survive for a week on the food I've dropped under the seat, but it would be pretty disgusting, but much less disgusting than eating one of my band members. Besides, it took all that time to learn the songs, and there's always a cell phone. I could probably tweet for help nowdays. As usual, I would be the one who would have to go for help. So I'd let them decide who to eat.
Which country you would love to play?
I would loved playing in Germany, and Brazil looks like a lot of fun and that they really appreciate rock music there.
With which bands you would love to share stage??
I love Stereophonics and they draw huge crowds in Europe so that would be fun. I also love Foo Fighters and that would be a dream. I've always loved Pearl Jam as well.
Are you OK, with the direction the band is going actually?
I just recently got a new amp (Vox AC-15) and a new strat, and for some reason, it all came together sonically for me. I'd been struggling to get a certain tone that I liked and I finally feel like I've gotten pretty close. All of my band members have very good live tone, so sonically it's really starting to come together for me. The music is very challenging to play because there are lots of harmonies, so I have to get used to the fact that I don't have seven background vocalists, but it keeps getting closer and closer to my vision for the band and we've done some very good gigs lately. The live sound is much harder rock than the cds, and much more stripped down. and immediate. We just opened for a band from France called Victori4, and they are very popular in France.
Check out more: http://metalogicmusic.com/