ALIEN ROCK: Part II
An Alien saves the life of Jimi Hendrix by Sean Casteel
Alien Rock Feature Part Two An Alien Saves The Life Of Jimi Hendrix By Sean Casteel This is Part Two of an article dealing with the UFO/alien presence and its influence on rock and roll music. Part One appeared in the November issue of “Rockstar Magazine” last month. Writer, editor and publisher Timothy Green Beckley has written a book on alien contact with celebrities called “UFOs Among The Stars” (Global Communications, 1992) in which he relates stories about major show business personalities who have been touched by the Great Unknown. For Beckley, UFOs and rock music went hand-in-hand from the days of his youth. “I’ve always been interested in UFOs,” Beckley said, “having had personal experiences and publishing literature on the subject even as a teenager. And of course I grew up with rock and roll. When I was a little tyke, about the same time I was having my out-of-body experiences and things, I was also pestering my mother to buy me rock and roll records. In those days, it was Little Richard and Chuck Berry and Fats Domino, and of course Elvis Presley. So I grew up with both things.” As an adult, Beckley promoted numerous rock concerts in the Manhattan area and was Page 6 • www.rockstarmagazine.com
a familiar figure backstage in the late 1960s and early 1970s. He became a close friend of a woman named Wally Elmlark, a columnist for a rock and roll fanzine called “Circus,” and co-authored a book with her called “Rock Raps of the Seventies,” now long out of print. Elmlark also dabbled in the occult, billing herself as the “White Witch of New York.” “She introduced me to David Bowie,” Beckley said, “and the Chambers Brothers and Edgar Winter. So I got to meet some of these people socially and found out a lot of them were interested in UFOs.” Beckley also met the late, great Jimi Hendrix backstage at a show on New York’s Randall’s Island. “He was standing there, tuning his guitar,” Beckley said, “and getting ready to go on. I just kind of walked by him and he made some comment about being – I don’t know whether he asked me if I was from Mars or whether he made some comment about him being from Mars himself, but we both kind of chuckled at that. I told him I was interested in UFOs, and he just kind of nodded and went onstage.” Beckley later made the acquaintance of Curtis Knight, who had played bass in one of Hendrix’s early bands, called the Squires. “We became fairly close friends,” Beckley recalled, “and Curtis revealed to me quite a few of Jimi’s UFO experiences.” Knight told Beckley a remarkable story about Hendrix, an event that happened a few years before Hendrix became the legendary and much-beloved guitar hero. “It was during the wintertime,” Beckley said, “and they were playing a small gig in upstate New York, near Woodstock. This was before the Woodstock Festival, so it has nothing to do with that, except as a point of location. It was not very far
from Pinebush, where there’s been a lot of UFO activity in the last few decades. “Anyway, as I understand it from Curtis,” Beckley continued, “there was a very snowy blizzard and the boys in the band were trying to get back to Manhattan. They got snowed in. It was so cold outside that they couldn’t even open a window. The windows had frozen. They had the engine still running, and the carbon monoxide filled the car. A couple of the other guys passed out in the backseat, but Jimi was still able to breathe apparently. And he claimed that a cone-shaped object landed on the road not far from their vehicle. A door opened on the side of the craft and a being came out. Jimi described it as kind of like a cross between a feathered creature, maybe like the famous ‘Mothman,’ and an angel. “This thing drew its wings out and walked around the vehicle, and where it walked, the snow melted. So they were able to get out of the blizzard and get back to New York. Jimi always told Curtis that if it wasn’t for
this being coming from the ship, he was sure that they would have all died in that car that night.” Before Curtis Knight’s death in Holland a few years ago, he wrote a book dealing with Hendrix’s many otherworldly experiences called “Jimi Hendrix, Starchild,” which Beckley published in 1992.
“This thing drew its wings out and walked around the vehicle, and where it walked, the snow melted. So they were able to get out of the blizzard and get back to New York. Jimi always
told Curtis that if it wasn’t for this being coming from the ship, he was sure that they would have all died in that car that night.” We mere mortals are all very likely fascinated at this point, but what’s in it for the aliens? Michael Luckman, the author of “Alien Rock: The Rock ‘n’ Roll Extraterrestrial Connection” (VH-1 Books, Pocket Books, 2005) who was interviewed for Part One of this article, offered some interesting speculation. “I think that extraterrestrials,” Luckman said, “are looking to influence popular culture through the rock stars. Exactly toward what end is very, very hard to figure out. This is something that is still to play out in the near future.”
Luckman shares the widely-held belief that the end is near. “I didn’t need New Orleans and Katrina,” he said, “or the tsunami to prove this to me. I’ve felt for a very long time that we’re living in the ‘end times,’ or whatever you want to call it. We have relatively little time left, and perhaps musicians are going to play some kind of a vital role. It’s hard to say just how and what and where, but I would think that if ever there was an opportunity to gather momentum and involve musicians in a movement, this is the time. “Therefore,” Luckman continued, “I think that with the remaining time that we have left, that we should try to do what we can to make contact. Because, to me, it’s the ultimate quest. The aliens could tell us so much about the universe and perhaps help us in some ways to overcome our problems, although frankly I feel that some of the damage is irreversible. But perhaps, if
we are successful in making contact, we can get some emergency help from extraterrestrials. We’re heading toward increasing manmade catastrophes, as well as natural catastrophes, and we have a lot of knowledge to gain from contact.” Luckman has founded an organization called The Cosmic Majority, which seeks “to advance the views of the majority of people living on Planet Earth who believe in UFOs, life on Mars and other planets throughout the universe, the paranormal, the New Age, and the sanctity of the environment.” Can Luckman bring this off? Can he use his book “Alien Rock” as the starting point for an entirely new kind of social and cultural movement? Rock music has nearly always had a social vigor that goes beyond its role as a simple musical form and has in fact been the catalyst for a great deal of cultural change for
well over fifty years. Whether it can actually be harnessed to bring the UFOs down from the skies to deliver us from our seemingly insoluble problems remains an open question, however. One can only hope, should Luckman ever bring to fruition the UFO/rock music alliance he envisions, that ET does more than think it’s got a good beat and is easy to dance to. The first comment the aliens make to an awestruck, waiting mankind could echo the words of “Life During Wartime” by the Talking Heads: “This ain’t no party, this ain’t no disco, this ain’t no foolin’ around.” And then the real work will begin. [If you missed Part One of this article, both parts are available in their entirety on Sean Casteel’s website at www. seancasteel.com]
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Achieving Your Tone by Christopher Jordan Achieving Your Tone – Chapter 3: Effects By: Christopher Jordan So far we have looked at how to find the instrument that is right for you and what kind of amplification configuration will help you hone your sound closer to what you are looking for. In this final installment we will examine my personal favorite part of shaping one’s tone…effects! Whether it’s the epic fuzz tones of Jimmy Hendrix, the lush flanger sounds of The Cure or the signature sound of a wah pedal, effects are what makes a sound turn from just a sound into something distinct. Let’s use this analogy: if your guitar is your voice and your amp is your mouth, your effects would be the character with which you sing. In other words, they are there to compliment the art you are already making. I love playing guitar, bass, drums, synths…heck anything really. Music is my life. But talk to me for but a few minutes or take a look at my studio and you can see that it does not take long for my true love to come out: effects. They are my musical obsession. Personally, effects always fascinated me more than instruments; when it came to recorded music, my fascination with them not only lead to my use of them as an integral part of my own music but
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to pursue a career as a live audio engineer. I can remember my first effect like it was yesterday. It was a Boss bass reverb CEB-3. I had decided in a fairly common sense manner to take up the bass because, well all my friends played guitar, the odds of a jam are a bit better when someone has a complimentary instrument. I was barely able to play the intro of Money and The Joker -- and son I was ready to step out. I tried a distortion and decided rapidly I was nowhere near good enough to make that sound good. Then I put my eyes toward a wah pedal, but jeez I could barely tap my feet and play, much less drive that thing. But then I plugged into a chorus pedal and there was something about it. It was quite lush and smooth and made things kind of “shimmer” on the edges. I was sold, I walked out of my local guitar store $90 lighter and an official addict! Seriously, I was hooked I could not get enough effected sound. It rapidly grew and before I knew it I had a rack of gear and a floor of pedals. Effects are what can make music fun, but they must be chosen carefully and used tastefully or they can be downright obtrusive. Just because you add an effect does not mean that a poorly played part will sound good -- not one bit. It takes a careful balance: the tone of one’s instrument, the playing of said instrument, the effects chosen to augment your sound, even the
order of effects chosen can affect your sound in ways you cannot believe. For example, a distorted wah sounds different than a wahed distortion. We’ll focus on a few types of effects in this article that are key components to general tonal shaping. From there your imagination can run wild with delays, flangers, phasers, wah and modulators galore. Heck, we’ll even be discussing quite a few of these options and their uses in future articles.
In this edition, however, we will focus in particular on three basic effects: Reverb, Gain effects and Compression. Reverb is a classic sound that is an option available on most amplifiers. Basically reverb is an effect that is meant to replicate the natural resonance of reflected sound. A perfect example of this effect is when you clap your hands in a large room and hear the immediate reflection of sound, or “bounce back”. This effect can either be achieved in the realm of good old analog with what is called a spring reverb or, of course, achieved digitally. Spring reverb is achieved with what is called a “reverb tank”. This “tank” is a metal box in which are suspended springs, on one side of these springs is a transducer that acts as a speaker vibrating the wires and on the opposite side is a transducer that acts as a microphone. As the sound is passed from your amplifier through the first transducer, the rise in voltage caused by the increase sound volume causes the wires to vibrate fast, thereby giving more of a sympathetically vibrating sound to the end result picked up by the microphonic transducer on the opposite end… simple right? Believe it or not, it’s even a mouthful for someone who lives and breathes tech. An easy example would be if you make a tin can phone, but instead of using string you used a long spring.
The spring would vibrate creating a twangy addition to the sound already traveling from can to can. Spring reverb was a common component of much of vintage rock and roll and made particularly popular in the sounds of surf music, jazz, western swing and Rock-a-Billy, just to name a few. Spring reverb is mainly an analog effect due to the requirement of actual springs, but to the discriminating ear there are a few good digital spring simulators out there. Yet another type of analog reverb would be a plate reverb. Actual analog plate reverbs are quite expensive and require great care to keep properly. These are usually found in the studio environment and in rack form. The basic principle of operation is the same as spring reverb except applied to two sheets of metal instead of to lengthened coils under tension (a.k.a. a spring). With the options of digital reverbs come the sounds of halls, concert halls, small and large rooms, and even tiled rooms. Depending on the style of music and desired ambience of the track, these various settings can provide a myriad of ways to add dimension and greatly alter the overall tone of your sound. Next we step into the realm of Gain effects or, for lack of a better term, “distortion”. Technically this category includes everything from clean boosts to overdrives, distortions, fuzzes and octave drivers. The circuits are meant to emulate the sound
of the gain stage of a tube amplifier adding extra “warm”, “dirty” and “fuzzy” sounds by compressing the peaks of an electric musical instrument’s sound wave and adding overtones to the original sound. In fact, many analog versions of these pedals such as the classic and popular Ibanez Tube Screamer and G.K Butler actually use a vacuum tube to achieve their signature sound. Other effects such as the vintage Fuzz Face pedals use a smaller form of what replaced the vacuum tube, called a transistor. Many other mainline distortion pedals such as the Boss BD-2 Blues Driver and Big Muff use diodes to achieve their sound. All of these elements vary in their tonal capabilities and the response they have to the incoming sound. Which sound you use really comes down to a matter of style and personal taste. Many vintage rockers such as Jimi Hendrix, David Gilmore and Pete Townsend used a lot more fuzz sounds, while modern and heavy metal rockers like Dimebag Darrel, Kurt Cobain and Kirk Hammet use distortion pedal.
Distortion tends to be slightly thinner and more percussive sounding while fuzz, on the other hand, tends to have a lot more octave generation and sustain to the sound. In the realm of jazz playing and general solo work comes the overdrive and clean boost pedal. This is made to do just as it says, add an audible decibel boost to allow the sound to cut through. Overdrive pedals add a slight amount of distortion to the signal to allow the tones to break up, but these as a whole are used to fill out the sound of a guitar to provide a blanket of warm sound upon which to rock. Finally, in the realm of general tone-shaping effects is the world of compression & sustain. Basically what compression does is allow the player to set a minimum threshold of sound coming into the circuit and a maximum ceiling of sound, thereby making all of the player’s notes fit within a certain decibel range. This allows minor mistakes to not be heard
and notes that may be incidentally played too hard to be brought under control. This overall “tightens” the tonal qualities of the sound you are producing and provides for a more consistent sound, especially when playing lead guitar. In addition to compression is sustain: this setting allows the player to increase the amount of time harmonic notes are held in suspension thereby allowing the note to continue on or “sustain” beyond its normal. Most pedal or rack units will have a knob for both of these settings, but many vintage and even throw back boutique-style are one knob compressors…simply on, up and rock! The one downfall and frequent complaint I have heard over the years, however, is the complaint of additional noise in the line with a compressor during tacet moments on the strings. This is a side result of the fact that you have set a minimum
threshold. This can be easily avoided through the old trick of simply riding the volume control of your instrument or even using a volume pedal.
The other option, of course, is to just never stop rocking. But hey, even the best us can get winded after a 23 minute long solo, right?
So there it is a brief introduction to the wonderful world of effects. Again, these are just some of the many options that are available. In the near future we will explore the uses and applications of many other wonderful exciting sounds such as delays, flangers, ring modulators and more. So until time, may your strings always be wound tight and your tubes always warm. Christopher Jordan has been a live audio/video engineer and recording artist for over 15 years and owns AustinHotMods.com an Austin,TX based pedal modification and repair company.~
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Los Loneley Boys: Revelation them all the time! That song was really meant as a joke...along with porn star. They were songs we had written quite a few years back and well all I can say is that certain people caught wind of then and were very persistent on making them part of that record. If you ask me, it shows a different side of what we do, but to be honest it doesn’t show anything about what we are really about promoting with our music.
Rockstar Magazine: Has life lessons made you better writers now that all three of you are in your 30’s? JoJo: Life’s lessons have always been the core of what we write about. You can rest assure in our lifetimes we’ve acquired much knowledge about the world and the people living in it.
Rockstar Magazine: Welcome to Rockstar Magazine guys. JoJo: Thanks for having us.
Rockstar Magazine: We look forward to having you here in Austin for the Austin Fan Fest. How is life treating the Garza family? JoJo:hings are good. We are all very blessed to be alive and still kickin. We are also happy and excited to be part of the fan fest...it’s gonna be a great time.
Rockstar Magazine: Henry has rehab and recovered and we enjoyed you last month on Nov 15th. JoJo: Henry’s recovery is still slow but he is doing more than any of us expected. He also jamming now on tour and giving it his best for sure. He’s very strong willed and a firm believer in Christ almighty. Thanks to God for his mercy!
Rockstar Magazine: Looks like you guys have kicked off the fall tour on the road in Milwaukee with Johnny Lang. Having fun yet? JoJo: We always have fun. We’re doin what we love and there are so many people that show lots
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of love and support so how can we not. The run of dates are goin well we are just happy to be back out.
Rockstar Magazine: Well we enjoyed you here back home in Texas! Has success in the last 10 years somehow redeemed the band from the hard work in Nashville and the early years? JoJo:Playin at home in Austin is always the best! There’s no place like home. I guess you could say that the last ten years have been a blast. To be quite honest it’s been more of a blur than anything. Very fast paced and constant work. You could say that all that hard work finally paid off, and if you ask our father I’m sure he’d say it was well worth it because without it, we probably wouldn’t be where we are now.
Rockstar Magazine: Welcome to Rockstar Magazine guys. JoJo: I’d take the Vegas odds that the band will be here in time for that fe
Rockstar Magazine: Welcome to Rockstar Magazine guys. JoJo: I’d take the Vegas odds
that the band will be here in time for that fe
Rockstar Magazine: I’m still jamming my Rockpango album. Have you guys been in the studio lately? JoJo:Thanks for all the support and for playin the music we create...it means a lot. We are always working on new music and creating. Wether or not it’s in a studio doesn’t stop us from that. We actually have been working on a new album. The title of it is Revelation. It’s funny because we always say we are proud of our work and that every record we’ve made is our best work...this album is no exception. We worked very hard and we do believe it’s one of the better records of our catalog. There’s lots of the growth and maturation one would expect from consistent focus on ones craft. We are very proud to release these new tunes.
Rockstar Magazine: Have you guys seen some spaceships out in the west Texas sky? 16 monkey’s might suggest so. JoJo: Haha! There’s always been spaceships and there will always be spaceships. We see
Being older has only made it easier to talk about topics that most people would think children know nothing about. In saying that, even as children we thought like adults and cared about more than the average child. Thanks to our father and
the guidance he gave.
Rockstar Magazine: WE had a great time hanging with you guys last month. Look forward to hearing The new album Revelation next year. Have a great Tour ! JoJo: Thank to so much for your interest and your support. Hope to see y’all again soon. Keep Rocking!
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No Left Turn with Sweet Tone Interview with Jose “Sweet Tone” Ruiz by Russell Dowden Rockstar Magazine: So tell me about No Left Turn? The CD? Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: My goal is to put out a CD, but I have to start somewhere. I wanted a song that was different and not traditional blues. So I began working on my first original several months ago. I hand-picked the guys to work with me on this project. We began rehearsing every week for a couple of months. The idea behind No Left Turn was to put the harmonica in a non-traditional setting. The title track No Left Turn is the style for the rest of the CD to come. Rockstar Magazine: Do you still perform with Woody Russell often? I saw he was there for the CD release show.
Recently Rockstar Magazine attended the Monthly Blues Jam at El Leons in East Austin on East 1st Street. (Cesar Chavez) for newbies in town.
My good friend Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz host the monthly jam . Only this time it was mas especial! On Dec 5th it was Jose Birthday and the release of his new Single release party for the single “No Left Turn” Alex Salinas, Woody Russell, Harold McMillan, and Bryce Powell and others all got together for the evenings Jam Sesstion.
Rockstar Magazine: Hey man.....
Nice Jam this Dec 5th.How long have you been hosting the Monthly Blues Jam at El Leon’s now? Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: I believe it’s been around 3-4 years that I’ve been hosting the Harmonica Jam at El Leon’s.
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Rockstar Magazine: This last one made it extra special. Tell readers why? Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: Well first all it fell on my 55th birthday. Secondly, it was the release of my first single. I had been working on this original single for several months and I wanted to hold the release on the same day as my Harmonica Jam. So it happened that I was able to complete all of the work on it. It worked out really well. We were able to get it on CD Baby that same day for people to download as well. Thanks to AD Management & Goldman Records for putting it all together for the release. Also I want to thank my good friend and Sponsor Juanios Queso for sponsoring the entire event that night. There are so many other individuals that worked on my project. I was very excited to share this tune with everyone.
Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz:Yes, I still perform with Woody Russell. In fact, Woody produced No Left Turn. I have to tell you, those that have not seen or heard Woody Russell are missing out on hearing a great musician. Woody is a phenomenal singer songwriter and one hell of a guitar player. Woody normally comes out to my monthly harmonica jams -- of course this one was special and he wouldn’t have missed it. As you know Woody just released (September) a new CD - “Delicious Days”. You can hear me on that CD as well as his previous CD “Up Against It”. You can go to Woodyrussell.com if anyone is interested in purchasing any of his CDs.
Rockstar Magazine: What is new for you in 2014? Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: Continue writing more songs for “No Left Turn” and releasing the full CD with the assistance of AD Managment. Continue plerforming with Woody Russell and his band, also looking forward to touring with Woody on the East Coast. I’m also playing with the Eastside Blues Syndicate Band, every Monday at the Victory Grill.
Rockstar Magazine: Will you
be recording more in the coming months?
Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: Most definitely, already started on the next one so for sure within a couple of months we’ll be back at 512 Studios. Rockstar Magazine: Your style is very UN-traditional. Is this fair to say? Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: You got that right. I am very un-traditional. I’ve always wanted to set myself apart and have considered my playing very different than most. I can play all genres of music -- I just prefer to play outside the box. I’ve also started focusing more on my chromatic which is the harmonica I used on No Left Turn.
Rockstar Magazine: Thanks for stopping in and saying hello. Any upcoming gigs you want to mention this Winter and January. How can people learn more about your music? Jose Sweet Tone Ruiz: They can go to my web site at Josesweettone.com and
Facebook. Upcoming gigs: Every Monday at the Victory Grill Eastside Blues Syndicate First Thursday of every month - Harmonica Jam at El Leon’s February 21 w/Woody Russell at The Brass House March 20 w/Woody Russell at Strange Brew As always Russell it is pleasure talking with you and hanging out. I wish you big success with Rockstar Magazine. Have a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.
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Backroom Reunion Show Interview with Rachael O’neil by russell dowden Rockstar Magazine: What is the lineup for the Backroom Reunion Show? Rachael O’neil: The Line up is as follows: All people in these acts have played the Backroom.. Melodic Drifters 7pm Think Lizzy 8pm The HIT! 9pm Jolly Garogers 10pm Madmans Parade 11pm Matt Fury 12pm Brewtality INC. 1am
Rockstar: Tell us about the Film you are working on and then about the Event at INFEST next month. Rachael O’neil: Its a documentary called “ The Last Days If Metal” I had an idea to chronicle the closing of “The Backroom” in 2006 it seemed we (The Rock Crowd of the 80s) were losing our venues from coast to coast. and that our grasp on being in the mainstream of music was slipping away.. The crowds were thinning . The media was losing interest and its just felt like our time was over.. I asked a local media music television if they wanted me to cover this event for them and they replied by saying “Yeah sorry we aren’t interested” I felt like coming here from L.A. maybe wasn’t such a good idea and that there would be more of the same rejection I had encountered there in generating interest if our beloved Rock genre. I felt like “If I feel this way surely everyone else was too, and I thought a documentary might be a way to express this. I mean a whole 3 generations of Rock fans had lost their place in the sun..and it was going back underground where it had began... This genre of music is the ONLY one to have this happen... Someone needed to document this.
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Which led me to hide and watch and wait for SOMEONE to have a “Backroom Reunion “ I waited for 6 yrs and no one did..I decided to produce the show after talking with some of the people who worked there.. We thought we would just have a small party and book bands and people who used to play there.. I knew of the places “Politics” and I knew there was some Bad Blood between some of the owners and their reigns so at first I sat back and treaded lightly..I knew we would ruffle some feathers and I knew I couldn’t make everyone happy. Some people were downright nasty about it as of we were digging up a long and buried relative . So I immediately told everyone “If you can’t be positive and add positive things to this show please stay home.” and that seemed to quiet down the pettiness . I wanted to create a great show with great bands from different era”s I wanted to capture the diversity of the backroom itself.. I think we have all done that well .. With Jodi McCarthy (Owner Sean MCarthy who has recently passed) Anthony Harkness ( Staff ) and Phillip Nitch (The Jolly Garogers) I believe we will have a great ROCK SHOW which is all I ever really wanted.. I want all the people who played there, worked there and listened there to feel like they matter!!
Rockstar Magazine. So Rachel when did the backroom close down? Rachael O’neil: I believe it was Sept. 2006.. I was there but the details are fuzzy after 8 hrs on stage with a video camera and high energy artists... it was a great show I remember that part... Rockstar Magazine. We all have memories from the Backroom. I remember seeing Agony Column there and a slew of Austin acts. Any moments that stand out? Rachael O’neil: Quite a few actually... I actually came down here (from Colorado ) with Chris from The Black Crows when they played the Backroom.. Also was here for Public enemy.. And I had
booked Tracii Guns (LA Guns) at The Backroom.. I booked alot of acts there from LA when I worked for Artists Worldwide.. Rockstar: Who have you interviewed so far for the film? Rachael O’neil: TOO MANY TO COUNT... But no one huge (which might happen later) But I mostly interviewed the acts as they came off stage that last night. Anthony Harkness had actually interviewed the staff and regulars.. anyone wants to chime in they can come to the show and give their BR memories to our camera confessional at The show Jan 17th at INFEST Rockstar: How can people get tickets to the Backroom Show? It is January 17th a Friday night at INFEST. Rachael O’neil: Man we have a great VIP situation There will only be 13 of these packages sold as VIP Space is limited. These packages include: Swag bag with gifts from local area merchants, 4 drinks from the VIP Bar (located in the VIP area), Dinner from VIP Buffet (VIP Area), Event T-shirt/ Event Poster signed by ALL The Bands, MEET and GREET with all the bands & A copy of the Documentary “Last Daze of
METAL” But you can go to: http://www.ticketfly.com/purchase/event/426069 to get tickets online and save $5...
Rockstar: The green chain-link fences on the stage, Rattlesnake Boots, Cocain Cowboys, leather jackets, fishnet stalkings, and frizzed out hair ; these were the trends in 1990 with Dangerous Toys, Soundgarden or Dokken. I was in high school getting into shows. Did you do that too? Rachael O’neil: YOU BET! I would fly to Austin from LA underage..(my Dad was busy with his club) to hang out and see great shows.. I was a go go girl and always had the tallest hair “The Sea Urchin Look” is what we called it. Man those were the best times. I am hoping to just bring a bit of that back for all of us and intend to dress the same as I did back then only covering alot more up these days.... Rockstar: Well we look forward to going to the Infest show. Should I wear my leather chaps and Appetite for Destruction T-shirt?
Rachael O’neil: YES PLEASE!!! I dont want to be the only one!!! I cant wait.. This is a long time overdue ... I Think its time... Thank You for having us here.. Rockstar: Thanks Rachel . And one last time. How can folks get tickets for this show?
And Thanks again Rockstar Magazine.... Lets Party!!
JAN 17th 2014 INFEST AUSTIN
Rachael O’neil: Easy Peasy! Just Google INFEST http:// www.infestaustin.com/
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MOTEL BALL BAND by Chris Kingsley
“We got picked up by Johnny Galyon of American Icon recently. He believes in our music as much as we do, and we appreciate that down to the marrow in our bones. were working really hard to get these next couple of albums released and really get us out there for people to enjoy. coming soon Motel Ball Band “No vacancy” live from hotel vegas!!! “ Rockstar Magazine: I feel like riding a Harley down Ranch Road 12 and drinking some beers at Riley’s on the Backbone. That’s what Ramble or She want’s your money make me feel like.
Rockstar Magazine: Ding Ding....Checking in! MBB: Two bottles of whiskey, 10 lb sack of potatoes and a whole fish haha! Thanks for having us in your magazine, were getting ready for a pretty eventful next couple of weeks trying to get things rolling. Writing songs playing shows and just enjoying all the good times that fall in between.
Rockstar Magazine: Welcome to Paranoid, introduce yourselves and what instrument each member plays. MBB: Squints Jorge - Vocals/Lead Guitar, Nick Fong - Rhythm Guitar, JD Martinez - Harmonica, Vince Delgado - Bass, Felipe Granados Drums
Rockstar Magazine: The sound is a very Roadhouse blues feel to it. It this fair to say? MBB: I think thats fair to say, down,deep, and we always put on on a raunchy show something to swing your woman to, or forget your women to. we like to call it, Swamp Boogie. Low down. Get down. we’ve always had a deep appreciation for the gritty side of swing and blues. i think that all of us in the band share the same appreciation even before we started playing together some years ago.Blues
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is just one of those things every one can appreciate and relate to because everyone’s felt the blues in one way or the other.
Rockstar Magazine: It’s been a few years since I saw you guys at the Triple Crown. How are things going? I hear that you are signed to American Icon Records. How is that going? MBB: Our shows are picking up, we finished a 5 month residency at Hotel Vegas on east 6th. which had to have been one of the greatest experiences, hanging out and getting to know people that play in some of our favorite bands Bad Lovers,Sweat Lodge,American Sharks,Holy wave,ect ect and getting to play gigs with them. theres a great local music scene right now roaring through Austin just the way its been for years and years and we’re confident that a majority of these bands are writing music that will be remembered for years to come and are making there mark. We got picked up by Johnny Galyon of American Icon recently. He believes in our music as much as we do, and we appreciate that down to the marrow in our bones. were working really hard to get these next couple of albums released and really get us out there for people to enjoy. coming soon Motel Ball Band “No vacancy” live from hotel vegas!!!
MBB: It’s the type of music you hear ringing in your ears when you walk in your front door and hear your back door shut.... you know, swamp boogie blues, the kind of music that makes you want to let loose, dance and feel free, we want everyone that hears our music to feel what we do; freedom, joy, heartbreak, woe... whatever it is that reminds your your alive and present. we try our hardest to incorporate all of our feelings in our music through our instruments from the bend of a string to the to the wale of that harp to the subtle pace of a ride. there is a lot of truth behind blues and truth to the music that follows,
and we just try and express it as best we can.
Rockstar Magazine: Describe the song writing process. MBB: Squints writes the licks and we roll with it. Like hopping on a train,steady rolling,on,lets go. we’ll all end up at practice with somthing fresh on the table squirmy and still alive. so we hack it up put all our favorite seasonings on it and cook it to perfection, we all end up changing things through out the process as we go along sometimes without even telling or mentioning it to one another. that’s one of the great things about us, we might just write a song while playing a live set because we know each other we’ve been friends merely all our lives. when we meet nick i swear it felt like we had known him forever, and when he played guitar for us it proved just that. there is no rules or established process. we just talk to each other through our instruments and most every time it comes together right before us.
Why the name The Motel Ball Band? People gotta be wondering? MBB: Well we’ve never run across a motel with a ball room, but if your ever find yourself driving down lonesome road without a single street light guiding your direction and happen to come across a run down
motel, with a couple flickering lights, you might just find us there.kind of a metaphor for always being at the right place at the right time. i can best describe it as once we were all taking a part of a good time in the late night of west Austin. we found our self’s taking a tour of the streets and random buildings surrounding us, when we ran across a building that seemed to have stair casings leading in no particular direction, it just resembled a really jenky looking motel overgrown weeds crawling up the walls and staggering drunk people everywhere. when suddenly this door opens to hear the one greatest funk bands ive ever heard and half naked painted women everywhere in sight. just something you really don’t come across every night. Plenty of experiences like that, that have always led us to believe we’ve been making the right decisions no madder how misconstrued, they have always led us to the right place. hallucinogens!
Rockstar Magazine:Thanks Guys for Stopping by MBB: No, thank you for having us. To follow up with us for shows in the new year visit our Facebook page and friend us at facebook.com/TheMotelBallBand
All live photos are credited to Daniel Castro Photography
Rockstar Magazine: Welcome to Rockstar
Magazine, guys! Introduce the band members and your roll in the band.
from Louisiana in March (first to San Marcos and onward to Austin). I’d say we’ve been playing in San Marcos for about eight months now.
Lochness Mobsters: Taylor Lumpkin- Vocals and guitar
Rockstar Magazine: So tell me . . . I have to
Brooks Lumpkin- Vocals and drums
Lochness Mobsters: Taylor actually came
Mike Chavez- Bass and vocals Rockstar Magazine: Tell us about the band.
Where are you from and how long have you been performing in San Marcos or Austin?
Lochness Mobsters: We have been a band for five years. We just moved to Texas Page 22 • www.rockstarmagazine.com
know. How did you guys come up with the band name?
up with the band name when he was 16. He used that name as a recording name for things he was doing on his own. Brooks starting recording with him and, together, they coaxed Mike to start writing songs with the band.
Rockstar Magazine: I’m jamming “Baileeehs-
N-Cream” and other tracks on Facebook. Is there an album out? Are you recording?
Lochness Mobsters: We currently have one album online titled “Zedonk”. It was recorded last year in Louisiana. Two free downloads on Reverbnation.com, streaming on Spotify, and sold on iTunes. Right now we are finishing up a couple more songs before recording and pressing vinyl.
Rockstar Magazine: So where can folks catch a show in the future?
Lochness Mobsters: We are doing a show at Hotel Vegas in Austin that is themed NYE 1994, which will be a 30 band cover set. In San Marcos, we are very pleased to bring our Denver buds (Dirty Few, Pizza Time) and San Antonio buds (the Rich Hands) to Triple Crown on January 16th!
Lochness Mobsters: We love Rockstar Magazine: Have you seen the UFOs surf rock, psyche rock, and in the light of the swamp gas chasing Bigfoot back to the Bayou? 50’s classics. Rockstar Magazine: I see you guys have per-
formed with Fayuca, Ashes of Babylon, and others. What artists do you guys listen to?
Lochness Mobsters: Wait, you where there too? Rockstar Magazine: Where can readers look
Lochness Mobsters: The Growlyou guys up online? ers, Night Beats, Turbo Fruits, Natural Child, and the Dead Milk- Lochness Mobsters: We are on YouTube for live videos, Reverb Nation men. Rockstar Magazine: Some tracks make you feel like you want to be at the beach with a huge bonfire, lots of girls, and a bottle of rum. Am I warm?
Lochness Mobsters: Very warm. We like to have the beach party vibe along with a touch of psychedelic blues and a touch of nonsense.
for songs and upcoming shows, Facebook for updates and shows, Spotify for streaming, and iTunes for buying music.
Rockstar Magazine: Favorite thing about living in Austin?
Lochness Mobsters: We love the music scene over here. Typically, we would be found at Hotel Vegas for shows. There are so many great bands playing over
here that we would never of heard of until getting out and seeing it ourselves. There are so many cool things to be a part of in Austin.
Rockstar Magazine: Thanks guys! When is the next show? Final thoughts to Rockstar readers?
Lochness Mobsters: Thank you, Russel! Check us out at Hotel Vegas in Austin for New Years with 29 other bands or January 16th at Triple Crown with our buds who are on tour! Look up Dirty Few (party pop from Denver) Pizza Time (Bi lingual rock’n’roll from Denver) and the Rich Hands (slop pop from San Antonio). We will all be partying at Triple Crown on the 16th of January. Help them out on their tour!!
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Artist Feature by Francois Larosa were singing that to me. Tory Tompkins : LOL. Oh you mean the Led Zeppelin song, Yeah it was for you. Rockstar: Tell me about the New CD, “Somewhere Good”?
Rockstar Magazine caught up to the very Talented Rocker & Folk Singer Tory Tompkins. A recent UT Grad, playing at the Prestige F1 Formula Fan Fest. Debuting her new CD,“Somewhere Good”. The crowd was digging her tunes, especially, Control Freak, Rabbit Hole & Eye of the Hurricane. Rockstar: Hi Tory, Thanks for adding that last song, I felt like you
Tory Tompkins: It’s all originals, and some were a collaboration of Musicians that I’ve come to know. Rockstar: Where are you based out of, are you here in Austin, Texas? Tory Tompkins: No I’m in Houston, but I travel back & forth. Since Austin is the Music Capital of Texas, some say the World. I like to stay connected.
Rockstar: Saw you jamming with your Takamine Acoustic guitar, you sound was sort of Folkish and Rock. After hearing the CD, what were your influences? Tory Tompkins: Growing up I listened to a lot of Classic Rock, like Heart, Foreigner, Bonnie Raitt, Fleetwood Mac. But also really enjoyed Jack White, Metric & Sarah Benjamin Rockstar: Love the Classics, and Jack White & Metric (Canadian Band) played at Austin City Limits in 2012. It was Wickedhard!!! As they say in Boston. Tory Tompkins: The CD is a compilation of Acoustic & Electric, and most of the songs I wrote and others I collaborated with in Houston at Satellite Studios. Rockstar: Oh Yeah JR’s Place. Tory Tompkins: Wow! You know him? Rockstar: No not personally, but JR Paredes has a good Rep there in Houston. Hey this is Rockstar Magazine baby!…not Rockstar the beverage (energy drink).
2). Write songs yourself and play them, think of Breakups, Sadness, things that make you mad, Self-Doubts… etc. This is a Male-Dominated area, I’ve accepted it. I also been called aggressive, but I’m strong and I know what I want, set a goal, and go for it.
Tory Tompkins: LOL. In the future I will collaborate even more.
Rockstar: What do you do in your spare time?
Rockstar: Now that you’re here, at this place, me interviewing you…What can you share with other female Artist starting out in Music? Page 24 • www.rockstarmagazine.com
Tory Tompkins: Good question. 1) Learn how to play an instrument, work on being self-sufficient.
Tory Tompkins: I teach girls music, help boast their self-esteem, and show them how not to fall apart in the down periods of life. Right when you think that’s it, something good will happen.
Rockstar: Tory you’re awesome, appreciate your time, and heard down the grapevine we might be seeing you more on the bigger stage. My fingers are crossed. How can we touch base with you and your Music? Tory Tompkins: Thanks, go to www.facebook.com/torytaylortompkinsmusic. And get connected with me. Rockstar: Well, sweet, thanks and we’ll see you down the road.
Austin Fan Fest
Circuit Of the Americas 2013 by Francois Larosa ment scene—Austin Fan Fest fueled by Shell will appeal to you. The key focus was on live music, with six stages scattered throughout the festival area, as well as a number of interactive fan-engagement zones and lots of activities for race fans and families. Here are some Pics from the All Access backstage favor. Francois Larosa
Rockstar Magazine attended this year’s Circuit of The Americas 2013. Shell sponsored the excitement around the 2013 FORMULA 1 UNITED STATES GRAND PRIX by offering Austin Fan Fest, an interactive, four-day festival presented free to the public Nov. 14-17. The lively street festival, now in its second year, featured an expanded foot-
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print encompassing most of downtown Austin’s renowned Warehouse and 2nd Street entertainment districts. “We enjoyed a remarkable response to our inaugural Austin Fan Fest last November with 220,000 guests attending over three days and look forward to building on that foundation this year with the help of our new presenting sponsor, Shell,” Circuit of The Americas President and
Chief Executive Officer Steve Sexton said. “We’re creating a larger festival footprint this year with more diverse activities, and entertainment options. We’re opening one day earlier to accommodate arriving race fans. Whether you’re a racing enthusiast, casual sports fan, music lover—or just looking for an interesting way to experience the Austin entertain-
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V Under the Stars
V Bury the Rod
2014 Upcoming Shows January TBA
Leap Year Fest March SXSW Band Showcase & Campout Reggae In The Hills presents The First Annual Jam Space Awards DEATH X SW April Neocloud May Country and Bluegrass Festival Latino Festival June The Music Ranch Anniversary Party July Freedom Fest First Annual Rockstar Magazine Festival Classic Rock & Blues Festival Redneck Olympics August TBA September TBA October WeirdFest Rocktober Fest Pumpkin Man Haunted Trail
Big Lou's Annual Birthday Party Hippy Thanksgiving
Book Now for 2014 Page 28 • www.rockstarmagazine.com
The Music Ranch Presents T By Serena Brown
his month The Music Ranch would like to thank our first sponser, ROCKSTAR MAGAZINE. We want to thank all of our friends and volunteers for their hard work this month. We also welcome our newest addition The Music Ranch Skate Park the company into high gear. We were featuring The Sweet Spot Sk8 Shoppe blessed with beautiful weather and a with Mana Vera. We welcome artists great turnout. Bury The Rod, Anima from all corners to decorate our skate Sector, Descend To Ashes, Dead Bepark. Your art might be featured in fore The Fall and BLANK__SPACE a videoshoot we host or viewed by inspired epic mosh sessions. TMR thousands of music lovers. Come on was the perfect spot for GreaseMan up and make your mark! photography to take some amazing On November 30th The Music shots of the metal chaos, while 3DP Ranch hosted a killer kickstarter filmed it. video shoot for Illumignarly We want to give a special thanks Apparel & Design Co. with the goal to Gabe Zapata for putting on a of raising enough money to kickstart kickass, successful show.
Featured Staff Member J How did you find TMR?
J How long have you been at TMR?
About a year or so. In 2012, my sister and I teamed up with another promoter to throw a J What are your responsibilities at huge unofficial SXSW show. We were TMR? scrambling to find a venue that would I handle all social media allow us to be creative and promotions. and throw something that J How do you see people would never forget. yourself contributing to We found TMR almost TMR in the future? last minute and could not have been happier. The Throughout my time show was not as successful here at TMR I have as we had hoped due to seen this place go in some unfortunate outside wonderful directions. circumstances but that did Kat Aleman Everything is bigger, not stop us from returning better, and we aren’t to TMR time and time again. I would finished yet. I want the venue to grow say The Music Ranch is definitely one and maybe we can branch out in the of Austin’s hidden gems. It truly future. If so, I’ll be there one hundred represents what kind of city Austin is percent, with everything I have to offer A place for music, love, and happiness. whether it be social media, marketing,
or even something I picked up along the way.
J What is your impression of TMR? I can’t really begin to describe how I feel about TMR. Most of the time it doesn’t even feel like a job. I feel like I’m with family doing what we love, and that’s basically what it is. You don’t know what love is until you’re surrounded by people you care about, cooking on an open grill, and listening to whoever wants to jam at that particular time. That’s love and happiness in the purest form. Every time we throw a show we work as a team. The bands and fans always come first. I can’t imagine myself anywhere else and I wouldn’t trade the friends and family I’ve made here for anything in this world. I love being a part of Gino’s vision.
The Music Ranch Presents continued
Band Interview by Matthew Cory, TMR Writer J How did you guys meet and
come together as a band? Shay, Willie, Ryan and I all went to highschool together. Ryan and I had been tossing around the idea to start a band together but it was just an idle thought at the time. I was taking an Italian language class in college when I met Willie. I recognized him from highschool and we were in band together at one point In middle school. became aware that the community and He was mentioning that he was playway of life here was something that ing guitar now, so I linked him and we wanted to be apart of. Gino was Ryan up thinking they might want to gracious enough to let us stay at the jam together. They seemed to hit it off, music ranch for a couple weeks until and I'd invite them over to my garage we found a more permanent place to to play while I'd sit there and write live. lyrics. I never intended to sing, it was The Armiger is a great band name. It just something that started to gradumeans Armor Bearer, is that because ally happen while they'd were playing. you bring the metal where ever you We were hanging out with our friend go? from highschool who HELL YEAH! \m/ had just quit his band You hit the nail on the when we convinced him head! to bring his drummer J You recently and bassist along to jam released a video for with us. That's when we "Sword Swallower", met Shay and our old where can the ATX bassist. Over the years, readers go to see the we ended up having a video? few bass changes until You can find our video we got to Texas and The Armiger on Outlander Producmet our current bassist tion's YouTube channel. Jimmy knowles. Or you can painstakingly type in this J You guys are a California band URL http://youtube/d3pjDjSq3RU that moved to Texas, what was the J How was the concept for the deciding factor for the move? video developed, and did the drumThe most successful failed tour ever. mer escape unscathed from that epic We had been planning this tour for a while, and the closer we got to leaving, looking body slam? We've always loved the idea of creating the more things started to go wrong. We left Cali with broken spirits, but as a video that captures the insanity of a soon as we got into Austin, we quickly backyard show. Our producer, Tyler,
The Music Ranch Manor
us succeed while we've been out here. The Music Ranch is more than a music venue, it's something that touches everyone that gets to participate in the culture that Gino and his friends have created there.
J I hear your getting ready for an-
other video shoot, when can the fans expect that to release? We're hoping by the beginning of December!
came up with the storyline, and we melded the ideas together. Shay was ready for a retake if necessary! Lucky for him we got the shot first try.
J You guys developed a relation-
ship with Gino at The Music Ranch before you made the trek south, how did you hear of The Ranch out in Cali? I was emailing everyone I could find that could possibly turn us on to some Austin shows. I ended up getting in touch with Charlie of Austin Music Marketing and her sister Kat, who set up this tour for us. We needed a place to stay while in Austin and Gino opened up his home to us. Since then, we've all been like family. We'd do anything for them.
J How was The Music Ranch helpful to you guys in the early days of the transition as well as continuing support? While we stayed there, we'd wake up every morning and hang out with Gino and the endless amounts of friends that came to visit him. We got to know him pretty well, and he quickly became like a mentor to us. I'm so grateful to have met him, he's supported us 100% and offered up every opportunity he could find to help
J What are your main influences
and what do you look for when developing your own individual sound? We all have a ton of different influences individually, but our sound is driven by our love for bands like Mastodon, Alice in Chains, Black Label Society, and a lot of the rock and metal that was popular in the early 90's.
J How has the city received The
Armiger? Are you getting a good response in ATX? We have gotten nothing but love since the day we set foot in Austin. We decided to stay so we could return the favor.
J Where can people who want to
check you out live in the near future go to catch your set? Our next date is January 9 at the Dirty Dog. Stay updated on upcoming shows through our various social media sites.
J What are some links for people
to check you out online and keep up to date with the band? Facebook.com/thearmiger Reverbnation.com/thearmiger Thearmiger.bandcamp.com Twitter.com/thearmiger
Building a Landmark in Austin for Musicians and Artists “Let The Music Flow And Never Let It Stop...” G Over 80 Acres Corporate Events Concerts Festivals Vendor Booths Private Parties RV Park Camping Hike and Bike Trails Skate Park by ATX Ramps Design Pedicabs
BYOB (No Glass) Sweet Spot Sk8 Shoppe By Mana Vera Multi-Day Events 1 stage, 3 stage and multi stages avail. Camping avail. for SXSW, ARF, ACL, Fun Fun Fun Fest Dog Park & Day Care All Pets Welcome
Multi-Day Events Southern hospitality in Austin Weird Musicians and bands Welcome to Rehearse on our Stages Anytime Blank Canvass for Painters, Sculpters, Carvers and Artists Great Staff
Paintball, Disc Golf, Studio & rehearsal rooms
WANTED Music Lovers & Volunteers
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Published on May 6, 2014
After taking a break for December we published our New years issue with Los Lonely Boys, Motel Ball Band, The Lochness Mobsters, Tory Tompk...