interview / 15 Nov 23
When did you start producing?
I started working on music in 1991 but took a really long break between 1997 and 2012 except for the occasional song or two I wrote or that time I was in a worship band as a keyboardist for a short time.
Where are you based?
Albuquerque, New Mexico
What's the music scene like in your area?
Since we just relocated here from Texas, I don't really know much about it but I hear that Albuquerque is very artistic within the various communities.
How you into music/production and what was your journey like
I have always loved music since I was a small boy. I remember that I would make experimental collages of sound using cassette recorders and record players and, form what my mother tells me, I ruined her Elvis Presley collection when I was two by playing scratch dj with the records.
What's your creative and production process..
Since I am totally blind, I use Native Instruments and their Komplete Kontrol software which has speech capabilities built in so that most parameters are accessible to me from the keyboard.
I don't have the patience or the ability to do my own sound design so I use presets, finding different sounds that complement each other, depending on what sort of mood or narrative I'm trying to go for with a specific track or album concept.
Which is your favourite of your own tracks and how did it come about, is there a story behind it?
The Touching is a Bridge between the Afterlife and the World you Left Behind is one of my favourite tracks. It was written in October of 2020 for the album Life Passes Slowly Unto Death, an album I wrote the week of my birthday that year.
I was thinking of my brother Joe who died in 2017 after a short battle with stage 4 Sarcoma which lead to the writing of this track which was quite an emotional experience for me.
How you have released so far?
I have mostly self-published my music but I have been on a couple of labels like Aural Films, Gates of Hypnos, Slithering Black Records and Earthmantra.
Any label you would love to release on?
The label I'd most like to have my music on has rejected several of my albums with absolutely no helpful feedback so I'd prefer not to say which label it is.
I enjoy the artists on the label so still support them but they are a label I will never again approach with anything I create.
Who would you love to collaborate with and why? What kind of music would you make together?
I have collaborated with so many artists from all over the world in my 10 years as an ambient artist and I always enjoy working with new people. I don't have any dream collaborator I'd like to work with at this point.
Tell us you how you got into live performance and what were your first performances like?
After I dropped out of graduate school in 1991, I moved to Akron Ohio and started playing my music in coffee houses and restaurants in the area. Most of the performances were enjoyable and people seemed to like my music. It was very different from what it is now though and I no longer perform live.
What's your live setup?
When I was performing live in the 90's I used an Ensoniq SQ1 synthesizer and a small amplifier. Not a really complicated set up but it worked pretty well, I like to keep things simple whether it be in the studio or live, when I was performing in that capacity.
Who inspires you?
I have been inspired by several artists, John Zorn, Merzbow, Steve Roach, Suzanne Ciani, Robert Rich, Deuter, ETC.
John Zorn for his diversity and his take no shit attitude when it comes to conforming to presumed conventions in the music industry, Merzbow inspired the infamous Spank Hookers project that I sometimes work in as my noise side project.
Suzanne Ciani and Deuter inspired me early on when I was playing more new-age music in the early 90's and Steve Roach and Robert Rich, both of whom I have communicated with over the years, have lead me to the exploration of ambient music as a creater in the late 90's.
Who's on your playlist right now?
Who would you love to go to dinner with?
I've been skydiving a couple of times and even though a lot of my music is pretty creepy, I get scared quite easily.
What were your most notable releases/ surprise successes.
Life Passes slowly Unto Death, Journey Through the Boötes Void and Child of Rage.
Gates of Hypnos