The palm desert high school days where all about exploring all sorts of music.I remember buying my first music in these times. My first purchase were 5 tapes: Beastie Boys – Licence to Ill, New Order – 1986, The Cure – Kiss me,Kiss me, Kiss me, and Gregory Issac’s – Night Nurse. As I said, I went to Palm Desert High and I remember Josh Homme(sons of Kyuss/Queens of the Stone Age). Homme was in my class, and I also played Football with him, but never glanced or even talked to him, we where in different scenes I guess….
Me and Orpheo hold down the lead Percussion in the band. What is unique about Fools Gold is that all instruments seem to revolve around the rhythmic section (percussion grooves). I play a variety of instruments, predominantly from North Africa:
1. The Gankoqui Bell -means (Forged Iron carrying a child) The basic form of a gankoqui consists of a larger low-pitched forged bell and a smaller higher-pitched bell permanently mounted together. The larger forged-iron bell/gong is referred to as the “parent” and the smaller, higher-pitched bell is referred to as the “child” (in the fanciful “protective custody” of its “parent” bell). This instrument is the rhythmic pulse for an entire ensemble, its voice provides the basic meter/background over which most Anlo-Ewe music is structured. In these cultures a performer may be said to be ‘playing blind’ if he or she lacks a keen sense of and synchronization with the gankoqui’s basic guiding patterns.
2. the Congas from Cuba
3. the Kagan Drum: a strait forward, sharp sounding drum that cuts through the music, and is always is accompanied by Awe Drums… these are ceremonial drums from Ghana used to celebrate dance rituals.
4. the Kashishi, Nut-Rattles, Goat-toe shakers, chekeres, Axatse Shell Gourds; all are shakers that accompany the communal layers of sound.
5. the Mizhar Tamborim from Egypt
6. and I also sing Call & Response vocals-Afrostyle
I have always loved African music. I feel that it is the beginning of all music… starting with the most basic instrument, the drum. I feel that it is the origin of rhythm & musical pattern. As a kid i found it in Hip-Hop, later in Indie Rock, and now I hear it in everything. There are beats all around us, just listen…
I was never in any mentionable bands in the desert. My first band I was in was called the “Clones Don’t Have Bellybuttons”. It was a fun hybrid of abstract Brazillian tempos, fused with German Kraut sound. The band never went anywhere but, but all members did go on to make awesome music, and they still are. One member, Rob Barbedo, is in Darker My Love. Jack Adams is in John Webster Johns. Orpheo McCord is in FoolsGold, Ed Sharpe and Magnetic Zeroes. And, of course, I’m in Fools Gold and am the newest member of Foreign Born… geez, now that I think about it, I miss that old band….
Through the love of African music, I guess. I remember getting a call about a year and a half ago from my childhood friend Orpheo. He was like, “are you ready to make African music?” I instantly said “yes.. when’s the first practice?” I got to the studio, met all the other cats, and it all evolved from there. The reality is that we all came together for the love of the music. I mean we are really having a good time up there and based on the crowds’ response, it must show. You know… without the crowd, Fool’s Gold is not as potent. Something magical happens when the reciprocity of energy is shared…
Well, our first self titled full length will be released on Sept 29th, on IAMSOUND recording label. We have several tours in the works, playing at the Sunset Junction Festival in Silverlake, Manimal Festival in Pioneertown, we also have a West Coast mini-tour the first part of October, and Europe in November/December. I know it will be cold out there… gotta bring some of that Afro- Cali-Sunshine music to the world.