The BEST OMD (Online Music Distributor) for INDIES (MUST be - WE are there):
CALL for SUBMISSIONS!!!
ALL artists! I am very, VERY happy to announce that IMPROVIJAZZATION NATION is ACCEPTING SUBMISSIONS again. I have been granted a (possibly long-term) stay of execution for my trip to Iraq. I will still be traveling all over the U.S., so new issues may be a little less timely, but (as always), we will review your materials as soon as possible after we receive them. Look at the guidelines for submission below, please:
MUSIC: All formats accepted. Snail mail to: Zzaj Productions, c/o Dick Metcalf, 5308 65th Avenue, Lacey, WA 98513 The only criteria for music you submit is that it MUST HAVE high performance energy... if you submit lacklustre material, it will be reviewed accordingly
POETRY: Poems are accepted for publication ONLY via e-mail. Poems submitted in any other fashion will NOT be published. Poetry that includes some reference to music is granted first priority for publication.
BOOKS: We will review some books; books about music are PREFERRED. We will NOT return any books submitted for review. Snail them to the address listed above for MUSIC.
DIY Announcements: We will post your (e-mailed) ad about DIY projects, regardless of genre or medium... HOWEVER, this is ONLY for INDEPENDENTS... if you are a corporation, don't even BOTHER sending stuff... it will be marked and reported as SPAM!
Improvijazzation Nation - Issue # 70
INTERVIEW with Jack Wright
I first started listening to Jack's amazing guitar works at INDIEHANGOUT, late last year, & was amazed by th' depth & perception of his music(s)... a broad range of styles, & clear love of th' power the instrument has... or CAN have, in the hands of players with the level of talent he shows in his playing. We are really HAPPY to have him join us for this interview....
Zzaj: You assign titles to your songs that remind me a great deal of Frank Zappa.... Wrightdude songs "New Age Trash Compactor", "Funkstaposition" & Quantum Kids song "Sardonisonic Shuffle", are good examples. Have you no respect for th' "title process"?
Wrightdude: Well... most song titles just seem to effervesce from my subconscious... and I tend not to question them... lol! Of course some titles are "consciously'" derived too. For instance the title “Megametamorphose” was inspired by the MC Escher graphic “Metamorphose,” which contains (in classic Escher fashion) a very long series of patterns and interlaced images that endlessly morph from one to another. Similar in a way as “Megametamorphose” does only in a musical fashion.
Zzaj: OMD's (Online Music Distributors) have been around for a while, in fact, we're on a couple of them... which one (that you're on right now) is the most enjoyable.... or are OMD's all "about the same"... just a place to get your music out? Also, regarding collabs, I’ve found that today’s OMD’s can (sometimes) be a great place to find collab partners. Has that been true for you?
Wrightdude: OMDs are a tremendous phenom!!!! I really don't have a favorite... though I am having a lot of fun at Mixposure trading reviews when I have time... If I had more bandwidth to manage them all, I would be on more OMDs!
I’m glad you mentioned collaborations, they are an absolute BLAST!!!!! I have had the GREAT fortune to be able to collab with the likes of Jamie Dubbery, Ed Drury, Daniel Iorio, KMP (Harout Kalandjian), Lisa, Mike Milillo, Pat Piegari, Henry Tarnecky and others... most of whom I've met at the Indie hangout.
I think collabs stretch you creatively. Challenging you as an artist to add brush strokes to another musicians “Monet” in a fashion that embellishes it with your own personal touch, but at the same time doesn’t turn the whole thing into a “Dali” (if that makes sense). I've got a few more collabs in the cue now with more very exciting indie names (which I wont mention till their released), so please stay tuned!!!!!
Zzaj: Though I hear snatches of folks like SRV, FZ & even Carlos in your playing, it's clear that you have a very unique style of your own. Are any of those players your "heroes", or is the "hero" business pretty much over? Who HAS influenced you the most (if anyone)?
Wrightdude: I’ve never really had a guitar “hero” that I "studied" or intentionally attempted to emulate. Of course there are many guitar players and bands I’ve admired and listened to allot over the years. So certainly their influences have inevitably infused to some extent into my musical psyche. In addition to the greats you mentioned, you may hear influences from:
Robert Fripp – King Crimson, Steve Howe – Yes, John McLaughlin – Mahavishnu Orchestra, Steve Hackett – Genesis, and of course Jimi Hendrix! I wore down allot of that vinyl back in the day!!!!!!!
Zzaj: Give us a little "history" about yourself.... where do you currently hang your guitars? How long have you been playing/recording/performing? Do you have dogs, cats or iguanas? You know what we wanna' hear (& what we don't).
Wrightdude: I’ve been a native of the state of Maryland in the USA my whole life… I started taking drum lessons when I was 8… which would be 1964… Yikes! I played percussion in the Montgomery County Youth Orchestra through Middle and most of High School before giving up a career as a classically trained percussionist to become a self taught guitar hack.
I played guitar in various covers bands in the '70's till I quit for a while to allow time to raise and provide for a family.
In the '87-'88 timeframe, after the kids were grown a bit and I no longer had to work all hours to make ends meet, I started getting “the call” again. I met up with Tom Shiben, my bass playing buddy from the covers band days and “The Quantum Kids” were born. We’ve been playing and recording all original instrumental music ever since! David Huether (drums) joined later around the turn of the century.
Performing live is a blast. We get out a few times a year attempting to make each show a unique experience… you never know when an Alien, Killer Cicada, or even the Creator of the Universe might make an appearance during our shows... lol!!!
I’ve been involved with a few other side projects along the way, most notably “The Drummstick” ( www.drummstick.com ). A very interesting project! And of course still lots a jams with lots a cool people still goin on to this day!!!!
I didn’t get to the dogs and cats, but I’m sure I’ve bored you enough already… Well… OK… one dog (golden) and three cats….
Zzaj: Many guitar players choose one niche & kinda' stay in that corner. You seem to ignore that rool.... can you tell us why, please? Or, tell us why we're incorrect!
Wrightdude: That’s an interesting point! I’ve never ascribed to the “one sound” “one style” doctrine. I think its cool to have a “signature sound,” but to dwell there all the time is just putting yourself into a box. Certainly, I do have my proclivities and certain compositional devices I oft tap into, but I strive to keep stretching and training new synaptic patterns as much as I can…
To spawn new ideas and sounds, I enjoy experimenting from time to time… one day I had the crazy idea of tuning a guitar to dim5’s. I took my Tele and tuned it D G# D G# D G# and much to my surprise the essence of the “Compactor Suite” was born!
Even after the diversions I tend to inevitably return to the classic Quantum Kids proggish style born out of my 70’s influences. But yeah Zzaj, I've always enjoyed listening to a wide variety of genre and styles... why not play them?!
Zzaj: One question always comes up, especially for guitar, or electric, players, & it's one we want to ask as well - what kind of (basic) gear do you work with? Do you ever work with analog tape, or is your recording setup totally digitized?
Wrightdude: In the studio, its all digital, recording on an Akai DPS16. I use Wavelab for mastering.
For guitar gear, my favorite amps are a Budda Superdrive 80 and a VHT Pittbull 45 (I tend to be a bit of a tube snob). For the album Quantum Foam, I used three different tube amps, a little bit of POD and five different guitars (Strat, Tele, PRS, Brian Moore, Ernie Ball Axis).
Zzaj: Can you give us a little insight regarding your levels of musical training? Have you been "schooled" in music, or has it been (for the most part) something you picked up on your own? How important (do you feel) training is?
Wrightdude: Aside from my percussion training, any music theory I may have learned along the way was through osmosis. My formal training in percussion did impart to me the importance of establishing a "practice regimen" which I applied to my approach to teaching myself guitar.
I think a disciplined practice regimen containing scales, exercises and various techniques is very important, but not to be taken too far. I often ponder the prodigy classically trained musician that play miraculous written passages, but cant improvise a note? and wonder if that part of their musical development atrophied while they played and practiced prescribed notes endlessly throughout their entire musical life??? My point being, I do believe it is important to maintain a strict practice regimen, balanced generously with time to just “make noise!!!!!”
Zzaj: As I move into the twilight years, it's inevitable that you young guys will "take over". When your turn comes (many years from now, we assume) to hand the reins over to 22nd Century freak-o-zoidz, what will BE your "words of wisdom" (regarding the "music industry") to them? Or, do you think there will BE a “music industry” by then?
Wrightdude: Well... at the age of 49 and still strapped to the day job... I'm obviously not the person to give advice as to how to become a rock star! But I can certainly say music is a wonderful thing! And even if you never become a rock star, musical expression can provide a lifetime of enrichment... and catharsis.... which will hopefully keep you out of the Looney bin!!! So my advice is keep doing what you do!!!!! and HAVE FUN!!!!!!!
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