Search results: kickstarter

Leav Kickstarter

4 Mar

We’ve written in the past about some Kickstarter campaigns that we’ve liked, supported or given a boost. Usually they’ve been for a musician, a show or something like that, but this time around it’s for a mix of all those things, in a really exciting package. It’s Leav, a new platform for smartphones that ties together music, video and art to the city around us, all in the palm of your hand.

If you live in a city long enough, you’ll invariably build associations to the place and art, whether it’s involuntarily humming the Hold Steady up in the Quarry, a poster that reminds you of a certain show on a certain night with a certain person, or a streetcorner that holds the memory of epic drama. Leav is a location and time-specific app that lets artists share their view of the city and attach new work to it. A dance company can create a video that you can only see at a certain time of day in a certain place, a musician can give you a sonic landscape that matches the cityscape around you. It’s an exciting vision of what technology and art can do together and it’s being built by artists – Andy Voegtline, Erik Martz, Joey Kantor & Bobby Maher – for artists.

Leav launched with a lineup of impressive artists to work provide work for the app – Holly Hansen of Zoo Animal, Chris Koza of Rogue Valley, choreographer and City Pages 2004 Artist of the Year Stuart Pimsler and nationally acclaimed visual artist Kate Casanova – and a new round of artists has just been announced, including man-about-town Andy Sturdevant, dancer Emily Johnson, musician Grant Cutler, and the Roe Family Singers. That’s a whole festival right there, one that we would be proud to use to introduce people to the Twin Cities, and it can all be ours in the palm of our hands.

With a March 8 deadline approaching, the Leav team are about $7,500 short of a $22,000 goal, so 66% there. That may seem like a daunting hill to climb, but Kickstarter’s own numbers show that of projects that reach 60% funding, 98% of those are completely funded. So go on and support Leav, because this is a whole new world for local art.


Theater Kickstarters

15 Sep

There are two theater companies that are near and dear to the heart of CakeIn15 which are currently in the end run of Kickstarter campaigns for their upcoming productions, so (seeing as how, yes, contributions have been made- we support the art we want to see) we’d share their videos and give them an extra push. The tricky part of Kickstarter is that if you don’t reach the pledge goal, you get none of the money, so the challenge to come in over the line is on.

Lamb Lays with Lion, of which c.a.s. was a member when it was based in Minneapolis, is now in Brooklyn and putting together funds to mount their first show there, Lamb Lays with Lion’s $ (pronounced “dollar sign”, apparently). It is about the destructive nature of the green stuff and, given that these are mostly couch-surfing, wait-staffing and temping actors that are putting together a bar-brawl dust-up of Karl Marx’s Das Kapital, they can use as much of it as they can get. 7 days left to help them hit $1,000, which you can do here.

Closer to home, the intelligent jokesters of Four Humors are raising funds for another financially-based skewering, with their The Extraordinary Terms of Ordinary Life. Set just before the stock market crash of 1929, a yound insurance salesman discovers that things aren’t all what they seem, which, well, they rarely are. Count on Four Humors and their talented cast to make the most of that, as well as of your money. 4 days left to help them hit $3,000, which you can do here.

Caroline Smith Kickstarter

10 May

CakeIn15 has been a huge fan of local songstress and free spirit Caroline Smith ever since she broke out onto the scene several years ago. Her sweet voice, her excellent band, the Good Night Sleeps (Jesse Schuster and bass and Arlen Peiffer on drums) and her playful but incisive lyrics make her just the kind of person we want out in the world representing our little corner of America. The band just finished up their second record, Little Wind, and are using a Kickstarter campaign to get a vinyl release and promotion funded. Their goal is $6000 by June 5, and as of right now, they stand at $3501, not bad right out the gate. Remember though, with Kickstarter, they only get the money if the project is fully funded, and if they are over-funded, that goes to them too, so chip in a bit, wouldja? It’s the only place to pre-order the record, so that’s a good reason to give and Caroline & Jesse played a number of the tracks from Little Wind at their Cake Shop show in January and we can tell you, you’re not going to want to miss out on helping these artists grow even more than the leaps and bounds they’ve already come.

Little Wind tracklist
Strong Shoulders
…Strong Shoulders (Epic Slow Jams Reprise)
Hannah’s Song
Eagles Nest
Denim Boy
Birch Trees and Broken Barns

On 9.26 – Rachel Ries at the Cake Shop

29 Aug

RachelRies c15web

When Jeremy Messersmith tells you that you should book an artist, you listen. It helps when that artist is Rachel Ries, a singer-songwriter who has toured with Anaïs Mitchell and Bon Iver, draws comparisons to Regina Spektor with a dash of jazz, and writes sweetly moving, evocative songs. The Cake Shop is excited to host Ries (pronounced “Reese”) for a house concert on Thursday, September 26th at 7:30pm.

Ries is the child of Mennonite missionaries, and grew up in Zaire before returning to the Midwest. Currently based in Brooklyn, Ries is a self-taught guitar player who began releasing music in 2005. After a hiatus from music which saw her work in theater and travel, Ries released the Laurel Lake EP in 2012 and just successfully completed a Kickstarter campaign to release her new full-length album, Ghost of a Gardener, recorded in Chicago at Pieholden Suite Sounds and due for an early 2014 release.

A private house show was one of her Kickstarter rewards, and now you can get that for yourself! Reservations are $10 a person and are limited, so reserve your spot via Brown Paper Tickets today. Upon reservation, you will be contacted with the exact address of the Cake Shop. All funds from the door go directly to support the artist.

What: CakeIn15 presents Rachel Ries
Where: The Cake Shop, address upon reservation
When: Thursday, September 26. Doors at 7:30pm, Music at 8pm
How Much: $10 reservation, all funds to the artist
Reserve your spot:

The Cake Shop is dedicated to providing artists and audiences with a unique and intimate experience that allows artists to freely experiment with new material. Shows at The Cake Shop directly financially support the musicians playing. Previous performances include Caroline Smith & Jesse Schuster, Communist Daughter, Spirits of the Red City, Zoo Animal, Dark Dark Dark and Elephant Micah, Pezzettino, Roma Di Luna, Jeremy Messersmith, The Pines, Ben Kyle & Carrie Rodriguez, We Are The Willows (Peter Miller), batteryboy, and Chastity Brown.

SXSW Day 1 – What’s new?

13 Mar

Well, it’s that time of year again. SXSW! I’m in sunny (thank God) Austin, Texas and ready to rock. Well… sort of. To be honest, I’m sort of over this whole thing. I look back and shake my old lady “get off my lawn” fists while remembering my first few years in 2007-2009 when it was fresh, new, full of friends, and just smaller. Yes, there’s been numerous articles more well-written than this about the same topic, but still, here it is. The whole over-corporatized over-saturated thing is just the tip of why this festival – yes, festival – just isn’t what it should be. Didn’t this used to be a conference? That weird dreaded “I’m going for work” word used by my boss when we’re off to things that I’m generally sort of ambivalent to. Not that there’s not information to be gleaned from said conferences, but festival is just an entirely different connotation.


Leavin’ on a jet plane…

I had a good conversation on my way to the hotel from the airport with the cabbie. He lamented how SXSW has grown and brought up some good points about the change in attendee, the age gap, and the way it’s no longer about finding and supporting smaller bands and increasingly about pimping bands that already have a following. Why go see some unknown band when you can see Prince?


My fav! Best Wurst with lots of curry ketchup!

This isn’t to say SXSW has “gone bad” or fails in some way, it’s just that it’s changed and it’s shifted, even in the short seven years I’ve attended things are different. Noticeably different. For some, that’s a great thing. They like having all these crazy big bands around town. They like the free Lone Star and the scramble to get a few free tacos. I’ve been there and that’s completely awesome. BUT. There’s part of me that wants to wander around and find new music by hearing something flowing from a doorway. I know I can still do that, but it’s increasingly harder and harder to get there.


Yipes! Look who I found wandering around SXSW



Now, there are fun things to do here. There are awesome strangers on 6th Street in costume and great posters and some ridiculous music. There are bands I can’t wait to see, the trade show, a few decent-sounding panels, and friends to hang out with. I’m looking forward to all of that. So I can’t say that SXSW has me bummed out, or that I totally don’t want to be here, but it’s just different. Different is ok, but when it begins to sway what used to be an industry conference more toward an all out party-down festival it starts to lose focus. That’s where I start to drift.


Well, at least I sort of saw Grumpy Cat at SXSW

This year, I’m down here for work. It’s a great job and I’m super excited for the students down here. We’ve got a killer lineup, a great venue, wonderful weather, fun sponsors and I’m really honestly looking forward to our show. Plus, it’s going to be awesome seeing these guys get their confidence going and really put in work to make this show happen. So that’s where the original spirit of SXSW lives on. It’s this new crop of people learning how to run the music industry in its current state. Realizing that things are constantly changing and moving and being able to roll with it. I’m hopeful they learn what they need to do to make their way in this world of music. I think SXSW is still a good step to making that happen. If only to get themselves embedded in the real world and outside the classroom.


Divine Fits at the Moody ACL Theater


Cirque du Soleil at the Moody ACL Theater

Today I’m all in. I’m heading over the Convention Center for a panel with Amanda Palmer. We’ve been talking a lot about her Kickstarter and Ted talk in my Promotions & Publicity class, and I hope that her talk will add to my knowledge of her as a case study. Then it’s off to the trade show, Flatstock, and some shows. I’m really hoping to catch Iggy & the Stooges, but there’s a 3-4 hour wait in line potential there, and I’m not into that any more. I’ve seen Mr. Pop and so it goes. See, there I go feeding right into the “larger band” machine. But so it goes. More tomorrow…

…and this is what makes this whole trip worth it for me:

Kick-start my Heart

30 May

Yeah, I realize that headline’s probably been used a billion times to talk about the crowd-source funding site Kickstarter, but whatever! Suck it!

We here at CakeIn15 have helped successfully fund various local projects in the past – Caroline Smith & the Good Night Sleeps, Zoo Animal, Zak Sally,Bethany Larson & the Bees Knees, Koo Koo Kanga Roo, and 4onthefloor, among others.

We thought it was about time you checked out some of the newest crop of our fav locals trying to make some art via this machine they call Kickstarter. Give ’em a look and see if you can dig into yer pockets to find some change to share. Art!

The Goondas

These guys are some of our favs in the Twin Cities. They’re crazy in the best way, they love what they do, and Brenden is oh-so-fashionable with his homemade recycled jeans. Oh – and they’re crazy. Did we mention that?


One of my fav poster artists from Mpls is finally coming out with something I don’t need more wall room for. I mean, I’m all for wall art, but there are not enough walls in my house to fit everything by the local poster artists I love! This project means I can hold in my hand some awesome pictures by the fabulous DWITT.

Margaret Lane

Oh, Miss Margaret. You probably first met her through her old band Hildur Victoria, who CakeIn15 were also huge fans of. Ms. Lane has decided enough is enough. Her music can’t be contained and so she’s making her first solo LP! We can’t wait to hear it!

Wheel Sexy Cabaret

18 Feb

Since winter has been especially kind to cyclists this season, some cyclists are paying it forward with a gift of their own: burlesque. In that vein, here’s the latest in an occasional series of posts highlighting local Kickstarter projects we love, tipping a helmet to Wheel Sexy Cabaret, a burlesque event by the bike community (but anyone is welcome) at the Bryant-Lake Bowl March 1, 8 & 9.

Spearheaded by local cyclists, theater artists and community facilitators Au NaturElle (Elle Thoni) and Retro Spectacle (Amber Davis) and developed with community participation from seasoned burlesque performers, cycling enthusiasts and the errant boy-lesquer, it’s hard to imagine anything more that we DIY love about MPLS – they’ll even have live music! Wheel Sexy is already sponsored by Smitten Kitten, the Hub Bike Co-op and Calhoun Cycle, but head over to their Kickstarter page to get in on the action, The goal is only $500 in 10 days, but it goes to help pay performers and c’mon, those pasties and chain grease don’t buy themselves. Also, there’s apparently a guy out to shut them down, so don’t let that happen, freedom riders!

First Avenue Best New Bands

26 Jan

We would like to think that we improve with each passing year, we become better, more complex and confident, more polished versions of ourselves, and hope the same for the things we care about. For the Minnesota music scene, to help this assessment along is the annual First Avenue “Best New Bands” showcase, highlighting the acts that our crown jewel venue most enjoyed from the preceding year. On Wednesday night, “Best New Bands” was not only a general consensus (five of the seven acts were also finalists in the last iteration of the City Pages “Picked to Click” poll) but also something of an understatement. When Local Current journalist Andrea Swensson noted from stage that she thought that, “Minnesota music is on an upswing”, it meant that the momentum from the successes of our past years (Doomtree, Peter Wolf Crier, GAYNGS) has raised the bar on local newness.

Fire in the Northern Firs opened with a woozy, pulsating shoegaze vibe that packed the punch you would expect from a quartet of experienced musicians. With vocalist Carin Barno (formerly of First Communion Afterparty) leading the charge and singing through a microphone embedded in a telephone receiver at points, the drive of the songs was wrapped up in her lusty energy that saw her lunging across stage while wailing about booze, love and blow. For the still-gathering crowd who showed up early, it was a heady way to kick off the night and set a high standard for the bands to follow.

If Barno and Fire in the Northern Firs brought a sexy rock n’ roll mess onstage, then Sexcat pulled out the electronica dance stops. Tongue (mostly) in cheek, Hannah von der Hoff and Megan Charles cooed and breathed heavy sweet nothings in our collective ears. “Your job tonight, Minneapolis, is to dance,” von der Hoff proclaimed from stage, and although 8:30 on a Wednesday may have been a little to early and a little too sober for most, it didn’t stop Sexcat from vamping it up like a more-chaste Peaches or Enigma with a libido and a bong.

Dream Crusher may have been missing Jacob Mullis of Fort Wilson Riot (in Arizona recording a new album) but with 10 men onstage and a cameo from Sean Anonymous of Wide Eyes and Ashley Gold, they weren’t wanting for sound. Keeping everything tight for Dream Crusher were the double drumming skills of Mo McNichols and Jared Isabella, while Jacob Grun of Me and My Arrow emoted via auto-tune such as to make Bon Iver proud. For a band of ad hoc membership and often no set path, this was one of the most passionate, cohesive and beautifully ambient acts of the night.

Then came the real veterans. Gramma’s Boyfriend consists of Haley Bonar, who put out a wonderful record in Golder last year, guitar whiz Jeremy Ylvisaker, multi-instrumentalist extraordinaire Mike Lewis on bass and the Hanson brothers, Jacob and Jeremy, on guitar and drums respectively, meaning there is altogether too much serious talent in that band, and they have to blow off steam somehow. So when Bonar came out in a pair of giant mom jeans (and she is a new mother) with an enormous fake derriere emblazoned with the sly logo “LARDACHE”, just chalk it up to her needing to be the anti-Karen O of art punk and let some septuagenarian freak flag fly.

Night Moves made it up next, fresh off the buzz that they had signed up with Domino Records in order to release their Colored Emotions debut and with a hearty recommendation as the cure to your love life troubles from Chase Mathey of Radio K. With their shaggy hair and over-sized shirts, they looked and sounded their part of the MGMT-spearheaded psych revival, falling into some mix of disco-era Stones and Pink Floyd harmonies over the course of their set. Although their sound is now an amalgam of sounds past, these are a creative bunch with some great bands under their belts (Mouthful of Bees, Battle Royale) so there’s no counting on what John Pelant, Mark Ritsema and Mickey Alfaño might do next.

If playing the First Avenue Mainroom is really the top honor in the Cities, then you had better make the most of the moment, and Bloodnstuff did just that. In front of a packed house, drummer Dylan Gouert and guitarist/vocalist Ed Holmberg absolutely owned the room from the get-go, using a wall of amplifiers and double floor toms to tear everything around them apart. With their sinewy, massive hooks, wailing guitar lines, open-throated screaming and devastating prog drums, these guys were unstoppable. DJ Jason Nagel of Cities 97 noted before their set that they had just reached their Kickstarter goal to fund their new record, but with four more days to go, that epic performance should earn them, as Nagel put it, “a few more shekels.”

Closing out the night (albeit to a slightly diminished house, the more’s their loss) was new hip-hop hope MaLLy. Currently nestled under the warm wing of Atmosphere (Slug is a fan, from appearing in videos to wearing a MaLLy T at Soundset last year) this young MC came across powerfully, like a The College Dropout-era Kanye, full of stories about his own hustle and family. With enough swagger and bite to claim that “if I was white, I would have been signed in ’07,” MaLLy was also moved enough by the crowd response to claim that he “wouldn’t be shit” without the fan support. If that brief flash on the Mainroom stage is any indication and with a record coming this spring, MaLLy’s going to be a lot more.

First Avenue was also showing off a bit of its own newness over the course of the night. From debuting the new Members Area for the inaugural run of the membership program to radically increasing space and visibility by removing the staircase that used to be in the center of the floor, the Mainroom was looking and feeling a fresher place, the venerable venue taking what it already did so well and making it better. If a venue can do that, then surely bands can and from fresh faces to new projects from old hands, the night was as much as we could have hoped for, and we always hope to be surprised and impressed like that.

Middle Fringe II and Other Theater Things

12 Aug

So here’s a quick recap of some continuing adventures of the Fringe, including moments of psychotropic mania courtesy of Primadonnas and some of the most personal storytelling I have ever had the privilege of witnessing, along with some other important theater-type happenings this weekend! It’s a frenetic hodge-podge of things strung together mostly by the will to keep on seeing performers perform and knowing that at the end of the night, there might be free sake for the whole thespian lot at Moto-i, funny conversations to be had and warm bed to dream in.

Orange Sunshine Primadonnas
4 kitties

As Primadonnas struck its final chord & the lights came up, my show companion turned to me with a giddy, hazy grin and roared out, “AM I ON DRUGS?” Which we weren’t (to my knowledge) but we had just experienced a hallucinatory, fragmented dose of surrealist theater about the extent to which people will go to create fantastical coping constructs. It was wickedly weird and funny, with campy prison lesbians, songs, drag & the bushily-bearded Garrett Vollmer pulling out wild characterizations in pearls & blond wigs. You won’t “get” the show, as any linear narrative is shattered, but if you relax your eyes (which also helps gloss over some of the Fringe-y DIY costuming & sets) to just let your lizard brain take hold, it’s a ride worth taking.

After the total absurdity of Primadonnas, the manic characterizations of Seth Lepore‘s show, Losing My Religion: Confessions of a New Age Refugee might have almost been tame, if they weren’t so thorough-goingly close to the surface reality of the infomercial quacks and faux-spiritualists who are at our every turn these days. Suze Orman, Deepak Chopra acolytes and Tony Robbins’ teeth were all over this piece and punctuated by moments of dark humor, the very personal underpinning made for an affecting piece of work.

Could Have Had a “Buddy Christ” Joke!
4 kitties

The characters Lepore pulls out are hilarious, a rogues gallery of chakra-opening snake-oil salesmen, internet-based money-making gurus, ego-driven buddhists and self-helplessness addicts. It’s a skewering of market-based faith and the ghost of George Carlin bounds gleefully around the stage as Lepore tears out voices and burns up these surface dwellers. Even though the spark of this hysterical and righteous anger may only be intermittently revealed through the cavalcade of caricatures, the button that ends the hour is a deep humanizing note that people of any faith or paths of questioning would do well to hear.

It had been my intention on that Wednesday to make it a three-fer of personal solo storytelling, adding in The Sometimes Grace of Saint Simon of the Water to the mix, but following monolog whilst trying to drive from Augsburg to the Bryant-Lake Bowl made that impossible:

“Awesome, I’m out of Seth’s show with, like, 5 minutes to spare, next shot at 7. It’s 6:30 on a Wednesday, traffic can’t be that bad. Here I am now pulling out onto Cedar and heading towards the entrance to 94 at 25th Street. What, Minneapolis? You have that blocked off, with no warning signs? It looks like I should be able to get through to the freeway here, it just says “detour”? No? It just spins me back to where I just was? Alright, let’s get over to Washington and 35. It’s 6:34, I’ll be fine, it’ll all be good. Alright, 35 to 94 and WHAT? 94, why are you totally stopped? What’s up with you today? Here we go 11th Street, I just need to get onto the city streets and have some luck with the lights. Stop, go, stop, go, stop, go, 6:42 and Portland! Yes! heading south, and fast! Perfect, a little more luck with parking in Uptown and I’m golden. Right onto Lake, cruising, 6:45 and WHAT ARE YOU DOING CUTTING IN FRONT OF ME GOING 21 MILES AN HOUR? SERIOUSLY? AND I’M BLOCKED IN ON THE OTHER SIDE TOO? AND NOW WE ARE SITTING UNDER THE I-35 OVERPASS AND NO-ONE IS MOVING ANYWHERE. 6:53! DAMMIT MINNEAPOLIS! I’m going to Pancho Villa.”

So that’s what I did. Here’s the trailer for The Sometimes Grace of Saint Simon of the Water:

The Sometimes Grace of Saint Simon of the Water from Ted Eschweiler on Vimeo.

It was probably a good thing that I had a chance to calm down and socialize because the next and final piece of the night, Ducklings, Rocks, and Squad Cars was one of the singularly most emotionally honest, intelligent and open works of theater I have ever witnessed, and I use that word in a spiritual sense here- you see the creator and storyteller Nick Ochs in all of his humanity. It may hurt, it may heal and I cannot recommend it enough.

A Life Near Your Own
5 kitties

This show brought my first tears of the Fringe, even if Ochs would have insisted that they weren’t necessary. Ochs’ intensely personal and physical presence makes “Ducklings” an incredibly brave work of theater, not a story like a like a fiction, but a catharsis, a purgation of Ochs sometimes terrible and sometimes sweet life. Tightly wound and well crafted by director and collaborators Tom Lloyd and Jeff Shockley, Ochs makes us feel each of his ricocheting emotions and makes the audience a witness, an exchange of trust that is incredibly powerful. If you have experienced these things, you will identify, if not, your world will grow. Afterward, although he was a sweaty mess, I hugged Ochs because it felt good, and right, to share that too.

In other theater happenings, Saturday is another day full of different kinds of independent action. First off, The Wild Plan will be pulling into town with two free outdoor performances. The Wild Plan is the brainchild of two Guthrie BFA grads, Eric Powell Holm and Ben Gansky to tour the country with a small group of compatriots putting on free shows. The tour was funded through a Kickstarter campaign (complete with lovely, quirky video) and they kicked of in Brookings, South Dakota and will make their way out to Cape Cod.

Here in Minneapolis, they will be presenting 2 shows. At 3pm at Matthews Park in Seward, they will present Boy with a Moon and a Star on his Head, an original piece conceived and directed by Gansky and created by the ensemble billed as “a new fable featuring the music of Cat Stevens”. That evening, they move to 2417 Pleasant Ave for a 7pm performance of Misanthrope, Or the Impossible Lovers, an original adaptation of the play by Moliére by Holm, which CakeIn15 live-tweeted in an odd experience at the Illusion Theater in January. The show is totally worth seeing, mind you, it was just odd to tweet directly in front of actors working. Still, with the distractions of outside, I am sure they’ll have quite a show up their sleeves to keep you engaged.

The other big news of Saturday is that the Bedlam, in conjunction with the Network of Ensemble Theaters’ Micro-Fest: USA is holding it’s 18th Birthday Bash at the Southern, sponsored by the Red Stag Supper Club. Yes, the Bedlam, though homeless, is now legal, so throw on your DJ Hot Pants and for $5, crush it until 2am.

Little Man

27 May

It’s no big secret that Chris Perricelli of Little Man is one of the most innovative and exciting rock and roll guitarists in town. Little Man is back with a new 6-song EP called Orbital Amusement, which breaks away from some of the more earthbound previous material and launches, with the help of new pedals, creative mic placement and huge energy into a glittering, cosmic rock realm. In talking about Orbital Amusement, Perricelli noted that he had worked his signature, live pulsing sound effect called the “Oscillating Raygun” into “The Tower” and called the song “Found Is A Passion” the “jewel in the lotus” of the record, as well as talked about his new pedals, the cycles of independent artists and how bringing in other businesses makes a scene stronger. Orbital Amusement drops tonight with a show at the Turf Club, so make it your business to get launched into orbit.
Photo by Emily Utne, Styling by UpSix.

CakeIn15: Tell us about these pedals, which seem to have opened up a new world of sound for you. How did they come about and how have you been using them?

Chris Perricelli: Playing live I have my effects and I don’t have a bunch of things that are my go-to pedals, but I like working with feedback especially and controlling that onstage. Zachary Vex came to see a show one time and he was impressed with what I was doing and was wondering how I was doing it. I talked to him after the show and he was like, “Well, you gotta have some Z. Vex on your pedalboard.” And I said, “Well, OK!” So I went over and we got to talk and check out all his effects and I didn’t know that he was based out of here, I had only heard of him from national act people, so it was lucky that he had been at that show! When I was over there I played through all the effects and there was one that blew my mind in particular and that was the Fuzz Probe. It works like a theramin, you don’t have to touch it, as your foot approaches it the pitches bend and that was totally what I wanted in an effect. I wanted something to do with pitch bending in some way and I’ve always been a fan of the theramin and he had compacted this on a pedal. He was able to give me a good deal on these. I also use the Fuzz Factory, which he’s mostly famous for, and the Ringtone. The Ringtone has eight different tones on it that you can physically set and so when you press on it, it goes “Beep-boop-beep-beep-boop-beep-boop-boop.”

C15: Is that sound at the end of the track “Orbital Amusement”?

CP: “Orbital Amusement”, yeah, that’s that. You can play your guitar through it and it sounds really interesting. You can play it so it sounds like a telephone as well. So I got ahold of some of those and I couldn’t stop thinking about them.

C15: And that was in the fall of 2009?

CP: Yeah, I guess! I can’t believe it’s been that long. That was when I started playing with those effects exclusively, at home or in the practice space, figuring out what sort of tones I can get out of these things, playing with them, being creative with them. And all of a sudden monstrous riffs come out of these pedals, they evoke something that’s deep and dark. It changed my way of songwriting in a way that this is something that came from tone first, and then riffs and then from that come the lyrics and the construction of it all. I’ll do anything to come up with a song and be creative, this is a new creative tool for me to do something that I haven’t done. And the sound is different than in the past, and that’s what I wanted, I was scratching my head, like, “I don’t wanna do the same thing that I’ve done before.” And I just was kind of on the lookout for something that could sound different in a way.

C15: Do you feel your trajectory would have been different if you had had these pedals earlier in your musical life, would your music be different?

CP: Yeah, it probably would have. It probably would have steered me in a different direction earlier on and you know, the songs that I did with Soulful Automatic and Of Mind And Matter would not have happened probably, or some of them anyway. Yeah, its changed things a little bit, and I’m not saying that I’m going to stay in this where I’m at now with these sounds, but these particular songs all came from sounds, except for “Found Is A Passion” is more straightforward rock-and-roll, what I’ve done in the past, but this group of songs just kind of emerged with the same sound.

C15: You wrote extensively about the recording process on your blog and at then end of one of those posts you had noted that recording was expensive and asked for donations to help out. Did you wind up doing anything formal like a Kickstarter campaign?

CP: I didn’t do a Kickstarter campaign, I definitely thought about it. I wanted to first give fans an opportunity to be a part of the record and by doing so, I think it was like a $25 donation would get your name on the record in the notes and I had some people do that, it helped. I didn’t feel like I wanted to do a Kickstart thing because personally I didn’t want to make it feel like I totally needed the help, which I totally did! [Laughs] But I didn’t want to come across that way and Kickstarter is fairly new and I was a little unsure, but I have had some friends be super successful with it, so I’ll probably do something with that in the future, but with this album at this point, I’m up for working my ass off to try and pay for it. I did, but I’m in debt, you know? [Laughs] That’s what usually happens, I don’t have any support. I work to save up my money to cut a record and then I spend all my money and I have a hard time after that. It’s difficult being an independent artist, but I’m doing it; I’m still releasing records, I’m playing out and as long as I’m able to do that, that’s what’s most important for me to do.

C15: Here’s a question that we’ve been posing to all sorts of people we’ve been interviewing- for all we’ve got going for us, what’s something that we could be doing better?

CP: That’s a tough question, because I think this is one of the greatest cities for the arts and there is so much that is all for it and for promoting it in many genres of the arts. That’s one of the reasons that I’m here, the support is huge and there are so many people that are into what’s happening locally. National stuff comes and goes but your local stuff stays, I think it’s great that we’re all together on the arts scene. So what could be done that’s better? That’s a really tough question. I’d like to have an answer for it. I’m going to think about it.

C15: You’re doing something interesting with your sponsors for the show, getting not just 89.3 The Current on board, but also the Blue Door Pub, and Marshall Liquors and your barbershop, Groveland Barbers.

CP: See, there, you answered the question yourself. I think that if artists in all genres, if we include other forms of whether it be art or businesses, things that are a part of the community, bringing them together in some way and having them be a part of something with you. So you’re not a standalone person, you’re showing that you’re really connected to a lot of other things. I eat there, I listen to them I buy my booze there, it’s a part of my daily or weekly or monthly thing, so I think its only right that I try to include them and have people know them. Look, these are places that I go to and they’ve helped me, because they believe in local business. I don’t have to write a song about the Blue Door, but I can tell people that these are great folks, and it’s worth putting your money into local places, local businesses that are run by local people. They’re depending on you to keep them alive and they’re feeding you, for goodness sake, or they’re giving you music or cutting your hair or giving you things to celebrate with! That’s all part of life and should be brought into the light.