Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Plaid Faction

OK...this is interesting and very long!
For those of you who don't know I use to play drums. From high school until about 2000 I was in about 8 or so different bands. I was planning on posting a blog about my drumming days later on, and I still am going to, but I came across something interesting tonight on the internet which I have to share.

I was surfing on YouTube, watching concerts and I did a search on some of the bands I used to be in, and I found some videos! "Wow", I thought, "This is interesting". Then I did a google search and found that this year (in 2008) one of the band members created a website for the band. The band's name was Plaid Faction. I was in the band for about a year, and they kicked me out...I have my version of why and I just found out tonight their version. But first let me tell you about the band and about being in bands.

As a musician you don't always play the type of music you want to. Sometimes you can't find the right people so you settle on "good for now until something better comes along", which is what the band Plaid Faction was to me. The band I was in before Plaid Faction was great. They were called The Grind. They were a mix of funk, true punk, and alternative rock. Imagine Bob Dylan, the Sex Pistols and old Red Hot Chili Peppers and their you have The Grind. But the Grind inevitably broke up and I was left bandless. So I answered an ad for drummer and auditioned for Plaid Faction. They were a bit cheesy, but I figured I could play with them until something better came along.

I auditioned and they asked me to join. I tried interjecting my own style and stage presence. I stood up most of the time with no seat while I was playing (you can see that in one of the videos Ive embedded below). Plaid Faction wasn't into that, they were a bit more tame, I think they were trying to be pop stars.
So anyway, I came across their website tonight. I was one of several drummers Plaid Faction had in the many years they were together (I was only in the band for a year). But regardless of that short amount of time I get my own personal section under their stories! Here is an exact copy (as of January 23) from their website of what they had to say about me:

Skip came along and saved our butts a bit. So there we were with an upcoming gig and no drummer. I can't remember if we rescheduled the gig or not or just found Skip on really short notice and played the original slot. Either way, Skip came in and learned all the tunes really quickly and we got back on track. Skip was pretty much the polar opposite of Brandon though. He really didn't have any funk in him to speak of and to be honest, at that time didn't really have a good sense of time. Which is a fairly important skill to have in a drummer. But to be fair, we didn't have a great sense of time as players at that point either. The difference was, we knew it, Skip didn't :)
On the flipside, Skip was a heck of a nice guy and had a great stage presence as you can see in the videos. He had a really hard driving, kinda "Hulk Smash!" sort of playing style that everyone dug. He also wore a (then) cool headband, had tassels on his sticks, knew how to spin his sticks like Tommy Lee and would just periodically stand up while playing and just start beating the crap out of his drums. Of course at that point, he usually quit playing the bass drum and we all fell apart rhythmically, but the crowd ate it up.

But as time went on and we all continued to grow as musicians, it quickly came apparent that Skip was not and we all felt that he was starting to hold us back a little. So the search was on...

then they talk about trying out other drummers...

When my guy came in, he also brought a note with him. He said Skip had shown up and caught us trying out drummers. My guy actually asked Skip if he was auditioning for the band as well, hehe. Ouch. Ok, so we weren't the smoothest operators at that point. If I remember correctly, we were trying out drummers on the night one of Skip's favorite bands was playing at Trees. We knew (thought) that Skip would be there and wouldn't come to the rehearsal studio. Obviously, we were wrong. Skip apparently went to the front desk and got a piece of paper and wrote a note. It said something like:

"I guess you guys are looking for a new drummers. That's fine. Good luck, I'll pick up my stuff later."

And I think that was the last we ever heard from Skip.

Here is the thing. I was mad when I first read this about me on their site, but the more I think about it the better I feel. This isn't about me now, its about me a long time ago. It seems to me that was their glory days, not mine. I hardly think about Plaid Faction. I'm happier now in my life than I was back then, and for those of you who know me I'm a completely different person now than I was then (you may not even recognize me in the video). I'm into my family, my friends, my art, my current life.

They are obviously spending a lot of time and energy putting up the website and videos. The only time out of my life that I have ever spent writing about them is this blog posting, and after I post this blog I will not really give them or the band I was in 17 years ago much thought at all (maybe in a James Joycean kind of passing cloud way). I would like to thank the band members for taking so much time to write about me on their website, posting 5 videos on YouTube with me playing drums with them 17 years ago in Dallas (it was actually fun to watch), and posting photos of me in the band on their site (even though those photos are unbearably embarrassing, you have my full permission to laugh at the silly photos - I'm the one with the beard and long curly hair).

So here are a couple of the videos they posted on YouTube. Please judge for yourself from the video of how bad of a drummer I really was ;)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Great video of you playing the drums! Moving on with your life and getting over teenage dreams is a part of growing up. I bought a piece of your art in Dallas a few years back. Music and Art appear to still be a part of your life. Good for you!