Demolition of the Chocolate Apocalypse

jj-murphy-iplaypickboy

Back in April of this calendar year we revived a communication through our Facebook/Pickboy page from a young guitarist named JJ Murphy. Let me preface this all by mentioning that we receive solicitations for endorsement and/or sponsorship on a daily basis.

Rarely do these amount to more than something like this: “This is Bobby Fastfingers and I play for Demolition of the Chocolate Apocalypse. Give me something for free because everybody who sees me play in my garage thinks I’m great”

Well JJ Murphy wrote, “I play in a band named Dynamo and we just cut a live CD at Ocean Ways Studio.” Needless to say he had pinged my musical attention radar. So I responded, “Send me your EPK to my email address. Usually this separates the pretenders from the alphas. If you don’t know what an EPK is you can’t send it.

The next day I receive JJ’s Electronic Press Kit in my inbox. Here’s his opening paragraph:

“My name is JJ Murphy, I am a 24 year old Nashville based guitarist. Fellow musicians have encouraged me to reach out to you and inquire about getting an artist sponsorship.  After every performance I do, guitarists ask me about my gear and even go as far as to take pictures of my set up and ask if I could loan them some of the picks I use. I have been using mainly your Pos-a-Grip 1.5mm and the carbon/nylon 1.14mm picks and they have been amazing.”

He was even gracious enough to indicate the exact time his solo started in the first video!

“I solo at 2:22”

I figured I’d start there and if he didn’t burn I’d blow him off. I have a stock ‘you’re making great progress, not what we are looking for, keep us posted of your future…..’ rejection letter ready to send. I would not be hitting the send button on that letter that day. What I heard knocked my socks off!

There seems to be a movement of late of bands that can actually play. They make music that matter. Bands like Snarky Puppy and Dirty Loops are putting emphasis song writing, tight arrangements and tasteful soloing.

Dynamo is absolutely in this same class.

Every now and then a band or artist comes along that gives us hope that there is still great music being created. It’s our jobs as listeners and fans to seek out and support the best of the music that speaks to us. JJ Murphy and Dynamo are sharks in an ocean of musically inferior minnows.

It gives me great pleasure to introduce Pickboy endorsee, JJ Murphy!

Click here to learn more about JJ Murphy and Dynamo.

 

Exclusive Interview with Jonny Java Mantra

Jonny Mantra

Tell us a bit about your musical background?
I’ve been playing guitar since age six taught by a local genius in the Bronx names Richie Giorgianni, was lucky enough to go to F.H. Laguardia Performing Arts High School and then study with some amazing masters at the Berklee College of Music where I was in a jazz fusion ensemble with 3 of the members of Imagine Dragons (Wayne, Ben, and Dan. Ben makes amazing cinnamon rolls.). I’ve since then had the pleasure of playing with many of NYC’s phenomenal up and coming artists like Nisha Asnani and Mario Spinetti. I’ll play with pretty much anyone, I just love sharing the experience. I’ve played in jazz bands, dance bands, rock/funk bands, big bands, kirtan combos in yoga studios, solo as a one-man band, with improv comedians, theater orchestras, my own vegas style shows, and much more. I enjoy playing in hospitals, retirement homes, prisons, rehabs and delivering live music to people that can’t afford it or aren’t able to go out and hear it. I love to play pretty much all styles of music and see all vibrations as being created equal, but especially like really spaced out soulful music that has a phat pocket groove with a catchy melody and room for improv with an eastern undertone that sounds like it was spat out by an extraterrestrial aboriginee. I recently went on a tour with Brother Joscephus and The Love Revolution and had a blast playing with them. If you haven’t heard them, go see them live. It’s an amazing experience.

I’m currently working on cruises in Australia and New Zealand as a one-man-act with a loop station. I loop guitar, bass, vocals, beat box, world percussion, household items and an iPod synth attached to my guitar with velcro while doing sorcery, mind reading, pranks, yodeling, vocal toning, animal noises on guitar, and a lil’ comedy and speaking about holistic health and transcendence.

I’ve designed my own guitar along with Godin called Aurora. She’s got a killswitch, sustaniac pickup, Stets Bar tremolo system, Slidefly slide holster, bone nut, harmonic overtone switch, and an iPod holder for synth and sound effects. If James Bond had a guitar, I’m pretty sure he’d want this one haha. It’s a blast.

What are you working on right now?
Right now, I am working on an album trilogy with my band of extraterrestrial, inter-dimensional shamans called the KoZmiK CoLLeCtive. They and others like myself are part of a sleeper cell of a secret agency from the 9th Dimension called L.O.V.E. that zips through the inter-dimensional multiverse to spread love, color and liberation among it’s many inhabitants. We’ve currently been driving around these earth-body machines to create a traveling sound healing festival on Earth that will incorporate vibrational sciences, integral education, holistic health, transcendental practices, performance and visual art, and more along with some and kick-ass music to heal people, empower them and bring out their love and special abilities. Check out some of the the music at www.jonnymantra.com.

We’ve recently patented an exciting new type of guitar slide called the Java Slide that’s really going to shake up the music world. We’re currently looking for a partner to team up with or license the patent to. You can check out the video.

I’m also working on an instructional video called “Strange Guitar” that will display tons of unorthodox, but useful tricks on the instrument along with some of the ones that players may have overlooked as well as another video on the topic of “Ultra-Creative Solo Guitar” that will hopefully extrapolate some fun new ideas out of solo musicians and bands alike. Check out some of the ensuing music and mischief at www.jonnymantra.com.

How would you describe the state of music right now?
As for the state of music right now, I think there’s just so much going on and so much to explore.  The quickly emerging technologies, population boom, growing cosmic awareness and the most access to culture and information that we’ve ever had can shine many paths to walk along if the interest of the individual is there. As long as the spirit of creativity and authenticity are kept alive and we don’t forget where we’ve come from, we can expect lots of new and beautiful musical colors to emerge. I do think that music as a service to humanity, nature, and the universe has an infinite amount of implications that have yet to be explored by many. I feel that the more people think outside of the box while creating music, but do it in an accessible way, the bigger the impact it can have on a wider audience and raise the center of gravity of awareness and musical intelligence. The only way to charm a snake out of her basket is to first play her what she likes. Then you can show her the many colors and lights of your world. (Piss her off and you might get a bite on your ass filled with venom.)

What’s coming up for you in the future?
In the near future I will be traveling all over the US with in my funky camper-party-van named “Iris the Space Van Love Machine” performing everywhere so look out for us this Summer 2014. We plan on visiting Eco-villages, Native American Reservations, festivals, bars, clubs, hospitals, random streets and subway stations, ashrams, temples, churches, parks, crop circles, vortexes and anywhere we can play and meet some really cool people and jam with some sweet musicians while picking up talent for the KoZmic CoLLeCtive Festivals. We’ll need all the help we can get :). Videos and dates will be posted at http://www.jonnymantra.com . In the long term, I’m looking to run a Cafe/Healing Concert Venue/ Hostel/Permaculture inspired eco-village that will provide shelter for those who need it, and give people a place to let loose, be creative and evolve into the infinite beings that they’re destined to bloom into.

What attracted you to Mooer pedals?
I love Mooer because the pedals are super small in size, quirky, and they sound amazing, but best of all they sound unique! They have really cool names too. I’ve been traveling all over the world and it’s been so great to see these popping up in guitar stores on the most random places and islands in the middle of nowhere! I’ve been especially loving the sounds of the Lo Fi Audio Machine and the Bass Sweeper. I play a lot of spacey and funky music and it’s really been enhancing my live performances. I’m really excited to do some recordings with them too. It’s nice to see somebody doing something so different for such a great price, creative high quality, while conserving pedalboard space as an added bonus. You guys rock, your pedals turn heads and your videos are awesome and the people that you have demoing your pedals are brilliant artists! Thanks again for introducing these amazing new sonic bliss machines into the world. P.S. Pickboy pics are the s#!t!

Love,
Jonny Java Mantra

Exclusive Interview with Teddy Kumpel

Teddy Kumpel

Tell us a bit about your musical background?

My Mom is a church organist and classical pianist, Dad was a lover of show tunes and standards and also played the piano. I grew up singing with my family pretty much non stop. In 10th grade I was chosen to be the guitarist in the New york All State Jazz Band, mostly due to the amazing teacher I had, Richard Rabatin. He was an oasis of music to me, a brilliant composer and blues influenced guitarist. He showed me everything from Merle Travis to John Scofield, Atonal sight singing to making one chord vamps have their own internal changes. The best thing he ever taught me was how to teach myself. I went university of Miami where I learned how to compose and arrange. The great thing about Miami in the 80’s was the sheer amount of work there was. I was playing non stop the whole time I was there.

What are you working on right now?

I’ve had a residency at the Rockwood Music Hall here in New York for the last 4 years with my band the LOOPestra. I use looping live to create a big guitar band sound and have a different rhythm section every week, some of the best in the business, like Shawn Pelton, Keith Carlock, Jojo Mayer, James Genus, Tim LeFebvre and Jonathan Maron. Look for the LOOPestra to play once a month in Rockwood 2 while the residency continues in a different format in 2014.

I also work on independent records. I just finished mixing a beautiful record by Sonia Montez, an amazing singer songwriter who rocks without forgetting her roots. I also produced and mixed a record for Rich Hinman, a great guitarist in his own right, who plays with Sara Bareilles and Roseann Cash.

I’ve done a lot of work on films with my friend and film composer Alex Wurman. Anchorman, Taladegga Nights, Confessions of a Dangerous Mind, Four Christmases, Temple Grandin to name just a few of the fun films we got to work on together. Temple Grandin won an Emmy for best soundtrack (by Alex) so I guess you could say that since I was the featured soloist, I won an Emmy too ; )

How would you describe the state of music right now?

music is and always will be a source for inspiration in people’s lives. Now there’s just more people doing it, thanks to the home studio revolution. I think it’s great that people who are naturally talented have a way to realize their creative dreams with computers even if they’ve never had any training. The cream still rises to the top, there’s just more fat than there was in the 70’s and 80’s…

What’s coming up for you in the future?

The future includes touring opening for the Waterboys with my friend Freddie Stevenson, the great Scottish songwriter. Also touring with Martha Redbone and developing my own music further.

What attracted you to Mooer pedals?

Tiny size and big sound. Why have something bigger when such a small thing sounds just as good? They’re really a big help for touring rigs.

Brooklyn Autumn Guitar Show 2013 Report

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Osiamo LLC participated in the Brooklyn Fall Guitar at Brooklyn Bowl on September 22nd. It was a beautiful fall day in Brooklyn and an enthusiastic crowd of avid guitars came down to the event.

We once again shared space with Phil Jones Pure Sound and Xotic Guitars and Effects, we enjoyed the accolades from the consumers.

We debuted both the Dr J pedals line and Dexter the octaver by Taurus. Dr. J pedals offer the famous “Boutique” sound, construction and vibe, at a price any musician can afford. With seven pedals in the line, all designed to be musical tools, you can expand your creativity. The Dexter Octaver is first of a new series from Taurus designed for guitarists as well as bassists. Dexter is a -1/+1 octaver that tracks equally as well on guitar and bass.

Past and future Osiamo artists of the months John Bendy and Teddy Kumpel graced us with both their presence and fine demo’ing!

Thanks to all who passed by to say hello.

Dealer Spotlight : Corner Music Nashville TN

ZillaMooerPedals

How long has the store been in business?

In 1976, amid all the fireworks and hotdogs of America’s bicentennial, Corner Music opened its doors for the first time. Legend has it that Larry was just looking for a good place to fire up the grill for the 4th of July, but that has not been proven.

How long have you work at the store?

I came to Corner Music in 1996. I was hiding from the Grunge Movement. Nashville seemed like the perfectly logical place for a white guy who played funk to hang out. Or something.

Why is Mooer micro doing so well at your store?

Mooer is selling well in our store because they are a no-brainer; they sound good, they aren’t expensive, they are true bypass, and they economize the precious space on a pedalboard. Most guys these days are playing on stages the size of postage stamps, or they are old and can’t lift much. The rest (hipsters anyway) probably just like all the pretty colors. The little Moo-Moos are perfect for all those guys.

How does the future of music stores look?

Lots of Stairway to Heaven and Smoke On The Water. Unless you’re a keyboard player, and then it’s Jump.

Peace Love N’ Funk Zillaaaaaaahhhh