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Current projects Project

Philly Maker Faire Podcast

Listen to the podcast just about anywhere!

In early 2021, Laura Chenault, the Marketing Director for the Philly Maker Faire, and Valerie Chikwendu, our volunteer coordinator, wanted to keep maker momentum through COVID, so we put together a podcast.

The Philly Maker Faire Podcast celebrates the creators, builders, inventors, and artists that bring their visions to life at the Philly Maker Faire.

We featuring interviews and announcements about the maker community in Philadelphia and surrounding areas.

Laura and Valerie both handle host/scheduling while I help with recording/editing. It’s been a great way to stay active during this crazy time, and we’ve met some outstanding makers!

To be featured on the podcast, visit the Philly Maker Faire website or drop me a line.

Listen to the latest episode here:

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Blog Project

“Spontaneous Oasis” by Sonic Sandbox

Recorded on November 12, 2019 by Scott Herzog (Third Story Recording) at David Ford’s home in West Philly, then mixed/mastered by me in Jan/Feb 2020, this album is now available on Bandcamp. Everything on “Spontaneous Oasis” was played live, no overdubs, and improvised.

I first met Sonic Sandbox after seeing the group advertised as part of Porchfest 2019 in West Philly. I didn’t get a chance to see them, but followed up later and eventually became part of their 2019 lineup. We later performed at Philly Maker Faire.

When I joined, the group technically had a bass player – Jonathan Wilder, also from Philly. Ironically, I met Jonathan previously through the open mic scene, and didn’t know he was part of the group. It was fun to see that Philly is also a closely knit music town, something I still miss from my long history in Central PA. Jonathan and I swapped bass playing roles from time to time.

I definitely prefer playing bass in the improv format. We tried two bass players, just for kicks, but it was not satisfying for me. Bass players operate in a certain sonic range, and there is such thing as too much bass. Thankfully, I can also play guitar, so for weekly practice sessions, when I wasn’t playing bass, I played Strat with some crazy effect pedals. That also gave me a chance to explore some electronic-leaning interests, and try odd combinations of effect pedals.

The group hadn’t recorded before. Bob, our electric violinist, wanted a recording for posterity. I considered running the recording session, but opted to suggesting we get someone else to come in because performing and recording at the same time can be too much at once. The original plan for this recording was for Jonathan to play bass and for me to play guitar. On the night of the session, Jonathan was suddenly ill or not available. I already had my guitar rig in the car and was halfway to the session. So I played guitar and there was NO bass player! If there was more lead time, I would have brought my bass rig instead. Such is life.

We hoped to put this out as a physical disc, but COVID and other considerations delayed the digital release until late June 2020. I’m not sure we’ll do a physical release now. The result is certainly unique and unlike anything I’ve done before or since. ”Spontaneous Oasis” is not for everyone, but I know some listeners will appreciate the free flow of ideas and explorative playing from everyone. You can learn more about the players on the Bandcamp page, and the mission of Sonic Sandbox on their site.

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Blog Fricknadorable

Tell-Tale Heart by Fricknadorable

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Fricknadorable Photos Scott Canouse

Fricknadorable 2017 Promo Shots by Scott Canouse

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Electro

Electronic Music Resources

Occasionally, someone will ask me where they can learn more about electronic and experimental music. While a Google search is a great place to start, here are some focused favorites to start your journey.

NEEMfest.org – Formerly the electro-music.com annual gathering in the Northeast, in 2017 the name changed to NEEMfest and was moved to the Center for the Arts in Homer, NY.

Electro-music.com – Radio programs, discussion forums, live events

Electrozone – Ithaca, NY group that puts on some great electro events.

Event Horizon Concert Series – The Event Horizon concert series is a Philadelphia, PA based concert series featuring Ambient, Electronic, Experimental and Space Music. It is held at The Rotunda on the University of Pennsylvania campus in West Philadelphia. (4014 Walnut Street.)

Cosmic Crossings – The Cosmic Crossings concerts are a series of electronic music events being held at the Unitarian Universalist Church at Washington Crossing (aka UUCWC.) Tickets for each show are $10, with all proceeds to benefit the UUCWC, which has kindly provided the venue for the series. Each concert showcases live performances by electronic musicians and bands from all over the world, playing ambient, experimental, and space music, accompanied by unique lighting and multimedia visual effects.

National Electronics Museum – Hosts an annual electronica music event in November.

120 Years – The history of electronic music from 1800 to 2015

Encyclotronic – Electronic Music Archive

The History of Electronic Music in 476 Tracks 1937-2001

Greatest Electronic Albums of the 1950s and 1960s

Moog Foundation Archives – There’s much more to electronic music than Bob Moog, but this is a great resource.

Buchla.com – Dedicated to innovator Don Buchla.

Muffwiggler – Forums, discussion.

Handmade Electronic Music – Nicolas Collins gives a great introduction to the world of creating your own noisemakers. Also visit his site.

Music from Outerspace – Analog synth DIY site developed by Ray Wilson.

Radio Spiral – Streaming radio for electro of many genres.

Star’s End – Ambient radio, with many links to the community.

Soma-FM – Radio shows, articles and more.

Hearts of Space – The program that started it all for many of us!

Echoes – Music for the chillout of the night. Another seminal program that continues to inspire.

Categories
Blog Electro

Greenwood Friends School Craft Night

On 2/3/17 I took some of my home made noise makers to school for show and tell. Here’s the results!

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Electro

Piezo Sonicscapes

I’ve been posting a lot of my piezo experiments. Enjoy!

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Fricknadorable Photos

Fricknadorable Photos by Caitlyn Foley

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Blog Project

Bloomsburg Mini Maker Faire

bloomsburg_mmf_logo_wordpressOn April 30 Pepperhead Studios presented entertainment by our family of artists for Bloomsburg’s Mini Maker Faire. Special thanks to Scott Canouse and Roxanne Zuber for taking pictures that day! Here’s some highlights.

Our featured drummer for the event was Urie Kline from Lyco Taiko. Urie has recorded on Mike Hickey’s album “55 and Sunny” and has been working on demos with the Ed Zuber Project and other Pepperhead artists.

Our percussionist was Safa Saracoglu, who also performs with jazz ensemble Negodniki and with the Susquehanna Valley Folk Dance Society.

For more about these Pepperhead Studios releases, visit the sites below:

“World Famous in Bloomsburg” by Paul Loomis
“55 and Sunny” by Mike Hickey

pepper_loomis_hickey_500x500
Paul Loomis (photo by Jeremy dePrisco) and Michael Hickey (photo by Scott Canouse)

Fricknadorable (Photo by Justin dePrisco)
Fricknadorable (Photo by Justin dePrisco)

Ed Zuber Project (Photo by Roxanne Zuber)
Ed Zuber Project (Photo by Roxanne Zuber)

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Fricknadorable Photos

Fricknadorable at King Street Coffee House 2/12/16