Percussive Arts Society just held their International Conference " PASIC 2008 " on November 6th - 8th, 2008 in Austin, Texas. This impressive event ties the best components of NAMM, DCI, Modern Drummer Fest, and education all together. PASIC has multiple components: a tradeshow that features manufacturers of everything drum & drum related, storefronts for popular drum outlets, magazines, and schools; halls in which famous & accomplished drummers & percussionists give clinics and performances; rooms in which lectures are given; and meetings w/commthread groups & think tanks.
I was lucky enough to attend PASIC 2006, also in Austin, and to again be able to attend PASIC 2008. Promark Drumsticks and Modern Drummer Magazine had issued me assignments to cover various artist performances. Jon Feustel, Director of Marketing and Communications for Percussive Arts Society, was kind enough to send a couple more clients my way: DCI Magazine (published by In Tune Magazine) and Dynasty Drums.
Here are a handful of photos from the event!
Above and Below: Marko Djordjevic at PASIC 2008. Marko performed on the first day, with a bass player.
Above: Derek Roddy at PASIC 2008 . Derek performed at Modern Drummer Fest less than 2 months ago, soon took the stage over in Exhibit Hall A. He informed the audience that anyone in need of caffeine was about to get a shot of it... and he made good on that promise! Blast beats tore through the hall, followed by rhythmic drumming.
Above and Below: Derico Watson at PASIC 2008. I had the opportunity to see Derek at Sabian Live @ NAMM 2008, put on a wonderful performance.
Below: After Derico's performance, two musicians whom I had never seen perform took the stage. Percussionist Fausto Cuevas and drummer Stanley Randolph . Little did I know, these are two of the 3 rhythm section members of Stevie Wonder's band! They put on a spectacular performance! An original song was covered as well as some Stevie Wonder hits. The whole crowd really had a great time.
Above: Stanley Randolph tearing it up with a new prototype for the yet-to-be-released Vic Firth LED color changing, USB chargeable drumstick.
Below: Over in monstrous hall 5, percussionist Taku Hirano and drummer Gorden Campbell began a clinic & performance. These guys are young yet have resumes and credits that most musicians dream they could have! The clinic was education, the performance was great... what else can I say?!
Wow... I'm not even a quarter of the way through the amazing performances at this year's PASIC! I will be showing only a handful more in this blog, though.
Below: Late in the afternoon, superstar drummer Steve Ferrone (Tom Petty, Eric Clapton) performed a solo, hosted Q&A, told stories, and brought a band onstage to play some rock'n'blues with. This was yet another fun & entertaining performance!
Above and Below: The next day, one of the performers was Terence Higgins , of the Dirty Dozen Brass Band. Terence's clinic & performance were a great kick-start after my early lunch! With the fun still in mind... I amp'd up these two shots in post-processing.
Below: Now this one had an interesting start. I walk onto the stage where Johnny Rabb and Marco Minnemann are supposed to be setting up their gear for a performance in 25 minutes. Marco is hard at work, but Johnny is playing around on Youtube! (Story continues after the photo)
Above & Below (Continued): I ask Johnny why he is watching the hilarious "Buck Nelson: Lifting the Cloak of Mystery off Rock Drumming" instead of setting his gear up. Johnny, with a serious look of concern on his face, says "I left my samples for the show at home... in Nashville." His performance was to include audio clips from the Buck Nelson video, and he had to rebuild it for scratch. It's a good thing Roland has Johnny program Roland V-Drums about 5 times a day, as his fast programming was vital in getting this done. Johnny finished up just about 1 minute before performance time. Thank God for Macbooks, WiFi, and Youtube.
Johnny & Marco put on am impressive series of solos and duos, ending with an absolutely hilarious duo that featured the Buck Nelson audio clips. I hope someone caught this on video to share with the world!
Two more amazing performances...
Above: Dafnis Prieto at PASIC 2008. Dafnis is yet another unique drummer who performed at this year's Modern Drummer Fest.
Below: Modern Drummer Magazine's "Progressive Drummer of the Year" Gavin Harrison of Porcupine Tree. Gavin did a great job, really entertaining and educating the crowd... and even taunting the photographer ;) Gavin was also featured at this year's Modern Drummer Fest.
Below: The last performance/clinic at PASIC featured a couple of monsters at the kit - Ray Luzier of Korn (formerly David Lee Roth's drummer) and Seven Antonopoulos of the late Opiate for the Masses.
Man, these guys really go nuts on the kit. Not only did they amaze everyone with their engaging solos, but they performed as a duo... while tossing sticks at each other and having a great time!
As a bonus to this post... I'm including a photo that was taken of me behind the kit on a point & shoot camera... Thursday night, Todd Sucherman of Styx and his wife Taylor Mills (singer w/Brian Wilson) threw a get-together at their place. The attendees were all wonderful folks and great musicians - much of the Promark family, the Ludwig crew, Gavin Harrison, Johnny Rabb, Derek Roddy, Corey Miller (of LA Ink), and other great drummers & people were there.
After a relaxing period of everyone just hanging out, there was a massive migration to Todd's drum room (which is more of a drum house, out behind his house). Todd has 4 full kits set up in this one room, ready to play, including a massive kit all mic'd up for recording. I would've loved to have had my camera gear there to capture what happened! A drum jam broke out... All of the pros and many of the other drummers all sat in! It was a blast! After some of the pros circled through what must have been 60 solos, I had a chance to sit in and jam with them. I'm a super-basic novice rock drummer, but it was still great to play with the greats!
The shot of me is followed by a few other small point & shoot cam shots that captured part of the scene.
I had a great time taking photos & spending time with all of my wonderful clients, acquaintances, and friends at the event. In the drum community, everyone is family... and it felt great to be entertained & educated by this family.