Making of Stones of a Feather

By Robbi  //  Lyres and Bones  //  4 Comments

Hi Desert Location Joshua Tree

Special thanks to Casey Kiernan for this little mash-up of film and music. Casey is the founder of the Time Lapse Festival where the master time-lapse filmmaker Godfrey Reggio famous for the Koyaanisqatsi, Powaqqatsi films was one of the judges. In this clip Casey combines some of his own fantastic time-lapse footage of Joshua Tree, with a piece of music from the new 3rd Ear Experience album.

To hear our music with these images one gets a clear understanding of the influence the environment has on our imaginations. Just imagine, we actually live and work among these images on a daily (and nightly) basis. I am surprised our music isn’t even more spaced than it already is. This piece of music is from the introduction to a song called Flight of the Annunaki, which is the first song on the new album.

Of the The FurstWurld Gallery Recording Studio

One question i have for a person who wants to know about God, is: ‘ what is the first thing you need in order for something to exist?’ – the answer i am looking for is ‘ you need a space for the thing to take place in’ – i call this the Tuesday Morning before the big bang. Anyhow so a rock needs a space for it to be a rock in. Space rock needs a rocking space for it to happen in – Ladies and gentlemen please allow me to introduce to you the one and only Bobby Furst. Bobby Furst has created the perfect rocking art space: The FurstWurld Gallery of Music and Performing arts. It is a huge Quonset hut filled with art. Every inch of the gallery is a surprise, a feast for the minds-eye, indescribable. Now remember, i bring in musicians who, some have never played with each other before – and we jam freely and i record the jams. The environment has to be just right for the musicians to feel free to be themselves in, and free to explore the unknown in their own expression. – this is the nature of the space that Bobby Furst has created. As soon as you enter the gallery you are “wowed” and your mind enters into an inspired mood. and you want to create something more unique than what you have before. This is the mood i need each player to be in. This is the influence an art gallery has on the creative mind. Bobby’s life philosophy exudes from his art and enters our minds and pickles our musicianship. Having virtually built this gallery single handedly, he has now dedicated this gallery to the community. It is one of the most beautiful gifts a man can offer a community. I hope that the beauty of Bobby’s gift can be felt and heard in our music, as our gift to the world. Ladies and gentlemen, my friend, my inspiration, the Shaman of Joshua tree; Mr. Bobby Furst!

of the musicians

Craig Else

My favorite story I tell about Craig Else is this one: One day Craig was asked to audition for a band with some heavy weight musicians in it – I think the bass player was Billy Sheehan – anyhow he was asked to learn a Steve Vai song and solo for this audition.
As many might know Steve Vai was voted the 10th “Greatest Guitarist” by Guitar World magazine. He is technically smart and fast as lightning. Steve Vai was originally introduced to the world through Frank Zappa when at the age of 18 he was hired to be Franks Transcriptionist. He later joined the band as second guitarist to Frank.
So to cut a long story short – not only did Craig learn this Steve Vai solo note for note but at the audition he played this incredibly complex solo backwards. Craig is insane that way with a brain built for physics. So for 3rd Ear Experience’s new album I got Craig in to handle a fretless bass solo on one of the songs. I was curious as to what type of a solo such a proficient guitarist would come up with, being limited and somewhat hampered by a fretless bass guitar. Needless to say he was masterfully tasteful! Ladies and Gentlemen it is an honor to introduce you to a good friend of almost 40 years now – the legendary Craig Else!!

Danny Frankel

When I was writing an exam for Trinity College of Music, there was this question about the piano. I don’t quite recall how it was actually phrased. But the answer was – Piano is a Percussion instrument. I didn’t get the answer right (so I found out later). I guess it’s the striking action that makes it percussion. Well that little realization has infused itself into me. Then while living on the farm – the local Africans would gather at the river and drum all night for their initiation ceremonies’ which were scary as all hell, but that’s a story for another day – but from a distance one could hear in those drums – the short melodic phrases that would be on repeat for the longest time – very enchanting. Since those days I was infatuated with making a music with percussion – in particular the hand drums – anyhow the rest is history. Ladies and gentlemen let me introduce to you Danny Frankel, Kyle Hanson and John Juan Smolinski on percussion. Thanks you guys for coming down to the 3rd Ear Experience recording sessions and adding your sultry pianissimo and piano-forte to the recipe!

Robbi and Jorge Bassman Carillo

 I have been extremely fortunate to have played with some of the greatest bass players of my time. Starting with Robby “the Zulu” Whitelaw of Shag, Dino Archon of the Asylum kids, Fuzzy of Baxtop, Jeff Ament of Pearl Jam, Joey Vera of Anthrax/Armoured saint, Dug Pinnick of Kings X and Paul Pott of the Space invaders. What made them great was not necessarily a good technique or great chops, (mind you Joey is pretty up there.) But what each one had in common is what one would call the “X” factor. A certain touch that was unique to them. Naturally what made them special to me was that they played the way I feel it. Even though Dino and Dug have a lot more top end than Robby and Joey, or than Jeff who is kind of in the middle somewhere; inherent in each of their sound is that lo yo yo, that depth of groove and of African tribal ritual shamanistic darkness’s. Ladies and gentlemen please allow me to introduce to you the latest in a long line of greats; Mr Jorge Bassman Carrillo. Jorge has through tirelessness and patience and with good cheer supported me and journeyed with me into the most obscure and challenging places musically. Places that have tested our techniques, strained our minds and our muscles, and tested our resolve and commitment to arrive at a place we can call our own. Ladies and Gentlemen – Mr Jorge Bassman!”

Rojer Arnold

There I was 13 years old, learning to play classical flute. The classroom was full of straight, short back and sides, apron laced boys milky groomed, and dressed for the orchestra – and silly me, with Celtic red locks shoulder length, Tibetan boots, faded denim jacket, green eyes, mean eyes, LSD eyes, mind already twisted by Dylan Thomas, Siddhartha and the Otis Waygood blues band. I had heard the fire within the reed, brooding and breeding, source and seed of life love liberty and light – I had heard of that guy Rumi who had a whole language based on the sounds of the flute. And there I was tantric stained forest mud on my bell bottoms, while the boys who ate the sugar right out of the bowl eyed me with suspicion and whispered behind my back. I have played all kinds of flutes since then – reed flutes , Chinese, Arabian flutes, even Indian. I don’t play flute no more. Many of my favorite rock bands have flute. Then one day while kicking some Ten Years After down at the saloon, in walks Roger Arnold with a flute. What the hell “sure , go ahead jam that little hippy flute over this raging and tumbling” – (cynical bastard that I am sometimes) Then, just as I was throwing out a thousand light notes a minute Roger hits the mic sounding a mad wind swirling around each of my riffs like an electron to an atom heart – howling and screeching like the wind through these cheap windows in my desert house. Ladies and gentlemen let me introduce to you the one and only Roger Arnold. Whenever we can, we get Roger on the music. We are super super pleased, that he, just by chance, wandered into the studio while we were recording music for the new 3rd Ear Experience album.

Doug Pinnick’s bass guitar sound has influenced everyone from Kyuss to Alice in Chains and many many others. He was the guy with the biggest fattest and lowest sound. Many acknowledge Dug as being their inspiration (of course there are also those who have no self pride and they dont). Dug used to create that sound by tuning down all the way to B and then playing through a bass amp (no treble) and a guitar amp (no bass). Nowadays SansAmp and a few others have created settings on their pre amp called Dug Pinnick. Sans amp have actually made a pre amp called the Dug Pinnick signature series. He still has the fattest sound in my opinion. A journalist once asked me the meaning of humilty – i said – you know humility when you stand next to an elephant. The same can be said of Dug Pinnick – when you play with him you feel like a small man beside an elephant. We are super honored to have Dug join us once again on this new 3rd Ear Experience album – Ladies and Gentlemen – Dug Pinnick!

Bobby Furgo

“So for this part I want the harmolodics Ornette Coleman thing. The idea is we superimpose our improvisations on a secret melody (which I sing for him) – even the tonal center of the piece can be tossed out, if you want, right? “ – Bobby stares back at me, Huh? “ that’s too much for a simple violin player” he says smiling. I try explain again; there is a secret melody the other players are singing in their minds, and improvising to, but no one is playing it- happening all at the same time. Again I get the Huh? and the smile. “let me hear the track” he says. So I play it for him and he starts hunting for the key. We’re in Eminor I tell/help him. He continues hunting for the key. This is odd, him taking so long to find it, I think to myself. In these overdub situations I like to give a musician one or two stabs at it – it’s a jam band, I don’t want them getting slick with knowing the piece- just the overall concept. So we do a few takes – Bobby plays great. Days later I listen to the track and am disappointed. How did we fuck up? So I mute his tracks. Weeks later during a mixdown I unmute his tracks and boom the penny drops – this fucking guy was having me on!! he knew all the time what I was talking about. He did it even better than I imagined – , muthafucker tossed the tonal center right out of the box!!!!!! So much so that it even transcended my comprehension! Brilliant! Courageous! I love being surrounded by musicians who are better than me – I just love it! Ladies and gentlemen Mr. Bobby Furgo!

Damian Lester

Damian is native desert plant. Born and raised in the desert. One time I wanted to borrow an amp from his dad Steve – looking down at the amp Steve said “ I raised a family on that amp” and what a family!! Every one as talented as the next. Steve taught them how to harmonize from a young age. To learn music first through vocal harmony before you touch an instrument, to me is the way to go. Damien was the bass player in my first desert jam band the Butter Thief about 10 years ago. He is one of the most sort after musicians in the Hi- desert and maintains one of the best if not the best – vegetable patches in the desert. I am once again honored to feature Damian on the new 3rd Ear Experience album …you got it…on vocal harmonies and stand up bass. Ladies and gentlemen – Mr. Damian Lester!!

Richard Stuverud

I met Richard when Jeff Ament (Pearl Jam) and I rolled into a studio to do a record. He immediately took to my concept of world drums in a rock context. Later on, as part of his training he offered to come on a European tour with my African acid rock band Tribe after Tribe as a hand drummer!! – his hands were swollen like soccer balls after the first few gigs. Since then he has handled the drum kit for me on many albums and tours. The extra special quality in Richard is that he is a great song writer and he quickly sees the whole picture before I even get through the first chorus. Our friendship also gets sweeter with every passing year. I cannot wait for you all to hear how insane the drumming is on this new 3rd Ear Experience album – think Keith Moon meets Ginger Baker!!

Kurosh Showghi

We are honored to feature Kurosh on didgeridoo drones on the new 3rd Ear Experience. Kurosh builds his own didgeridoos, from the native woods of the desert yucca trees. Known by locals as the gentle giant in combination with great circular breathing technique Kurosh’s drones unfurl like dark matter that consumes the hidden depths of the universe, lending a foundational roar to 3rd Ear Experience’s sonic explorations.

Alan Swanson

Al is a mountaineer and climbing guide. I believe this comes out in his playing. He creeps to great heights, his chords, augmented, diminished and altered give vertigo. His only rope is woven from the whole tone scale. Al’s performance on this new music has given it the depth of Coleman and Evans and the passion of Deep Purple.

John Whoolilurie

When we first met John he was a one man band, working with loop pedal to create live grooves, with only his voice and a saxophone – rocking the crowd at the Joshua Tree music festival. John owns the ONE – and when a soloist “owns the one” he can bully the groove of a melodic improve into doing anything for him. We are proud and honored once again to have this great man and musician featured on the up coming 3rd Ear Experience album.

Chris Unck

Chris Unck, my current favorite guitar player: Chris will be featured being a very naughty devil putting stink and sting on the new 3rd Ear Experience album – its an honor! – Stones of a Feather!

4 Comments to “Making of Stones of a Feather”

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  • [...] seinem Making of Stones of a Feather, erklärt Frontmann Robbi Rob (Gitarre), dass es eines Raumes bedarf, damit etwas existieren und [...]

  • [...] seinem Making of Stones of a Feather, erklärt Frontmann Robbi Rob (Gitarre), dass es eines Raumes bedarf, damit etwas existieren und [...]

  • Really enjoyed listening to your interview on the house of prog yesterday Robb,cant wait to hear the album my wife becky won from Nick. Would be great if you could get a gig at the oregon country fair this year, im sure you would go down well here in Eugene. Keep doing what your doing,we get you.peace.

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