Authors Posts by KEN “K BO” BIEDZYNSKI

KEN “K BO” BIEDZYNSKI

KEN “K BO” BIEDZYNSKI
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Senior Editor, Beato's Blog

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“Bang your head! Metal health’ll drive you mad”

Quiet Riot, Bang Your Head (Metal Health) (1983)

The University of Queensland in Brisbane, Australia, has just finished a study that was initially determined to confirm probably what most of us thought; that listening to heavy metal and punk rock leads to aggressive and sometimes violent behavior.  However, surprise surprise.  What the study really found was the opposite; that listening to such music dissipates such behavior, it does not cause it.

hard_heavy_bang_your_head

The study involved 39 people between the ages of 18 and 34 who regularly listened to “extreme” music which is defined as including heavy metal, hardcore, and punk.  The subjects were put through 16 minutes of “anger induction,” during which they talked about such irritating things as relationships, money, and work.  After getting the subjects agitated they either sat in silence for 10 minutes or listened to 10 minutes of songs from their own playlists. What researchers learned was that those listening to the aggressive music were just as calmed as those sitting in silence.   You can read the study here.

“This study found that extreme music fans listen to music when angry to match their anger, and to feel more active and inspired. They also listen to music to regulate sadness and to enhance positive emotions. The results refute the notion that extreme music causes anger….”

By the researchers’ own admission, the study was limited since it was conducted in a controlled environment and not in a “realistic social setting,” therefore, they called for further study.  However, despite these limitations, the study’s main conclusion still stands: “extreme music matches and helps to process anger” rather than causing it.

Interesting thoughts.  Do you agree with this study’s conclusions?

KEN “K BO” BIEDZYNSKI, Editor

 

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One of the biggest events in music this year is HOF band Chicago celebrating its 50th year of existence. Few bands ever achieve this status so it is only right that any group that does reach it should be specially recognized….in sytle. As it relates to Chicago, drummer Tris Imboden and percussionist Wally Reyes, Jr., the rhythmic backbone of the group, have had the good fortune of being associated with DW Drums and LP Percussion who have come up with a special series of drums and percussion pieces to celebrate this very special occasion.

(Louie Garcia (l.) and Akbar Moghaddam (r.))
(Louie Garcia (l.) and Akbar Moghaddam (r.))

Before we show you some killer pics of the new gear (photos courtesy of Kristy Duff Photography) we should acknowledge the two gentlemen who worked so hard to make these beautiful instruments; Louie Garcia (DW Drums) and Akbar Moghaddam (LP Percussion). (Special thanks and recognition also goes to DW’s John Good and LP’s Jerry Zacarias for making the project possible in the first place).

Wally Reyes, Jr., also wanted to add this:

“I have played professionally for decades and I have seen and played many makes and models of instruments but this–for both Tris and I–is a once in a lifetime experience. What DW and LP did here was nothing short of amazing. It’s one thing to be included in one of the best bands on the planet alongside one of the best drummers in the business, but it’s another to be privileged to be playing such beautiful, beautiful instruments that honor a once in a lifetime event. It’s really special and frankly, I am speechless. I think the pictures say it all.”

Well said Wally. Having said that, let’s get to the photos to show you what he means.

Tris Imboden behind his majestic 50th kit
Tris Imboden behind his majestic 50th kit
Wally antes up with beauties from LP
Wally antes up with beauties from LP
Tris Imboden doing what he does best
Tris Imboden doing what he does best
Wally knows a thing or two about showmanship
Wally knows a thing or two about showmanship
The percussive dynamo known as Wally Reyes, Jr.
The percussive dynamo known as Wally Reyes, Jr.
The man is always smiling
The man is always smiling

Editor’s Note: In addition to LP Percussion, Wally would also like to thank Regal Tip Sticks; Sabian Cymbals; DW Drums; Remo Drumheads; Beato Bags; and, Roland Corp.

Great job guys. Look for Chicago this year in a city near you. You can find their tour information here.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

 

J Geils Band
The J. Geils Band

Sadly, guitarist John Warren Geils Jr., known to the world as J. Geils, died on Tuesday in his Massachusetts home. He was 71. Geils was the founder and lead guitarist of the wildly popular band The J.Geils Band. The band attained acclaimed status with a string of chart-topping hits in the ‘80s that included Love Stinks, Freeze Frame and Centerfold. Police found Geils dead in his home around 4 p.m. and they said that “a preliminary investigation indicates that Geils died of natural causes.”

Geils started the band in 1967 in Worcester, Massachusetts, while studying mechanical engineering at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. The group signed with Atlantic Records in 1970.

Peter Wolf
Peter Wolf

The band, led by Geils’ driving guitar and vocalist Peter Wolf, scored their biggest hit with Centerfold in 1981. The song held the number one spot on the Billboard charts for six weeks. Vocalist Peter Wolf Tweeted this:

R.I.P. J. Geils. You were great.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

Alabama
Alabama

We are sad to report that Jeff Cook, guitarist and fiddle player with the iconic country band Alabama, has announced he has Parkinson’s disease and that he will no longer be regularly touring with the band. Cook, who is one of the founding members and who has been with the band since 1969,  is 67.

Cook was apparently diagnosed about four years ago but the band kept the news private until now. Cook said the chronic neurological disorder gives him tremors that make it hard for him to play his instruments, but he didn’t want to stop playing music. He said he is not quitting the band, but won’t be regularly touring with Alabama so he can rest. In the 1980s Alabama dominated country music with hits like Love in the First Degree, Mountain Music, and Dixieland Delight.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

Tye Trujillo
Tye Trujillo

As strange as this may sound, mega-metal band Korn has announced that the 12-year-old son of Metallica bassist, Robert Trujillo, will join the band for their South American tour. Tye Trujillo is a member of the group The Helmets and he will replace bassist Reginald “Fieldy” Arvizu for a series of dates in Columbia, Brazil, Argentina, Chile and Peru, beginning next week.

The Helmets
The Helmets

 

 

A statement from the band says that Fieldy is “unable to make the shows… due to unforeseen circumstances” but will join the group’s tour again in May. The band added this statement: “We are bummed Fieldy can’t join us on this run but excited to do a few gigs with a young player like Tye. We look forward to welcoming our brother Fieldy back when we return to the States in May.”

Korn made the announcement on their Facebook page:

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

Cheikh-Ndoye-FriendsIf you are into jazz and you are in the NYC area next weekend (April 15) you are in for a big treat as Senegal native Cheikh NDoye, master bassist, composer, arranger and accomplished musical artist comes to town for a CD release party for his new record entitled, Sons Of Africa. Ndoye is well known in jazz circles as he has successfully married his jazz influences to world music while complimenting that with Ndoye’s rich Western African Heritage. Joining Ndoye is an all-star lineup which features, among others, accomplished violinist Karen Briggs (formerly with Yanni) and Grammy-winning drummer Raul Pineda, who is one of the best Latin jazz players in the world. Band

To learn more, let’s hear from Cheikh himself about his upcoming series of shows on the East Coast including the show at Club Bonafide on April 15 in NYC (located on 212 East 52nd Street):

Sons of AfricaFinally, just to give you a flavor of what you are in for check out this video from the St. Louis Jazz Festival:

Enjoy the show.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

 

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Along our way in life we sometimes have occasion to sit down and talk with an individual who has made significant and important contributions to their profession or trade. Roy Burns–the legendary performer/drummer, educator, and manufacturer (Aquarian Drumheads)–is one of those individuals. We recently had the chance to sit down and talk with Mr. Burns and he is as impressive as billed and we invite you to please take a moment to check out our interview with this icon below.

(from l. to r., Chris Brady, Roy Burns, and me)
(from l. to r., Chris Brady, Roy Burns, and me)

But first, we need to say something about Roy’s company, Aquarian Drumheads. After a brief tour of the warehouse–which must literally stock every kind of drum head known to man along with plenty of really great sound control accessories–we had the opportunity to meet with the Aquarian staff led by Chris Brady. The staff–to say the least–is accommodating, top flight, extremely knowledgeable, and as professional as it gets. Chris himself is an encyclopedia of sound; tell him what drums you play and what sound you want and he tells you what head will deliver your desired sound. Have a tonal issue or want to control issues with your sound? Chris can steer you towards an Aquarian product that can help. Aquarian 3 9 30 15

As to Roy himself, he is very giving of his time, engaging, and a wealth of knowledge about all things music. Indeed, he is a living legend. Please also take the time to check out the many videos that you can find online which show off Roy’s skills as a drummer. Roy’s performances are epic as are his skills as an educator and innovator. Indeed, we sincerely thank him for his time with us.

We sincerely hope that you enjoy our sit down with the great Roy Burns.

Editor’s note: We also want to specially thank Aquarian staffers Gabriel Diaz and Jesus Estrada for their fine assistance in the filming of this video and the compelling and interesting tour of the Aquarian facility. Again, the Aquarian staff–and particularly Gabe and Jesus–are great people. Period.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

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Eric Moore
Eric Moore

The statement that drum heads are critical to a drummer’s sound and performance is not a novel proposition. But finding the right head and making it work for you in any environment or venue is a different story. Recently, I was captivated by a promo video that I saw of monster drummer Eric Moore. I know that Eric is very talented and in my mind he could probably make tupperware sound good however, I could not help but notice these interesting drum heads that Eric was playing. Then a light went off when I recognized where the promo video was shot; it was Aquarian Drumhead’s facility in Anaheim, California.

Aesthetically, the Reflector series are the best
Aesthetically, the Reflector series is magnificent
(l. to r., Chris Brady, Roy Burns, and me at Aquarian's facility)
(l. to r., Chris Brady, Roy Burns, and me at Aquarian’s facility)

My next step was to place a call with Chris Brady, Aquarian Drumhead’s kwan and Mr. Burns’ (as in drum legend Roy Burns) right hand man. After giving me some basic information about these heads (which I came to learn are called Aquarian’s “Reflector” series), Chris asked if I wanted to try them to which I said, “sure.” Drum heads take on a special importance to me because I am not a national artist. I usually don’t even have a sound crew. In fact, for many of the venues that I play in with The Phil Engel Band we typically only mic the kick drum. So, I expect any drum head I use to do a lot of things for me such as getting a rich sound that can carry in a somewhat large room. It also has to be durable because with Summer coming we will be working a steady 3-4 nights a week on the Jersey Shore (one of busiest cover circuits in the country) and many of those gigs will be outside in the heat and elements. Finally, for the larger outdoor gigs, I will need a head that will be responsive to the whim of a finicky soundman who is miking my drums. That last concern is a big one because I never let duct tape anywhere near my drums (it is a favorite of some sound guys) so I rely on the the drum head to sound good miked or not.

IMG_0822Upon receiving these heads–which are very pleasing to the eye–I immediately noticed the “feel” of the heads themselves in my hands. The Reflector heads are 2 ply so there is some meat to them (the top layer is 7 mil and the bottom is 10mil). They are not going to break easy which is a good start but by the same token, by their “feel” I could tell they would sound great if that makes any sense. Next, I applied the heads to my drums and followed Chris Brady’s suggestion on tuning them (i.e., watch Eric Moore’s video). What I loved about how Aquarian distributes their products is that each head came with 2 T-Tabs which is my favorite Aquarian product. The T-Tab looks like a band-aid and it really helps fine tune out any overtones in either the batter or resonant head. Each head also came with a “duraDOT” which is essentially a circular dot with adhesive to the back of it. The “duraDOT,” like the T-Tab, can be stuck anywhere on the head and it is reusable.

IMG_0821

IMG_0824Although you can really manipulate your sound with either a T-Tab or duraDOT, I did not need either. The head performed beautifully without any need for sound control. But, in the spirit of adventure, I thought I would try applying Aquarian’s industry-leading sound controls devices. I found that if you are in a big hall where the sound “bounces,” so to speak, and basically your drums ring if you even look at them, you can virtually manipulate your Reflector head any way you want to. It’s a strange dynamic because with Aquarian’s Reflector heads they almost go through 2 processes of tuning; the first is traditional tuning to make sure that the drum is tuned to your preferences as a player and the second process involves the application of Aquarian’s sound control devices (i.e., T-Tab or duraDOT) to remove any overtones or “ringing” that traditional tuning might not resolve.

A Reflector head mounted on a Canopus drum kit
A Reflector head mounted on a Canopus drum kit

The end result is that these heads are more susceptible of tuning by the player than virtually any other heads on the market. So, in light of all their capabilities and adjustments how did they sound? Phenomenal. The Reflector series heads provide depth, punch, and attack, all without unwanted overtones. And here’s the best part. With Aquarian’s superb sound control products, I can make changes virtually on the fly. The T-Tabs and duraDOTS are easily removable and reusable. There also is no sacrifice in the power of these heads. They cut through and basically can be modified for the needs of any player. So, do I recommend them? You bet. No questions asked. You will love them–I sure did.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor
 

Journey
Journey

Steve Perry, the former frontman for the iconic mega rock band Journey, has agreed to join the band tonight in Brooklyn (at the Barclays Center) when the Hall of Fame induction class of 2017 is welcomed into the Rock N’ Roll Hall Of Fame. Journey is part of that class along with Yes, ELO, Joan Baez, Tupac Shakur, and Pearl Jam. The last time Perry performed with the band was in 1991. Journey is slated to perform 3 songs (Lights, Separate Ways, and Don’t Stop Believin’) and it has now been confirmed that Perry will be performing on at least one of those songs. Could this be the start of a reunion?

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor 

Well, the much awaited moment since mega band One Direction split has happened: Harry Styles has dropped his first single as well as the video to go with it. The surprisingly lengthy track, entitled Sign Of The Times, dropped today and you can check out the video below.

Complete with strings and grand harmonies, Sign Of The Times–a piano ballad–stands in contrast to what fans of One Direction had previously heard Styles sing with that group. However, one thing hasn’t changed from his One Direction days; despite being dropped today the video has already garnered over one million views on You Tube. Some things never change.

Ken “K Bo” Biedzynski, Editor

 

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