Welcome to the Kasbah blog. Check in daily for the scoop on whose performing, what artists are showing in the gallery and special edition interviews and happenings!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Tessa Chat's With Strum Diesel

 Hi Kasbah friends and fans! It's time for another Chat with Tessa! This time I sat down with Strum Diesel to learn a little bit more about this awesome SL performer. I have had the pleasure of attending several of Strums shows, but I must admit it was fairly recently, so I didn't really know too much about him. I decided to start at the beginning and asked Strum how he got started in SL music. Strum said that a little over two years ago his RL friend, DJ Deere, aka as Fantasy2u Deere in SL, began mentioning Second Life to him. It was probably 6 months of DJ talking it up before he actually gave it a try. He had become burned out, performing way too often in RL for far too little appreciation, so he decided to take a break, lucky for us, he popped into SL! "I was really lucky, right off the bat I met  Valeria Paster and she helped me get set up to stream, I had a lot of help, met so many nice people at first...I started performing and never fact I think I went a little crazy, played too much...I actually sprained a tendon in my hand and had to stay off the guitar....thats how I began using the piano in my performances." I know I for one am really glad he did!
         Speaking of performances, I was curious about Strum's RL shows and how SL might have had an impact on how he approaches them now. He shared with me that when he first started in SL he really was burned out from the RL music scene, doing 4 hour gigs and really not feeling like he had been heard as a writer or an artist. The first thing he noticed in SL was how much more receptive the people are, how much more appreciated he felt as an artist and it really boosted his confidence. Now, when he performs in RL he says he thinks there is an overall improvement in his stage presence, a confidence he didn't have before. He went on to say, " Knowing people WANT to hear what I have to say has really fact, the first contest I entered in RL since joining SL I won!" I could feel the enthusiasm and appreciation for SL Strum has when he said, "It has really helped my writing, I feel like I am connecting with the people and it gives me more motivation! You can't beat the energy and many times a simple show turns out to be much more like a party!"

         The first time I attended one of Strum's "parties" I noticed his signature green know me, I had to ask about it! He was gracious enough to explain to me in detail how he enjoys changing the color of his hair in RL and that in SL the avatar is what we see as the perfect "us". He said green is the color his hair is now, and that it is his favorite color. He also believes in the power of colors and that green is known to bring fortune and good luck. Strum also said something I thought was so important in this day and age of computers and virtual worlds..."We need to stay connected to nature...we are heading into a virtual existence and it is vital that we keep in touch with the real world around us."

           I was really impressed with Strums views and it  brought me to thinking about some of his other views, more specifically, his political views. I had noticed that many of Strum's original songs have very strong political messages and I asked him if he used SL as a platform to get his messages out there. Without a moments pause he said "Yes, absolutely yes!" He explained how SL is full of people from everywhere and with his songs they can connect any song with a political quality comes from his own experiences. He quoted Ani Difranco..."the personal is political and the function of art is to comment on society" he said one of his goals is to maybe not give people answers to their questions, but to inspire them to search for those answers. "SL is a great tool to reach people and to learn about what is happening politically all over the world" It was refreshing to speak to someone so in touch with what he believes in and so willing to share those beliefs with the rest of us.

            With such a strong desire to share his message  I was curious what might be coming up next for this interesting and animated performer. "I am playing a little less, trying to get the next album underway. I already released an album earlier this the new album the songs are very connected SL and I want to capture the energy I feel from the audience" He also told me that there has been some talk about him going to Scotland, possibly late winter of next year...if that works out, he may even book more shows and possibly make it a tour of Europe. Strum can be seen most Saturday nights at the Kasbah! He is also doing the Fire and Ice show for Diabetes, taking place today from 3 to 9pm SL...a benefit being run by Mandy Ornamental at the Fire and Ice Club, all proceeds go to RL diabetes research, so be sure and catch him there if you are able!
            If you are a fan you know that the relationship between fans and SL performers is unique. I asked Strum his thoughts on his fans in SL and WOW he really opened up to how he feels about SL and his fans. He expressed to me how incredible it is to know that people come to listen to you because they like what you have to say, how you sound..."so many times in RL the people at the shows are friends, or friends of friends that feel obligated to SL, the people come not because they are your friends but because they WANT to hear you." He marveled at the generosity of his fans, even how he worries sometimes that they over indulge him. He raved about venue owners that will sometimes go over and above, turning the entire stage green, encouraging guests to wear much he appreciates those ways the fans connect with him.  We talked about how wonderful it is to be able to touch someone with your music, people you might never reach if it were not for the SL platform.

           Strum really has a strong connection to his fans and I felt he would be the perfect person to ask my favorite last question to..."Do you have anything you would like to say to your friends and fans before we close?" I felt the smile, the warmth as he said "I have said it so much and I will never be able to say it enough...thank you for hearing me, for understanding, connecting to me...for buying my records and my groceries and putting up with me when I am acting like a total rockstar LOL...I am so glad you are all along for the ride!" I don't think you can truly aprreciate those words without actually hearing them...the chat was lovely...I love my job! Thats all for now, until next time...Tessa1 Beck

Scruplz Live Music Event @ Kasbah

Hi all you lovers of live music! Tonight was an amazing night at The Kasbah! Scruplz sponsored 4 hours of live music to launch their new publication, The Scene. It is a directory listing active live musicians and live music venues across the grid with advertisements 100% focused on live music.  It will be a constant work in progress with improvements as times goes on making it more and more useful to the live music community in Second Life.  To celebrate this awesome new addition to Live music they put together a thrilling lineup! Guitar Zane opened the evening, launching into some of the best guitar playing I have heard in a long time! He did some really great covers from such greats as  3 Doors Down and my personal favorite, his cover of Heartless by Kanye West. He was really able to let loose and showcase his vocal abilities! Halfway through his set the place was packed and everyone enjoyed the originals he shared with us as well as the covers! Before we knew it, the hour was up and time for another awesome musician to take the stage...Maximillion Kleene, one of SL's shining stars, was ready to go, diving into his first song with the enthusiasm we have all come to expect. His set was filled with covers from some of our favorite bands and solo artists. There is little better in SL music than listening to Max, but as soon as that thought came to me...he upped the anty inviting Raspbury Rearwin to join him onstage for a bit of dual streaming! The two good friends performed together some really fun songs and through it all maintained a constant stream of amusing banter. They ended their set together with a dedication to me...playing one of my all time favorite songs, I Don't Want To Lose You Yet by Steve Earle. Max left the stage to huge applause, thanking everybody as he went. Raspbury continued on with his solo set never missing a beat. We were treated to some of his original songs and covers, all with the usual Raspy twist! Someone once said about Raspbury.."Yeah, he is fun, but when he whispers....there is nothing like it!" We got to hear a little of that whisper with his cover of Closer. All too soon it was time to say goodbye to Raspbury and hello to the final performer of the evening...CraigLyons Writer. Craig was new to the Kasbah stage and he was welcomed in the usual Kasbah style. He had live video running so we could watch as he performed some really wonderful covers and great originals! Craigs audience comes equipped with loads of fun gestures including the stomp stomp clap, one of my favorites. It was nice to hear that Craig still donates a portion of his tips to Global Green and he even showed a short video featuring Global Green during his set. His last song was one of my favorites and he played it for one of his group members, a special version of a John Lennon song, Across the Universe. Craig does that song to perfection and the crowd went wild. There were fireworks and lots of gestures flying! It was a great end to a wonderful night of live music at the Kasbah! Be sure to grab your copy of The Scene so you can be informed of all the exciting things SL live music has to offer! Thanks to Scruplz for sponsoring this wonderful event and for bringing us all together again!