Quist has built an enormous online presence through his jam-backing tracks, and he recently performed as the lead guitarist for Bryan Ferry (Roxy Music).  This Danish guitarist has performed at the Royal Albert Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, Coachella, Glastonbury, and Abbey Road Studios, and has established himself in the Los Angeles music scene.  Aaron Sefchick and Joe McMurray enjoy an awesome conversation with Quist, diving into his musical journey, his jam-backing tracks, the LA music scene, and building and maintaining an online presence.
Quist tells the guys about his musical beginnings, playing his dad’s guitar at age 6 and touring as a ballet dancer until he was 13.  After leaving the ballet world, he devoted himself to the guitar, eventually studying jazz at the Royal Academy of Music in London, performing in New York City, and settling in Los Angeles.
Quist tells Aaron and Joe why he originally started creating backing tracks for practicing, and how they gained wide popularity on YouTube.  The guys have a healthy discussion of how to create mode-specific chord progressions, with lots of useful music theory.
Quist, Aaron, and Joe discuss the differences in the music scenes of different towns with a focus on the LA scene.
Welcome to Fret Buzz The Podcast. My name is Joe McMurray and I am Aaron Sefchick. and
Today, we have an amazing guitarist. Quist is calling in from Los Angeles, although
he’s from the Netherlands. Not only is he an incredible guitarist, he’s become a
YouTube sensation for his jam tracks and his instrumental versions of popular
songs and recently he recorded and toured with Bryan Ferry of Roxy Music. He
was recently inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. So welcome Quist.
Thank you so much. Yeah that was a lot! Yeah. Welcome to the show. Man, that’s
awesome. Thank you very much. Yeah, we’re really excited to have you. We actually
got your information originally from Jens Larsen, who a lot of people have
probably heard of. Checked out your stuff and I was I was blown away. I think I saw
the Bruno Mars video that you did. Playing your ES-335 and you’re
just ripping on it. That’s fun track. Yeah. I know it was a fun track.
Yeah, I don’t do those kinds of videos that much but but you know like
when a fun track comes around and I’m like I gotta do something on that and
you know I’m like okay let’s let’s do that and then that one’s popped out a
little bit cuz I guess some people you know enjoy it or I think that you look
like you were enjoying it so much while you were recording it then right it’s
infectious yeah so yeah I sold that in the comments more than once and I was
like huh okay I guess I mean that’s that’s an old truth as a performer isn’t
it like that you know you if they can see that you’re enjoying it they’re most
likely going to enjoy it as well yeah but I guess that was that was true in
that case that it definitely worked you know caught my interest in the first you
know 15 seconds or so and I was hooked so yeah we’re glad to have you and uh
you know both Aaron and I are guitarists first and foremost first and foremost so
we’re adding have somebody that we can talk about you know guitar specific
things with today and we like to have a broad range of
you know experts from different musical fields and sometimes I feel like I’m in
in class like learning from someone about building guitars or building you
know anything that’s our pedals that’s that’s also that’s all something about
the the podcast is willing because you can you can dig deep yeah exactly
absolutely yeah yes and it’s great if you’re out walking the dog or driving to
work he can learn something and better yourself while you’re you know
multitasking yeah I’m actually kind of slow to the party because but it’s only
in the last year that I’ve really let the podcast into my life and now I’m
like any time there’s a tea you know housework or traveling or whatever I’m
right there learning about something or listening to somebody maybe I smile yeah
our testing is uh it’s growing like wildfire right now yeah yeah and for a
good reason it’s so it’s a great thing and like compared to so much other
entertainment it’s I mean I’m sure there’s lots of different podcasts but
it seems meaningful many podcasts seem like a meaningful way to spend your time
so you know that’s what I like about many other podcasts that I listen do you
feel like you’ve you’ve not just wasted two hours you know you’ve actually
gotten something in that might give you some perspective for the future so yeah
well done to you guys I listen to some of your podcast as well obviously thank
you it’s really really cool really you could thing you got going really look
forward to every every time we do this I I feel like I it’s one thing to listen
to to a podcast but to actually be involved in the in the conversation and
asking questions I get to hang out with these cool people and ask them whatever
I want it’s like what more could you want
yeah Sunday afternoon so I’m curious where where did your journey start and
how did you get into audio and when you say audio Aaron yes what do you mean
audio like to make music or okay you’re what let’s even go further back than
that maybe your first musical instrument and then
because usually what I’m finding is through all our guests is it does start
with some kind of musical interests somewhere along the way and then just
beyond that they usually realize that audio plays a huge role in their life as
well well musics been kind of a big part of
my life the whole the whole time from kind of various angles but I mean the
guitar was the first thing that that got me hooked and and it’s like it’s been my
main thing the whole time as well yeah and that was my dad actually he had a he
had like a beat-up acoustic guitar that he was he was really good at the you can
still kind of pull it off the the Bob Dylan kind of finger picking kind of
stuff and so he was doing that and I was like what’s that and so that that guitar
was successful to me and I sort of started you know to to learn and and and
dig into that when I was about six so that was the first like musical
instrument and like the first entry into that kind of kind of world and then at
the same time I was doing performing I I started as a ballet dancer Wow I I kind
of got hooked on the Performing aspect of music pretty early on because I my
sister was at the Royal Ballet of Denmark and I sort of you know saw that
from the sidelines and I was like maybe that’s what maybe that’s something I
want to try and then I tried to get in and I got in and then pretty quickly
starts like tour and stuff and like a dance at the Mets you know in in them
New York you know the Metropolitan and like some pretty big places and and got
a taste for the old being on stage and and that was you know when I was before
I was like 10 years old so so I kind of been hooked on the Performing aspects of
music since then and obviously in ballet it’s all about music as well and you
know this so all the music like from like check
cops key and like all these classical composers that got engrained in in my
sort of life pretty pretty early on so I guess that’s I don’t know does that
answer and if your questionnaire oh yes absolutely
I think is a really good foundation is in terms of where you’ve come from
that’s great and then where did like so how did it begin to blossom well when I
was about 12 or 13 I I’ve been learning guitar since I was like six or whatever
but but then at that point I decided to dump the whole ballet thing and then
just become just because I’ve never gone to like a normal school so I took leave
from the from the from the ballet world and then sort of just dog into playing
guitar like I became just a total guitar nerd when I was like about 13 and 14 15
16 out you know I had like a had a little stopwatch the one that I had it
sitting on my bike but then I could take it off and then carry it with me and I
used to play a minimum of six hours every day but usually eight or nine
hours you know and I just like forced myself to like keep that minimum effort
on a daily basis beause I just was a real nerd but obviously there was some
blossoming during that period in terms of ink abilities you know and then just
quickly ask you what what guitar were you playing and what amp were you
playing I was playing first times playing like a really chic Roland I
don’t remember the I mean it was you know not not a green amp and then and
then I got at jcm800 stack actually that when it started when it start to rock a
little and that was fun but yeah my first guitar was it was a fender type
it’s called Fender navigator oh sorry ESP navigator it was made by USP in
Japan okay and it was a it was actually a really good guitar and I lost it when
I was I like got junk after a session in a studio in London one time and somebody
nicked it or stole you know so that was an omen to not do that kind of thing but
I lost sitting like scour eBay for years after that but I never found it but
anyways that was my first guitar and then the one that I did all the shedding
on or shredding if you like was a Hamer chaparral from the from the states here
like a hand-built Hamer which I was like when I bought that one with money I’d
saved up from like Bally stuff I was like okay this is the greatest thing
ever like Floyd Rose just you know all the good stuff so I was in heaven and I
still have that one i standed it down to like wooden finish because it was like
turquoise it was pretty much this color actually so I I I got tired of that
after a while and sanded it down in in an in an attempt to be able to use that
in like common or in like not in out I’m basically some of the stuff that I do
but then I got away from it because it’s yeah I really need stuff that kind of
shreds as hardest as a Hamer shipper oh yeah that’s awesome I love that you were
practicing for 16 6 hours minimum is impressive for especially for like a 13
year old but what were you practicing in that time period did you have like a a
method like were you breaking your time into different aspects of music were you
just yeah put learning songs were you working on technique or music theory er
yeah broke it into like different things and also just to go back and to what to
what you were saying about being impressed about the stakes out and stuff
I the that’s one thing about the ballet world
the discipline is like insane what you get exposed to in terms of workload as a
ballet dancer is pretty pretty insane so give it up to any ballet dancer from
that perspective so I took a little bit of that with me and in in terms of like
being a slave driver like I just really took that kind of work work I think but
um I did like a combination of you know practicing scales obviously and learning
solos I did a lot of learning stuff from Records like literally records like
vinyl I remember you know dropping the needle in the same place again and again
that kind of thing I you know ruined a few few vinyl records that were just
like trying to learn you know angry Malmsteen or whatever just listening
again and again and I think I mean tabs were already starting to come out
obviously a lot but I kind of stayed away from that for a while I should be
like because I kind of felt that there was a some value in learning it by ear
and stuff like that so I I am I definitely learned a lot of stuff from
by ear I and that’s not the kind of time consuming but I felt like it was time
well spent and I still feel like for anybody who’s learning music and guitar
is like you know learning anything by ear is super helpful because you do
you’re like honing so many skills at the same time like it’s not just learning
somebody’s musical ideas it’s also developing your own ear and like overall
understanding of stuff so so yeah I did that and to be honest like I started
doing the jam tracks thing like really early on like because I made my I’ve
made my own jam tracks like I would say like okay so we have Ionian mode we have
Dorian mode we’re Phrygian mode like I lined all the modes up and I said okay
how can I make a progression that cuz I was you know reading up on music klarion
and stuff like that from various whatever sources I could find what
guitar magazines and whatever and so I would line up like jam tracks and I
would play there play just like really brought me into
I don’t know tickled boombox or like a you know just that really crude
recording situation and I would just play like five minutes with a metronome
and a rhythm guitar and then I would rewind and just solo on top of each mode
like that so Recor like a mode specific progression on rhythm guitar with a
metronome and then rewind and just play rewind play everyone play at libitum
just getting to know the the modes that way and and that was that was kind of
the foundation for what became my youtube channel like goes way back to me
as a teenager like learning the modes that way I kind of because I kind of
wanted to share that with the you know with other people because I thought it
was a pretty great way to practice and that was the the first things that that
that became big tracks on my youtube channel like those jam tracks so so it’s
quite a full circle kind of situation so with these these jam tracks for each
mode so say we’re in you know talking about the parent key of c-major like
what what types of progressions you know for the folks out there that are
interested in modes because I feel like every every lead guitarist goes through
a period where they like discover that modes exist and it’s like not all just
pentatonic boxes and it’s like oh I can right make all these cool sounds so like
yeah somebody wanted to loop their own you know their own jam tracks on their
looping pedal what would you yeah something something suggest so like in a
major key for example it’s like it’s – the key is to like take each chord that
you have and say like let me start a different way the trick is to make a
progression that contains all of the notes of the mode so because if you do
that you and nothing but those if you do that then you know it’ll sound right
when you playing the mode and it’ll sound wrong when you’re not you know
that that’s that’s kind of the the really basic way so like in a major
scale you know if you play the one the four chord and the five chord you’ve
now stated to so to speak all of the notes of the major scale so so the trick
is to find progressions that that kind of cover cover all the if not all the
notes then like all the key notes so even a you know even a one and A four
chord if you play a major chord I made a C major to an F major you know
naturally you’re gonna want to play C major scale even though in those two
chords you’re missing you missing you missing it be natural so but your ear
probably want to play a major scale anyway but but you could also play a big
solidia n– if you wanted to but like say you wanted to do a mixolydian
progression if you had C major and you played a b-flat major it’s kind of like
you’re stating you’re stating all the very obvious notes in a mixolydian
progression so so yeah that’s that’s the trick you know to make progressions that
that contain the like key notes and that make it like sound very much within that
mode so that you are like okay you can hear when you’re stepping out of the
mode and you can hear when it’s when it’s just right so you would like the
one four or five chords so when I said you know b-flat go C to going to a
b-flat it’s like well C mixolydian if you look at the parent key of C
mixolydian miscellanea is the fifth mode so so the parent key would be F because
if you know F major if you woke up an F major scale the fifth note you’re gonna
get a C so that we so C mixolydian stems from F major and you think what’s the
four and then what’s the five chord of of F major words it’s b-flat and C so so
by playing those two and being in C mixolydian you you know it’s you’re
covering most of the most of the bases so it’s really you know if you seek out
the four and the five chord of the parent key of whatever mode you’re
you’re trying to playing then you will have covered
in many cases a lot of the ground that’s awesome I I love getting into that kind
of stuff and we I think as a lead guitarist knowing how to approach a
certain chord progression is half the battle I mean it says important more
important than what your fingers can actually do technically yeah if you look
at a son I love starting with my students with the Blues because you just
have so many options and you have a lot of time over each chord it’s like while
you’re playing over that one chord like you know say you’re playing the blues
and see you can play the C major pentatonic the C mixolydian scale you
have a lot of options or you can get that you know you can have them play C
minor pentatonic or throw in the flat five to get that bluesy sound
yeah but then when you go to the four chord you really have to you can’t
because of the F dominant 7 has the E flat in it you definitely don’t want
them to play the C major or mixolydian scale because that II national sounds
horrible yeah um so you know you can have somebody playing a really slow solo
and just play the right notes and it’s and it’s very effective I think knowing
your modes gives you a lot of opportunities to make interesting sounds
yeah very colorful yeah sounds yeah I couldn’t agree more
um it’s when it’s also kind of knowing when to when to think modally and when
to think otherwise because like you say with the Blues sometimes you can play
you know you can you can play the minor pentatonic when it’s maybe technically
not right or whatever but it still sounds great and like so I think the
thing with modes is to know when to when to go down that road and when to think
in a different way that’s more to do with overall vibe like maybe I think
maybe the modes get a bad rep sometimes because cuz I don’t know some people
maybe just think of them as kind of you know it’s a very specific vibe and like
and something like shreddy maybe did you know what I mean
like it yeah ready depends on how you approach them it’s you it’s the artist
behind the mode and what they’re doing with it yeah obviously just different
genres treat them in different ways but just knowing your modes and the
importance of them just you know I always tell my students when when I
bring up the concept of modes something like The Simpsons theme song and
something like jaws and how that mode creates a specific emotion and feel it’s
not just sad and happy and happy it there’s more to it because there’s
varying versions of sad and happy bring a gray scale yeah yeah modes really are
a way for as a composer would kind of be able to take the listener on a journey
through emotions and that’s kind of how you look at modes and modes aren’t like
strict you can bend them a little bit and and like you were kind of saying is
the overall emotion the overall kind of feel of what’s going on within the piece
and being able to say okay mode would be appropriate here but then knowing all
the same time to be able to go outside of the lines a little bit and play a
little bit and make it a little bit more colorful in it yeah yeah totally and I
couldn’t agree with you more like it’s the most are amazing for being able to
conjure up like certain emotions just on command like that you know if you know
your modes like as a not as a soloist so much but as I mean also as a soloist but
like as some as somebody who makes music or somebody who composes or has to you
know or wants to create a certain emotion at any time like the modes are
like amazing for that because they they they they can they can just on command
create a certain type of vibe and a certain type of emotion so yeah I always
immediately have when I’m going through this with my students for the first time
I will put on Satriani’s Joe Satriani is flying in a blue dream to explain the
lydian get them to hear the sound of the Lydian
mode and everyone’s like that is such a cool sound like isn’t it it’s like one
of my favorite sounds yeah yeah yeah good
he said he’s pretty famous for that one yeah
he’s done well in terms of I mean that’s well hit him and and by I guess yeah and
they’ve done well and I guess Zappa is another one that gets mentioned oh my
gosh in that yeah in that context those three is always you know put out if you
know quite a few Lydian mode jams I just recently actually put out a tab
of solo that I did on a Lydian mode jam because it was getting popular so okay
I’m gonna put that up but like you know it’s it’s fun to see how like those
three are the main people that anybody will associate when one whenever you put
anything out that’s to do with anything Libyan people are it’s either Satriani
Vai or Zappa that gets the kids dimension because they’ve just like
owned those those sounds to make too many people anyway at least in the rock
world yeah no yeah of course yeah there’s that there’s a whole other
aspect but yeah in the rock world they’re kings of Lydian yeah awesome
well back to your back to your shredding shedding for 69 hours a day as a
teenager so when did you decide that you wanted to go to music school and then
what did you go to music school for and where and how about it yeah well when I
was 16 I was going to go I wanted to go to Musicians Institute in Los Angeles
cuz it seemed like the right thing because I was kind of a shredder and you
know was reading the kind of guitar magazines that they would run ads in and
and whatnot so I was going to do that but I then decided to finish high school
in Denmark which runs until you’re like 19
so I decided to do that first and then in the meantime after I finished high
school I found out that there was a musician Musicians Institute in London
in the UK and so I was like mmm well maybe I’ll actually try that one it was
a little closer I was moving away from I you know out of my parents place and
whatnot so I was like maybe I’ll maybe I’ll maybe I moved to London so so yeah
that’s what I did and went there for a year and then it changed his name and
owners and like somebody ran away with a lot of money and it was pretty it was a
pretty messy as you know you’ve probably been in the context of music schools and
not not always is everything as organized as it seems to the students
right right so yeah so some stuff happen and and and then one of the teachers was
a teacher at the Royal Academy of Music in London who they have a jazz course
one of the most famous reasons students of which is Jacob Collier the guy that
just won he won two Grammys for his Arrangements yeah he’s amazing he’s he’s
pretty cool too but he went to that courses that was the same course that
this this teacher who actually was literally he his whole vibe was the kind
of arrangement madness that Jacob Collier is now known for which is quite
funny because he was literally that was his vibe he was always trying to make us
do like the most outrageous you know deep like just really you know you know
what I’m trying to say like you know it’s just as many notes that you could
trust we crammed into a melody and there it
was it was it was it was interesting his name is ed spate really amazing dude
he was a guitarist so anyway he suggested that I could try and get into
that two row academy music for the Jazz course and and and I didn’t have a lot
of money but they gave me a like a scholarship and stuff so I was able to
do that and then I did that for four years but but yeah I nearly stopped
doing it actually halfway through because I I made a red cord the first
record I made was with Sony Music in Denmark got signed with a project there
and was like a MDE honor on this project and it went pretty well and we worked
with one of the biggest like rock producers in Denmark so I kind of got a
taste for something else than jazz like pretty much almost as soon as I started
that course so I was kind of like beard off in a different direction straight
away but I I decided to finish it after all even though like I said I’d nearly
choked out halfway through and then yeah after four years that sort of made you
know some some network and stuff in London so I just kind of stayed on there
you know and and worked on a lot of music and and then a little further line
down the line started doing a lot to bring and then I started touring with
some American artists and then that’s when somebody said you should come
turmeric and and you know you might like it and I was like well I was gonna come
to American when I was 16 years old so and I sort of remember that that was
actually what I realized to do and I you know I love British culture and like
I’ve been you know in British culture for a long time and it feels in some
ways I feel more British than I do Danish by now because I had so many
formative years in in Britain like my whole I never lived in Denmark as a
young adult like you know on my own I moved away straight away to England so
so I have a lot of passion for that culture but I always felt that I might
feel at in American culture as a musician like
because of like what I’ve spent time doing and what I love and stuff like
that and I was not wrong I love like being in America and I’ve been here for
like almost five years and I have no intention of leaving unless I get told
to so it was pretty awesome that it kind of worked out yeah yeah yes
and you’re in LA now right I’m in LA yeah I nearly I mean I I nearly moved to
New York like I went to New York you know I mean I’ve been to New York many
times but like I went you know and really I did I went through Jam that all
the jams I all the jazzy jams and like really you know looks at it in thought
is you know is this it’s what I want to do but having lived in London for a long
time I kind of wanted to I thought it would also be cool to have like a like a
proper lifestyle change so you know get a bit more Sun and like yeah some summer
vibes and like cuz you know lunch I mean there are we see two amazing cities but
London and New York are similar in the way that you you know you pay a lot of
money for it you know not a lot of real estate and like you getting is kind of
you know thirty and iron and in LA you know you can catch there’s a little more
you get exposed to a little more nature and a little more Sun and I was like
maybe maybe maybe I want to may want to do that can I ask you do you notice the
difference between the music between the west coast and the East Coast well yeah
I mean I I mean that and that was part of my decision-making as well but like I
mean as a jazz er mmm as somebody who you know if you’re if you are somebody
who is like a straight-up jazz er yeah you haven’t got much to do here in LA
you know you you better be better off in in New York I would say you know there’s
a lot a lot more of a scene for that kind of kind of thing as a session
musician and like somebody if you want to play with like major artists
and stuff like that I think this is a pretty great place to be la you know is
that there’s a pretty it’s a pretty strong session scene and obviously if
you’re a rocker as well I mean LA’s is pretty amazing
I’ve met many great rockers since coming here and like the LA rock scene was kind
of first scene that I got I don’t want to say accepted into but a lot that that
some of the doors opened to like I met some of the the the sort of rock scene
dudes and I invited them to come see me when like we were playing with Bryan
Ferry like I think the first like three or four years of living there I played
like three shows with Bryan Ferry the last one was at the Hollywood Bowl with
the Hollywood Bowl all carry-on stuff so it was pretty pretty big and I was I
think I played like 17 guitar solos or something he was he was that and it was
a good business card or whatever so I so I tried to I invited all these cats from
the rock scene and whatnot down to see me play on you know whenever I could for
those types of shows so that kind of you know it sounds pretty calculating and
whatnot but that opened a few doors you know in terms of meeting people and
getting invited to things and whatnot so the rock scene is and I’m amazed at how
you know it’s see it’s like there’s so many people that there it’s a very alive
scene in some guys it’s definitely happens the rock scene still there’s
like there’s Jam at The Whisky A Go Go that’s been going for quite a few years
now where everybody like come and strut their stuff
every Tuesday that’s cool yeah I’m on a list to get up and play know it’s like
they they you have to kind of get invited or whatever like it’s a little
bit inclusive like in terms of they I mean you can if you they like to
it’s kind of how I don’t know how to say this in a good way but it’s kind of like
you know you get on stage and they go oh this is such-and-such from this and that
band and and I think that’s part of the cake as well for for everybody that does
it but also for the audience that they can see like the bass player of
Whitesnake jamming with the lead guitarist of Brian Terrio or whatever do
you know what I mean like it so it’s kind of so they they tend to kind of you
know pick people that have some kind of credits to the name or whatever and so
it’s a little bit elitist like that maybe but they also have you know other
people that are just you know talented and and and that’s so stuff so but yeah
it’s been a very rock kind of scenario and I have a you know I I kind of I do
do a lot of more jazzy kind of stuff so I I don’t feel 100% at home in that kind
of context I have to be honest you know but I am but like I said that was like
the first scene that I sort of entered when I when I first came to LA and so I
just rolled with it and and it’s lovely you do you find that like when you’re
hanging out with people are I mean are there a lot of people that are making it
as full-time musicians or most of your friends in the music world also working
other jobs to get by most of the people that I work with our full-time musicians
but I have I am starting to discover a pretty big number of musicians that are
yeah that that that have like other stuff like I was playing with this guy
recently who’s the drummer in a pretty big rock band I don’t mention it but but
he’s a he’s great John and like plays in a band that has a real name but he’s
like got this construction business on the side where like he’s made all these
people in the music business and now he’s like got this big
is where he make builds people’s houses on the side you know like because he
knows all these people anyway from the music business and and so my go okay
you’re a your contractor as well as a drummer that’s interesting and I guess
you know what you know I seen that more and more actually over here where I
guess that you know at some point people get tired of you know a certain amount
of struggle or whatever if there’s not enough gigs or not enough like you know
if it’s too much up and down that gets stressful over over an amount of years
you know I can I can testify to that myself you know it’s that’s a stressful
situation so if you can get rid of that stress by having some kind of totally
constant income source on the side then I guess that’s you know that’s
definitely something to think about for health and peace of mind you know and
and yeah so I’m definitely starting to realize that that’s the case for for for
quite a few musicians over here and also some that you don’t expect like like I
say where are you like all that that’s like such and such you played with such
and such and but he’s like got a construction business okay interesting
I’m very much I mean I’m still relatively new being full-time I think
I’m I quit my job in 2014 I’ve been full-time music since then and
I I don’t think at least at this point my life I couldn’t if I had another job
I wouldn’t be able to make I wouldn’t be able to spend enough time practicing and
preparing for different types of gigs as a musician and like even just preparing
for my students lessons like sometimes somebody wants to learn it’s something
that I need to spend some time on preparing or I need to you know oh
here’s an offer to play this this gig where they want this type of meat you
know they want st. Patrick’s Day music and we’re gonna pay you for that so I
need the time during the day preparation fair yeah and if I didn’t have that time
I wouldn’t be able to take the gig and it’s just like it’s all a snowball
if you’re available to take any gig that’s thrown at you yeah then you
commit and you have the time to prepare for those you can make it but at least
in where I am yeah where are you guys well we’re
actually in different places I’m in Virginia Beach Virginia right and I’m in
Northern Virginia right right and I used to live up in Northern Virginia and
that’s how Aaron and I got to know each other we were both working together
right we have band we had a band that was quintet what sorry
the Cairo’s quintet oh cool yeah we we played a bunch of original music it was
fun but uh yeah so what 8ki k AI r OS yes I don’t know that the I think our
website we let the domain die it’s been a while now yeah I’m sure you could
search it’s out there somewhere but but the thing is I I know of a
Kairos even or either quintet or cool to from but I felt like they were from
England but and but Amaya mom may may have been you guys I’ve definitely seen
that name before in all likelihood it due to our we wrote some great music I
think we wrote and recorded some great stuff but we didn’t have the our lives
were pulling in different directions like amongst the whole band and we
weren’t able to get out there and perform enough and tour and promote that
music yeah yeah we’re more of a recording for the sake of recording Dan
and in quick it was me taking advantage of musicians that I knew were talented
around me and put together a band real quick and write some original stuff that
we may have had on our own or collaborate together and come together
for a period of time and just have a lot of fun really awesome yeah and he didn’t
take you didn’t take advantage of us you took of an advantage of the fact that we
were there in order for us all to mutually benefit yes it was not like my
vision and this is my band it was more along the lines of let’s let’s do
something collaboratively and drained as a whole
that was that was my vision but that’s awesome yeah I think that kind of
scenario is literally medicine to me like you know playing and and creating
with other people is like the best thing that I can think of I’m getting goose
bumps for now Russia is well right there just thinking about that cuz it’s like
it’s the best freaking thing you know yes it’s literally medicine to me
yeah that’s especially powerful when you’ve written something and you’re
you’re going into this collaboration with the open mind of like I’m gonna
take other people’s suggestions and somebody throws some idea out there for
your song that you never would have thought of like just from a totally
different angle and you’re like yeah it’s awesome yeah yeah yeah yeah
collaboration is uh sometimes it can sometimes you can shy away from it
because of complications with like songwriting who owns the rights to songs
and everything and yeah you just don’t wanna have to deal with paying people
and whatever but it’s the finished product is often far superior yeah yeah
and it kind of lends itself very nicely into this idea of improv like when you
are playing and being able to pass it off to the next guy and you have this
kind of speak that’s going on between the band that’s that’s very nice yeah
absolutely do you seek that out sometimes at
present or is it how do you feel about now good in terms of putting a band
together yeah or in terms of putting yourself in that situation however you
can like sometimes you know even just playing with people creating you know
not necessarily creating but like yeah yep being creative playing with people
oh my gosh yes I mean nuts I’ll say it to be quite
honest with you is not so much anymore because I’ve recently had children not
recently but my oldest just five years old so they kind of took over and I was
of the mindset okay I’m going to deal with my kids for the first couple of
years and just use them right but yeah previous to this very much so
anytime there was an opportunity throughout my entire life that I had a
chance to be able to play with somebody and create something out of nothing
that was that was always me as a kid like you were talking before about how
you were 13 years old and playing for 6-8 hours a day I’m right there with you
I’m connecting with you the entire time that was me what as a young kid going to
all the record stores and all the music stores and putting up those pieces of
paper and take a ticket and call me because I want to play with you and I
would do that all the time because it wasn’t like I just enjoyed playing with
as many people as I could get to play with I liked that collaboration I like
these the prospect of actually creating a band and rocking out that was that was
very much to me I mean you’re talking about the magazines and oh yeah I just
yeah very much that’s awesome and so I’m in a very weird spot in my life now I I
was when I was in Northern Virginia and when I was in studying music at George
Mason at one point refer a lot of a lot of that period I was in three bands
doing mostly original music in all of them and playing all these gigs that
were incredibly fun but not profitable at all
I mean really losing money on overall beep you know by the time you play a gig
where you might if the band’s getting paid you know a couple hundred bucks and
you’ve got 4 of you that’s 50 bucks each but then like one of my bands we I think
a couple actually we’d take 50% of the band earnings would go to the band
account to pay for studio stuff equipment maintenance whatever so maybe
you’re taking them 25 but then maybe you had a beer and like you were so maybe
even brought home 20 bucks but you had to pay for parking and you also
rehearsed one night that week for that and your entire evening that nights like
like 10 hours of effort and you made 20 bucks
it just wasn’t profitable so when I came to Virginia Beach I I was looking for
bands I thought that’s what I was supposed to
do and I started making money playing solo and I’ve had a hard time like I
want I miss the band connections and that excitement mm-hmm but I’ve only
played with bands a couple times here when I’ve been like paid to play like
come sit in with us we need a guitarist for the night we’ll
pay you just show you know learn the songs show up and play kind of thing
it’s just it’s hard to imagine spending I just I cannot make enough money doing
it right now unless you made that your thing and you played the big like at
least around here like if you’re in a big local cover band or tribute band
playing big justice I think it depends on your locale you’re in Virginia Beach
now if you were in LA where the playing with a band I think it’d be a little
just a little bit of a different story but so do you so Virginia Beach is very
much a get paid to play location you know right there’s just built-in crap I
mean last Thursday for fourth of July I I was playing on on the oceanfront
Street and like there were tens of thousands of people walking around and I
was you know in this little tiny stage like you know playing my heart out but
it’s awesome in other we’ve had a lot of guests who have been in scenes like New
York or Nashville and other places where the circumstances are the opposite where
there’s lots of musicians and not so much for built-in crowd then it is LA
the type of place where as a musician you can just like go and bars will pay
you to clubs will pay you to play or is it based on ticket sales
how does it work out there yeah both of those are are definitely there and I
have a lot of friends that I mean that will go out and do big time like session
gigs but then they also have these little comfortable bar gigs that they do
every single week and I’ve noticed that that’s definitely a thing that a lot of
the musicians over here do like they just they have these fair
what’s a cold when you go and play there again like a residency yeah residency
yeah it’s thank you they have all these residency he’s happening and they get
paid for it yeah I not always I think will there be loads of people I’m not
sure but I mean it’s a bar situation so there’s obviously folks there and and
that kind of thing personally I don’t really seek out that kind of thing
so um right so so yeah I don’t have that much hands-on experience with that kind
of thing but do you notice if I could interject real quick do you notice in
terms of like we’re talking about bands but then we’re also talking about this
idea of a solo person like Joe almost like a singer-songwriter type of thing
is there a board of Adam and one way that you see towards bands or
singer/songwriter or I mean I know people that there are both types you
know I know Qataris that goes out and does a lot of solo shows you know he
knows a million songs and has great arrangements and and whatnot I mean III
I have actually done I’ve done some you know in the last few years I’ve done a
few like you know well-paid like solo type of things you know where I say well
paid not to brag but just to say that I did them you know kind of more for the
for the money right you know understand you know I just like money gigs
basically you know and so those definitely happen you know that people
will want a guy in the corner to play some nice music and then they’ll pay
well for that those those that may happen and and and them but yeah the
band scene is tons of bands like three days ago somebody called me up to ask
because I’m touring slightly less right now than I have been in you know
previously I’m focusing a lot on creating and making music right now so
so he called me up and said well now that you’re not touring you know do you
wanna you wanna join this band that goes out
and does all these gigs you know um and and you know make a long story short I
said no because it’s not really my scene to play like you know like covers and
stuff and um right right that’s nice not like my gig but but there are a lot of
people doing that and a lot of people do pretty great from it you know like I
have a friend who goes down plays a Disneyland like twice a week or
something like that and you know they make they make good money from that
right up is he playing in like a like they do
that at Busch Gardens in Williamsburg Virginia where they actually have like
like written out like people have their charts in front of them and they’re like
wearing costumes and it’s part of the they’re paid as park employees but it’s
like a major part of the park it’s professional music like orchestral
almost right right so they have a Disneyland I guess I haven’t been as
much as I probably should have um so I’m not entirely sure
and surprise your kids with it you know it’s a it’s for the kids but really it’s
free maybe read you yeah no I yeah I I am I should actually explored more I I
have not been really down there all that much so I’ve been to Anaheim obscene am
so many times and I always see and go yeah I should check this out oh yeah I’d
love to get a name we’ve talked about that like China hearing and I trying to
get to name yeah we just need to yeah yeah yeah that would be that would be
great to meet you guys that way and am that sick that’s a good forum and yeah
you could meet you know a lot of potential guests as well I’m sure
there’s a stick obviously them I mean it’s obvious but I said one of the great
things about NAMM is that everybody is there
but within this field of hours you know have you ever considered some earn a
more oh yes that’s the one in Nashville yeah yeah
it’s pretty soon as well I think yep here we go scheduling is difficult we’re
gonna make this happen sometime yeah but yeah here’s brutal
Hmmmmmm NAMM 2020. Not a
bad idea Joe. That is where we’re gonna leave it for today. I can’t tell
you how much fun I’ve had with this conversation. What a good time and I
can’t wait for you to hear next week. It’s awesome, what a good guest. I
definitely suggest that you go and check out his YouTube channel as Joe was
talking about in the beginning. The Bruno Mars one is quite enjoyable to watch so
yeah. by all means. check out Quistorama.com and enjoy all that he has for your
pleasure. Yeah, great guest. Can’t wait for you to hear part two next Thursday.
In addition, hey by all means, if you’re enjoying all of the material from Fret Buzz The Podcast…
man we’ve covered a lot of stuff,
by all means, jump on over to iTunes do all the usual, give us a review and more
importantly, when you get the chance, reach out to me at aaron@fretbuzzthepodcast.com
I know you’re listening and I thank you so very much.
I’d love to be able to put a name and a face with who you are.
Send me your questions, send me comments. I’m really interested in the fuzzier
kind of concepts for people. Things that maybe are a little unclear, whether
that’s… I don’t know, recording, tone, amplification, how things work, maybe
that’s finding jobs or school questions, certain professionals within the musical
field. Anything thing that you guys have questions on or maybe it’s a technique or
theory question. Send them my way and I’d love to be able to dig into them
with you. Great! So yeah, aaron@fretbuzzthepodcast.com and with that I think
that’s where I’m gonna stop. So join me next Thursday for part two with Quist as
we jump into more of an amazing conversation on Fret Buzz The Podcast.

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