KARAVAN ROAD JOURNAL
OF THE WEEK ARCHIVES
QuickTime rhythms from the road:
Highlights from 4 years of Eklektro Karavan!
3/10/06 Road to Florianopolis Brasil
guest cam by danny n
un-editing by -ekg
Part 1 2:53 23mb
Part 2 1:53 13mb
3/2/06 Salvador Brasil, CARNAVAL
Traveling RV-free, backpack studio style again; and this time its Brasil, just in time for Carnaval (!), heading straight to the roots: check out the trios eletricos and wandering drum corps in the hilly streets of Salvador Bahia! -ekg
Part 1 5:28 33mb
Part 2 5:59 34mb
Part 3 7:07 40mb
12/20/05 December's Nomad: video blog
When a studio is solar-powered, shorter days and longer nights can seriously compromise one's free electricity supplies; until surprise! Warmer winds arrive, inspiring exodus visions; as winter solstice approaches in southern California -ekg
Part 1 quicktime mp4 2:48 13mb
Part 2 (still on deck, stay tuned)
and blowing off steam
EklektroOverseas full moon on Thailand's
2:08 17mb quicktime mp4
12/25/04 X-mas "Week of-Breakbeats"
EklektroRetro: flashback 4 years to
the epic New Year's Global Tribal Gathering:
roots (the tribes) 6:15 74mb
rock (the kasbah) 3:20 23mb
rave (the finale!) 3:40 24mb
(DVD) sample excerpt
Episode 4: "Revelations" 4/15/04:
tropical drive 2:40 / arrive 2:40 / thrive 6:40
live! 15:00 (DVD only but check a sample
semanasanta @ eklektro-desperado page)
RevolutionFlow mix: 7mb
montage of previous weeks:
fun with megaphones 2m:31seconds
megaphone serenade 8.9mb
a trio of unedited electronic drumtracks
Happy Independence Day, from the
Spirit of '76 (1976 silver-retro RV studio)
6/17/02: unedited nightshot
2AM desert all-night drive
6/9/02: New Orleans kids
with Eklektro megaphone
Represent - 844 k
4/10/02: Tremolo Beach:
jamming dual-screen, 1.6mb
Take the 3-minute tour of
Eklektro Vehicle2, the "before" shots
(temporarily offline, remixed for DVD)
Winter drum circle Venice Beach
420K, Quicktime plug-in required
of the week
is accepting submissions from
electronic drummers and beat poets!
updates for Eklektro Karavan, nationwide or orbiting LA
excerpts and highlights"behind the scenes" and cyber-journalized
Road Journal is in the process of being migrated over to our Blogger
but feel free to scroll down and peruse 4 years of our intermingled archives, stream of consciousness-style, cascading chronologic, enjoy!
4/30/05: the eve of MayDay, and i'm surprised at myself how long i had been neglecting the journal aspect of this page, and why? (having spent the past 3 months in thailand... and having just landed back 'home' now 3 days) with such an overwhelming barrage of imagery, perspectives and epiphanies of late, i guess i didn't want to gush all over this page... like how satisfied i was having decided to take this trip in the first place, escaping LA winter in a tropical and affordable way (jungle-studio paradise adventure 75+ days)... living a prescriptive mix of serenity and excitement: writing and working experimental media/musical (starts as simple as laptop and headphones)... long-hours in a sunny bungalow in a far away country... a sunny sort of underground i suppose..., all the while paving the way for a possible Thai return next year with friends: a backpacking solar panel carryin' "karavan" into the beachside jungles of Thailand... and w/dustyfoot satellite dish, streaming from ultra-remote locations... jungle jams: extreme electro-organic cyber-jazz jammed virtual transceiver-style, tech-nomadic art via internet MCs emboldened by their surroundings: channeling, reflecting: represented for instant archive for the vicarious, or inspiring your own eventual experience, ever-eclipsing.
Thus the brainstorms fueled by first-time asian adventure, perfectly thai-like... just like mexican first impressions, introductory visions of bangkok, improvising, enterprising... enticing... overwhelmed and then the overnight bus and morning boat ride, afternoon arrival: mecca(!): the island: living better-balanced, focused and further progressing as a tech-nomad.. and most essentially for me: having left the RVs behind for the first time in 4 years... (last time being Morocco)... Remembering what it was like, those days before i took on the task of owning multiple RVs... trying to elicit a karavan outa' nothing; nothing 'cept what seemed like a good vision: off the grid: adaptation of recent inventions w/expanding forms of subcultural celebration: solar / wireless + re-creational vehicles..., independent = no entanglements... one would think a most-proper base for artistic expression, as opposed to stationary dirty-money studio IMHO (and yet i'd often be forced to fly the karavan flag solo)... i mean, it was post 911 by barely a few months and high time we made some kinda statements... from the freedom outposts... from the unpolished and untarnished underground... from those of mobile perspective... those willfully living on the road. and yet most of the past 6 years, yes, 'collaborations' have been inadvertently one-sided and subject to cause and effect amplified by ultimate self-sufficience, ie) indefinitely sidetracked by learning a never-ending series of necessary new skills, like auto-mechanics, or how to upload video from your laptop tethered to your cellphone... And so its taken years (!), spinnin' wheels and waitin' impatiently for other pirates to take the plunge; but by golly, NOW some of my more experimental/musical friends have finally independently purchased and outfitted their own RVs... and i'm wide-eyed at what might soon come to be... damn proud of 'em.... (while wary of the changes lately coming over ME: new vocal explosions forthcoming, having lived thru alternative rock, industrial and even surviving grunge... great expectations for techno always at arm's length) despite energetic format of dancefloor (DJ-ism must be half the problem?); i've surely assumed the role of instigator, and why? format is essential... for with whom would one otherwise choose to forge out a collaborative soundtrack of pure origin...? in what future-flavor would you envision the perfect new media network? to draw the connection between a drum circle and a radio signal? minimalism with which to counter the population explosion, the dumbing-down? umm... some cyber something or other?? umm: PUNK! for the hell of it at first (or rather i say heaven)?.... a haven for commercial free individually-driven expression, still perfecting the number one lesson: so wanna join me? wanna be part of starting a mobile internet radio station of live-played jams and interviews with undiscovered artists of all flavors... from exciting locations? then go grab your best weapons (information): via eclectic electronics (instrumentation):... everywhere! as purveyors of wireless web and solar-power (the network merely awaits true committed collaboration): eklektro.net
12/25/04:Season's Greets, and a Week of Breakbeats! uploaded today is a collection of retro Eklektro clips, from the days before the site was ever launched. Also, over the years our archive has become overgrown, and so we'll soon be doing some weeding down on the vids on this page. Last chance to view some before they're removed... to reappear full-length, full-soundtrack and HI-res on DVD... So as usual, please stay tuned!
in the states, o "impuestos" aqui.. expatriate? a good day to hit
the internet cafe anyway, 2 birds with one stone / upload / unpaid:)
Just when i had reached a solo-solar-sonic peak, after 3 weeks completely alone on this perfect writer's kinda beach; Semana Santa arrives, and mi privada lugar is invaded... descended upon by alien campers... indeed one incredible and extended family in particular... and they have charmed the pants off of anyone else's preconceptions of the Mexican version of Easter Week... a respite, outdoors under the sun, beneath the palms, the moon and stars, the campfires, the home-cooking, the magic kids, the electro-organic jams, the waves... and the revelations: we're ALL aliens indeed, and nobody knows this better than the kids... and the adults who can still take time to remember how to BE kids.
lot to catch up on: Today marks 4 full weeks that The Rocket and I have spent
situated SOLO upon a little piece of jungle paradise... off the beaten path...
hidden along the Mexican Pacific coastline. This is the longest time i have
ever been "camped" in one place, and the experience has certainly
allowed the solar-sonic studio explorations... as well as nomadic life's-path
REVELATIONS to flow: Welcome to Episode 4 of Eklektro Mexico Breakbeat of
the Week: Revelations. Perhaps you are starting to sense a pattern. Episodes
one thru three: Impetus, Exodus, Excelsious... and now, Revelations. Such
are the first steps to becoming a full-time and full-fledged electrified nomad,
as unveiled to me over 5 years of incredible (and actually goal-oriented)
wanderings... I have noticed the cycles, the distinct modes in which one takes
to the road (and there are indeed 2 more modes yet to be disclosed), but it
wasn't until this one particular epic trip, Eklektro Mexico, that i have been
able to conceptualize and formulate such theories as concrete, continuously...
while living within the mystery... while working upon a multimedia re-creational
format to do justice to all this! So instead of just what i've long thought
would be one all-encompassing disk, there is now a series of DVDs i'm cooking
up behind the scenes, to be released indeed chapter by chapter, and if you've
been following the exploits of Eklektro Karavan lately, via our "breakbeat"
tongue-in-cheek, I think you will be most surprised when given a chance to
absorb and consider the more serious and high-resolution side of all things
and so with hard drives bursting with data, new music and imagery, we figured it was high time we finished the first complete piece... in the beautiful and rather challenging format of all-original and solo-composed DVD!
chronicling the amazing possibilities found
when jettisoning into the NOW, nomadically
and in regards to b-b-Breakbeat of the WEEK, the biggest challenge lately has been trying to keep the "stories" somewhat brief (!) for internet upload, Quicktime video, for net connections of varying speed: quick-cuts and compression... while perhaps a style in itself (and always delivered free) definitely lessens the resolution (and sometimes side-tracks our productivity!) and so we've been working mostly behind the scenes... mostly longer storylines, new mixes of completely new (as well as epic-archived) original tracks, sharper imagery... working diligently on a special mix of media to grace this first Eklektro DVD! ... like a documentary? Rather a cross between a "concept album" and a road-radical DV journal, composed in motion (rendered when sitting still... saves lives.. and hard-drives). ... like an episodal series? The adventures of El Eklektro... via RV? In terms of 100,000 miles and 5 years ago... certainly intriguing... but tell MY story? how boring :) The experience has been ongoing... cyclical... psychotic... and certainly participatory!
.... seemingly never-ending: yes, seen thru the eyes of one soul, solar-energized, and with powers of absorption/digestion/transmission trued, trained... with 5, perhaps 6 senses all firing, reflecting, mutating into one: having developed a modern day migratory instinct! As a test-case, I have been graced as only this ever-changing perspective could afford, and it seems my destiny is to spread the word: mobility: presenting potentialities... those which could just as easily be YOURS, by inserting your specially-flavored storyboard. Integrated into a vocation (vs. vacation) and even irrespective of "adventure", the perspective of the road is something that indeed everyone can and should afford: And so consider the author, the artist as transceiver, cyber-journalist on a quest, running the labyrinth of re-creational life: Catching up to NOW (wow!):
And so WHERE and WHEN to start "the story"? The unveiling could be overwhelming if not broken down into chapters... considering the epic expanse and special proximities... all the vital parts which are integral to even the INTRO! And so, a series, of rotating themes... destinations and special guests... ie) What DRIVES you...?
to take to the road? Impetus
to flee? Exodus
to accelerate? Excelsious
to see? REVELATIONS
to educate? Definition
to celebrate? Exhibition
and so it seemed obvious upon this trip that Revelations would become disk one... to join this program in progress, in the ecstatic center of things... to be released before the end of May04... From south of the border, we say, por favor, stay tuned!
Cinco de MARZO from El Eklektro. We stopped over in Mazatlan just for a quick
respite before continuing south, and ended up staying for a while. The Solar-Sonic
studio is all plugged-in with all systems GO, and we're getting down to business
of doing this desperado DVD, finally! check out the Eklektro blogger
for details. Hope to rendevous with Eva from Skapista.com, currently traveling
down near Puerto Vallarta. Hasta luego!
12/20/03:Winter hits LA. Southern migration impending: Eklektro Mexico?
8/27/03:Next phase of Rocket-refurb now complete: major studio components moved from The Camel (disabled) to The Rocket. Quite a feat to cram it all ergonomic into the smaller RV's interior space (23' vs the Camel's 26'!). Finished just it time: we're on the road to BurningMan!!
modulations and loads of vehicular audio/video out-take materials gathered
in the past month since "the crash" (hit by a drunk driver), all
of which in some way to be remixed (and stories recounted) in our upcoming
Digital Nomad DVD... it seems the best stuff is the stuff that flows behind
the scenes, or indeed when broken down (like a true breakbeat). So after spending
the better part of May readying the systems for a summer on the road, NOW
the story of Eklektro Networks becomes increasingly complex (and our Euro
plans have been slightly pushed back)... realizing how dependent we are upon
our vehicles, our mobility, our solar electricity... and now we're damn well
nearing 500 days officially "on the road" and/or orbiting LA (since
we started counting).
Yeah, "the crash" interrupted our momentum and forced many quick decisions amongst friends and collaborators. We had to do a bit of "musical chairs" with the RVs, with Mark Trance moving operations out of The Rocket and back into Qtopia until The Camel gets repaired... or rather, reborn (and when it comes back, you'll hardly recognize it)!
In the meantime, The Rocket enters yet another stage of interior studio redesign. Its a constant quest for maximum ergonomics. You can't be too cyber (and only one month till Burningman)!
7/4/03:With the audio studio in disarray, today i finished the "Daily Manifesto" chapter for the text accompaniment (booklet) to the upcoming DVD. Hoping that GUMweb.com will lend their graphic talents to help produce the printed artwork.
6/25/03:A drunk driver crashed into our parked RV last night while i was working inside with headphones on... caught me completely by surprise, threw me and my laptop clear across the room, destroyed the front end of The Camel (26' motorhome/studio), bending the frame! This crash won't be any easy clean-up, but we're already working on bouncing back bigger better bolder, ASAP. Stay tuned.
5/9/03: New mobile collaboration in the works: LA underground electronic guru Mark Trance last week took up residency in The Rocket, with an RV full of gear and a huge archive of gig-ready tracks. So together with myself (EKG) on laptop, drums n vox, as well as Negative2 on visuals, a new tour-ready act has sprung into action. Stay tuned for dates this summer!
intense months fly by, working out in the wilds and cooking up within the
digital kitchens...such is the mobile solar-studio existence during these
months surrounding another semii-migrational WINTER out west... from SanFran
(TechnoTaxi) to the southern tip of Baja (Eklektro Mexico)..all adventures
which will be fully documented cyber-journal style on our upcoming DVD release...
This period of re-free-form-ation includes entire works born on-the-fly, on
the road: composed on deserted beaches, mountaintops, deserts, downtown ghettos
and passionate parking lots of the great American West: 2 RVs: 2 laptops and
a microphone...a fluctuating inspirational crew, incomparable adventures (and
comical misadventures). Confidential, theoretical, political, philosophical
and celebrational writings that in turn inspired fully-fleshed-out multimedia
tracks (currently in progress.. and still perpetually on the road). Also included:
writings published in GUM mag, the RV technical journal follow-up to the RES
mag Digital Habitat article: to accompany the "after" video of Eklektro
Re-Creatiional Vehicle #2, The Rocket... a walk-thru after its finished refurb...
and new plans for the forever-continuing retro-fit... the silver vehicle of
many brainstorms... the catalyst for countless collaborations...
Ride-on, Write-on: Digital Nomadic Verse for DVD text... stay tuned...
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9/14/02: BurningMan Wrap-Up:
Ah how it burned, like forever it will always be
different flames, and the same familiar intensity
we need 24-7 and are you coming up for air yet?
BurningMan '02: The Underwater World meets the Silver Submarine!
After a couple false starts, today marks a personal and complete phase of BurningMan decompression... now that we're actually MID-september, past the 9-11 annniversary; having re-entered the atmospheric environs of reality, re-establishing contact, exchanging abbreviated and unbelievable stories, dusting out the systems, repairing all the broken stuff... If not so inspired, i know we'd be indeed completely BURNt out. Its the end-of-summer season again but at least we're getting better at it. We survived another BurningMan. But NOW i'm bummed that we never got picture proof of the silver alien megaphone girls riding rooftop on the RV spaceship... as promised to a particular incredulous mechanic who worked overtime to help us circumvent some last minute carbuerator problems as we were leaving LA for the 10 hour drive to the burn... quite a multi-dimensional trick to ready this 6-wheeled '76GMC Rocket for its 10-day BurningMan atmospheric audio-visual mission... "You're going WHERE? to do WHAT?"
For this year's project we set out to RECORD keeper-quality audio while in motion, for near real-time remix; and so chose the theme of a pirate techno silver sub-marine (with interior studio gear plastic-wrapped to repel dust)... a theme quite analogous to this vehicle's regular tour of duty: art imitates life, and for this particular re-born and retrofit RV, a new destination: an environment more free than it had ever seen in its 26 years as a mere motorhome. Shy of needing an "art-car" permit (and some corresponding modest exterior modifications to qualify), Black Rock City is a land of few regulations, and nearly everything libertarian is permitted within the wonderful empty palette that is BurningMan. Just BE art: and so we opted by default that this vehicle reflect a shiny techno potentiality to the tribes: an RV as proposed "art-car" must stand as a Re-Creational Vehicle (or else stay stationary in your camp like all the other RVs, thank you), reflecting the better surface of everything that is urban-escapism, underground, and although albeit dinosaur fossil fueled, integrating music of sub-cultural origin. This was our hopeful projected first impression for our sensory stimuli drive-bys across the playa: with audio samples drawn and warped from the likes of Fleetwood Mac "drowning in the sea of love" to unknown CDs of German hardcore techno... from ethereal to guttural, with new software affording the possibility to mix anything and everything... Indeed a new dynamic freedom was afforded this year, with the laptop riding shotgun, and as sloppy as it could be at times (with eyes on the road and hands upon the wheel), we were bent on much more than a party-mobile agenda, and hoped that in some ways our escapades were interpreted as such, to inspire further evolutions... We knew there were others out there barking up the same tree, and we never did meet up with the mobile solo video projectionist vehicle, but there's always next year, and so let's keep incorporating and warping the newer technologies... in strange places...
So as for the tabulations of the Burn: Pictures do indeed tell stories, but once again this year, with so many Re-Creational Vehicle technologies to tame, there was very little time for actual documentary, and so our Eklektro B-Man stories remain a mostly oral tradition, and over time we will indeed unveil the tale. So not much video was shot, nor projected, but at least this year the only gear to die the dusty death was the RV's starter... and the starter for the onboard generator... hmm... a coincidence? or did we attract weird electrical fields...? So for damages, that's pretty much it... mostly safe and sound and returned to earth... and mostly back to reality. So not all the divas that helped with decor got their turn on the microphone, nor did every drummer have his day, but oh how we know the Burningman equation, and how the Eklektro mobile soundsystem and stage was just one of 20-some thousand stages, personalities and apocolyse-NOW emcampments: Mad Max comes to life, and I want to thank those who contributed generator gas, and especially those who unexpectedly pitched-in when needed, thru the duststorms and electrical logisitics, and to those that drove: take it from this unwitting pirate ship's captain who will forever be fine-tuning this formula, we wouldn't pursue such an against-the-wind struggle against the elements if we didn't recognize the unique benefits: getting to collaborate with those whom we least expected, or simply entertaining somebody who just jumped onboard for a half-mile ride... unique situations and uniquely comical struggles just to keep this mobile ship afloat, what with 3000 watts of strobes, JBL rooftop dancefloor sound and an infinite supply of desert gypsum dust... This was another maiden voyage, and so although no multi-track audio got recorded this time around, hence the mystery maintains itself, as deluged by creative stimuli and our 'round the clock media broadcast drive-bys and ceaseless sleeplessness electronic experimentations. So perhaps a built-in and somewhat welcome phenomena of burningman is that we're too busy living, rescuing and being rescued, celebrating and showing off... to even deal with a camera... keeping technology in check. Minimalism vs. the extreme, often the best times were the far-off ambient broadcasts at sunrise, with whispered megaphones and remixed calls to prayer... drawing unexpected visitors from far and wide across the playa.
So we're back in LA, Point Dume in particular and deja-vu'ed to those pre-launch days of a few weeks ago in August... all wiring and wrenches, a lotta miles and even more dust, the long drive, set-up, the nightly voyages and impromptu performances... Many objectives but NO set in stone PLANS, and by surprise this year I was actually fortunate to enjoy the concept of living anchor-free (camp-free) at Burningman, once again a nomad, and technically a compact theme-camp and soundsystem on wheels... a very dusty undertaking... and worth every ounce of expended energies. And now with mission accomplished i'm just emailing to say THANK YOU to everyone who's path we crossed, and amazing as ever... and like many of you we're ready to settle down to a new body of work, with new crews and destinations to pursue, ie) stay tuned... and we're looking forward to staying tuned to you too. We recount all this nearly 2 weeks afterburn, on a sunny afternoon, to say GREAT to see you all again, and thanks for your insight and energy... your shared visions. And while one week a year might be sufficient to gather and celebrate, and almost enough time to vent, we are of the scattered tribe who believe that its NOT enough time to formulate, let alone pursue the magical state of formulation on-the-fly... ...and so let's Follow Thru
Now that we've enjoyed having speakers and video projectors on our RV roof, we are looking to see whom else might like to experiment with our latest and specifically electronica-flavored MOBILE multi-media format within the environs of LA... or SF... (We've already entertained 2 new crews and productions since the Burn, and this is Eklektro Time-Share afterall, and we want to keep promoting the concept far and wide: create in motion) For mobile recording, renegade promotions, drive-bys, low-budget video shoots or basically any definition of the word VEHICLE, the silver RV awaits. And for the sheer love of experimentation, civil diso or high-tech demo, Eklektro is at the ready, year-round. The Re-Creational Vehicle/studio/soundsystem/silver submarine always has its periscope UP and its sonar tuned... on the lookout for collaborative experiments, with or without strobe lights... So think MOBILE, and stay in touch! over and out
7/19/02: Stop the press! Each week we sweat the release date of Breakbeat of the Week, knowing full-well we get our best viewership if we release on a monday or tuesday, as opposed to this week's offering... friday! Ah life, as unpredictable as technology, but the show must go on. And so we postpone whatever else is on our plate and get down to art-crucial matters and DV beats... often while mobile or urban camping in a Wal-mart parking lot, between cities, beaches, deserts, and garages coast to coast... quite humorous at times, othertimes tragic, but always ecstatic. All said, it has become a weekly ritual release of Quicktime would-be streams, a disposable demonstration of raw collaborative components transmitted to the vicarious viewer upon regular interval, a periodical, a Raw Street Journal... a modest weekly feature hoping to step up intensity of content and frequency of release once we begin more freely-collaborative work with many of you who's work we admire.
And so despite our "rent-free" existence, we are not yet at the point where we can play with our drums, cameras and laptops 24/7... We have to keep the mobile home-studios on the road afterall, which often means being one's own mechanic (or apprentice-mechanic). Regardless of one's budget level, Digital Nomadic living requires a constant ergonomic quest, consistent with the Eklektro interactive formula: We are unabashedly experimental, living in the trenches of a non-stop media war waging all around us, intermittently teaching and partaking in the survival course: Are you ready for real-time? Are you located near LA? Come step onboard on an open-studio afternoon, beachside, solar-powered (BYO hard drive), and let's see what we can create.
Living MOBILE and self-funded, and as purveyors of tribal micro-economix, we are traders of sorts: of energy and electronic gear, self-employed and pre-occupied with technical toys which could also be looked upon as tools of evolving forms of expression. Eklektro.net seeks to travel to and participate in timely manner with all factions of individuals who are on the edge of multi-media breakthroughs...and those making late-breaking tribal news... (insert audio analogy to breakbeats here): Each threshhold crossed, each microsecond of true progress, individually and in concert... as a society... when society so badly needs to identify the missing substance that they want to feel, to relate, without the obtrusive dumb-down of commerical mass market media. Such substance should NOT be luxury, and we must start at our own most obvious inspirational flashpoint: life-style: survival manual, fashion without exclusion: techno-ethical brand identification... with future-culture electro-organic music as catalyst: communication. And in regards to the function of Eklektro.net, perhaps this is our best job description, for it can be applied in terms of whatsoever appeals to you (dance groove, catchy melody or intellectual property?), public at large, individual discoveries, loves and routines: One big jam session, as a fluctuating accumulation of raw expressive components: sonic, visual and all points in between: Perhaps inspiring a return to raw truth in communication is our best area of concentration, specialization... and crew to crew too, an aspiring net-work: Live the alternative, live forward-thinking, full-motion and strongly in support of those who aspire to live as ethically as you aspire too... so that we may all come to inspire each other. In other words: tribal economix, exchange, energy/information/emotion, utopia incorporated... its OK to get carried away! Upload and outspeak. Over and out...
next phase is beginning work on The Rocket (RV#2) for BurningMan "Art
Car" status... only 45 days away... Good to be back with our LA friends.
Angus had a sudden departure this past week, with business beckoning in Baltimore...
bus to Vegas and then hitched a ride in a Geo Metro all the way... knees on
his chest. Way to go Angus. We know he'll be back... probably bringing more
Lotek vibe (and perhaps Derek Lotek himself?) back with him. Got a chance
to speak out on national radio this past weekend on the Matt Drudge show...
the topic: overproduction in music. Drudge kept wanting to steer the conversation
back to George Michael (i was trying to steer it towards new electronic punk)
and soon i was hung up on... awesome.
6/27/02: After 100 days on the road, we are back to home-base, and orbiting LA and way too busy to write... promising to catch up ASAP... Mountain Jam coming 7/6-7/7: camp-out, bands, DJs and Eklektro Karavan multi-media under the stars... stay tuned!
6/13/02: A week of Texas Radio and the Big Beat, and we'll never be the same; and thanks to super-mechanic Dale Verius we are back on the road! Stay tuned to hear the rest of the engine blow-up recovery story..
6/6/02: June 5th, day 80 of Eklektro Karavan, surviving crew of 2 plus myself, 30 miles shy of San Antonio, and 3 days away from our projected landing and splashdown in LA. Angus at the wheel of The Rocket, Annabelle at the wheel of The Camel, and myself taking a fresh break from my 150 morning miles behind the wheel; having awakened at 6AM in yet another Wal-mart parking lot; having uploaded the previous day's imagery and text to the site via cellphone. Angus gets up. We gas-up, do the systems checks: oil, air suspension level, tire pressure, radio batteries, 110v inverters, soundsystem, Radiohead, made coffee and cruised like clockwork out of Houston, beating the better part of rush-hour, and ready for a solid Texas stretch of miles... hell-bent on LA by the weekend... Hours later, Angus is singing some road-crazed creation while half-trying to get the attention of a Mexican chick he's passing in a Corvette. I'm on the back couch with the laptop, cellphone, map, sunglasses and a cup of chai. Its rare that any one of us get a break from the wheel, now being 3 people in a 2-vehicle caravan, electronic karavan at that... lots of machines to attend to; but i'm stretching out and looking forward to a possible 4 hour digital pitstop in San Antone and with a pot of rice bouncing on the burners, lunch should be ready by the time we land. I get San Antonio Kinkos on the horn for directions, and "Yes sir, you can plug your own laptop into our network and get on the web with broadband. You need directions off the 10?" Fantastic. We're moving. We're creating. We're uploading video, working logistics almost like afterthoughts now, and talk about multi-media tasking: Food's cooking on the stove WHILE we're driving. After 2-plus months of intermittent RV refurbs while on the road, we've got TWO digital life-pods now, and we're finally LIVING the objective of the digital nomad... the pioneer mission of Eklektro Karavan. New Orleans' electronic street performances had been the best ones yet. Blown alternator belt be damned, we've got 15 amps of solar charge power on this fine Texas morning, feeding The Camel's distributor while we fly blissfully westward... firing on all cylinders. I open up Ableton LIVE software and my latest music project file and put it to the background of the Mac's desktop so I can finish up the last of the morning's emails and put them in the outbox... with music as reward to look forward to after I scan the to-do list of the day. Some distant distorted voice is mixing with Angus's singing, and i'm wondering what backwoods radio station he might be blasting for kicks, and why the woman is half-screaming on the radio... The radio!! Its Annabelle, screaming through her walkie-talkie, trying to get our attention. I leap for it and answer back, "Sorry sorry, come back Belle!" "I'm at the side of the road! I've been calling you for the past 2 minutes! (crackle crackle) ...a rattling noise and the temperature gauge is up and I smell something strange!" (pause while my heart ices over....) "Do you hear me?" I heard her. For the longest 10 seconds i couldn't answer as i felt my blood pressure quicken. My brain seemed to have dislodged from my skull enough to lighten the weight of my body, my limbs, the heavy realization physically counterbalanced by some strange adrenalin, self-preservation with the machines now being part of me. Their pain is my pain... Gigantic weight of doom, yet i felt like a helium balloon on a windless day... just enough helium to slowly rise me off the ground, but helpless to be banged against every tree branch or telephone pole along my path: irretrievable fate, the unbearable lightness of bankruptcy, the end of the road, the maxxed credit cards, the diagnosis already known. The engine had blown. (to be continued)
6/2/02: New video uploaded for Breakbeat of the Week: the eastcoast re-launch... Now we can work towards making it a true weekly submission as opposed to the Breakbeat of the Month that its been more like lately... All gear breakdowns and exploding laptops aside, Breakbeat of the Month doesn't rhyme, nor jive. in other news: first impression: New Orleans shows great street-performing potential....
5/28/02: Eklektro Karavan lifted-off from Jacksonville Beach Florida today at 17:00 hours and now we aim for eventual splashdown at Venice Beach CA, a straight shot on the rt. 10 interstate, 2,462 miles. Time to check out the atmospheres of cities we had to hurriedly drive thru on our way to Miami in March!
5/24/02: Rumors of the inevitable return of the Ricochet wireless network in Los Angeles, combined with rising Florida temperatures and news from friends and networkers back home has us looking westward. Eastcoast lift-off impending...
5/20/02: St. Augustine has delivered our ultimate beachside workplace... Cool winds, quiet and free. We'll camp here at least a few days and work on individual projects
5/5/02: Eklektro Cinco De Mayo, 9am. We've spent the past couple days parked outside an interesting internet cafe here in New Smyrna Florida, Farese's Family Hub. Tom the owner has been a very gracious host, allowing us to plug in our Airport base station so we can use our own laptops to surf and work from inside our RVs... thereby foregoing the temptations of the real surf just a few miles away, and the "nightlife" of Daytona Beach just 15 miles north, but ah, the luxuries of broadband. Nearing 50 days on the road, and suddenly hit by a Florida heat wave, little favors like this go a long long way, and we have to look back at several times upon this trip where people have gone far out of their way to exercise "kindness to travelers".
5/1/02: Eklektro Karavan welcomes 2 more laptops onto the virtual grid of eklektro.net: Annabelle's iBook 600 combo (iBitch) and Angus's iBook 500 (iPunk). Angus will be joining the Karavan upon arrival 5/7, taking a train down from Baltimore, signing on for a yet-to-be determined time... crew position will be multi-tasking production assistant (like most of us): from street promotions to all aspects of "network" maintainence, as well as beat creation and understudy of live audio modulation... and of course lots of motorhome driving.
Visualization / Implementation:
Can you VISUALIZE what it could be like, a day in the life of the network, once this "project" reaches true network status? Once mobile broadband broadcast is achieved? We are shooting for on-location live-performed electronica mixed with open-mic and a non-traditional talk format for real-time broadcast. Script-free subject matter arising from on the road adventures and interesting paths crossed on a daily basis: reality TV without RealWorld cliche or Survivor dumb-down. I would go on record saying that none of those castmembers would last 10 minutes aboard either of our VEHICLES. And so, this maiden voyage cross-country drive is one long casting call in actuality, and we are serious about what we do, and what we propose to do. We are in the field, NOW. We'll be coming to your town tomorrow. We need more connections in more cities with which to quicken the pace of information distribution, to find out exactly where things are going down. To collaborate and upload the results, reactions and realizations on a daily basis... With corresponding music inspired from the source of vitality: life in motion... digital, direct address with no permanent address... uprooted and upwardly mobile. A long flow of individuals realizing goals in real-time and making their experiences known on a widespread basis... thru the "airwaves" of world wide web. Eklektro.net touches all aspects of the evolving communicative experience, in conjunction with technology's liberating qualities and every successively higher hurdle for human evolution. (Now, if we can just get the project to pay for itself without slutting out :) So much for this week's issue of Rhetoric Against the Machine. Over and out.
4/16/02: Nearly a month on the road now and the digital nomad concept refines and strengthens every day. From urban promotions to beachside solar-studio sessions, we are indeed LIVING it: Out there spreading the word, in-person. In search of more crewmembers, electronic artists and eventually "on-air personalities" for the mobile internet radio station. Yesterday met with the legendary Jim Bounds from Cooperative Motorworks. Toured some of his experimental and hi-tech retrofit RVs, all refurbed classic GMC motorcoaches, like our '76 "Rocket" and '78 "Camel". Jim's vision and choice of the GMC motorhome runs closely in parallel to our digital "life-pod" concept, so closely in fact that we learn that he has already performed an installation of the upcoming 2-way satellite internet system, for a GMC owner already on the beta program. We're going to stay at least a few more days in Orlando, in order to be able to brainstorm and trade ideas with Jim while doing some more retrofitting of the Rocket, maybe a timing chain on the Camel.
Eklektro Karavan T-shirts are now available, click here
for more into!
Tentative plans for the next week: tomorrow (sunday) a daytime beach rave down in the direction of Ft. Lauderdale, then midweek possibly going to see travel-writer Michelle in Orlando, and then of course Daytona and eventually Jacksonville for street performances.. making it up as we go along. Anyone have Florida info or logistics to pass along? please email firstname.lastname@example.org
4/5/02 Update: Nope, not legal to "sleep in vehicle" on Jupiter Beach, but the nationwide RV safe-haven Wal-mart is a mere 5 miles away.
New RV Nirvana?
How appropriate that the silver spaceship should land on Jupiter...
testing out the atmosphere... fantastic!
dateline: Jupiter, Florida: These mystical apparent safe-haven no fee beachside dry-camping parking spots apparently do still exist in America.... Parking and working all day, then staying oceanside after midnight and waking to the sound of surf is actually legally a very expensive prospect in most states: you usually need to rent space at a plush RV park to enjoy this luxury ($25-50 a night)... ie) you pay too much to rent a space with all the unwanted amenities. Half the fun of digital nomading is that you don't need facilities most of the time. Contrast this to the predominant reality: For $7 you can get dry camp space at Thornbroom campground, 15 miles north of Point Dume Malibu, but there is no cellphone reception, and the sound of the highway is more prominent than the sound of waves. Still, Point Dume by day is worth hiding out in the Malibu Hills by night. Wow, this is the stuff of outlaws and digital desperados... Is it "legal" and free anywhere beachside in America?
Uploads in anticipation of 2-way satellite broadband
Bring on the bandwidth!
Yes, it has been an excruciatingly long time since we updated this Breakbeat of the Week page, but here it is! Fresh video on the vidclips page, and many stories to relate. Hardly know where to begin. How about a crew update? Annabelle survived the 3 week itch which comes as a matter of course when you live in close quarters in an RV. She toughed out a bout with claustraphobia by acting as our protege to all things WMC while in Miami and now she's back full graphic force, with the new 86 second video upload synopsis of the coast-to-coast. check it out on the vidclips page. Lotek made the 24 hour drive back to Baltimore safely (more on that later). Brett has been pursuing his star as mobile artiste extraordinairre. Tomorrow his work will be shown at The Palm Beach Premiere Art Show here in Florida, along with some artwork by Joshua, our newest karavanner who joined up in Miami last week. As i write this (from another choice Wal-mart paking lot), our master chef, driver and advisor Antoine is probably taxiing out on the runway and on his way back to LA. I dropped him off in the nick of time, after spending a couple choice hours at "The Mac Store" in Cooper City. Joy, Meg and the crew helped us out of a tight spot by helping facilitate an emergency repair job to our Titanium G4 powerbook. And extra special thanks go to Richard Eikenberg at Apple for considering our on-the-road situation and getting the part out to us pronto. More Miami news on the way as we recount the past few weeks... the past few thousand miles. Stay tuned!
Made it to Miami! Parked at Ocean Drive, and in a state of disbelief that comes with a 5 day cross-continental drive. Lotek arrives later today from Baltimore.
Help! We've been living out the this garage for a month straight, working around the clock to get the RVs ready. We've pushed the launch back a few more days so we can actually cram a few hours sleep in before we lift-off for that 3000 mile drive: target 3/17!
First day of shooting with TechTV went well, but reinforced the fact of exactly how much work we have yet to do in a mere 2 week period! Next shoot will be at Brett Wood's Nucleus Art Show this Saturday, where we'll be doing an electronic drum cirlce, and Annabelle arrives either just in time for this performance, or the very next day. Final preparations should pick up steam after this weekend, commencing with the exterior paintjob of RV2!
Unbelievably busy the past few days, but we're back on schedule for 3/13 departure. Annabelle confirmed as crew member (www.obular.com). RV2 engine fired up beautifully after rebuilding the carb.... good motivation for the next batch of work. Tech TV cams scheduled to come down to the garage on Monday to interview and document the work in progress, for an upcoming feature on AudioFile. Uploading this journal entry from Venice Beach cyber-docking station (Airport wireless hub, with RV parked out in the street... drive-by broadband... over and out).
Speaking direct about the concept of the digital roaming life-pod (high-tech RV living), I just spent a solo 36 hour stretch up in the coastal regions of Malibu, just like half my digital days this past summer when the Ricochet wireless broadband network was still alive (was almost too cool to be legal, websurfing behind tinted glass). Though dis-connected from the net during this quick trip, i composed emails and web content offline on the laptop for later upload.. in between reading incoming emails on cellphone (old school, and we will soon look back and laugh at these days of evolving connectivity... can't wait for satellite.)
First day of test activities with new eklektro vehicle-2: installed the new leather seats and drove it ouside its garage home of 2 years and washed the dust off (i'm half-tempted to drive it for a while sporting the bad-ass grey primer :) With its matching distinctive GMC spaceship-shape, our fleet will be easy to recognize. interior is stripped out, but has all new components, fortunately not yet installed, so we can modify the floorplan to work in sync with vehicle-1's studio space and in shifts with 2 different living spaces. much work to do in preparation, and meanwhile the search for additional crew members has intensified with sporadic placement of ads nationwide, worldwide, and the official unveiling of the website any day now. (I have to keep re-setting the countdown timer, but its all cool. Miami's still a month and a half away...)
RV negotiations have resolved surprisingly positive : confirmed acquisition of vehicle2: same retro-sleek model as vehicle1, but bought as a 3/4 finished rebuild project-in-progress with new engine and primed for paintjob : Today we formally went thru the list of work to be finished and negotiated the mechanic's half of the rebuild, signed the papers.. we'll crash at the repair shop for the night, holding off christening festivities for tomorrow....
Web-launch countdown had to be pushed back 4 days due to last week's real world priority scenarios... realistic breathing room, and we also have to get ready for a VJ gig at Zoom on 2/6. Blew off necessary steam (still waiting to see if our RV#2 offer will be accepted) by bringing the Eklektro DrumWagon to the Venice drum circle for an afternoon of organic and 12 volt sound therapy. 150 lbs of deep cycle batteries made the wagon difficult to transport across the sand, but we enjoyed a surplus of 110 volt supply and it was worth the extra work. We'll switch over to gel-cell batteries before next venture. Drum circle networking yielded unexpected crewmember candidates... friends with tech skills and potential MC's volunteering for the mobile satellite internet radio station... i'm never sure if they know for sure that we're not joking. but i sure love how we emphatically humor each other's crazier ideas here in LA. "Yeah man, I'll check out your website... cool.. (desert-raver hug)... cool." And regarding the website, i must remember to find credit space for mo, fabio and eric, who all worked individual components for bringing the site to life. Also, the wireless cyber-dock households who've allowed me to hook Airport base stations to their DSL's: Amy, Karin, Stephan, Annabella and Eric... In a post-Ricochet existence, this sure beats running a phoneline over the sidewalk...
Thorough visualization and re-evaluation of objectives validates the immediate need for a 2nd RV (re-creaational vehicle) so that technical crews may work and alternately chill out in stress-free shifts, allowing more creature comforts, to facilitate creative flow for crew, as well as any aliens we may pick up along the way. Have located an identical starcruiser in need of retro-fit. Engine, headers, suspension, and tires have already been replaced, interior has been gutted, original paint has been stripped and sanded, awaiting new colors and logo. Negotiations are underway. Potential karavanner from Boston is coming out for a week to discuss details and possibly begin training.. flight arrives tomorrow. Web-launch countdown may have to be delayed in order to concentrate on these latest factors.