The Feel Good Patrol, The Orbit Group | Buzz Blog

Monday, December 20, 2010

The Feel Good Patrol, The Orbit Group

Posted By on December 20, 2010, 11:47 PM

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As the concerts wind down and lighten up between Thanksgiving and Christmas, its become a little difficult to plan out and cover an all-locals show. But this month provided an opportunity to hit up a State Street venue that I haven't had a chance to cover a concert at in nearly two years. Bar Deluxe. Its not that there haven't been shows there that I've wanted to see, its just... when you're place smells like an emergency room floor and the ownership refuses to call you back, you tend to not want to go there.


--- Thankfully this year brought about about a management change that afforded a new willingness to have press pop in frequently. And they got rid of the smell which turned out to be the air-conditioner, so bonus for us. Bar Deluxe had been a pretty badass place over the years but fell over the last few without any willingness to fix itself. Now its in better hands who are looking to turn all the complaints of old around and revitalize the place over the next few years. This past Friday I popped in to chat with The Feel Good Patrol and The Orbit Group, the later playing an extra-long show for a live recording. Plus pictures of the show for you to check out here.

The Feel Good Patrol

Gavin: Hey guys, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.

Mike: We're the Feel Good Patrol. We're just a group of friends that decided to combine forces in order to focus our efforts.

Ren: Well... "focus" should be used loosely. Haha!

Gavin: What got you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?

Joey: All of us started playing music before it was "the cool thing to do". Haha. %uFFFDWhen we began searching for music on our own, it was an eclectic collection of groups like; Parliament, Zappa, Coltrain, Zeppelin, Beastie Boys and The Roots that we listened to.

Gavin: How did you all get together to originally form Sinthesis?

Mike: Sinthesis is a separate monster all it's own. Feel Good basically started as a super-group comprised of members of Sinthesis, Swan Juice, Shades of Gray and Ren. We now consider Feel Good to be an umbrella over the groups that are made up of Feel Good Patrol members, among others. It's more of a collective.
Gavin: What was the experience like for all of you putting together your sound and not trying to come off like other hip-hop groups in the area?

Josh: We're not influenced much by other local groups so it's not hard to not sound like them.

Gavin: You've changed names a few times after forming up. What made you settle on The Feel Good Patrol?

Mike: We may have played a couple early live shows as Sinthesis but as we developed our own sound, we took on the name Feel Good Patrol.
Gavin: At last check you were recording an EP, but no news has come out about it since. What's the word on it?

Ren: We never threw a release party for Gon' Cheat On Me%uFFFDwhen it came out. We only pressed 100 copies for press-kits, radio stations and desperate housewives. Since then we've recorded about five or six songs, a few of which like "Dirt", "Freezin" and "Real Deal" can be found on our MySpace page. We may finish the rest for an album later on, we'll see.

Gavin: Word has it you were also putting together a live album from an Urban Lounge show. How is that one coming along?

Swan: That's one we never officially pressed. Some of those songs can also be found on our MySpace page. We made some homemade copies for show promoters and hungry fans, but we figure if people want the live experience they can check out on the YouTube page. Thank you Flip!
Gavin: Are there any plans in the works for a full-length album, or just concentrating on performing?

Joey: We've actually all put a strong effort into recording separate projects lately like the Samuel Smith Band, Youth In Eyes, Josh's solo project, Sinthesis, Gold Tooth and Colter's producing albums for local emcee Pat Maine and Minneapolis based emcee TQD. We've put together a few mean shows lately for the party people. It's possible that a full length manifests itself in the coming year, but if I'm wrong, don't hesitate to support the hard work we've all been putting in elsewhere.

Gavin: Down the road are you looking toward touring or staying around Utah for now?

Josh: We would love to hit the road again soon. We've played a handful of shows out of state but haven't put anything together lately. It wouldn't be hard to fill several hours with our collective alone, but we would love to tag along as openers for a bigger group sometime.
Gavin: Going state-wide, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?

Mike: Most people understand that it's healthier to Buy Local First, whether that be food or material goods, so how is music any different? There are plenty of amazing musicians here in Utah constantly playing local shows, the masses just need to know about them and recognize what they've got in their own backyard.

Joey: It's difficult making a living off of music in a place where the musicians are trying to bring what they've got to the fans, rather than the fans searching for it.

Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?

Colter: I think if venues and/or show promoters treated locals a little more like they do touring acts, people would notice and support them. Some local groups find a bigger following out of state which is kind of sad, but you can't really blame the artist for going out there to try and find that.
Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?

Josh: Samuel Smith Band, Youth In Eyes, my solo project, Sinthesis, Shades Of Gray, Gold Tooth and of course the ever-slaying Feel Good Patrol. Oh... not including ourselves? Haha!

Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how its affects local musicians?

Swan: In our experience the harsh reality is that it's not how good you are or how hard you work, but rather who you're friends are. If stations were eager to find new local material they could find it pretty quick, but unfortunately it's pretty political. We've definitely had our trouble getting heard, with the exception of our shows.
Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?

Skyler: On one hand, it's great that people may find your music who normally wouldn't. On the other hand, paying bills for making music would be nice. For me personally, the main goal is getting our music out to as many people as possible by any means necessary. Thankfully, in this day and age, there are a few more options to get money straight into musicians pockets instead of going through a record label, via iTunes, Amazon and so on, so that's always nice.

Colter: As music lovers and musicians even, it's convenient for us to find groups similar to us or share influences with each other for cheap to free.

Joey: All we ask is that people who hear free music that they like, support that music at a show by paying a small cover or buying merch.
Gavin: What can we expect from you guys over the rest of the year and going into next?

Ren: Like we said, we've all been hard at work recording other stuff as well as rocking Feel Good shows so check out the new stuff during the week, then come party on the weekends.

Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to plug or promote?

Mike: Much love to War Regime and Danksquad. Also, be sure to Rock Local First. Come check us out downtown at EVE on New Year's Eve at 6PM, then come party at Salt Lake Recording with Samuel Smith Band and our girl from NY Erin Barra.

Ren: Sex, drugs and Feel Good.

The Orbit Group

(For this interview, the band chose to answer as a group)

Gavin: Hey guys, first off, tell us a little about yourselves.

TOG: The Orbit Group is a very eclectic, groove-oriented, R&B rock band that formed in Salt Lake City in 2009. We’ve been playing shows in Utah for over two years and recently expanded into the Wyoming and California music scenes. Our debut album will be released this spring, which we’ve been carefully planning this past year.
Gavin: What got you interested in music, and who were some of your favorite acts and musical influences growing up?

TOG: Everybody in Orbit has a little bit different story as to why they started playing music or what made us interested in the first place. Some of us started playing music in church, others in school, but I would say we all grew up in an environment that was very supportive of the arts. Red Hot Chili Peppers, Rage Against The Machine, Led Zeppelin, Beatles, Pink Floyd, Outkast, Jay Z and Supertramp.

Gavin: How did you all get together to form The Orbit Group?

TOG: We formed the group in 2009 at the University of Utah and most of us have played together every sunday at New Pilgrim Baptist church. Our original line up was Bronco, Joe, Ben, and Duke, because we all went to school together. Then, when we got involved with the music department at New Pilgrim Baptist Church we added Tim and Josh. Around the same time Aquile, our singer and front man, joined up with the group. Joe and Aquile were old friends from when they both lived in Wyoming.
Gavin: What was it like for all of you to mesh styles together and form the jazzy-club sound you have?

TOG: It was easy, and it’s what we believe gives us our unique sound. Since most of us have been heavily influenced by jazz, one can find hints of it in our music. We are also trying to connect with as many people as possible, which is where the sort of “commercial” club element comes from.

Gavin: With a large rock scene going around the venues, how has it been establishing yourselves around the state?

TOG: We love playing in rock venues, because we always end up playing for people that have never seen us nor ever would in any other circumstance outside of a rock venue and since our music has a lot of rock themes mixed with so many styles of music, everyone in the rock scene seems to respond really well to our show, which kind of makes us stand out in some respect, especially the farther we travel outside of downtown SLC.
Gavin: You've been pretty active in getting videos put together, mostly of live performances. What persuaded you to do that before officially having any releases?

TOG: Releasing videos allows us to keep in touch with everyone on a very personal level. Since we are planning our up-coming album very carefully and taking all the appropriate steps, it is allowing us to keep our friends, family, fans, and industry partners updated with our newest material while we are preparing to release our upcoming album. Our good friend Keith, a sort of “unseen” member in the group, has been doing an amazing job with our video and digital productions, which can be seen on our website. Video is the most effective medium for promoting our sound because when we are live playing together we can really communicate and play off the other people in the band. Park City TV gave us our first real developed video. They have been so supportive of us. Now we have Keith who does a lot of the digital production and he has captured some really great video and photos that we are about ready to put out. Our show's this weekend will all be recorded so it would be awesome to have a lot of people come out and get on the video.

Gavin: Recently you've been switching time between SLC and Los Angeles. How has that experience gone for you?

TOG: What a learning experience that has been. It took us two years to build up our base in Salt Lake, and so now we are trying to keep our home town fans involved and still keep pushing forward in new areas. The hardest part about trying to work SLC and LA has been having the band divided. The seven of us playing together is where our real power lies. Los Angeles has talent like you wouldn't believe. Individual musicians that are beyond normal comprehension. But there is a strange music scene in LA, it is pay to play most places, and saturated with lots of artists good and bad. Having the chance to go there and work hard to make a name for ourselves is exciting, and exhausting.
Gavin: I understand you have an album in the works. What can you tell us about the recordings so far and when can we expect to see it?

TOG: Yes, we have been recording in Salt Lake, Las Vegas, and Los Angeles the past six months trying out lots of different recording techniques and we are getting pretty close to zeroing-in on our sound. It’s been bit of a challenge, since a huge part of our band’s sound come from the organic aspect of playing improvised music so it’s been tricky. Our sound in this album is starting to become more structured. I'd say that we have enough material to put the album out now, but we need to get together as a band and spend some more time fine tuning everything. Our first few releases were focused on solos and catchy beats, but now we have begun to use computers for a more produced sound. We've learned to compromise between the electronic and organic music a little, toning the fifteen minute instrumental tracks down for a more produced song, but still working our asses off on our instruments to keep pushing the sound to its limit. We are so excited about the up and coming album, which is scheduled to be released this spring.

Gavin: When its finally complete, are there any plans for a tour or sticking to home for the most part?

TOG: One of the biggest things on our platter is trying to find the right booking agent to work with, so we can get on tour. I think most of us would prefer to be playing 300 days a year.
Gavin: Going state-wide, what are your thoughts on the local music scene, both good and bad?

TOG: Our local music scene has world class musicians and incredible bands although you sometimes need to look for it. It would be nice to have more all ages venues so the scene can spread to the people that might not necessarily come to a bar or a place that is 21 and older. It's a very strict environment.

Gavin: Is there anything you believe could be done to make it more prominent?

TOG: I think we could be more active in the music community, I think the art community as a whole is coming together. There is amazing talent in Utah and not enough events that put everyone together. I think Portia at UtahFM brought out the best music in the state when they did their event this last summer. It was incredible to be apart of.
Gavin: Not including yourselves, who are your favorite acts in the scene right now?

TOG: Fat Soul, SLAJO, the Chickens, and Sara B are some of our favorite local bands. We've played with King Niko and Sam Smith a couple times and those guys are all so rad and definitely worth following. Marinade is killing it and our fellow music school guys in Big Blue Ox and Josh Payne Orchestra all are doing really cool things right now too.

Gavin: What's your opinion on the current airplay on community radio and how its affects local musicians?

TOG: Radio is tough because it seems to be determined by statistics rather than good music, but we hope to change that. Internet radio is taking off so we are going to push hard in that area.
Gavin: What do you think of file sharing these days, both as musicians and a music lovers?

TOG: Sharing is caring, and if people like our music enough for it to spread like that i think its a good start. When people see us live we get a great reaction from the audience, so hopefully no matter what people choose to throw on Mediafire, we will still keep them coming back to see us perform. I remember the concerts I've been to much more than all the CD's I’ve downloaded.

Gavin: What can we expect from you guys over the rest of the year and going into next?

TOG: Think our success as a band hinges on what we can accomplish this year. Creating a situation where the seven of us can be together working on the band full time is probably the most important thing. Recording a full length CD filled with our best content comes after us all being able to work together, and then finding a booking agent who can help us travel and spread the word.
Gavin: Is there anything you'd like to plug or promote?

TOG: We are working hard on our website and would love to collaborate with local artists who think they can add some cool style to our images/logos/etc... so go to our website and help us build a great website that can display a lot of the talent that has helped us get to where we are. And we'd like to add a thank you to Bar Deluxe. Please say thanks to Jake and Kaci from Bar Deluxe who have supported us from day one, and continue to provide the best venue in town for us to rock out at.

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