Please tell us about yourself and your latest projects?
When I’m not on the road promoting guitar gear I’m a content creator hosting and producing podcasts, webcasts and promoting geek/pop-culture. I also performing with Jones World, Nashville’s funk/rock extravaganza as well as a club band by the name of Jukebox Gypsies.
What got you into music and what was the first concert you attended?
My mother was a classically trained pianist and my dad was a big music fan. They played albums and 8-tracks from the likes of Led Zeppelin, Earth Wind and Fire, Quincy Jones, Al Green, and the Ventures. It was VERY eclectic. When our family moved from Seattle to Nashville the music bug hit us hard. We were around 11-12 years old and MTV was a huge influence. Instead of taking lessons for violin I wanted to play guitar like Dweezil Zappa and Eddie Van Halen so I began taking lessons at my local music store. My first concert was seeing Men at Work in 1982 at the Grand Ole Opry House. It was a great concert and it really furthered my love for pop music and what goes into writing a good pop song.
Tell us about the first gig you ever played?
At the age of 12, I won a junior songwriting contest held by the Country Music Hall of Fame and was presented an award by a very young Vince Gill and later performed that song acoustically in front of a ton of people at the Hall of Fame. It was a crazy first gig! Afterward, I started a band, with my brother on bass and a few other high-school friends and we played covers in gyms around town.
What was your most memorable performance?
When I was playing guitar and keytar for the alternative band MINK in the early 2000’s we played several USO tours. Performing in Djibouti Africa for 3+ hours for the U.S. Marines during a promotion party for the base colonel was insane. The troops I’ve performed for were amazing and was an experience I will never forget.
What are you listening to now?
Other than the classic rock channels I listen to I have been turned on by a lot of newer rock and pop bands like: Bad Suns, Echosmith, Charlie XCX, and DNCE. Rockers like Halestorm, Five Finger Death Punch, and Weezer are mainstays. If I could wear out my iPhone playlist, classic rock bands like Aerosmith, Cheap Trick, Van Halen, Journey, and U2 never get old.
What is your deserted island album?
Oh my. I knew you were going to ask this… Can I just take Journey’s Time Cubed triple album box?
And if you were stuck on the deserted island and could only have one type of food and drink (besides water) what would that be?
How about sushi and Moscow Mules? That’s half-way healthy, right?
Who is one person you would like to meet (alive or dead, musician or not)?
Although I met Dave Grohl while I was an FM DJ in Nashville years ago when the Foo Fighters began to tour it would be great to have dinner with him to talk about music and pop-culture. My one regret is that I never got to meet Les Paul. So I guess Les.
Who would you cast to play you in a movie?
(Laughs). Even though the actor is not Filipino/Chinese I do love Masi Oka (Heroes Reborn/Hawaii Five-O). He’s so damn funny, plus he is my shape.
Besides music, what are you into?
My wife and I love horror movies and pop-culture. We love to watch movies and TV shows like The Walking Dead. We are podcasters that cover Disney, Marvel, and Star Wars. I also host a show called Pro Wrestling Cast. All of these shows/radio shows have been well received and I’ve been producing them for several years now.
Interview is not an interview without talking about gear. So let’s talk gear. Must have, best for studio, a must for tour?
I really enjoy using my Kemper Profiler in the studio. It makes dialing in tones and recording easy. Although I have toured with tube amps throughout the years I am currently using Blackstar and Quilter amps. They are lightweight, tube free and worry free. I also have a lot of analog pedals as well. I was, at one point, a guitar pedal junkie. Since then, I have a good 30 or so pedals I can’t seem to get rid of. Good cables like George L’s are a must, especially for patching pedals. On tour I always carry a backup like a Line 6 M9 in the event my pedal board goes down. In terms of guitars, I’ve been known to play a Gibson or two. I love Flying Vs and Firebirds. The Les Paul is a no-brainer. It’s quite possibly the best guitar ever created.
Speaking of tour… any previous tour stories you want to share?
My old band Mink had been doing some USO tours around the Middle East for our troops post 9/11. We spent New Year’s Eve entertaining a military base in Africa. It was also the night the base hosted a celebration for their colonel who was getting promoted. Before our show, the troops found out we were based out of Nashville and brought us a bottle of Jack Daniels, fresh fruit and potato chips. This was a great gesture since food and alcohol was a premium during wartime. That said, they were an awesome crowd to perform for. It was a rocking night for some amazing people. I’ll never forget those troops we performed for.
Tell us about your experience with PRA Audio and WiC Wireless System?
The WiC Wireless System is killer! I love the small footprint, ease of use and tone. WOW! The tone! It’s my tone guitar tone exactly! Speaking with the great team at PRA Audio, I couldn’t believe the guitar tone using the WiC. It’s really magical. The box came with everything I needed to start using the system. They weren’t kidding. I was up and running in a few seconds. I’m always ready to rock with my WiC! Cheers to the PRA Audio team! I can’t wait to see and HEAR what they cook up next!