Weekly Inspiration // Stu Faris

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Hi Everyone,

My name is Stu and I’m the Audio Visual Coordinator at The Gathering. You can find me behind the mixing console most of the time but occasionally I’m behind the kit. Thanks for checking this out! I’m excited to tell you about some stuff that has been keeping my creative blood flowing to my artistic heart. There is so much stuff that inspires me and I’m literally all over the road with things that I’m into, listen to, and just do from day to day. I’m a rocker at heart, but I also don’t in any way stick to just that. I’ve literally been into so many different kinds of music and was raised on many types of music. I go back to the music that has formed who I am from time to time. I’ll start old with a few bands that I’ve recently gone back to, and then work my way to the present. After that, I’ll get into some other things that have really inspired different work that I’ve been a part of lately. So buckle up, here we go…


MUSIC

Bruce Springsteen:
I know that at first mention, most folks are like “no way”! His voice is distinct. His songwriting is classic and so so good. If you could seriously wipe away everything in his catalog from 1984 to the present, he would still be without a doubt, one of the best ever. I suggest going and checking out Greeting from Asbury Park and Nebraska. These two albums are some of the finest written albums of this era. Don’t even get into that whole Born in the U.S.A. time of Bruce. Trust me. Check it out here.

NOMEANSNO:
This is probably one of my favorite bands of all time. Canadian punk rockers originally from Victoria, British Columbia. Formed in 1979 by brothers Rob and John Wright, they eventually would be considered foundational in the punk jazz and post-hardcore movement and one of the originators and a formative influence of math rock. Their stuff is a little tougher to find but is all out there. Here’s a quick link.

J Mascis:
The frontman, guitarist and main songwriter for Dinosaur Jr. is known for his blinding loud Marshall stacks and killer vintage guitar collection. Well, he has some really great solo albums and Several Shades of Why is an album of some of his songs done acoustically. It’s such a great mellow album and musically beautiful. The change from electric to acoustic is really nice and tasteful all the way through. Give it listen

Fantastic Negrito:
I have so much good stuff to say about this guy, but I can’t do it any justice. I’ll just add what I originally found out about him on his website…”Fantastic Negrito is a man’s truth told in the form of black roots music. Each song the true story of a musician from Oakland who experienced the highs of a million dollar record deal, the lows of a near fatal car accident that put him in a coma, and is now in the phase of rebirth despite his playing hand being mangled. Negrito’s music emphasizes rawness and space. Slide guitar, drums, piano. Rather than update the Delta Blues, Fantastic Negrito leaves the original sounds of Lead Belly and Skip James intact, building bridges to a modern sound with loops and samples of his own live instruments. But the primary element that drives Fantastic Negrito’s music is uncut realness and zero concern for “pop” anything.” Nothing else needed to say but check it out.


PODCASTS

Recording Studio Rockstars:
This is a really cool podcast I enjoy and there’s some really great episodes with some of the greats. There’s a cool episode with one of my all-time favorite producers, Steve Albini. He produced some great music and is the owner of Electric Audio Studio in Chicago.

Tape Op:
This is a podcast that was created by the fine folks over at Tape Op magazine. If you care to learn about producing, recording gear, recording studios, or anything in that vein, this is the podcast to check out. AND you can subscribe to the magazine for free!!!


ARTISTIC

Outside The Box Woodworking:
This is a really cool family owned woodworking company that builds some beautiful tables and pieces. Period. They put a lot of love into their stuff and if surely shows in the end.

The Old Wood Company:
Another small woodworking company that is really producing some artistic wood pieces. I love the way they produce things. They specialize in using fine reclaimed wood as well as environmentally friendly and health-conscious finishing methods. Very cool stuff. Very cool for our planet.

Greiner Kilmer Drums:
Simply put, high quality hand built drums from a couple guys in Bainbridge, PA. Take a look!

DRAS fab:
Local sculpture Andrew Andrasko is a sculptor that works in metal, wood, stone, and found objects. He forges steel and fabricates steel sculptures as well as some other really cool stuff. I’m glad to know him and call him a friend. Check his stuff out.


PEOPLE

Kids:
I’m inspired in so many ways with the innocence of kids. From my kids to the 6-8 year old kids I get to coach in hockey, they are amazing in so many ways. They learn and want to learn and soak things up like a sponge. They are special in so many ways. Each kid out there is so special and inspires me to teach, to pause, and to never stop having fun.


OK, I’ve rambled on enough and could keep on bouncing from art to music to technology and will on my own personal time. But just one thing to leave you with. Art is everywhere. Beauty is all around us. Stop. Take more time to just notice the beauty that’s all around you. In anything from your shoes, to your car, to the table your computer may be sitting on at this moment. Smell nature. See the human race. Be a part of it all. Create something!

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Stu Faris is an Audio Visual Lighting Producer and loves learning and is a jack-of-all-trades kind of a guy. He really loves life and enjoys music and being a part of any aspect of it that he can. He’s played drums in numerous bands over the past 27 plus years as well as had the chance to be a part of making some great music, producing shows and records, and creating art. He currently plays in The Thunderclaps and the Dirty 30s. He loves art in any form from creating music, to mixing and engineering music, to drawing, and building things.