Thursday, January 13, 2011

Six of One

 


I never thought that I would be posting this, much less ever hear the music again since it was sitting collecting dust somewhere in Colin's house and then it moved to my attic for a few years.  I also don't want this blog to come off as too self-serving, but the fact is I have been in a number of bands throughout the years.  Whatever - it's my blog.  This post is about a band I was in called Six of One. 

Six of One was formed in 1996.  I had left this grunge metal band I was in called No Regrets the previous year after I realized "Hey, who put this metal into my grunge band?"  I had been driving home after a show with No Regrets and I was asking my friends Homer and Dan if they thought that No Regrets was a metal band.  Homer is my best friend and possibly the nicest guy in the world, so he was attempting to sugar coat it for me saying "Well, there are some metal aspects" whereas Dan just said "Dude - yes, you're in a metal band."  I realized that wasn't what I wanted to be doing and the guys I was in a band with weren't very interested in the music I liked.  I briefly joined another band called Sativa but it lead nowhere, mostly because of the "singer."  I decided that whatever I did next I wasn't going to be dealing with any lead singers with cases of lead singer syndrome (LSS) anymore.  I would sing.

Six of One started with myself and drummer Bruno Tagliaferri after I found an ad he posted at Hofstra looking to start a band with influences of Sonic Youth, Jesus Lizard, Fugazi and Pavement.  I really liked Sonic Youth  and Fugazi at the time so I tracked him down.  We jammed a couple of times on and off before things clicked.  Jamming with Bruno was always cool because after we'd play he'd put on CDs from his monstrous collection and he wound up introducing me to a lot of stuff like Guided By Voices, Slint, Hovercraft and Jesus Lizard.  I put out an ad for more members a few months later, and my friend Colin fresh off of his band EM-50 (formerly Effigy) breaking up saw it, called me and pretty much joined the band later that week.

Finding a bass player was a hardship.  We tried out a few people, but the music was so noisy that bass players seemed to have trouble finding the right key.  We tried out this guy Dan Martinez who we really liked but he was very into his job in Hotel Management at the time - I believe he would join that band Reach 454 eventually. I met Lee Greenman who was in Scarab at that point and asked him to come down.  He was concerned with how Scarab would deal with that.  After jamming with us he decided to quit Scarab.  In retrospect, I don't know why Lee wouldn't just continue on with both bands since plenty of people are in more than one band - but we were young, so who knows? I'm currently in a band with Dan Lopez who was the drummer for Scarab and I've come to find that Lee's resignation may not have been as one-sided as I originally believed.  Let's just say it was mutual.  For years I thought Dan hated me because I stole his bass player, which was not the case.  With that being said, Lee was a great bass player who provided the foundation that was needed for Colin and I to layer lots of noise above.

As I mentioned in a few previous posts, we referred to ourselves as noise-rock or melodic dischord.  Indie wasn't really a term at that point, I thought stuff like Folk Implosion or Low as what was indie at that time - which we really weren't.  We definitely were taking the a cue from both the abrasive and catchy elements of Fugazi, Jawbox, Chavez, Jawbreaker and Sonic Youth.  There was also an undeniable spirit of hardcore we were tying into as well.

The band was not around long.  We played our first show in January at Dr. Shay's opening for Soulsick and Hostile Intent.  It was definitely one of the most adverse crowds I can remember playing in front of.  In June, Bruno left the band and probably the only time I've encountered this, he found us a replacement as well in his friend Robin.  She had previously been in the band Special Agent Gumby and at that time was also in this Dave Matthews-like band called Hatch. Robin joined the band for 3 or 4 shows.  Hatch would actually get paid at their well-populated gigs, so what we were doing wasn't exactly competitive.  Robin decided to leave and in one of my more ill-advised moments, I noted this turn of events on-stage at our last show.  "How to Alienate Bandmates and Generally Displease People" by Jason Schneider.  I can say that moment was a learning experience. Our last show was again at Dr. Shay's in July 1997 with Inside, Last Days of August and Broth. 

During this period we recorded 3 songs at SUNY Purchase with Lee's friend Evan.  For some bizarre reason we didn't record our best song which was called "Hero."  A little tip to bands: Always record your best song.  Don't save it for a 7" with some label that you spoke to once, don't worry if it'll be a pain to record it - chances are you will break up before another opportunity arises.  That's what happened here.  I don't remember much about the recording other than we played live and then I went back to overdub the vocals the following week while sick as a dog.  I was no singer to begin with, and that is no excuse for the vocal performance; I'm just providing a little background.  At the time we weren't happy with much besides the last song (Last Year's Model) and we didn't release this.

In addition to the 3 tracks with vocals, there are versions of the 3 songs sans vocals,  2 takes of another song called "Toronto" that Lee sang but we didn't get an opportunity to record vocals to, as well as an instrumental version of the song "Afterthought" that I found on a practice tape.  I recommend listening to the 2 takes of "Toronto" as Colin managed to cull the most amazing noises out of a guitar possible. 

After the band's collapse, Colin and I tried to pull something together with Steve DeJoseph from Pretty Polly which didn't take while Lee had found a new drummer but wanted us to start a new band with my 'poppier' songs.  None of that would happen as I chose to form The Cotton Weary instead... which is yet another story.

Lee Greenman went on to play in Radiate with Steve from Sleepasaurus and Long Distance Runner, and later  Endgames, The Fire and Reason, Human Parachute and currently is a member of The Goodbye Radio.  Colin went on to play bass and later guitar in the now-legendary Saetia, then Precision Auto which changed its name to The Fiction and is currently a member of Gunners.  Jason Schneider (that'd be me) thankfully stopped singing, but kept playing guitar in The Cotton Weary, Satellite Lost, Circle the Sun and others and is currently the guitar player of Steady as She Goes.  Robin returned to playing drums in Hatch and I've lost track of her since then. Bruno Tagliaferri stopped playing drums.    

This download is for the recordings mentioned above.  As I've just figured out how to add images to posts and since Colin recently scanned a bunch pictures of us playing at CBGB's and Hofstra, I've included a few shots well.

SIX OF ONE





2 comments:

  1. HI! Random question: Any chance you have any Long Distance Runner music to share? I saw them in 97/98 in Los Angeles and my buddy bought a full length and taped it for me. Lost to the ages at this point. My 18 year old self really liked it though! Anyway, been casually looking for it for years. Any leads would be lovely.

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