BPP at the Boys and Girls Club!

•December 17, 2012 • Leave a Comment

This past Saturday, we spent the afternoon, along with a few other artists from RAW Ventura,  teaching children music.  It was a heartwarming experience, to say the least.  We had a blast, and wanted to share a bit of the experience with you.

The kids all got a good smile out everything they could play with on Bonnie’s keyboard – and they all had a great time pushing buttons and feeling the beats.  Image

While drumming isn’t the easiest for everyone to pick up, some of the kids were actually quite good.  One of the kids really good — if he could just stop hitting his head with the sticks when he messed up, he’d be great.  

After their drum lesson, Chris told them, “You’re certified drummers now…”  And one of the children, Daisy, replied with a “No, I’m a guitar player!”Image

Check out this picture of her with the guitar.  She loved it!  We’re hoping she gets one for Christmas 🙂Image

We didn’t get a chance to play live band musical chairs — maybe next time.

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A Little About Our Writing Process

•December 11, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Hello there all you BPP’ists, BPP’ers, and BPPeople!

Just got home from rehearsal, and I must say, it was a good one… We
came up with a few new solid musical ideas for songs, all very
different, but all good in their own way. Bonnie talked a bit last
week about some of our new stuff, but I figured since we get asked
about it often enough, I would go a bit into our writing process
itself.

Usually, Miles will come to the table with a riff (either on guitar or
bass), or chord progression, and I will drop a dope-ass beat (see
Kanye on 60 Minutes) over that. At that point, Bonnie will typically
begin hashing out ideas for her parts, including picking synth sounds
and things, along with Eddie putting together certain melodic ideas
and hooks. That order isn’t set in stone, but that’s probably the most
common way we arrange things… Sometimes, Eddie will have an idea
already in mind with keys and vocals, and we’ll all work on that. Or,
sometimes I start jamming out on a particular rhythmic pattern, and
Miles and Bonnie come up with riffs and chords around that. Also,
occasionally Bonnie will find a sick keyboard patch and write a part
around it that gets my beat-producing energy flowing. Whichever way we
get there, once we all have parts and a decent structure we’re
satisfied with, we have a close version of what the song will sound
like. Eddie writes the lyrics throughout the music-composition
process, and we will all help with re-writes and other edits before we
go into the studio to record. I don’t pretend to know what percolates
inside that head of his when he comes up with the original song
concepts; I’m just glad it’s not my job!

My favorite part about writing new music is that all four of us get
just as surprised with what we come up with at the end of the night as
much as anyone listening to us for the first time. Miles, Bonnie,
Eddie and I all have our own influences and roots, and yet, the whole
of what we create at the end of a rehearsal is most certainly greater
than the sum of its parts. Maybe we’re all just simply happy to have
fellow musicians (and friends) we can respectfully, humbly, and
gratefully share a creative outlet with…

AND HAVE IT SOUND AWESOME AS FUCK. 🙂

Until next time guys and gals,

-Chris

.. And the new music continues…

•November 26, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Over the course of the past two years the four of us have grown into more than just a band, and being the only girl it’s a lot like having three brothers, ex boyfriends, husbands, and best friends rolled into one happy, emotionally disturbed, loving, and dysfunctional family.  I would say the upside of being the only girl is that you feel a sense of protection from the guys, with a few of the downsides being having a water bottle handed to you when you’re stuck in the van and have to pee on the road, or being trapped in a gas chamber of guy stench…also known as “our practice space”.

After Hive Mind was finally finished, we of course did was every band does: went on a raging show binge. Performing our asses off as often as we could until our collective ADD kicked in and we had to go on a writing frenzy. We finally got a legit practice space, which was a very unfamiliar setting since we were more used to practicing in abandoned dry-cleaning warehouses and breaking into the music halls of college campuses. I’d like to give a special thanks to those CSULA cops for threatening, but never actually arresting us =).

Now a new chapter in our imaginary “VH1 Behind The Music” episode has finally begun. We finally have a place to put together all of our random puzzle pieces of artistry that we separately bring to the table and are no longer afraid to throw away ideas that suck. We have a solid line-up, which we wouldn’t trade for anything. Miles and I have finally realized that we can’t solo at the exact same time.  We’re in love with the few songs that are finished and can’t wait to expand on the 20 unfinished skeletons that reside in our iPhone voice memos. We’ve realized that we’re not terrible musicians if our best song only consists of 3 chords. I’ve finally stepped off my classical training high horse and am playing “with” my band mates instead of “at” them.

We’ve finally decided to relieve ourselves from this musical constipation that’s been building inside of us for the past few years… and I’m proud to say that so far, our new shit is pretty fucking awesome.

– Bonnie

The Process of Recording “Hive Mind”

•October 30, 2012 • Leave a Comment

The first thing I encountered when I began to think seriously about the recording of the Hive Mind album is how little I recall of the experience…how inaccessible some of the the memories were and how far I had to reach to grab hold of something that could inspire me to write about the process. I had to look at photos of the band in the studio and I watched what little video footage I have from the massive amount that was filmed by our friend Pete Diederich. I guess the whole thing has become a lesson in what people do to move on after they’ve given everything they have to a project. When it’s done, you print the work, shut it down, and leave a lot of the rest behind. The final product is really all you have to show for the long days, months, and years that went into its creation.

I can start by saying that the whole enterprise of recording this collection of songs could have fallen apart before it had even begun. Chris had agreed to record the album with us after the situation with our last drummer didn’t work out…two weeks before we were scheduled to start recording…after we had already booked to the studio. Had Chris not been willing to gamble away his time and energy learning the songs in a fortnight, (yeah, that’s right, I went old school for emphasis) there would be no album and possibly no band at this point. With Chris on board, we went into preproduction feeling pretty confident. After all, we wrote the songs years ago…if a guy could pick up all that material in a couple of weeks, it couldn’t be that hard, right?

Hopefully the obvious set up prepared you for the following…it was hard. It was really fucking hard. However, it didn’t necessarily have to be. It turned out that we were, in a lot of instances, either simply underprepared or ignorant to the process, overwhelmingly stressed out, creatively cockblocked, or just maddeningly frustrated with one another. I’d often pace around the studio during tracking or playback thinking that it helped me focus, when really it was just annoying everyone. Sit down…seriously. I was so high strung I felt that sitting there on one of the comfy studio couches (provided by the auspices of the talented Mr. Tim Moore of Mas Music Productions in Highland Park…plug!) equated to not being fully engaged. Eddie was pretty tough to work with at times because to some extent he doesn’t like the recording process. I still don’t fully understand why…maybe it has to do with my pacing. Bonnie struggled with debilitating Facebook and burrito habits. Chris, I think, struggled with the notion that he could just hit us over the head with something, get out scot free, and forget the whole thing happened…and perhaps it could have been justified. Anyway, we had our ups and downs…very manic days when it felt like we were breaking new sonic ground that never been explored, and desperate doldrums when we just wanted it to be over. All in all, the process took almost a year to finish because we did it all on a shoestring budget. We made a down payment, recorded some stuff, ran out of money, made more money, recorded more stuff, and repeated the process until we finally decided that the album was finished/we couldn’t do it anymore…I don’t know which really came first. At some point you just have to say, “it’s done”.

Truthfully and without any conceit, I can say that I am proud of Hive Mind. Apart from it being a pretty cool album, it’s amazing that it exists at all really. It’s a snapshot of our youth that we can never reproduce…which is probably for the best. We’re more confident than ever that our new material is some of the best stuff we have written yet, and we’re only getting better and better. But if you want to check out where it all started, give Hive Mind a listen…and listen loud.

-Miles, BPP

What does Black Party Politics mean, you say????

•October 24, 2012 • Leave a Comment

Black Party Politics is a state of mind.  It is a state of being.  Black Party Politics is imminent.  Black. Black. Black.Black.

How many times did you count the word black in that Orwellian ramble? Is that a memorable word? We literally exhausted option that was reasonable for a band of scalliwags like  us.  And readers,  do not think for one moment I take the word “scalliwag” lightly.  For it is the only way to describe us young deliquents that comprise this band. I love my friends dearly.  I love my bandmates. But despite what you may see,  we are all pretty uniquely fucked individuals. I use “fucked” as a term of endearment.

If there is one thing that I can say about my bandmates,  past and present,  its that none of us have ever quite had the luxury of fitting right in. We’ve all just been weird and sort and out of place our entire lives.  Except maybe for Chris. Everybody loves that charming fucker. We are daughters and sons of foreigners. We were always a little too self aware for our ages. We all come from multi-cultural families,  that stretch across the globe.  We may have also been guilty of the occasional know-it-all asshole kid behavior that only the swift kids get away with it. The flags we flew,  always miraculously blew in the opposite direction. Our banners’ hues, weren’t fit for the salute.  No matter how hard each of has tried over the years to change our true shade, we have always come back to our true brilliant color.  You can never hide your true colors. All attempts to do so will make you blush intense shades of red in frustration. When you die everyone will know you bled florescent pink.

The beautiful thing about being a weird luminous tear weeping monster, is that you attend to attract other neon Pollock skinned monstrosities as well. We were a motley crew of shameless punks abloom the likes of which you’d never seen. When we blended and created with each other for the first time,  our colors were unabashed and vibrant.

Black Party Politics,  is a veil of protection for the outsiders, wierdos,  geeks,  queens,  closet cases, conspiracy theory freaks,  schizos and school teachers.  It is everyones colors,  unaltered and unabashed spilling from their truest self, and washing everything pristine in strong soaking of unified blackness.  The concentration of everyones truest colors to create a force so powerful that light and gravity cannot escape it. Sing today forever.  FUCK EM.

-Peace
Ralston Henry

Black Party Politics

•April 14, 2010 • Leave a Comment

Thanks for checking out our website! Here we’ll have up to date information on upcoming shows, events, our new album – “Hive Mind”, radio, press, and more!

Black Party Politics