age from Remo)
Jose Pasillas has developed into one of music’s most prolific drummers since picking up stick at the age of 16
in Calabasas CA. as one of the founding member of Incubus. His art has been used extensively by the band on album covers and CD’s and now Pasillas will see his love of art and music combined by SceneFour in the collection “Abstract + Rhythm Landscapes” being released on November 1st. The collection will be limited to 100 pieces and, from what Jose tells me, will range in prices from $250 to $1,000 as a way to try and allow as many people to own the art that want to.
Jose took a few minutes out of his busy schedule to talk with us about the project.
The Muse In Music: How did you get connected with SceneFour and how long does it take to put a project like this together?
Jose Pasillas: There’s a girl, Danielle, associated with SceneFour and I actually went to school with her sister, she went to Calabasas High School and she was actually the one that suggested me. I agreed to do that with them and they knew that I was a painter as well so we agreed to change it up a little bit and actually augment two or three of the pieces with my art on top of it.
tMiM: I was looking through some of the musicians that SceneFour has worked with and they’ve collected some of the biggest names in drumming such as Rick Allen of Def Leppard, Matt Sorum of Guns N’ Roses and Stephen Perkins from Jane’s Addiction, how intimidating is it to have your name added to that list?
JP: I’m definitely humbled and honored to be on that list with these other drummers, it’s been pretty amazing.
tMiM: I’ve looked at some of the work that SceneFour has done with Stephen Perkins and Frankie “Kash” Waddy, can we assume that your work is going to be in the same vein as these?
JP: Exactly, it’s the same concept, they get the images using the same technique.
tMiM: How are you going to make your pieces unique and personal?
JP: I’m going to augment a few of the pieces by hand and that was one of the original idea going into this project, that I would alter them myself in order to make them more unique and individualistic. I’m going to paint directly on top of them. I use a lot of mixed medium at home with spray can, acrylic and paint markers so it’s going to be a mix of all those things. Exactly what I’m going to do to them, I’m not exactly sure yet, we’ll see what I’m inspired to do when the time comes.
tMiM: So you haven’t started working on these yet?
JP: I just started on it. I’m getting to the point where I’m getting ideas and putting
them down and still have a ways to go to realize what it is I’m doing.
tMiM: They debut in a little over a week and a half. That doesn't give you a lot of time. You need to get some inspiration pretty quick.
JP: Yeah, I have a lot of work to do but I’m very inspired. It will definitely be completed on time.
tMiM: The description of your pieces says that “…each depicting a sonic landscape where rhythm is translated onto canvas through the use of a sophisticated process that converts drumstrokes into color and light.” This is a pretty vague statement; can you elaborate on this process for us a little?
JP: Yeah, it’s the right description for it without telling exactly what the images are. I’m basically being shot in the dark with sticks that are lit up so with a 30 second exposure the image that is laid down is very complicated and abstract when it’s said and done. Exactly how the photographers does it, I’m not sure. I’m not a photographer but the images that you see on the canvas are images of me playing a beat for 30 seconds and it being splattered on canvas with light and that’s kind of the result that you get. It’s kind of complicated and kind of difficult to grasp but that’s the best way of describing it.
tMiM: When I interviewed Ben Kenney a few years ago for the release of his solo album I had this next question for him as well and it works well for this situation as well. When you work with a band you have a number of different people to bounce ideas off of but when you’re working on a piece of art, whether it be a painting or a song, alone there’s no one else to use as a sounding board.
JP: I think it’s easier, only because there are not so many conflicting ideas being thrown into the pot. They’re not always conflicting but you’ve got 5 other artists with 5 different ideas. I can see how it would be difficult to work alone though. For music I need the guys to bounce off of and inspire me so that’s where it works really well as a group, but for art like this it’s a very individual thing.
tMiM: The hard part would seem to know when the work is done. When you work with a group there’s a definitive point when the song is complete but with this project it’s just you deciding am I done or not?
JP: It’s a good question. I feel as though I could keep going when I’m drawing. I just have to put the brush down at some point. I can over think things and keep adding and adding but at some point I just have to look at it, feel good about it and just stop. That is one of the more difficult things to do is to know when to stop.