Tag Archive | brennan benko

Music Video Preview

The final “Move Your Body” music video by False Puppet is nearing it’s release! Here’s the official preview! The video will be up for all to see sometime soon after May 19th. Get ready, “Move Your Body” is headed your way! Watch in HD for best effect.

WW1 Bar Fight!

Today, I’ve got another little video treat for y’all. About a month ago, my history teacher offered a large amount of extra credit to those who would create a film representing world war one in the form of a bar fight. Because my grade was suffering, I seized the opportunity as it applied to my interest in film. So, I’ve decided to present it to Beatitwithsticks. Keep in mind that we had to follow a set script, so some dialogue is weird. Otherwise, sit back, relax, and enjoy the video! Watch in 720p for best effect!

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8xOuSPUt4ck

Songwriting and Stuff.

For almost every band, there’s a point during their start when covering songs occupies most of their set. Like any other, this is how we started. It wasn’t until at least two months after we began that we started writing our own material. Even then, it was difficult to crank out enough polished originals that would be greater in quantity than covers.

Now, after almost three years of playing, the majority of all our sets are originals. A usual show for us will consist of between two to four covers at the most. This includes what we call “original covers.” Original covers are when we take a song of a different genre that we enjoy, and put a rock/pop spin on it. For example, we perform Lady Gaga’s “pokerface,” Eminem’s “lose yourself,” Michael Jackson’s “billy jean,” The Rolling Stones “can’t always get what you want,” and many others. These types of songs show diversity in our style, as well as display well-known songs that everyone can dance and sing along to. It’s very rare now that we do straight covers, much of our set is original music.

However, producing such an amount of originals enough to where they occupy most of your set can take a very long time. On average, writing and polishing an original from beginning to end takes at least five days for us. Though often we work on multiple new songs at once, our own music does not come over night. That being so, it can take long amounts of time before one can be ready to perform an all original show.

We’re often asked how we write our own music, and to be truthful, there’s no direct answer. Inspiration, and the start of a new tune can come from anywhere. Tyler may think of  guitar riff, or Channing a bass riff. I may start a song by writing a new beat, or the guys could think of a unique new vocal harmony. The start of our songs always varies. However, I would say it most commonly begins in the music room with me and Tyler.

 

The music room is our own little shed/hut/cave/lair, whatever you want to call it. It’s the birthplace of every False Puppet tune ever written. Sometimes me and Tyler could be down there simply noodling, and come up with something were into. This happens every so often, and definitely has started some of our better songs. But,we never know how a song may start. It’s a random system where anything can be thought of or created, and to me, it’s something that really has the potential to make our music unique. The unplanned, “go with the flow” factor of it makes songwriting that much more intriguing and exciting to me.

On top of the time and effort it takes to write a song, its all incredibly fun. For me, the feeling of creating something new and inventing a song that hasn’t been played before is exhilarating. Not as exhilarating as when I finally get on the stage and play it though. The excitement of entertaining your fans with a song they’ve never heard before is almost gratifying. Playing it is like a whole new experience in a way. To be playing a sequence of rhythms and beats that you’ve never performed before in front of a live audience is new and exciting. And to take your listeners with you on that experience is fun as well. I also enjoy hearing the crowds reaction before and after performing a never before heard song. It’s very rewarding to know your audience enjoyed your performance, and the excitement I feel right before playing it in front of a big crowd is sometimes unreal. Occasionally, it’s performances like these where I see myself play best. The only downside I see of it, is if a mistake is made or there is no reaction from  the audience. Even still, these happenings can be seen as a reminder that the song could use more work. From there I would be sent back to the songwriting process, which I enjoy equally. Luckily, so far we haven’t faltered any brand new songs during a live show yet.

It’s also a great feeling to know that there are still endless amounts of songs to write. There’s a whole lifetime of songs to be heard, written and played. It’s comforting to understand that as long as I remain passionate about music, there will always be new opportunities and experiences for me. The fact that there are still billions of songs to be written is amazing, and one can only look forward to the new generations of music to come! If you have any opposing ideals, questions, or remarks, go ahead and leave a comment below! Thanks for reading folks! Have a nice day.

 

False Puppet Live!

I realize only now that after talking so much about my band, many of you haven’t even heard us perform. So, I’ve decided to ease up on writing today, and to let you all check out our live performance. Here’s a video of False Puppet playing “Hall of Shame” at the House of Blues in Hollywood.  Enjoy.

 

More Music Video News…

Lately the Music video has taken up nearly all of my time aside from shows, so I’ve been finding it difficult to update the blog on anything other than it’s progress. We’ve got a lot of excess footage that won’t be used in the video, so I figured once again asa little teaser, I’ll give you guys a quick behind the scenes look on our classroom shoot.

I’ve been doing a horrendous job of keeping this a surprise, but supplying other content is really hard for me right now. So I threw together some extra footage, enabling you guys to take a look at what we’ve been up to. You guys sure are lucky! Take a look…

If you’ve got any questions or remarks on the progress of the video, leave a comment below! More updates coming soon! Have a nice day.

Update on the Music Video

Yesterday, Monday April 23, we started up on the second official shoot for the Move Your Body music video. In case you have not read earlier updates, our last shoot was a few weeks ago at the Rockshop Academy in Santa Barbara, CA. That was a basic performance scene, however we brought about 50 fans to the area to dance, and to create that crowd/audience vibes. This provided us with additive shots to establish a party, dance, and performance type scene, which will be scattered throughout the basic theme of the video to give it the fun mood it needs. After filming our crowd shots, we ended up abandoning our original plan for a beach scene, and thought up of some different ideas.

Our general desire for the video is to, once again, make sure that it’s a fun, party style video. So, we planned out a shoot at Goleta Beach originally. We thought a beach would be a unique, fairly easy, and exciting place to schedule our second shoot, but after discussing specific times, and most of all coping with what our weather conditions were like, we found it easier to bail on the beach and go for a more unreal and comedic setting. After more waves of ideas, we ended up agreeing on a classroom scene. This seemed perfect, if we could book a classroom anywhere, we would then have a good time to film, a good place, wouldn’t need to worry about weather conditions, and could have a steady lighting arrangement indoors, excluding any worries about losing light. Once we agreed on a school shoot, it was up to me to get us a classroom.

Before booking a classroom, I had to review the necessities in order to make our scene legitimate. First of all, we would need a relatively solitary room so we could play music loudly without disturbing anyone. Second, an empty classroom wouldn’t do, we wanted desks, chairs, whiteboards, the whole nine yards. Anything that would make the class look realistic. We would need power (which most rooms have anyways) and a reasonable distance to load in equipment.

I did also realize, however, that these were specific requirements, and if some were not available, we would need to cope with it seeing as it’s not often a classroom is rented out to a band. Luckily for me though, I’ve known the Principal of my own school since Junior High, and as far as I know, I’m on his good side.

I didn’t have any certain classroom in mind, but I was sure that there would be something open for use. By Friday April 20, I had booked a perfect classroom for the shoot. Our principal was nice enough to lend out a rarely used classroom at the level of the football field. It held desks, a whiteboard, everything we needed. Best of all, it was isolated from the remainder of the school, meaning that sound was no issue, and we could have it until 11 at night. Now that we had room for 5:30 on Monday afternoon, it was time to select actors for the video. I had already had a couple of buddies in mind, but there was a crucial actor/actress that we needed by then, and we only had the weekend to find them.

Now, I would normally tell all about who, and what this actor/actress is doing exactly but I’d like to keep it secret until the video is released. But I will say they add an awesome part to the video, and honestly made it for me personally. With this actor/actress, the basic theme of the video was complete. However, with the weekend in front of us, we were yet to find them. It wasn’t until Saturday afternoon that our bass player’s father actually thought of the perfect person. We had worked with them before on a Television show called SB Backbeat, and new that they would be just right for the role! We quickly contacted them, gave them times, dates, and details, and were then set to film.

When Monday rolled around, we packed up all our gear and were off to the classroom. We arrived at 5:30 and promptly began assembling the set up, and rearranging the classroom so it would cooperate with our standards. Once all the members from the band showed up, we started off shooting individual playing shots at least two times through with each member. After about an hour of that, we moved on group band shots as a whole, and from there to the actors. The whole process took about 5 hours! We had finally finished recording around 10:00, and were then left to break down all of our instruments and gear. And I must say, disassembling everything that we put up earlier was quite a hassle, and certainly didn’t help with my tiredness, and hunger. However, it was all worth it. As soon as we finished up, we went straight to the Santa Barbara Chicken Ranch. The food there is awesome, if you’re ever in the area, definitely go and check it out!

After 5 hours of filming, we were all super excited to see the turnout! It should be done in approximately a month, once it’s up, I’ll be posting it here on Beatitwithsticks for all to see! Thanks for reading! Leave any questions or comments below! Have a nice day.

Fan Art!

While searching through photos for my last post, “The Many Faces of Brennan,” I stumbled upon some awesome fan art in our fan album. This girl drew an individual shot of each band mate, and I was super impressed! It’s drawn in a really cool, simplistic style, yet it reflects each of our appearances. Needless to say, I was stoked on how they looked! I can’t believe a hadn’t stumbled upon it earlier!

So, here’s to our lovely fan who drew these! Thanks for the Artwork! 

Tyler Benko

Channing Peake

Brennan Benko

There’s even more cool fan artwork on the False Puppet Facebook page. So, if you wanna check it out, go on and click here and go to photos;

http://www.facebook.com/falsepuppet

If you don’t have a Facebook, but would like to see more fan artwork, request some in the comment box! Thanks for reading! Have a nice day.

The Best Splash Mountain Picture… EVER!

I understand that this is a blog based on drumming, but I honestly think that this is too funny to pass up. So, unfortunately for the drummers, this post will not involve much to do with music. But fret not! This is worth showing…

On Saturday before we departed for the tour, me and five friends left for a quick Disneyland visit. We thought we would spice up the start of our tour with a little fun. We had a wonderful time there, and left with a lot of great memories, one in particular that seemed to really stick with us all.

It seems to have become a notorious action to produce the most ridiculous picture possible when having your photo taken at the end of each ride. I often see a lot of great ones on the rides Space Mountain, and of course, Splash Mountain.

I don’t visit Disneyland too often, so unfortunately for me I had actually never rode Splash Mountain until this time. Needless to say, we had an amazing time with that ride in particular. I think we rode it at least four times. And trust me, with lines like the ones at Disneyland, not too many people will ride the same ride consecutively if it means waiting in enormous lines. But luckily for us, that wasn’t the case. We had what are called Fast Passes, which are just about exactly what they sound like. They’re special tickets that will get you through the line quicker and with less of a wait. So, after our first test of true fun on Splash Mountain, our whole party immediately fell in love and stocked up on Fast Passes for the rest of the night. Because of our new-found ride love, we ended up on the same ride for the rest of the night, and of course, with the most valuable picture from the trip yet.

After already having a full day of fun from ten o’clock in the morning, we needed to stop for a quick bite to eat (and don’t worry this is still relevant to the story). We had just been on Splash Mountain for the first time that day, and left soaking wet. myself especially, because my friends being the assholes they are made me sit in the very front. In case you don’t know, the front seat guarantees complete sogginess. So, I left soaking and sopping wet, while my buddies in the backseat sat down for dinner comfortably dry. Here’s our very first picture from that trip. Notice the absolutely horrifying amount of anger I’m displaying because of sitting in the front.

So, there’s a visual of our first run. But that’s just the beginning.

We stopped at a neat little Mexican joint in Downtown Disney and chowed down. Luckily for me, there were plenty of heaters that slowly but surely dried me off. However, over dinner the topic came up to Splash Mountain. We all wanted to ride it… again. But that left us to face the issue that we would undoubtedly get soaked once again. We had to solve this problem.

Our friend Tarry then got the brilliant idea to go to the front counter of the restaurant and ask for six massive trash bags. Apparently, his request was granted as he came walking out of the building triumphantly grasping a mass of black plastic in his hands. After unfolding, untangling, and punching in head and arm holes, our whole group strutted through the entire park wearing big, trailing, baggy, flowing, beautiful, garbage bags. With a few glances down the wall of true men who aren’t embarrassed to wear ponchos in disneyland, we all knew we would be leaving the park that night comfortably dry. This, is what led to our picture.

We rode over and over, with massive grins on our faces, as each time we departed, we marveled at our dryness, and then at the sopping wet heaps of families that walked away into the cold night air with knowledge that Splash Mountain had defeated them.

It was only until our last ride that we sealed the deal, took my favorite picture of all time, and left the park on a good note. I’ll let the element of surprise take it’s place here, so I won’t explain who’s idea it was or what we did in the picture. All I know is that I can’t stop laughing when I see this, and I hope it will do the same for you. Behold, what I believe to be the best Splash Mountain picture… Ever.

With trash bags on our entire bodies, we knew it would make for a hilarious picture. Sure enough, we arrived in the showing room and basked in pure happiness as the sound of park-goers laughter echoed through the artificial caves walls.

Without further ado, we left the park in a good mood, and ready to sleep. Unfortunately, we couldn’t buy our picture because it was apparently “dangerous,” but we still got a picture of the screen, so it was no sweat. This picture definitely brings some good memories. Can you top it? If you can, tell about your experience on Splash Mountain in the comment box below! Thanks for reading, and have a nice day.

The Many Faces of Brennan

Some would say that I’m a very… animated drummer. My movements, expressions, and overall performance reflect that of, and I quote many fans; “Animal from the Muppets.” I don’t really know if this is necessarily a good thing, but it leaves me somewhat content with the fact that my drumming performance isn’t going unnoticed.

In my opinion, going crazy with hitting hard, headbanging, and just looking into it makes it a better show for everyone. It appeals to the audience, it can pump up other bandmates, and it’s just fun for myself. So, when performing any show at all, I give my best rock n’ roll performance unless I’m somehow rendered incapable. However, performing a physical show like so, does indeed often drive me to try very, very hard to maintain the performance, which for me is a coordinated, technical, and physical workout. Because of this, I am often presented with many absurd comments on what I call, my “try hard face.”

My facial expressions are often a result of me trying very hard. Hence it’s name, “the try hard face.” This expression most commonly involves; protrusion of the tongue, sucking in of the bottom lip, and/or biting the lip.

I don’t know why it’s this face exactly, all I know is that the audience really, really thinks it’s funny. I can’t blame them either. I’m certain it’s hard not to laugh while watching a young adult flail and cringe as if there are piranhas in his shirt. I know I would be hysterical!

I specifically remember hearing a comment that actually surprised me with just how intense my faces are. A few weeks after a show, I was informed that a friend of my girlfriend actually thought that I suffered from, well… Mental retardation. They said it was polite that the other band members allowed a child with special need to play in their band… I know I look crazy, but really?! I feel like that’s a bit of a far fetched assumption. Unfortunately I can’t see how I look, but I honestly don’t think it’s THAT bad. I mean, I hope everybody else knows that I don’t suffer from mental issues. And yes, I do not have any form of autism for the record. On the bright side, I’m glad to know that if the band did have a special needs person performing, it would at least be accepted.

Anyways, I always get at least one remark on my facial expressions after a show. So I figured if people are seeing it already, why not post it online! I’m sure after reading this you’re anxious to see these crazy faces. So, lucky for you, I’ve prepared an entire gallery of “The Many Faces of Brennan.” Get ready. I think you’ll be pleasantly surprised with just how psycho I look. Enjoy my friends.

Just thought I’d throw this one in there, I destroyed my fingers at a 2 hour show. I was dealing with cuts and bruises up the whazoo!

What do you think? Pretty damn crazy… I do realize now how absolutely mad I look. So I understand that the audience would indeed want to consult me about my somewhat concerning faces. Unfortunately, I can’t exactly help making “the try hard face.” It’s something that I just do, and I’ll have to learn to accept it. Lucky for me it can please the viewers just as much as it terrifies them. I hope these faces didn’t scare you in any way, but if you’re surprised, or frightened, or just laughing your ass off, go ahead and leave a comment about what you think! Thanks for reading, and looking. Have a nice day.

Nostalgic Blog Posts…

Just a quick post today to tell of my reminiscence on the very beginning of False Puppet

I found myself searching through old old old photos and I stumbled upon some shots of us at an interview. Needless to say, I was amazed at how young we looked, me and Tyler in particular.

So, because of my sudden remembrance of the very beginning of the band, I dug up some photos from that interview. We honestly look so little!

Anyways, just thought I’d show you all the old days, when we just getting started. If you’ve got any comments, or questions, go ahead and ask away in the comment box! Thanks for reading! Have a nice day.

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