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Up close with Ozomatli’s Wil-Dog (and Michael Moore from Center Arts)

By MELODY STONE, The Eureka Reporter
Published: Aug 21 2008, 5:46 PM · Updated: Aug 21 2008, 5:50 PM
Category: Arts
Topic: Music

(!!!/submitted photo)

The bass player for Ozomatli, Wil-Dog, was preparing for a sound check before a show when he took some time to chat with The Eureka Reporter on the phone.

“I go through the styles of music, funk, reggae, Latin, hip-hop,” said Wil-Dog about Ozomatli’s sound. “It’s like futuristic Santana on acid. If you kind of dig Santana, you might like us, too. We play with all kinds of other bands, like Lenny Kravitz and Dave Matthews.”

Ozomatli has played in Humboldt County numerous time and is coming back again for the Humweek celebrations on campus Thursday, during the first week of school for Humboldt State University, with !!! (indie-electro-dance) and the Upright Citizens Brigade (sketch comedy troupe).

“We’re open to go anywhere. We try not to overplay markets, and we try not to underplay markets. We don’t want people to get tired of us and we don’t want people to forget about us.”

“We’ve played at the university a bunch of time,” said Wil-Dog. “We enjoy hanging out at the square and going on nice hikes. In general, we love going to Northern California.”

Ozomatli has a high standard for each one of their shows, no matter how big or small the venue. “Whatever the cost of the ticket to get in, the show has got to be priceless.”

Ozomatli being a touring band, they have to juggle having families with a hectic music schedule.

“It’s a balancing act,” said Wil-Dog. “This is what we do. We are musicians, and we chose this path.”

Tickets for Humweek, which takes place on the HSU soccer field Thursday, are $25, or $10 for HSU students.

The Humweek concert was organized in part by Michael Moore, event coordinator for Center Arts.

When asked how he decided on the lineup for Humweek, Moore said, “I searched for available artists that would cover a broad range of styles and be fun to see in a soccer field. !!! are very danceable and Ozomatli are a dance party in themselves.”

!!! can be pronounced chk chk chk or bam bam bam or any one syllable sound said three times. !!! is made up of Nic Offer (vox), Jerry Fuchs (drums), John Pugh (vox and perc), Allan Wilson (perc, synth, sax), Mario Andreoni (git), Tyler Pope (git), Justin Van Der Volgen (bass) and Dan Gorman (perc, synth). When recording their third album, “Myth Takes,” they lived together in a house in Nashville, began each day with exercise, then spent the day jamming.

The music consists of electronic cut-and-paste samples and live instruments. The group formed in 1996 and has enjoyed recognition in the house and electronic scenes, and even opened for the Red Hot Chili Peppers.

(Melody Stone can be contacted mstone@eurekareporter.com or 707-269-7437.)

Humweek Concert Schedule

  • Gates open to the public 4:30 p.m.
  • Upright Citizens Brigade 5-5:45 p.m.
  • !!! 6-6:45 p.m.
  • The Marching Lumberjacks 6:45-7:05 p.m.
  • (performing off stage in the field)
  • Upright Citizens Brigade MC duties.
  • Brett Dennen 7:15-8:15 p.m.
  • Bloco Firmeza 8:15-8:30 p.m.
    (performing off stage in the field)
  • Upright Citizens Brigade MC duties.
  • Ozomatli 8:45-end

Related Links

Ozomatli
www.myspace.com/ozomatli

Brett Dennen
www.myspace.com/brettdennen

!!! (chk, chk, chk)
www.myspace.com/chkchkchk

Upright Citizens Brigade
www.uprightcitizens.org

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