about barnes

  • Dave Matthews
  • Mike Gordon of Phish
  • Mike Gordon of Phish
  • Bill Frisell
  • Jeff Austin
  • Keller Williams
  • Sam Bush
  • Robert Earl Keen
  • Tony Trischka

i’ve been at this a pretty long time. the main thing i use to get my ideas across has been the banjo. it has an unusual sound and is capable of a wide range of expression, however it isn’t very developed yet, in terms of what is being done with it in a current macro sense. it’s untapped.
 
a lot of what i do was informed by punk rock and dub music from the 70’s, i bought those records when they were new, thus starting a lifelong obsession of buying records. i received a degree from the university of texas [austin] in audio production, and loved the classes there about the history of audio and recorded music. that’s where i first started hearing experimental music, that’s also where i learned to be very comfortable in a recording studio. later i became the principle songwriter/producer/singer for bad livers, and eventually launched my own private record label [minner bucket records], publishing company, and solo career in about 1998.
 
i have some good friends in bands of various sizes, some of them are these quite famous people, though i try to learn from anyone that has an “idea.” my whole thing is music, and trying to make my own sound. i have developed a specific technique i call barnyard electronics which is an aesthetic combining various bits of bluegrass, noise, rock, and electronic music. the live aspect involves a computer program i built in max/msp and a banjo. i do about 150 domestic shows a year with that set-up.