So I've been very fortunate in the past few weeks to have been playing gigs with some of the most amazing musicians and people! Having been able to play with legends such as Calvin Keys, John Shiflett, Bob Kenmotsu and some other bay area heavies like Brian Ho... Talk about being at the right place at the right time for most of these... It has been nothing short of amazing and humbling. Thanks for the opportunities and the music. I learn so much everytime I play music but even more so when it's musicians of this caliber. Talk about the real school! Looking forward to more fun times! :)
Had a great turn out at Cafe Stritch... Packed the house with the walk in crowd along with a bunch of musicians on a SATURDAY night... ridiculous... :) 6 bass players, 4 guitar players, drummers, horn players... Talk about fun...
Anyways, thought I'd write some new things happening... in this case new gear... For some reason I go through soft cases quite a bit... However have been having amazing luck with the Ahead Armor cases... I've had the one for my snare drum for a little over a year now and the thing is amazing... Light, it's got this whole rigid thing where it retains it's case so it's easy to put drums in... The protection from temperature changes are amazing which is a really huge thing for me especially because of how often I leave my drums in the car over night (Yes I know I shouldnt be doing this but when you get home at 3 or 4 in the morning and have morning down beats the next day or early afternoon, you tend to get lazy unloading).
So anyways I went ahead and ordered some cases for my toms and such for my main gigging kit... Wasnt too sure about the sizes I'd use seeing as my main working kit right now are pretty oddball... 6X10, 9X14, 12X16 BD... So I emailed Ahead and got a response literally like twenty minutes later. The rep, Bob answered all my questions in a nice short summarized email with suggestions to some of the stuff they had which i didnt even know existed... Long story short, I ordered the 16X14 Multi snare case which comes with two fleece dividers... (Before I was going to get a 16X14 tom case and use foam to divide it)... Looking forward to some new cases to retire my old torn ones... As for my bass drum, I'm going to have to bring my bass drum in to a store to try some out... I mean I'm pretty sure it'll fit a floor tom case but the drum's got one of those DW riser thingies... So maybe I might have to go with an 18" bag... Though what I was wondering about was the little V shape space Ahead has on their cases... Hopefully that'll work... We'll see... :)
PS : I am not affiliated to Ahead whatsoever... just wanted to share how happy I am with the products and the service...
Just a really quick update... Having my first gig at Cafe Stritch not as a sidemen this Saturday 09/21 8pm - 11pm... Come out and hang out at the party... All thats required is a good attitude... Everything else is optional... :)
Getting back on the horse... been a little too laid back over the past few months and now i'm getting back in the groove of shedding... Some exciting things coming up over the week aside from the usual giggin'... Got a lesson on Thursday which I know I'll get my butt handed to me and on Sunday evening I'm getting together with a fellow local drummer we're gonna work on some Philly Joe stuff... So yea, i got a few days to transcribe and learn these transcriptions... Gonna be fun... Off to shed! :)
So remember I said I got a chance to play an underground gig with Mike Phillips? Someone took a video of some of it... Check it out! :)
And the music keeps on going!!! Had the chance to play an underground event for C&L Music with Mike Phillips (Prince, Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson). Dude was killin! Defintely a ridiculous horn player with a big sound and man when he started playing these fast double time patterns while he was circular breathing... Man I nearly lost it! Once again and I know say this a lot... But I really feel blessed to be making music with such amazing musicians and people! Thanks Tony Song, Jack Hanan and Jason Bellenkes for sharing the experience with me as well! :)
Oh... and coming soon I figured I'm going to start a pit setup photo gallery showing all the weird pit setups I've done... Think that might be interesting... Til then... Here's one from last month at John and Jen
March is finally coming to an end and I must say it's been a hell of a ride. I've been so busy it's been ridiculous playing an average of 6 - 7 services a weekend on top of teaching and recording. This weekend was definitely an eye opener as I hadn't had the time to do laundry, so I went out and got more concert black outfits to last me the weekend. Falling sick and having to play three gigs for one of those days did not help either. It's been intense and I've come to the realisation of having to take better care of myself. I mean, I'm eating right, juicing hella but I barely sleep and I feel like butt for not having been on the bike in while...
Non music wise it's been an emotional rollercoaster as well; making new friends and reconnecting with old. Though quite a bit of it have definitely been distractions they are indeed welcomed ones. That being said, I am grateful that I play music for a living even though I complain quite a bit about having to do 9am downbeats... haha.
I breathe, eat and sometimes DONT sleep music. Would not have it any other way...
Was just sent some photos from Chelsea Mudlo from the other day via Facebook... Check them out!
So it has been a pretty eventful day yesterday... Did a photo shoot with Chelsea Mudlo in the day and then worked with Peejay Estay... A 16 year old songwriter from Daly City... Peejay is one of Broken Horn Studio's new artist and we're working on his new album right now scheduled to be released this summer... Anyways, we got together last night, ran through a tune of his a few times and then recorded this live podcast video which will be one of many to come. It was done with the Broken Horn studio musicians, Will Mandell, Tommy Folen and I. Anyways, check it out!!!
Do you guys know those days when you feel just absolutely depleted? Your heart's pounding from all the excitement over new possibilities and potential of things around you. You can hardly sit still as you're at a constant rush. Palms are sweaty as a million thoughts race through your mind. On top of that you can hardly sleep and that doesn't make it any easier as what little rest time you have is pretty much as precious as gold. I guess you could say that it's sort of a 'good' depleted... Having people and music to fuel my day. I swear I think on some days, it's the only way I make through. I'm very fortunate to be constantly surrounded by amazing people who do amazing things and amazing can often be the simplest things as well... As simple as just smiling or joining you as you all sing in harmony while using a urinal... It's funny how I think really a lot of times we have the ability to choose to be happy or help someone else have a great day at any given time and though it can be rough sometimes, we all carry the potential to do so. A little push from a friend or even complete strangers you meet on BART or a coffee shop or even just by striking a conversation at the pub. But yea, it seems that lately I'm just surrounded by such people and I truly am greatful for that...
I was watching a bunch of interviews with Mark Schulman recently and he said something which i really took to heart. "Always leave people and things better than the way you found them. Let the the experience of you enrich their lives". Thats just a really great way to see things. I think i'm going to start living by that and hopefully stay true to it in my quest to be a better person. Will start by smiling more; it's one of my favorite things to do in the world and I do hope it is contagious and you'll pass it along...
Anyways gonna end my yapping... Have a good one! :)
So I've been compiling photos for my new press kit and so here's a sneak peak of stuff to come including ones from the quick 10 minute photo shoot a few days ago with Broken Horn Studios... More to come...
Oh and Happy Valentines Day! :)
Photo By Will Mandell, Broken Horn Studios
Photo by Seth Dolcourt, Seth Dolcourt Custom Drums
Well... it happened... I've officially joined The Peninsula Music and Broken Horn Studios team with my two business partners, Will Mandell and Tommy Folen. We are in the process of aquiring our new space and moving from our currently location in San Mateo, but pretty soon, we will have the place up and running and i'll be able to track drums remotely and send them out via email or whatever... Possibilities... :) Also, teaching in The Peninsula as well right now... :)
Stay tuned for updates including an event for opening day...
They're finally here!!! Seth pretty much slaved all weekend to get them ready for the upcoming week. I give you the Poh-Litely...
16X12, 14X9, 10X6... They sound amazing!!!
Hosted a session with them yesterday, tonight they will be at The Rock It Room, Friday at a recording session, Sunday at a sax recital in Fremont, Tuesday the Boom Boom Room, and Friday another recording session... Cant wait to play'em somemore!!!
So there's been some pretty amazing things happening as of late... Aside from doing the whole musical theatre scene and playing the random jazz gigs with my own group or accompanying vocalists, I recently started playing with Dirty Cello, a gypsy jazz rock and roll kind of band. Somehow got a phonecall a few weeks ago and now I'm playing three weekends in a row with them. The first being The New Parish in Oakland, then Sutter Creek Theatre in Sutter Creek and finally The De Young Museum in San Francisco this Friday. It's been a wonderful and humbling experience making me realise that I've got so much to learn and work on...
Also, just accepted a job teaching a weekly elementary school percussion class... Love corrupting young minds with music and making their parents hate me for practicing... :)
Man, it seems like everytime I play at The Douglas Morrisson, the setup just gets bigger and bigger!!! Well, at least they're fun to play and more importantly, they look cool... :)
2010 - Little Women
2011 - The King and I
2012 - Grey Gardens
Another quick update on the September 5th Bistro session. Marshall Williams will yet again be subbing for me as I'm in tech week for Grey Gardens which is literally a few blocks away. Will definitely roll by after the rehearsal though...
Roll on by and have a beer with me later... :)
So I will be back at the La Honda Music Camp yet again this year from 07/27 to 08/04. Will have no cell phone reception and very limited internet access for the week. So best way to contact within those periods would be via email or facebook...
Also, because I will be gone that week, Marshall Williams will be subbing for me for the Poh Teng Group Session at The Bistro, Hayward on 08/01... :)
Just a quick update... The Poh Teng Group session now has a facebook page... So LIKE us... if you like us... :)
Also, for the 4th of July, the session is going to start at 3:30pm and end at about 8pm... Thought that may be some useful information... :)
It was friday morning... my phone goes off and I read a text from a good friend of mine saying that he's in town til Tuesday. A lil last minute but we managed to find some time to squeeze in a really quick living room hangout session in there at another good friend's place. Recorded some of it. Check it out!
Tenor Sax - Chris Almada Bass - Mac Esposito Drum - Poh Soon Teng Trumpet - Andrew Wilke
Fresh from the workshop of Mr. Seth Dolcourt... Dude's got a nack for beautiful wood and quirky names... even if it is just plain old red birch... This one is going to be called the Poh-Litely... haha
So I got this one from Tony at cymbalsonly a little over two weeks ago. Let me just say I think i've finally found it... The last main ride I'll EVER play!!!
or at least for a while... hahahaha
But yea, this one has everything i've been looking for. Clear articulate stick over a lush smoky sexy wash. Think Chet Baker, Shirley Horn and Diana Krall? Yes... I'm comparing cymbals to vocalists... :S
At first glance, she looks just like any other turk cymbal, but once you start looking a little closer, you'll notice some differences from the usual Bos Turk. First off, the crust looks a little different. It's more reddish than the other greenish turks i've got in my setup. Could they have changed something in the bronze? It's almost Istanbul ish in colour. Then you'll start looking at her a little more and notice the bell. It's far from being a circle (Not as clear in pics). Probably adds to the complexity I'm hearing in the wash which is something I LOVE about this pie. Then there's the weight. Bosphorus calls this one a Turk Thin. But it weighs in at 2519g. Far from being anorexic like most other thin pies. She can be mean and nasty when shanked and dont even get me started on the wobble. Every once in a while i find myself really beating the s**t outta her and man, the response definitely puts a smile on my face. Especially since the stick just constantly stays on top of that bed of complexity.
It's definitely not the 22" Old K sound but it's the sound i've been trying to get come out of my head and now I have it.
So i've been just in bed all of last night and this morning... tired and starting to feel a little depleted... But got a rehearsal in a bit... and man... UPS better get here soon... Really wished they delivered on the weekends... :S
Yes... Despite the common perception that I'm weird... Not saying that I'm not... In fact, I am a full fledged weirdo... :S
I do enjoy hanging out in living rooms with good company. Every once in a while, some friends and I would gather at someone's place with beers and food and just hang and play music. And, every once in a while, there would be a recording setup ready to go... Here's one from Matt Roads' and Andy Wilke's place from a few weeks ago... Playing on the old Gretsch Catalina which i sold Matt not too long ago along with Marshall's cymbals... That 22" Spizz is very purrrty... :)
Tenor - Chris Almada Bass - Matt Roads Piano - Chris Sullivan Drums - Poh Soon Teng Trumpet - Andrew Wilke
Got some time to kill... so anyways, here's a quick update... Beginning March, The Poh Teng Group will be hosting a session at the Bistro, Hayward every first Wednesday of the month... Though for February, we'll be there on the 22nd. Music starts at 9pm... :)
So it's been a while since I last posted but time is short so i'm just checking and gonna make this short... Finally got my 'Poh-Bop' from Seth a few weeks ago... man am I in love... I think these are going to be the last set of drums I'll play for the rest of my life... It's since been in a session setting, recording session and currently in a community chorus thing... Man I love this thing... Here's a video of our last session at the Bistro in Hayward. Sorry bout compressed audio quality, but oh well... :)
My Funny Valentine
Tenor - Chris Almada Bass - Matt Roads Guitar - Lu Salcedo Piano - Chris Sullivan Drums - Poh Soon Teng
The Poh Teng Group just played their first night at The Bistro, Hayward, CA. We live streamed it via UStream and iPhone and stuff... Check out our channel in the future for more live streams at...
Tenor - Chris Almada Bass - Matt Roads Guitar - Lu Salcedo Piano - Chris Sullivan Drums - Poh Soon Teng Trumpet - Andrew Wilke
Finally got a soundcloud account and thought I'd share some recordings i just uploaded. Recordings were done via iPhone... the ecm jam was cut short due to some one calling in... )((*&%^$^*&(&*%&$^#%$%^&
But enjoy... :)
Chris Almada - Tenor Sax Matt Roads - Bass Lu Salcedo - Guitar Chris Sullivan - Piano Poh Soon Teng - Drums
Been getting into ECM lately... Just really
digging all the Brian Blade, Jon Christensen and Manu Katche... the
stuff Jan Garbarek and Eberhard Weber... Omg... anyways, got together
with a bunch of friends on Thursday night and this happened...
one of the 4 "tunes" we played... We just walked into the room, no one says a word and we start playing... Recorded with my Iphone. XD
Chris Almada - Tenor Matt Roads - Bass Lu Salcedo - Guitar Chris Sullivan - Piano Poh Soon Teng - Drums
Wow... It's almost been a year since i last updated this site... But anyways, much has changed and things have been good. Done with undergrad life and starting a new phase in my life... :)
Wanna know what else is up?? Well, just hit me up... I'm a lil too lazy to type... :)
PS, The Poh Teng Group is now hosting a session every first and third Thursday at Zuckersuss 7:30pm - 9:45pm. It's right across the street from Buffalo Bills Brewery. Walking distance from Hayward Bart... Come on over and say hi...
Tenor - Chris Almada Piano - Chris Sullivan Drums - Poh Soon Teng Bass - Matt Roads
Here's a video from someone who was there at our last one... Opening it up with some blues... :)
Once again, it's been a while and this time even longer. Finishing off
my GEs over the summer all at the same off working up my repertoire,
gigging and etc... Had the wonderful opportunity to work with many very
accomplished musicians over the summer at La Honda music camp while
making friends along the way. That and I just recently got a teaching
gig at a studio in Fremont!!! It's busy but it's good... will keep you
guys updated in more detail later when i dont have ten minutes to class
Anyways, new videos added... and did I mention I got to meet Stanton Moore??? XD
It's been a while and been swamped with school and random gigs, but here's a little update. Just uploaded some sound files and added my buddy's site to the links page... XD
Welcome to Poh's site... Currently
under construction, but feel free to browse through. Recordings and
videos will be up sometime soon as well as a schedule... XD