Contrary to what the trio of John Fletcher, Nathan Field, and Philip Massinger told us in their 17th century play “The Honest Man’s Fortune,” as disseminated through Ralph Waldo Emerson’s essay, “Self-Reliance,” no band is its own star — no band is self-reliant. Though, when it comes to Explorers of the New World, we like to think we’re getting pretty close.
For starters, we’re songwriters and musicians. We’re also studio engineers (aspiring) and filmmakers and journalists and even amateur web developers. Oh, and we’re photographers now, too:
There’s a buzzword in journalism that describes the present-day demand for reporters who can produce their own words, audio, and video for each one of their stories. That word is “convergence.” As I’m sure you’ve heard, the Internet is currently choking the monetizing life out of newspapers, local news, and local radio. Simultaneously, it has been stabbing Apollo — well, more like Apollo’s money-grubbing grandfather, Cronus, the progenitor of Big Music — outside the Theatre of Pompey since the Ides of June, 1999. This is neither good nor bad. Id est.
All ancient Roman metaphors aside, and what I probably should have mentioned two paragraphs ago: participating in a music-generating enterprise, or band, especially in the independent sector, is not for the one-dimensional musician anymore. Unless, of course, you’re an uncle in a cover band that plays some originals (in that case, why the fuck are you reading this?) Indeed, a band is only as good as the amount of content it can generate, like most enterprises these days, and must consist of members who can effectively produce words, audio, and video, among other things. It’s convergence, a survival mechanism, and as square as it all sounds, as square as square sounds, art must live (does a falling statue in a museum make a sound if a working ear isn’t present?).
That’s just where we are right now in the rock ‘n’ roll continuum.
With that excessive preface in mind, which was solely written for the enjoyment of its author, who refuses to apologize (Emerson would be proud), Explorers of the New World is truly lucky to feature such a talented photographer as one of its members.
The photos above were shot and edited by Joshua Foo during the night of April 9 and early morning of April 10. You can find his other work here. Our “Americana Space Fantasy” costumes consist of a fish bowl helmet and a duvet cover cloak. We used a vinegar/water mixture, or a homemade cleaning agent, to mist our helmets, because we were too lazy to dump the solution from the spray bottle and replace it with water.
I still smell like salad dressing.
-James fuit hic.