Thee Water MoccaSins

Artists on Trial: Roman Numerals and Thee Water MoccaSins

Steve Tulipana has been one of the commanding forces of the Kansas City music scene for years. As a member of several prominent local bands and a co-owner of recordBar, Tulipana has more than made his mark in the community. Two of his bands, Roman Numerals and Thee Water MoccaSins, will be appearing at Middle of the Map Fest next week.  
The Deli: Down and dirty: 1 sentence to describe your music. What is it?

Steve Tulipana: Roman Numerals: Post-post-punk.
Thee Water MoccaSins: Electro-psych fractal pop.
The Deli: What other artists are you looking forward to seeing at MotM?
The Deli: It always amazes me to watch either of the bands perform since Billy Smith (Smith lives in NYC) isn’t in town often to rehearse. How do you make it work?
ST: We’ve all known each other a very long time and have very similar tastes so yeah, I guess it just gels easily.
The Deli: It’s always a big celebration when either band has a chance to play in town. Do you guys have any releases coming up?
ST: Roman Numerals: Probably not, though I wish there was a proper release for the last stuff we did.
TWM: Most definitely. Still hoping to release our album (From the Rivers of Missouri and The Banks of Fear, The Deli KC’s #1 album of 2012) on vinyl. I just finished a new “found footage” video I should be releasing any day now.
The Deli: Anything special planned for either of the bands for MotM?
ST: Roman Numerals is playing with our original drummer Pete LaPorte. We’ve not played with him in about 5 years. We’ll also be playing material from the first record, which we haven’t played in a long time. Probably will be some Joy Division tunes thrown in there too.
The Deli: What does supporting local music mean to you?

ST: It’s second nature to me. It’s vital. It’s air and blood. Without it I’m dead.
The Deli: Who are your favorite local musicians right now?

The Deli: Who are your favorite not-so-local musicians right now?

ST: Moonface, David Bowie, Frank Ocean are all on constant rotation right now.
The Deli: What is your ultimate fantasy concert bill to play on?

ST: See above.
The Deli: Would you rather spend the rest of your life on stage or in the recording studio?
ST: Stage. I hate the studio; too boring for me.
The Deli: A music-themed Mount Rushmore. What four faces are you putting up there and why?
ST: Kerry King, Dave Lombardo, Tom Araya, and Jeff Hanneman. Because it would be wicked hilarious and awesome.

The Deli: All right, give us the rundown. Where all on this big crazy web can you be found?

The Deli: Always go out on a high note. Any last words of wisdom for the Deli audience?

ST: Kansas City needs more weird. Get creative. Don’t chase trends. Express.
Roman Numerals is:
Pete LaPorte – drums
Shawn Sherrill – synth
William Smith – guitar, vocals
Steven Tulipana – bass, keys, vocals
Thee Water MoccaSins are:
John Bersuch – drums
Mark Hoffman – euphonium
Liz Kinninger – backing vocals
William Smith – guitar, vocals
Steven Tulipana – bass, guitar, keys, vocals
Wade Williamson – keys, guitars
Both of these bands will be playing at Middle of the Map Fest next week, and since they don’t play often, you won’t want to miss them. Thee Water MoccaSins will be playing Thursday, April 4 at recordBar at 11:00 pm, and Roman Numerals will be playing on Saturday at 5:00 pm on The Outdoor Stage.

--Michelle Bacon 


On The Beat with John Bersuch

(Photo by Todd Zimmer)

John Bersuch plays drums, raps, records music, paints, creates. The drummer of Thee Water MoccaSins tells us about his true musical passions, his creative outlets, and his love of whiskey. Bersuch will be playing on New Year's Eve with TWM at recordBar for a special celebration. Find out more about him; catch the beat right here!

--Michelle Bacon

On The Beat is an exclusive feature from The Deli Magazine-Kansas City that showcases many of the talented drummers in the Kansas City area. 

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On The Beat with John Bersuch




On The Beat with John Bersuch


John Bersuch is undoubtedly one of the most eclectically creative individuals in Kansas City. He’s a musician, an artist, a sculptor, a sound engineer, an architect of haunted houses. He was one of the men behind Bacon Shoe, the experimental hip-hop “nerdcore” trio that crossed boundaries and conventional schools of thought. He’s also a drummer who has performed in a variety of local bands. Since he and his band Thee Water MoccaSins will be performing a special New Year’s Eve show, we catch up with him and his busy life.

The Deli: How did the drums find you?
John Bersuch: My dad brought home a makeshift drum kit for me when I was about 12. I never took drum lessons as a kid, but eventually I went from being completely horrible to kind of all right. I would jam out with friends regularly, and one of my adult neighbors had a blues rock band that I would sit in with when their drummer couldn't make it.
The Deli: What other instruments did you dabble in?
JB: I took piano lessons and guitar lessons. I also recorded weird rap songs and skits on a little 4-track as well.
The Deli: What type of kit(s) do you use?
JB: Well I'm currently buying a C&C kit from Jake Cardwell piece by piece. I also have a small Gretsch Jazz kit, a 5-piece Pearl Export kit, a Sonor kit and a toy drumset that I enjoy using for certain songs/projects. 
The Deli: Biggest influences?
JB: My earliest influences were The Dead Milkmen, N.W.A., Metallica, Molly McGuire, Ween, Craw, Beck, and too many more.
The Deli: Who are your favorite KC/Lawrence drummers?
JB: Well, Jason Gerken is on the top of my list for sure. Others include Brian Steever, Mike Myers, Chris Metcalf, Arnold Young, Kent Burnham, Ian Ballard, Chris Fuggitt, Kriss Ward, Jake Cardwell, and Ryan Shank. I know I'm leaving out a few important ones, but I can't name all of them I suppose. 
The Deli: What bands have you performed in as a drummer?
JB: Minds Under Cover, Trench, Big Jeter, Trouble Junction, Forrest Whitlow, Olympic Size, Import/Export, (of) tree, Thee Water Moccasins.
The Deli: You create so many different moods with the sounds you create. What is your true musical passion?
JB: My main passion is recording songs. Starting with drums, keys, bass, or just a little duckbill tapping on a wind chime, and then building on it until the song is complete. I enjoy hearing a song back and know I played all the parts and did the vocals. That is part of the reason it's hard for me to leave the studio. It's a never-ending addiction. My newest solo album is very, very close to being finished.
The Deli: Playing music is not the only thing you do. You turn your home into a haunted house each year. You have a recording studio. You probably do a bunch of other stuff I have no idea about. So what keeps you busy when you're not playing?
JB: When I'm not playing, I like to create in other ways. It really doesn't matter what I'm making. Whatever inspires me at the moment. I enjoy oil painting, circuit bending, large wooden sculptures, etc., etc. I'm totally into hanging stuff from the ceiling now. There is gonna be a lot more of that coming up in the near future. I also take photos and make music videos. Sometimes I like to drink some whiskey. :) 
The Deli: I know you’ve collaborated with a ton of local musicians, but are there any in particular you really enjoy working with?
JB: A few of my more recent favorite people to collaborate with include: Andrew Ashby, John Ferguson, Jeremy Cerda, Kian Byrne, Sterling Holman, Chris Fuggitt, Ian Ballard, and Jeffy Williams. I'd like to do more collaborating with Mac Lethal. He freestyled on a beat I made awhile ago and it'd be fun to do some more of that. Also, I'd like to work with Brandon Draper from Organic Proof. I'd like to hear what kind of drumming he'd pull out with some of my crazy looping. I run all of my instruments into a Kaoss pad and then into a Line 6 delay pedal. It allows me to create really fast loops with the bass guitar that would be otherwise physically impossible to play.
The Deli: What are you looking forward to most about the NYE show?
JB: I'm looking forward to seeing Billy Smith again. Each time is a treat. Also, I'm going to do hundreds of jello shots (not really). This show is going to be a blast!! Playing with Thee Water MoccaSins is always fun. Those guys are pros and I'm lucky to be a part of it.
Bersuch will be playing with Thee Water MoccaSins on New Year’s Eve—Monday, December 31—at recordBar. They’ll be joined by The Golden Republic and a very special guest. Champagne toast and party favors will be included. Tickets are $12 and available at this link. Bersuch will also be doing another show with Bacon Shoe in mid-January. Stay tuned for details.

--Michelle Bacon 

Michelle is editor-in-chief of The Deli - Kansas City. She plays with Deco AutoDrew Black and Dirty Electric, and Dolls on Fire. She's got blisters on her fingers.

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John Bersuch

Photo by Todd Zimmer

Thee Water MoccaSins
 Photo by Todd Zimmer
Bacon Shoe
Photo by Todd Zimmer
Thee Water MoccaSins - From The Rivers of Missouri and The Banks of Fear 



Editor's Pick: Top 10 Albums/Songs of 2012

2012 has been a fantastic year for local music. With a couple hundred albums released in several genres, The KC/Lawrence music scene continues to make an impression both locally and regionally. 2012 brought national attention to Kansas City music in USA Today, who featured prominent local bands at MidCoast Takeover, the annual SXSW showcase spearheaded by Midwest Music FoundationThe Deli Magazine recognized this showcase and allowed us to launch a Kansas City branch of the publication, among the ranks of larger musical cities like NYC, Nashville, and Los Angeles. 

The following lists are top 10 albums and songs of the year as ranked by editor Michelle Bacon. 
1.         Thee Water MoccaSins – From the Rivers of Missouri and the Banks of Fear

2.         The Grisly Hand – Western Ave (EP)
3.         Hidden Pictures – Rainbow Records
4.         Antennas Up – The Awkward Phase
5.         Schwervon! – Courage
6.         Molly Picture Club – Molly Picture Club
7.         The Caves – Duplexiaville
8.         The Empty Spaces – Party Line (EP) 
9.         The Latenight Callers – Easy Virtues (EP)
10.       Ghosty – Ghosty
1.         “Ride” – Tiny Horse
2.         “Diablo Diablo” – Thee Water MoccaSins
3.         “The Mad Season” – The Latenight Callers
4.         “Coming On” – Antennas Up
5.         “Fanclub” – Molly Picture Club
6.         “Give It Away Or Lose It” – The Caves
7.         “Holidays Are Nice and Warm” – The Empty Spaces
8.         “Cyclone” – Schwervon!
9.         “Blue Light” – The Quivers
Finally, I want to take this opportunity to thank everyone who has helped out the local music community this year, be it through creating music, watching shows, buying albums, engineering, running sound, booking shows, managing or promoting bands, running venues, etc. And special thank you to Midwest Music Foundation for making The Deli KC possible, as well as everyone who has contributed their time and talents to this e-publication. This would be impossible to do without all of you. Here's to a prosperous and musical 2013!

--Michelle Bacon

Michelle is editor of The Deli Magazine - Kansas City and plays drums in Deco AutoDrew Black & Dirty Electric, and drums/bass in Dolls on Fire. Her favorite breakfast food is biscuits and gravy.

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New video: "Fumbling Toward the Abyss" by Thee Water MoccaSins

Check out this new video from Thee Water MoccaSins, "Fumbling Toward the Abyss" from their album From The Rivers of Missouri and the Banks of Fear. This is the first of eight videos released by the band. They'll also be performing tonight at The Riot Room with special guests Be/Non and Olivetti Letter.

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