Oct 7, 2018
I have to admit that I don't know many people that would self-classify as a "punk PhD", but Shawn Trail is that. From a background of punk, hip hop and jazz, and through his electroacoustic and computer music studies, Shawn carries his edge with him throughout his travels. And those travels have been pretty extensive, taking him to Africa to study percussion, on the road with Pat Metheny (supporting the touring Orchestrion Project) and into many studios for production work.
Shawn has a deep interest in robots, and many of our recent (offline) discussions have been about the way that machines can extend the facility of a great musician. But he is also passionate about computers and music, considering the laptop as the 'most prevalent folk instrument of our time'. You can probably understand why we get along!
Follow our chat as we discuss his background, his work with Metheny, and his vision for the future (and how it ties into the past). And check out his work at http://shawntrail.co/