Sunday, May 6, 2012

Richard Peek - Backyard Creator Extraordinaire

A few months back we were hangin' out while eating some breakfast and cruisin' through youtube videos looking at various motorcycles, engine builds and killing time listening to music. But while sorting through our mental catalog of upcoming projects, we happened to see a particular video and an idea struck us. 

Now as much content is uploaded to youtube daily or lets say by the minute (roughly 48 hours of footage is uploaded every minute,) the progression of the site seems to indicate that it truly is becoming the new FM station du jour, for your favorite music. With a world wide audience at the ready and the ability to stream 24/7, youtube is the future of content programming. The best part is that you can sift through to exactly what you want to hear or see and its free.

Our default some days might be watching vintage motorcycles fire up or our absolute personal favorite is to view process videos of objects being made. So that lands us square into another big project that we have cookin', but we needed some outside help on this one.

As y'all know, we are workin' with the one and only Billy Don Burns and his new album will be coming out on July 10th. For as great as the music sounds, we knew that we needed a better way to help get his songs out to fans world wide and to take a different approach. The same way Billy Don might craft a new song, was our guiding path to hatch a new plan to grow his fan base. Luckily we happened along to one cool dude by the name of Richard Peek. After numerous emails back and forth about our idea, he was on board to help build a truly unique element for this album. 

Tomorrow we will launch part one in a series of process music videos to shine light on Billy Don Burns new album with the help of Rpeek, our new favorite back yard builder!

Below is quick write up on Richard Peek and what makes him tick, read on and enjoy the videos as they roll out...

Richard Peek - Backyard Builder Extraordinaire
1. tell us about yourself, what drives you to work through new ideas and seek out new possibilities?

I don't think of myself that way at all. I'm still trying to catch up with all the old idears that's been stuck in my head for the last 50 years that I never had the time or the money to mess around with.

2. What really got you started into making Gas Can Banjo's?

I can't take credit for it. I seen one on ebay many years ago. Someone stuck a 4 string banjo neck on a can and was sellin' it for $45 bucks. I figured it seemed like a good idear, only I converted a 4 string neck to a 5 string. At first I thought it sounded like crap, but over time I learned to make it do what I wanted it to do. Still got that first gas can banjo too, and I think it's the best one I ever made.

Gas can we won on Ebay is going to turn into something really cool for Billy Don Burns
Just one of Richard Peek's ornate back yard builds

3. How many have you made so far?

The one I'm making for you will be #10. Every one is different. Each has its own personality and sound. I never know how one is going to turn out. I had a girl bring me a 5 qt oil can she found in the woods and asked me to make it into a banjo for her so I did, and that rusty old can had the best tone quality of any I've made so far...

4. If you could pick out new type of musical instrument to build what would it be?

Oh I don't know.  Maybe tractor music. Like let's crank a tractor, get it to lope along, get some guys to squeel their tires in the background. Mess around with different types of rubber to adjust the tone of the squeel and see if we can make music out of it. hahaha

5. Is the journey to creating a new piece, enjoyable most in the process or at the conclusion of a job well done?

Oh I don't ever think I've done a job all that well. I just get idears and throw things together.  Sometimes they delight me. If'n they don't I come up with somethin' else. I don't think about it much.

6. When it comes to building a hot rod, where do you like to start?

Frame. I think about the frame. I'm old enough to know frames. Model A frame. '32 Ford frame. '33 Chevy frame. 55 Chevy frame. 69 Camaro sub frame. Each tells it's own story, makes it's own project happen on it. I know frames, how they should be set up, how they used to be setup and what people do now days, makin' new frames like the old frames didn't matter. I like a car with an old reworked frame best.  It's just part of being old enough to understand 'em I guess..

7. What is in store for some future projects?

I've got to build me a bigger garage to put some of this junk in. hahaha