We had the pleasure of sitting down for a Little Talk with Bluetech while he had some downtime in between shows on his current tour. He talked construction on his solar powered studio, sustainability in music and San Francisco based violist, Nils Bultmann, who is Joining Bluetech at Cervantes for the first time on Saturday, October 11th as a part of Sonic Blossom at Cervantes Masterpiece Ballroom. SIA: How’s the solar studio coming? BT: It’s coming along, we’ve been living off of four (solar) panels and two batteries which is enough to power some stuff, but not quite enough to get the studio fully up and running. I think after this tour I’ll be able to add a couple panels and eventually have it fully operational. SIA: What is the goal of the solar project? BT: The goal is really to try and find a way to be more sustainable in the way that I live my life and approach the whole Bluetech project. The solar studio is also my home, and it is a fully offset structure, solar powered, with a water catchment, and I am really trying to find a more sustainable way of proceeding. SIA: Speaking about sustainability; how can music help bring about change in terms of social environmental issues? BT: I think anytime you are in a public position where people are looking up to you or paying attention to what you have to say, as an artist you have the opportunity to communicate ideas or concepts. For me one of those main ideas has been about sustainability and finding a way to walk in a world that is less destructive and less harmful to our surroundings. It is a constant challenge because I am on the road and I am flying from city…to city…to city, which is ultimately not sustainable but it is one of the reasons why I am so concerned about trying to offset that with the way that I live at home and the way that I actually compose music so that every aspect of my life isn’t drastically out of balance. SIA: These sorts of energy and environmental issues are all really personal to you because of where you live in Hawaii and what you see happening there. What exactly has your experience been there, and what can we do to keep these issues relevant to those who are not directly exposed to it? BT: I don’t think its just Hawaii that has made me concerned about these issues; anywhere you travel in the world, if you are paying attention will see that the way in which our culture is progressing is incredibly out of balance. It doesn’t take living in a rainforest to realize that something is off. I think that people are frightened and overwhelmed by how large the issues of ecology are, that they tend just turn off into complete escapism rather than engaging in some sort of attempt for change. One of the main and direct physical ways that I’ve approached ecological work and non-profits and try to spread a message with my art and with people I work with is to make it fun and not this doom-and-gloom “change or we’re all going to die” type of attitude, which I see a lot, and I see a lot coming from the non-profit sector. One of the ways that we get people involved is by offering music and art and projects that they can get involved in and that they are interested in anyway. Then the funds from those projects can be used to finance specific on the ground initiatives whether locally or some projects we have in South America in the rain forests there, it just seems like giving people a choice to get involved gets a better response than guilting people into trying to make change. SIA: What do you hope your fans take away from engaging with you as an artist, as an activist, or also engaging with these shows or projects? BT: I would really hope that people come away with a sense of understanding that they have to be more conscious, or be conscious in general of the world around them and I think its daily choices and daily interactions people have with their neighbors and the people around them that really set the seed for change in general. SIA: What’s the most positive experience you’ve had lately? BT: A kitten showed up in my life that was abandoned or lost or something and needed a home. It has turned into the most rad little hunter-cat buddy ever, wakes me up purring every morning on top of my chest. That’s a pretty happy experience. SIA: Nice. Does he get along with the bird? (Bluetech has an African Grey Parrot) BT: He loves the bird, actually. He’ll go and sleep next to the birdcage. SIA: What are you particularly excited about in regards to coming to Denver for Sonic Blossom? BT: I actually have a live viola player coming with me, which I am very excited about. His name is Nils Bultmann and he is an amazing musician, he ads quite a bit to the show when he is able to come along, and he is able to join me on this one. I’ve never brought him to Cervantes’ before so I think it will be really nice for people so see…it’ll be a whole new element! • • • You can still buy tickets for both nights of Sonic Blossom here!!