Have you ever heard that one guy . oh . what’s his name? Well, with Mike Silverman, That1Guy is hard to forget. Now, the classical musician turned inventor has turned the world of bass on its ear with his quirky instrument, as he storms into town in support of his new live DVD, “Live in the Land of Oz.”
Silverman, or as he is better known, That1Guy, began his musical career in the classical realm, studying upright bass at the San Francisco Conservatory of Music. But as he put it, “on the path to respectable mainstream success, something went fanatically wrong.”
Silverman began to experiment with physics in relation to instrumentation, and soon enough, “The Magic Pipe” was born. The contraption is made out of seven feet of galvanized steel, bass strings, magnetic pickups, an old Appalachian handsaw and an electric cowboy boot. Sound bizarre? Just watch him play it. You really do have to see it to believe it.
“It makes way more sense when you see it,” Silverman said. “When I first started booking my own tours, people wouldn’t really get it . It completely catches people by surprise.”
Since then, That1Guy has amassed a cult following, touring behind perhaps one of the best-titled albums of all time, his 2003 debut “Songs in the Key of Beotch.” While the album is as intriguing as can be, it leaves the listener with something to be desired. And that something is seeing exactly what the hell kind of instrument is making these sounds. Quite honestly, his style and his music are beyond description.
A That1Guy show is truly an event. His music, as well as his showmanship, is purely astonishing. For anyone who prides him or herself on listening to bizarre, intriguing music to one-up your friends, you’ve hit the jackpot. It’s pretty much a guarantee that no one else in the world is even doing anything remotely like this.
“I’ve always wanted to have my own voice, my own style,” Silverman said. “I’m really happy having my own sound, own instrument, own approach.”
If you’ve ever wondered what would happen if Les Claypool, Yo-Yo Ma, Tim “the Toolman” Taylor, Frank Zappa and Dr. Seuss had a child, That1Guy just might be your guy.
That1Guy is playing at Jammin’ Java in Vienna on Thursday March 1st at 8 p.m. Tickets are $10.