Ken Leighton 6:48 a.m., Aug. 27
Sound description: Brazilian-inspired acoustic pop.
Upcoming Local Shows
- "Batty in Belize" · Aug. 15, 2012
- "Super Open-Minded" · March 16, 2006
Influences: Brazilian Music: Caetano Veloso, Gilberto Gil, Tom Jobim, Lenine, Tine, Carlinhos Brown, Jorge Ben, Novos Baianos, Paul Simon, Nick Drake, Elliot Smith, Neil Young, David Crosby, Led Zeppelin, Genesis, the Police, Elliott Smith, Johnny Cash, Gregory Page, Todd Haniggan
Chad Farran has played drums with Superunloader and Pruitt Iago, and also fronts his own band, in which he plays a variety of instruments. For several years, he's done music for a surf-travel show on Fuel TV, On Surfari. "[Farran] has managed to capture the essence of foreign countries that the show travels to," according to a Fuse press release, "by studying the traditions and instruments from each place, incorporating them into musical pieces, and creating a contemporary and refreshing soundtrack."
Farran's 2006 album Another Ride collects many of his compositions for On Surfari.
In 2012, he released On Surfari Sessions Volume 2, a compilation of soundtrack songs from the Fuel TV show featuring pro surfer Shayne McIntyre. “The show got canceled after several seasons,” explained Farran, “because Fox [the owner of the network] decided Fuel TV should show more agro, fighting shows than action sports and travel. I guess On Surfari was too wholesome.”
Farran did all the music for the show when it was on location in Africa, the Caribbean, Middle East, and Central America. “I attempted to create a soundtrack that matched the locale using instruments, samplers, loops,” says Farran. “Shayne would also give me pop tracks he liked, and I would create new music in the same style that he could replace them with.”
“He would sometimes give me music he wanted to emulate and sometimes he would just say he needed a scary-spider song or a touching-turtle song or an uplifting song for a scene with an amputee soccer team. It varied a lot, and it gave me a chance to explore different genres, tones, instrumentation, and rhythms.”
“Traveling was by far the best part of the job because I really enjoyed meeting local musicians and learning about their culture and music.” Indeed, traveling is one of Farran’s great loves, but it almost killed him a few years ago while exploring caves in Belize.
“I had to go to the emergency room after multiple days of severe fever upon returning from Belize,” says Farran. “Luckily, as I waited, the doctor recognized my name from watching On Surfari and gave me special treatment, which included a cut in line and a private room. I spent four days in the hospital undergoing a barrage of blood tests. They never did figure it out, sent me home, still feverish, with a ‘good luck,’ a pat on the back, and a $17,000 bill.”
“Chris McGreal [Superunloader bass player] did a Google search for pneumonia in Belizean caves and diagnosed me with histoplasmosis, a rare infection from inhaling the fungal spores that can emanate from bat shit. I cured myself by smuggling into the hospital a thermos of grapefruit-seed extract and hot water and began holistic inhalation while sleeping with bags of ice.”