"Drum Driving"


Drum Driving is an hour and five minute film where I've setup a digital drum studio in my car and I record the entire duration of my commute to work with a GoPro.

This project came out of experiencing culture shock moving from Detroit to Los Angeles. I found myself in a new routine with a full-time job and an hour and a half commute from Santa Clarita to Boyle Heights. I had less time to play around with art. I fantasized about the artwork I would make to help me deal with the difficulty of transitioning to this schedule. This was an attempt to make the time for an art practice that didn't necessarily exist.

Because I was interested in how another musician would interpret my action and re-represent it to me, I recorded my commute while drum driving for over 10 trips so that I felt I had enough to give to the Brazilian musician, Manuel Lima. He decided to work with one of my trips and overlaid his own visuals and audio on top of my footage. This includes some beautiful original musical compositions made digitally. He captured, to great effect, something inherently troubling, that was not central to the piece by adding simple interruptions. This removes the sublime aspects of the drive drumming act, heightening the absurd and possibly dangerous aspects of not giving driving one's full attention.

Since the camera is from a fixed vantage point, the viewer is an unwitting passenger being taken on a ride. There are moments of incongruity, where the film is made up of editing decisions that heighten the difference between the vantage point of the driver and the fixed position of the viewer. This could be considered a structural film, as there are rules that govern what you see regardless of what would be the most comfortable experience. For example, there's no story to tell; I really am driving, and I really did film my commute in a single take. Nothing has been fictionalized other than surface edits so there is kind of a separate logic than your usual film that you might see in a movie theater. This collaborative cut must be watched as a screening and doesn't work as well on a small screen or with headphones. It's best experienced being immersed for the whole ride. Sometimes it's a bit meditative, but in terms of how the journey and the collaborative edits unfold, there are surprises along the way highlighting the inherent anxiety of risk, capitalism and obsession.

Additional Details

This film is in color with surround sound audio, an aspect ratio of 16:9, and contains no dialogue

Link, Password: drum


Raw Footage (prior to collaboration)


Some of my favorite 30 sec - 1 min moments take place at:

4:46 - where you can hear how I start patterns
10:41 - Now entering Los Angeles
24:02 - where I start making a 'stuck in traffic' melody
27:16 - I start getting into a flow
32:53 - Sounds get a little more abstract
1:01:14 - Revving some fake engines before an epic slow turn
1:04:20 - Made it to work early