THWOMP Interview: On Convention Gigs

Nintendo Cover Band TWHOMP of Calgary. Photo credit: THWOMP. Originally written for Suite101.com on July 27, 2010 as part of my  Interview with Dave Marshall and Brad Stanton of THWOMP series. This one didn't make the cut (although the other parts did, go figure). Here, Brad Stanton and Dave Marshall of the Nintendo® cover band THWOMP discuss convention gigs:

Calgary-based Nintendo® cover band THWOMP has attracted a growing fan base of gaming enthusiasts. They will rock Edmonton on August 6, 2010 at Animethon 17.

In the fall, they will release their debut CD. Band members Brad Stanton and Dave Marshall came for an exclusive chat with Suite 101. In this segment, they talk about this year’s convention gigs. 

Video Game Bands and Conventions – A Good Fit 

Conventions draw anime otaku, hardcore gamers and comic book fanatics, giving them a platform to publicly indulge in their geeky passions. In On Gigs, Past, Present and Future, Brad explained that these enthusiasts make for their ideal audience.

Having performed at Alberta's anime conventions for a couple of years has given the group members a unique insight in convention organization. "It’s interesting being on the inside a little bit, seeing how some of them are run," shared Brad. "How completely different they are, even when it’s a lot of the same people because it’s people from the same circle."

Anime conventions are mostly volunteer run, which the group admires. "They’re doing it just because they love the experience, which is kind of like what we’re doing," said Dave. "It’s a good fit in that respect too." 

Animethon is Alberta's longest running anime convention. The anime con takes place every summer at Edmonton's Grant MacEwan University. The guys from THWOMP are looking forward to their August 6 gig. "Last year was such a hoot," said Brad. "We tore it up. We had some fun. So we’re gonna expect some good people there. It’s a good show."

The group is appreciative of the efforts that convention organizers put towards hosting an entertaining show. man, they put in a huge effort into it last year, too," said Brad in relation to Animethon 16. "The stage last year was so wicked." 

THWOMP at the Calgary Expo Last year marked THWOMP's debut gig at the Calgary Comic & Entertainment Expo, held every spring on the Calgary Stampede grounds. The Calgary Expo attracts high profile guests such as Star Trek's Leonard Nimoy and Brent Spiner.

THWOMP's expo experience hit some sour notes. The guys tried their best to rock the convention "on some risers in a box" during their half-hour gig. Unfortunately, their gig was scheduled at the same time as the cosplay contest. "That was lame!" said Brad. "You can’t rock out in convention hall lighting. It just doesn’t happen." 

THWOMP at Otafest  

THWOMP also enjoys their gigs at Calgary's annual anime convention, Otafest. This anime con is held every May long weekend at the University of Calgary. The organizers have experience hosting anime cover bands and video game cover bands and take great efforts to staging the shows properly.

The 2010 Otafest was extremely memorable. THWOMP's show blew a fuse, cutting off power in one side of the building. "It was exciting," recalled Dave. THWOMP is a Nintendo® band comprised of Calgarians Brad Stanton (lead guitar), Colin Mitchel (lead guitar), Scott Munro (bass), Scott Moffat (drums), David Marshall (keyboards/percussion) and Kirk McVean (keyboards).

For more information about THWOMP, the band or to listen to audio clips, visit their website and Myspace page. In upcoming installments of this Suite 101 exclusive interview, Brad and Dave discuss video games, fun and food.

Full interview series: Part 1 – THWOMP’s Origins | Part 2 – Band Names & Niches | Part 3 – Songwriting | Part 4 - Hey! Listen! CD Release | Part 5 - On Gigs | Part 6 - Convention Gigs | Part 7 - Video Games | Part 8 - Fun & Food

(c) Rhona-Mae Arca, 2010. All rights reserved.