The first band I was in, in Fort Wayne, Indiana, we named BORED. We renamed it later to Ogun’s Will. BORED had its origins in late 1995. I had recently been working with a friend, Shawn Kent, who I went to elementary school with but hadn’t gone to school with since then. BORED was mostly our project, with various collaborators over the years. BORED eventually was renamed to Ogun’s Will, but we stopped really doing anything with the group by the year 2000.
How it started: We were Bored
At the time, there wasn’t a lot going on in Fort Wayne unless you wanted to get stoned all the time. Since we weren’t big partiers, we were bored and looking for something to do. Since we both loved music, it was a natural thing to try to do.
Shawn and I worked together just after high school while we were both taking college classes. While there, we were talking and quickly came to the conclusion that we had a mutual interest in edgy music. We explored the possibility that we could compose and record music entirely on Shawn’s computer. I couldn’t sing, but I could snarl confidently, so I took on vocal duties. We set out to do this, and it kind of worked.
We worked on these songs for a year. We didn’t have any training doing music this way, so the whole project was an exercise in discovery. We put together a demo tape. Naming things wasn’t a huge concern, so initially went with “BORED”. You know, because we were bored. I put together the cover art for our demo tape using a copy of Photoshop and some signage from a video we took from our work. A lot of it wasn’t inspired but we were very serious about it.
These days it is common to refer to independent acts as ‘basement musicians’. This was literally us. A computer with audio WAREZ, in a basement, cranking out shitty tunes.
At the time, people that were using computers to make music were mostly using Cubase and Cakewalk. We were recording things into Sound Forge, and destructively mixed them down to one track. This is why it sounds a bit muddy, though Shawn got better at this on our next set of recordings and we had no peak clipping.
Our first demo tape
We handed this demo tape out to everyone. When we went to shows(which was often), we’d give copies to the performing bands. This included a lot of low key, independent musicians but not always. Somewhere, bands like Ministry and My Life With The Thrill Kill Kult probably threw these tapes in a trash can!
The demo tape was awful, but it got us started.
Seriously though, it’s really bad!
As can be seen from the cover art, we had a website, which was pretty rare at the time. Tim Pratt, who at the time worked for the local Fort Wayne Journal Gazette, did a feature on our music.
Sometime after, we were at a rave. Tim asked me if the “e” on the end of “the black horizone” was intentional. It wasn’t. I told him that. I’ve never been so embarrassed in my life. I left the error as is, for posterity.
We started playing live shows
We performed live a few times for some small, touring acts. The Vampire Nation situation was quite memorable. I think that may have been one of the first shows I was involved with putting together, though I seem to recall it was mostly my friend Kyle that negotiated bringing them to Fort Wayne.
Mostly, we played with local punk acts because that is what was around. We didn’t really fit in. Our guitars were played via keyboards and samples, sometimes we even had a PC on stage. But, we did approach it with a punk rock attitude, so from that perspective, we fit in fine.
In 1997, we started to be a little more serious, so we re-named and re-branded the band. We started going by the name Ogun’s Will. That’s when things ramped up and we took it a little more seriously. I’ll write about that in a future post.