Monday, December 29, 2014

A Farewell To Holidays 2014

To feed this project further, tomorrow, Dec 30th, I will attempt a mid-winter broadcast of live music from the mountains of Big Bear, California. It will be my last broadcast of live music during the holidays, if you count my recent broadcasts of live piano impressions/improvisations.  However, tomorrow's broadcast will not involve music of my own, primarily.

Many don't know this about me but I was a DJ of alternative electronic music at clubs and events in-and-around LA in the early 2000s. For fun over the last 5 years I've also occasionally mixed together my own DJ sets from outdoor locations and even in transit while driving as a passenger and the like.  Well, I'm going to finally start broadcasting these DJ mix sets during my travels as well, starting with a really wild experiment tomorrow.  Read my SN posts about it, as follows:

Tomorrow, Dec 30th, I will try something new; I will broadcast a DJ-mix-set that combines internet radio stations as they stream live from different players. Yes you will basically hear radio stations mixed together, as strategically as possible. It's as wild as it sounds, but still comes across intentional. It will be an audio/video broadcast, so you will be able to watch the computer-screen activity as the stations are mixed together, and even see most of the artist's names on-screen as their tracks play and combine.

Join me (Dean De Benedictis) as I try this strange new form of simulcasting. Did this for myself a few times in 2009, and now bringing it to you as a simulcast.

Additionally this will happen outdoors in the mountains of Big Bear, California. You will see my location on-screen through the cam view on the left, hence the visual aspect of the broadcast.

Most of the stations used will specialize in classical, acoustic and ambient, but other genres will be occasionally mixed in. The idea is to provide a calming, alternative, electro-acoustic winter esthetic using an experimental method that joins the efforts of multiple DJs all at once. The radio stations layer together to form an alternate piece of music. Catch it.

A shot I took in 94, west of Portola, CA

Because of mobile-signal instability, an exact time cannot be given, but it's guaranteed to happen sometime between 2pm and sunset, Pacific. This should give you some slack-time to catch any part of it. It will last anywhere from 1:30-3 hours if I get a strong signal.  Look for the announcement here the moment we are live.

Page for the broadcast:

Facebook page for announcements the moment I'm live:

Monday, December 22, 2014



I just got news this morning that my license has been suspended due to a miscommunication on a prior conviction years ago.  Unbelievable--almost.  So now the entire Reno trip is postponed for a month, including my performance with Bruce Licher at Mono Lake.  He's already been notified and is fine with it. I can't postpone the holidays so I will probably have to wait a year to do that part, but I won't wait a year to take this same kind of trip to Reno in Mid-to-late January of 2015.  So just give me a month, and stay posted for that because I will keep all you guys posted on every detail. 

I'm really sorry about this, and to anyone who might be disappointed again, including myself.  Yes this would have been a super cool winter music environment for everyone to check out during these holidays, but I PROMISE to do it next year (God/luck willing).  And I promise to still carry out a version of this same trip in roughly a month's time.  It won't be quite the same, but it will be close enough.  

Also I might still broadcast a couple of performances over the holidays from a couple of different locations in-and-around LA and/or the LA mountains with friends (since they will be doing the driving lol).  Let you know.

And I would say that I'm totally embarrassed about it, but at this point I think we all know the drill.  As I've explained many times, the obstacles I face with this travel project are an un-parelleled many compared to other projects in my past or present.  Partly due to traveling and all of it's natural complications, but it's also due to the fact that I'm not just a traveller but an active artist and musician with plenty of projects to match.  All of these other projects defuse my attention, making the travel project more complicated and unstable.  I think all rational people would agree that there is very little I can do about that other than just deal with it, if in fact I want to succeed at both.  

However, I think I'm still going to take a small poll for the moment.  Not that I will let people sway my overall decision, but I think I'm just interested in getting a couple of opinions right now. So anyone reading this should feel free to contact me about it or leave comments and tell me their opinion of either of the following:  

1) Do you think I'm not much of an artist/musician right now anyway, and thus I should only be trying to finish this travel project?  2) Or do you think the travel project is a waste of my time and that my talents are better focused on other things?  3) Or do you think both endeavors are just as worthy and thus I should continue the way I've been going?  

Let me know. And just bare in mind that if I choose either one of these paths over the other, that chosen path could take years before I find the time to get back to anything else.  %100 focus on one thing means it will basically become my life and that will be it from now on. You won't know me for anything else.

You can reach me at:

Spring of next year is actually my BIG trip.  Oh Nessy it's the big o'one.  It's the Big Daddy Kain of trips baby!  It's the... okay you get it.  

It's the trip where I will be on the road for 7-8 months trying to finish all of my locations for this project.  It will be the Southwest in Spring and then the Cascade peaks in Summer.  This is for both Ambient Travels (Travels Rendered) and The Summit Music Project.  I've been setting up the trip for a long time and I've even made heavy sacrifices for it, sacrifices that were so disturbing I don't even feel right sharing them here.  I MUST take that trip.  I must get it done so I can get on with the rest of my life.  Getting stopped with a first offense suspension by leaving right now could actually throw everything into many more months of chaos and dysfunctionality, thereby completely ruining my chances for the trip in Spring.  Not an option for me.

I may be kind of a screw up at this point, sure, whatever, but bear with me before I agree to being the winner and guest of honor at the National Looser Of The Year Awards held in Where-We-Go-To-Die, Idaho.  (even though I love Idaho)

But again, I will indeed take this same trip to Reno in late January of 2015, a month away.  This will happen.  So please look for that and please join me.

So, more here soon.  Keep you posted.  Promise!

Sunday, December 21, 2014

Season's Travels And Atmospheres

-Read to the bottom because the most important stuff is down there.-

Pyramid Lake, NV.

In the winter of 2009 when I started the traveling portion of this project, it was a short trip to Reno, Nevada, to visit my mother.  I had recently bought my first laptop, equipped with Ableton and Reaktor software and a couple of synth cracks.  I travelled through the Sierras to get there, on the 395 highway route - one of my favorite routes in the entire country if not my favorite.  I made ambient music at different locations along the way, as well as some of my favorite areas around Reno itself.

Reno is actually a place I partly grew up in because my mother has lived there since the 80s.  I eventually became a traveller, so I eventually got to know the country in and around that city, which is far more interesting territory than the general public is aware of.

Reno is located in a large valley that separates the Sierra mountains from the Basin desert.  With this in mind, it's a given that some amazing outdoor places would naturally be found around there.  Many of them--I found.

Reno. Photo not by me.

Unfortunately for the public, Reno and Tahoe is also known for being only a "smaller version of Las Vegas," which is seen as a decadent, "scummy" town where adults go to purge their repressed desire for sin, or whatever.  I never bought into that way of approaching the two towns.  Those cities have as much "sin" going on as any other town, and everyone knows that.

What no one ever really thinks about is the fact that both Reno and Vegas are located smack dab in the middle of a vast desert wilderness, a wilderness that would be considered wondrous if those two supposedly lecherous and sinful towns weren't there to confuse the situation.  And again, the confusion over those cities is just an established stereotype because of the mafia, the old west, and etc.. It's really not as horrible a place as our culture and history tends to brand it.

Reno. Photo not by me.

Personally, I love both of those towns not because they are at the forefront of culture and progress - which they aren't even close to - but simply for the sake that they are both huge oasis's of comfort in the middle of baron wilderness.  That is actually a good thing to me, as much of an environmentalist as I am.  I'm not hypocritical in that I completely blame civilization for pollution and then live my life on the grid, taking advantage of all of it's comforts on a daily basis.  That's not my style.  I try to preserve the environment and yet appreciate civilization and some of it's development for the good it has to offer.  I am pro-environmental where I think it is a necessity--which unfortunately still happens often.  But I can say this, there is nothing more decadent about Reno or Vegas than there is about Los Angeles or New York; they are both huge metropolitan meccas that consume to the extent that any ant colony would, and sin just the same.

Mammoth along route 395. Photo not by me.

Back to the story: during that first music trip I took in 2009 to Reno/Tahoe, I had recorded lots of cool ambient music, and filmed it.  To my misfortune, as some of you already know, there was a car theft in 2010 where my car was broken into while I was gone and all of my footage and some of my music was taken.  Long story that I'll get to in future posts.  But the short part is that my footage from that trip had been completely stolen, and this include pretty much everything from both that year and the year before it.  This even included my first Reno trip.

Because of that, I'm going to relive the entire trip again, right now.  I'm on my way out the door to take my favorite 395 route through the Sierras and film music creation along the way as well as in-and-around Reno when I get there.  Only this time it will be for the winter holidays, which is one of the best times to be doing this.  Reno/Tahoe and the 395 are basically like friggin' magic during the holidays, and all of the great precipitation we've been getting this year (finally) will allow for great winter landscapes.

The entire trip should take close to a week, and I will perform at a different location each day.

Pyramid Lake, NV.

Most importantly, I will be broadcasting every location performance I do, LIVE, online, on  This is a major addition to all of my previous locations through the years, and to my entire project in general.  So come and join me out there.  I will be broadcasting from a new location each day, and possibly even more than one place on some days.  But just bear in mind that yes, sometimes certain performances might get cancelled at the last minute, mainly due to cell-phone reception fluctuating out there the further you get away from civilization.  I will stay in contact with you guys as much as possible, but sometimes I will drop from contact unexpected simply because of the signal issue.  Sorry in advance.  And I believe this is a small price to pay for such a great music novelty.  :)

The event page to tune into these on-location performances will be here:

Check it daily.  Or to see notices whenever I am live, you can either like my facebook page, or join Livestream and follow me there.

My Facebook page:

Lastly, here is something to really take note of: tomorrow, Monday Dec 22nd, I'll kick off the entire trip with something extremely cool.  I will be performing twice tomorrow, and the second of the two performances will be the important one.  I will be performing a set of live ambient music at Mono Lake, in the mid afternoon, accompanied by musician Bruce Licher, ex-guitar player for the post punk band Savage Republic and the band Scenic.  Bruce already lives in the town of Bishop (nearby in Owens Valley) so I contacted him and he was all about it.  He and I were close friends with ambient music legend Barry Craig (A Produce), so we will probably dedicate our set to him.  It will be roughly an hour of improvised lush ambient music with gothic-ish space guitar--perfect for the area and the cold time of year. Try to check this one out.  Unfortunately I won't be able to give you exact times for any of these performances, due to weather, road conditions, location conditions and constant equipment adjustments.  But like I said, you can either like my facebook page to get posts whenever I'm live, or join Livestream and follow me there.

The event page to tune into these on-location performances will be here:

My Facebook page:

And/but yes, you should probably join my Livestream page if possible because I may not get a chance to update this blog after each location I do during the trip.

Mono Lake, CA, in a photo I took for one of my albums.

Also, I will probably do a short 20-30 minute set of live ambient music at the crack of dawn tomorrow, 7-ish am, Pacific Standard time, at Red Rock Canyon State Park, a really amazing little canyon I've known about all my life.  This one is far less guaranteed because I won't know if I can get a signal there until the morning.  If I can, I will broadcast some music.  If not, then just tune in in the afternoon for live ambient music at Mono Lake

So here is my rough itinerary for the entire next week, provided I get a signal in each of these places:


22nd - Red Rock, then Mono Lake, then possibly Mammoth

23rd - Bodi Ghost Town, then Bridgeport Northern Sierras

24th - Virginia City Ghost Town, then Downtown Tahoe or Reno

25th - Virginia Lake, Reno, then possibly Lake Tahoe overlook

26th - possibly Lake Tahoe overlook, then Squaw Valley or Heavenly

27th - Pyramid Lake Desert

28th - Donner Pass, near Donner Lake

At least half or more of these locations proves to be a successful performance, so I'm pretty excited. Join me.

And happy holidays / winter season / end of the year / whatever your poison.   ;))


(Some of Bruce Licher's past projects...)