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Behind The Veil Of An Artist: VALI SC

We have been working on a big project with Kenny Elkin of VALI SC, former Sextile. This is the first glimpse of a full "Behind the veil of an artist" project. The creativity flowing around VALI SC is really rad, and Kenny always makes us laugh cause he's funny af! We even included a behind the scenes improv song he did about Home Depot and Hot dogs! We hope you enjoy this article!

Photo taken by: Morticia Batz/Graves

How important are your pedals for VALI SC?

I use 10% my brain and 90% pedals I feel like I simplified it for people, all it is, is a lot of distortion and fuzz. To delay reverb and tremolo.

As an artist who breathes continuous creativity no matter what’s going on in life, do you have any advice for other musicians starting out?

My opinion is to play every day, enjoy getting together with a few friends, and having fun. Practice every day and play every day, read and watch tutorials for things you want to learn more about. The biggest one for me is reaching out to other musicians! It's what I had to do because I’m a big fan of music — I asked people what they were reading what records they listened to and what they were thinking at that time. Sometimes you find out they were just reading a book.

Photo taken by: Morticia Batz/Graves

Distortion is something you like to play a lot with. We love hearing distortion — would you say the distortion you create kind of connects to your emotions?

It’s why I have so many of them (pedals). It’s like the side of me that helps transfer and shift the room. Especially when I play live with an audience. I gravitated to a lot of distortion when I first started experimenting and listening to Mogwai.

The Sextile guitar has lots of character. Can you humor me and tell me about the guitars surfing crowd experience in Oakland?

It was brought up to me when I deejayed this event a couple of days ago. I've always thought about it from time to time. But, I didn’t know my friend was at that show in Oakland. This is an embarrassing but true story! I tripped on stage and the guitar went flying into the audience. The crowd was spiraling out of control with distortion and tremolo from my guitar -- the crowd, crowd surfed my guitar back to me which was really sweet. This guitar has been with me and has never left my side. I’ve had to take myself out of situations & remove myself from life to focus on myself from time to time -- and the guitar has always ended up back with me. Whoever watches my guitar keeps it safe and it’s nice that no one has stolen or sold it.

What’s something you want people to know about you or VALI SC? (Or both)

That I’m a strong force and I’m only one person. In Vali SC it's just me and I’m coming after you! haha

Photo taken by: Morticia Batz/Graves

I hear VALI SC merch is coming soon. There has been a lot of creativity going into this merch. Are you excited to release some of these pieces?

Yeah, I want even more merch so people have variety. That is why I am working on so many different things with the VALI SC merch. I want there to be unique pieces where only one was made too. I am even getting into tye dye.

Follow-up Question to the one I just asked! Finish this sentence! DIY is important because…. You do it yourself

Watch video below to see Kenny's full response to DIY. Improv song "DIY: Home Depot & Hot Dogs"


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