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Sound Tribe Sector 9

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  • Years Active: 1990s, 2000s


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Biography All Music GuideWikipedia

All Music Guide:

Founded in Georgia in the late '90s, Sound Tribe Sector 9 quickly refined a style of dub-influenced, breakbeat-infused psychedelic music with a heavy emphasis on group improvisation, comparable to the work of jam band peers such as the Disco Biscuits, Lake Trout, and the New Deal.

Sound Tribe Sector 9's debut effort, Interplanetary Escape Vehicle (1998), was recorded soon after the group's formation and provides only scant hints of what the sound the band would develop, instead focusing on somewhat generic instrumental funk and jazz grooves. With the addition of percussionist Jeffree Lerner in 1999, the band's sound solidified into a powerfully original, highly danceable tapestry. Through constant touring, the group began to work up a large following among jam band fans. Two more releases -- Live (1999) and Offered Schematics Suggesting Peace (2000) -- captured both the band's developing sound and their increasing interest in Mayan mysticism and culture. The former accurately documented the confident tone of the band's relentless live performances, while the latter used analog tape loops, a blend of live and studio tracks, and extensive use of guest flutist Kofi Burbridge to create a more subtle mix. With a regard for spirituality, equality, and a freeing of musical egos, the band eschews solos in favor of small, repetitive parts that add together into a musical image that is at once droning and texturally deep.

STS9 relocated to Northern California in late 2000. Constantly touring, they also formed their own label, 1320 Records, releasing the albums Peaceblaster (2008), Ad Explorata (2009), and Axe the Cables (2010), along with an EP, When the Dust Settles (2011), on the imprint. The group also gained renown for its festival appearances, with shows at most of the major U.S. fests, including Lollapalooza, Bonnaroo, Coachella, New Orleans Jazz, and Outside Lands.


For the space shuttle mission, see STS-9.

Sound Tribe Sector 9 (abbreviated as STS9) is an instrumental band whose sound is based heavily on instrumental rock and electronic music, funk, jazz, drum and bass, psychedelia, and hip hop, originating in Georgia, USA. Self-described as "post-rock dance music," the band mixes standard live rock instrumentation with electronics, favoring group rhythm over individual solos.

STS9 has released 11 albums, two remixed albums (Artifact: Perspectives & the Peaceblaster: Make it Right Remixes), and two live DVDs (Live as Time Changes and Axe The Cables) on their own label 1320 Records'. STS9 has toured the US nationally and internationally, ranking among Pollstar Magazine’s list of top-grossing touring acts, with a heavy presence in the music festival circuit.

^ Eisen, Benjy; Greenhaus, Mike (17 April 2014). "Back to the Future: An Oral History of Livetronica". Relix. Retrieved 29 May 2014. ^ Drumming, Neil (February 21, 2005). "Pushing Your Buttons". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved November 19, 2012. ^ "STS9: Coming Full Circle by Aaron Kayce, December, 2009". ^ "STS9 Talks As Time Changes by Dave Terpeny, October 9, 2006". 


Since forming in Atlanta over a decade ago, instrumental electronic rock band STS9 has risen to the forefront of the jamtronic music scene. Consistently ranked among Pollstar Magazine’s list of top-grossing touring acts, STS9 continues to average nearly 5,000 tickets per city, boasting a list of opening acts such as Snoop Dogg, Bassnectar, Ghostland Observatory, The Glitch Mob, Thievery Corporation, Pretty Lights, Big Boi of Outkast and countless others.

STS9 has headlined stages at festivals such as Moogfest, Bonnaroo, Outside Lands, Regeneration, Lollapalooza, and Electric Forest Festival. STS9 runs its own record label, 1320 Records. The group has raised significant amounts of money towards activism efforts (including $150,000 recently to The Make it Right Foundation, paving the way to rebuild a house in the Lower 9th Ward of New Orleans).

June 2011 brought the release of the band's latest studio EP, When the Dust Settles (the eleventh album in their full discography), keeping with XLR8R Magazine’s exclamation that STS9 is "one of the country's most intriguing, innovative outfits around.” The EP debuted at #1 on the iTunes Electronic Charts and landed in Billboard’s Top 25, while the first single “Scheme” was downloaded over 100,000 times in its first week alone.

STS9’s self-owned record label, 1320 Records was founded on the principles of collaboration, cooperation, and community.

On January 14, 2014, it was announced that founding member and bassist David Murphy was leaving the band. Alana Rocklin was recruited as his replacement. Rocklin performed with the band for the first time March 28, 2014 at McDowell Mountain Music Festival in Phoenix, AZ.

^ http://www.jambase.com/Articles/121201/STS9-Returns-With-Alana-Rocklin-On-Bass-and-New-Material

Social Work[edit]

STS9 has partnered with a variety of non-profit organizations throughout their career. Over the last several years, they have partnered with Conscious Alliance to bring food drives to various concerts and festivals on their tour. In exchange for fan participation in these events, STS9 and Conscious Alliance thank patrons with limited edition art work posters, often created by the same artists who accompany the band on stage. In 2005, STS9 put on a benefit concert where they raised over $20,000 for Hurricane Katrina victims <citation needed>.

Beginning in Fall 2006, as part of their Live as Time Changes tour, STS9 traveled across the country in a carbon neutral tour bus and powered their live concerts using renewable energy. The band hoped to offset 100%, or about 138,000 pounds, of their carbon dioxide emissions from their tour by donations of Renewable Energy Credits from their partnership with environment-friendly companies.

STS9's remix album “Peaceblaster : The New Orleans Make It Right Remixes”, features 30 remixes of material from STS9’s 2008 album, "Peaceblaster". All proceeds from this album went to the Make It Right Foundation in an effort to build a home in New Orleans, which has since been completed and taken up by a family displaced by Hurricane Katrina . The home is endowed with many eco-friendly features, including solar panels, high efficiency HVAC system, wire-free lighting panels, tankless water heater, dual flush toilets, low e windows & doors, a rainwater collection system and water absorbing native landscaping. And, for future storms, the home comes equipped with walls that can withstand 130 mph winds, kevlar hurricane shields for the windows and a roof hatch in case an escape is necessary.

^ "STS9 OFF-SET EMISSIONS, September 26, 2006". 

Notable Concert Performances[edit]

STS9 has gained acclaim, as well as a distinctly loyal fan base over the past decade. Their 2005 album Artifact reached #12 on Billboard's Top Electronic Albums). They have moved from playing and opening in small clubs and bars to headlining major music venues and festivals. In 2003, the band reached new heights by opening for The String Cheese Incident in their first amphitheater performance at majestic Red Rocks Amphitheater in Morrison, Colorado Template:Http://soundtribe.org/2003.html. A special concert scheduled for the night before at the Fox Theater in Boulder, Colorado sold out in less than fifteen minutes. The band has now sold out several Red Rocks shows, along with many other venues across the country.

In the San Francisco Bay Area, the band has built a following with frequent performances at The Fillmore, Warfield Theatre, and the historic Regency Center. They have performed at The Fillmore on 10 occasions including three 2-night stands, a 3-night stand for Halloween in 2004, and a 4-night stand in early 2009. They have performed at the Warfield Theatre on 5 occasions including a 2-night stand. STS9 performed at the Regency Center on 5 occasions including two consecutive New Year's Eve shows in 2002 and 2003. The band has also put on performances at the Independent, Great American Music Hall, Golden Gate Park, and the Stern Grove Festival. STS9 also performed at the Boulder Theater in Boulder, CO for a 5-night stand in March 2007.

Santa Cruz, California has been home to various members of the band since moving to California. 'STS9' has performed at the Catalyst on 9 occasions since 2002, including two 2-night stands. Previously, the band had been frequently playing Palookaville until it closed in 2002. In 2003, the band headlined the Santa Cruz Civic Center.

In their home state of Georgia, the band continues to ride their popularity. On October 3, 2006, the band marked the 9th Anniversary of their first ever show with a celebration at the historic Georgia Theatre in Athens, Georgia. The band has performed many 2-night stands at the Georgia Theatre since 2002. For three years in Atlanta until the end of 2009, they have performed at the Tabernacle on New Year's Eve as part of a 3-night stand, and extended the run to four nights in 2007 and 2008.

STS9 chose Denver, CO as the host for their three 2009 New Year's Eve concerts. The December 29 was the band's first acoustic show ever, called 'Axe the Cables.' The band performed two sets at University of Denver's Gates Hall. The remaining two nights were standard 'electric' shows played at the Wells Fargo Theater. STS9 returned to Denver for NYE 2010, playing three shows at the Fillmore Auditorium. The December 29, 2010 show opened and closed with a cover of the Grateful Dead's "Shakedown Street".

For New Year's 2011, STS9 returned to The Tabernacle in Atlanta, GA. They performed a 5-night run from December 27 through New Year's Eve.

In the summer of 2013, the band will embark on a co-headlining tour with Umphrey's McGee, switching the closing slot each night.

On March 28, 2014 the band returned for their first concert following their split with David Murphy. This show was held in Phoenix, Arizona during the McDowell Mountain Music Festival and it was the first time the band played with new bassist Alana Rocklin.

Festival appearances[edit]

STS9 has a steady presence in the music festival circuit, headlining several festivals across the country each season.

In 2007, STS9 announced they would return to Deerfields for a new festival titled Re:Generation. The two-day festival included additional performances from The Join and Telefon Tel Aviv. According to the band's website, this event promised to be "a unique celebration of music, nature, family, mind, body, and spirit." In 2011, STS9 re-created Re:Generation festival in its second incarnation held at Horning's Hideout in North Plains, Oregon.

In May 2008 STS9 performed at the Summer Camp Music Festival in Chillicothe, IL.

On Saturday June 7, 2008, STS9 headlined the Sun Down Stage at the Wakarusa Music Festival at Clinton State Park, Lawrence, Kansas.

At Rothbury 2008, STS9 performed a three and half hour show, which packed a capacity crowd.

In June 2011, STS9 performed at Bonnaroo in Manchester, Tennessee. The set began at 2:30 A.M. and was played until the sun rose. STS9 has performed live at the following events:

10,000 Lakes Festival (Detroit Lakes, MN) – 2005Adirondak Mountain Music Fest. (Moose River Campground, Lyonsdale, NY) - 2003All Good Music Festival (Masontown, WV / Legend Valley, OH) - 2007, 2009, 2011, 2013Anon Salon’s Sea of Dreams (San Francisco, CA) - 2002, 2003Area 51 Soundtest (Indian Springs, NV) - 2004Austin City Limits (Austin, TX) - 2002, 2007, 2009Berkfest (Great Barrington, MA) – 2001-2003Big Wu Family Reunion (Black River Falls, WI) – 2001Bonnaroo Music Festival Late Nite Show (Manchester, TN) – 2003, 2005, 2007, 2011Buku Music Festival (New Orleans, LA) - 2013Camp Bisco (Various Locations) - 1999, 2007, 2009, 2013Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival (Indio, CA) - 2002CounterPoint Music Festival (Kingston Downs, Georgia) - 2014Creekside Jamboree (Almost Heaven Campground, Forksville, PA) – 2003Dancin' in the District (Riverfront Park, Nashville, TN) – 2005Earthdance Festival (Ya-Ka-Ama Native American Reservation, Santa Rosa, California) – 2001Earthdance Festival (Golden Gate Park, SF, CA) – 2002Earthdance Festival (Black Oak Ranch, Laytonville, CA) – 2003, 2005, 2009Electric Forest Festival (Double JJ Ranch, Rothbury, MI) - 2012, 2014Fairfax World Music Festival (Fairfax, CA) - 2002Family Affair Festival (Port Orford, OR) - 2001Fourth of July Festival (Nelsons Ledges, Garrettsville, OH) - 2005Fuji Rock Festival (Japan)Gathering of the Vibes (Seaside Park, Bridgeport, CT) - 2000, 2012Harmonic Convergence Fest - STS9 Presents (Deerfields Amphitheater, Horse Shoe, NC) – 2002, 2003Harmony Fest (Sonoma County Fairgrounds, Santa Rosa, CA) - 2006, 2007High Sierra Music Festival (Plumas County Fairgrounds, Quincy, CA) – 1999-2004Horning’s Hideout SCI Festival (North Plains, OR) – 2004Hangout Music Festival (Gulf Shores, AL) - 2011, 2012The Husdon Music Project (Saugerties, NY) - 2014Jam In The Dam (Melkweg, Amsterdam, NL) - 2006Jam On The River (Philadelphia, PA) - 2007Jamcruise - 2005, 2010Kanrocksas - 2011Langerado (Sunrise, Florida) - 2004, 2007, 2008Live OFF The Levee (Soldier Memorial Plaza, St. Louis, MO) - 2008Lollapalooza (Grant Park, Chicago, IL) – 2005, 2007, 2009Lunatic Picnic Outdoor Festival (Hakonomori Play Park, Shiobara Onsen, Tochigi Pref., Japan) – 2002Memphis in May Festival/Beale Street Music Festival (Memphis, TN) - 2004, 2014Music Midtown Festival (Atlanta, GA) - 2003Mountain Music Festival (Willow Creek, CA) - 2003Musicians For Medical Marijuana (Oakland, CA) - 2001Nateva Music & Camping Festival (Oxford, ME) - 2010New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival Late Nite Show (New Orleans, LA) – 2001, 2004, 2007Nocturnal Music Festival Texas (Apache Pass, TX) -2012North Coast Music Festival (Chicago, IL) - 2012Oulipo Ballroom (Lexington, KY) - 2009Outside Lands Music and Arts Festival (San Francisco, CA) - 2011PhilFest (Patten Gymnasium, Northwestern University, Evanston, IL) - 2002Red Rocks the Vote (Red Rocks Amphitheatre, Morrison, CO) - 2004Re:Generation - STS9 Presents (Deerfields Amphitheater, Horse Shoe, NC) – 2007Re:Generation - STS9 (hornings hideout, North Plains, OR)- 2011Rothbury Music Festival (Rothbury, Michigan)- 2008, 2009Snowball Music Festival (Winter Park, CO) - 2013Sonic Bloom (Beaver Meadows Resort) - 2007Sno-Core Icicle Ball – 2002Stern Grove Festival (SG Park, San Francisco, CA) - 2003Street Scene (San Diego, CA) - 2008Summercamp Festival (Chillicothe, IL) - 2008, 2010, 2011, 2013SummerFest (Milwaukee, WI) - 2009, 2010Summer Set Music Festival (Somerset, WI) - 2013Suwannee Hulaween (Live Oak, FL) - 2013Tamarak Music Festival (Bear Valley, CA) – 2001Van Hoy Farms Family Campground (Union Grove, NC) – 2001Vegoose Music Festival (Las Vegas, NV) - 2007Vegoose Late Night Show (Las Vegas, NV) - 2005, 2006,2007Wakarusa Music and Camping Festival (Clinton State Park - Lawrence, KS) – 2004, 2006, 2008 (Mulberry Mountain - Ozark, AR) - 2009, 2010, 2011, 2013, 2014They are scheduled to play at North Coast Music Festival, Ultra Music Festival, Red Sky Music Festival, Summercamp Festival, Hangout Music Festival, Moogfest and Bonnaroo Music Festival Summer 2011. ^ AllMusic Guide chart information^ http://www.pollstar.com/news_article.aspx?ID=805015


2003: STS9 Live in Santa Cruz - GrooveTV #201 (VideoCD, MPEG Download) - GrooveTV.net2006: Live As Time Changes (DVD) - 1320 Records - Recorded Live December 29–31, 20052009: Axe the Cables (On Demand Streaming) - iclips.net2007-2010: STS9 Live (Free Streaming, On Demand Streaming) iclips.net


STS9 Side Projects1.1 Tzolkin1.2 Landscape and Breath1.3 Santa Cruz Hemp All-Stars1.4 L.I.F.E.1.5 Root Science1.6 Pigs on the Wing

STS9 Side Projects[edit]


On several occasions, STS9 has billed themselves under the name Tzolkin. A promotional flyer put out by the band advertising the 2001 performance reads: “A New Sound Expression” from Tzolkin. Tzolkin is all 5 members of STS9. These very experimental concerts have been used to debut brand new material in a live setting without having the audience expectation of hearing existing STS9 material. The term Tzolkin means sequence of days and refers to a 260-day harmonic module calendar cycle.

Tzolkin performed live on:

July 3, 2001 – The Justice League, San Francisco, CAOctober 12, 2002 – Speedway Meadows, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA (Earthdance Festival)June 10, 2004 – Tasty World, Athens, GA
Landscape and Breath[edit]

Landscape and Breath is STS9 members David Phipps (keyboards/laptop) and Hunter Brown (guitar/laptop/midi keyboard). Landscape and Breath is very similar to the sound of STS9. Steeped in ambience and without drums and bass, the sound is softer and lighter. This side project has been known to work through raw material and ideas that eventually become real STS9 compositions.

Landscape and Breath is credited with producing 4 songs on the STS9 2005 release Artifact. The duo also contributed 4 different songs to the Low Pro Lounge 2004 release, The Most Hi-Fi. Other Landscape and Breath compositions can be found on the STS9 2004 release Live At Home, although the songs are credited individually to Phipps and Hunter.

A new album is in the works, and may be released sometime 2009.

Landscape and Breath performed live on:

July 15, 2001 – Club Sugar, Santa Monica, CAMarch 19, 2003 – Olive, San Francisco, CA (J. Garcia art opening)April 20, 2003 – Rawhide, San Francisco, CA (Low Pro Lounge event)July 31, 2004 – Brookdale Lodge, Brookdale, CA (Blue Moon Benefit)
Santa Cruz Hemp All-Stars[edit]

Santa Cruz Hemp All-Stars (S.C.H.A.S.) is a side project that includes the STS9 rhythm section of Jeffree Lerner (percussion & effects) and Zach Velmer (drums). STS9 member David Murphy (bass) has also appeared with the band on 4 occasions.

S.C.H.A.S. performed live on:

May 13, 2001 – Palookaville, Santa Cruz, CAAugust 19, 2001 – Palookaville, Santa Cruz, CADecember 16, 2001 – The Justice League, San Francisco, CAJanuary 25, 2002 – Civic Auditorium, Santa Cruz, CA (opening for Maceo Parker)June 14. 2002 – Great American Music Hall, San Francisco, CANovember 16, 2002 – Studio Z, San Francisco, CA

L.I.F.E. (Love In Full Effect) was a short-lived side project that included STS9 member Zach Velmer (drums) plus Max Malone (drums, bass) from The Free Energy Project. According to the band: The intention of L.I.F.E. is to perform music as an uplifting experience of transformation to a higher vibration of love. Through selected tones and rhythms, the music is performed as a cycle of life recognizing our journey from birth to death, spring to winter, as circle, vibrating higher after each revolution to experience Love In its Fullest Effect.

L.I.F.E. performed live on:

January 12, 2002 - Studio Z, San Francisco, CA (Digital-Be-In Media Festival)February 1, 2002 - Vet’s Hall, Santa Cruz, CA
Root Science[edit]

Root Science was a short-lived side project that included STS9 members Zach Velmer (drums) and David Murphy (bass). The band also included DJ James Christopher, lyricists Lost and XQR, and female vocalist Syrene. A promotional flyer put out by the band advertising the event reads: “Root Science is a classic drum and bass tracks interpreted live in an improvisational atmosphere. As a group, the performers will recreate and simultaneously reinvent the sounds at the roots of the modern jungle.”

Root Science performed live on:

February 2, 2002 – The Justice League, San Francisco, CA
Pigs on the Wing[edit]

Pigs on the Wing is a Pink Floyd tribute supergroup composed of STS9 bassist David Murphy, Matt Weiss (Collective Efforts), Coley Dennis (Maserati), Mike Albanese (Cinemechanica), Alfredo Lapuz Jr (Velveteen Pink, Immuzikation), Stanley Walker (Velveteen Pink), Count Kellam, and Tim Conley. The shows featured vivid lights and visuals as well as interpretations of some of Pink Floyd's greatest compositions.

Pigs on the Wing performed live on:

April 3, 2009 – The Loft, Atlanta, GAApril 4, 2009 – Georgia Theatre, Athens, GANovember 5, 2009 – Fox Theatre, Boulder, CONovember 6, 2009 – Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom, Denver, CONovember 7, 2009 – Belly Up, Aspen, CONovember 13, 2009 – New Earth, Athens, GAApril 24, 2010 – New Earth, Athens, GAJune 24, 2011 - Re:Generation Music Festival, Horning's Hideout, ORJanuary 9, 2013 - Three20South, Breckenridge, COJune 28, 2013 - Electric Forest Festival, Rothbury, MIMarch 7, 2014 - Cervantes' Masterpiece Ballroom, Denver, CO

"Re-Generation" 2012 http://regeneration-themovie.com/

Played at Terminal West in Atlanta, GA on September 26, 2012

^ Love In Full Effect, Jambase.com, January 4, 2002
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