Out from the soundboards

If its amplified on campus, chances are the Popular Music Board is responsible for it.

If its amplified on campus, chances are the Popular Music Board is responsible for it.

From running sound for events like the Vagina Monologues, to holding concerts in the park blocks every week–the Popular Music Board (PMB) has crafted a firm place as the go-to sound crew on campus. Now, instead of merely entertaining students with concerts on campus and working behind the scenes at events, this group of student sound experts is expanding into other arenas.

A drum clinic, orchestrated by the PMB and featuring studio drummer Karriem Riggins, will be held today in the Smith Memorial Student Union Ballroom (SMSU 355). Like the PMB, Riggins might not have an instantly recognizable name, but you’ve probably heard his handiwork as a some-time producer for The Roots, a live drummer for Kanye West and a drummer in the Diana Krall quartet.

Riggins will be showing off his drumming style and instructing the audience on new, and advanced, techniques.

The drum clinic is a new realm for the decades old PMB. Reid McCargar, production coordinator for the group, personally asked Riggins to come to PSU for the clinic when he was working a Krall show in Bend. Riggins has never instructed a university audience before, but according to McCargar, he was up for the challenge.

“The clinic shouldn’t be a one time only event,” McCargar said. He and the PMB staff would like to start holding more events that are catered towards musicians and are designed to help to improve their musical skills. “Musicians have a tendency to reach skill plateaus and events like the Riggins drum clinic can help them reach the next level,” he said.

In addition to their daily work–noontime concerts on campus, running the mixing boards for student group events–the PMB is planning some larger events for later this year. On April 26, they will hold a folk festival, tentatively titled the “Singing in the Rain Folk Festival,” and on May 18, they are planning a live tribute concert for Elliott Smith.

Events like the drum clinic and the Elliott Smith show are helping the PMB get the word out about what they do, so they can hopefully, “restore the world’s faith in sound guys,” McCargar said.

“It’s a great opportunity for us and for the community to see that we exist and that we are hear to make music a little bit better, and a little bit more visible to the PSU community.”

The PSU Popular Music Board is a group of seven paid technicians, three group leaders and numerous volunteers. They provide free sound support for student groups on campus and hold concerts and other events throughout the year. For more information visit www.pmbpresents.org.

Karriem Riggins Drum ClinicToday6 p.m.Smith Memorial Student Union Ballroom (SMSU 355)$10 general admission, $8 students