ALIVE AND WELL

Selected tracks from Soul Satisfaction On Clean Sheets


The Beatmachines’ first performance in 10 years

Louie Fontaine has keept his maybe biggest invention ever, looked up in his studio for 10 years, until Aug 2011. After many requests from fans and friends, Mr. Fontaine decided to play it once again, but this time in a completely new way, playing together with only percussionist Nils Ile and bass Terry La Gaarde + of cause the lifetime serving beat mecanic Andis Krasitz.
It turned out to be fun again, and therefore decided, to show the Beat Machine to world once again in 2012 in a show incooperated with The Starlight Searchers on bigger festival stages only in 2012, due the size of the machine.
Louie Fontaine and Nils Ile (Percussion) is also working on setting up a seperate show as a trio for smaller stages, and writing new materiale as we speak,to go on the road in 2012 as a trio + the faithful beat mecanic Andis Krasitz.

THE BEAT BEATERS
Louie Fontaine: Beat Operator ,Guitar (DK)
Nils Ile: Percussion(LV)
Terry La Gaarde: Bas(US)
Andis Kraskurs: Beat Mecanic (LV)

LOUIE FONTAINE & THE BEAT BEATERS
Louie Fontaine: Beat Operator ,Guitar (DK)
Nils Ile: Percussion(LV)
Terry La Gaarde: Bas(US)
Andis Kraskurs: Beat Mecanic (LV)

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The Biggest man build mecanical rythm machine in the world.

Louie Fontaine- And The Beat Machine/ 2000

The Fabulous Beat Machine Live
Mecanic A.Kraskurs & Mecanic Mr T. Pinkerston

Build by Louie Fontaine from 1997-fully operating in 1999.
Fontaine’s studio in copenhagen caught fire in early 1999 and the machine was delayed for debut but fully restored again same year. First time in public performance in 1999 on a European tour in 12 countries.
Louie’s ideer to build the machine first of all was because of lack of good drummers, he just could not find the sound he was looking for, and often forbid drummer to use their snare drum during rehearsals in confusion. Louie’s new songs could not be realized with a regular band, so he started this mad man project to create something that would say BOOM BOOM BOOM BOOM.

But soon he realized, that you could do much more than that. The first prototypes was made out of plummering pipes with big arms attached, hitting barrels and other noisy home made instruments.
Working in his fathers factory watching the big air run, press machines in linework everyday gave Louie the ideer of using airpresure as the energy source.

Working with rythm is like working with a swiss watch, presicions was the key word to the perfect Beat machine.
Many varius trouble such as speed control, backbeats, unwanted noise from air valves and tons of trouble shoothing, did not stop Louie in his scientific beat project working day and night, he had his mind set to finish and finally did after 2 years.

The Beat machine, played under the control of its master.

FACTS.


Weight: 1 ton
Air Pressure: 13 bars
Cylinders: 36
Air Canals: 48
Max rythm capacity:24 (in the same time)
Instruments: 22
Axes: 4
Beat Wheels: 100
High Pressure Pipe: 500 meters
Horns: 5
Drum control sections: 8

The machine takes 5 hour set up, and 3 hour to take down, with a crew of 4 people.
In live performace it need 2 programmers and a beat operator.

A BAND MEMBERS GRANDMA DIED

Guitar player Johnny Royal (alias Jonas Molteleth) married Louie’s Nanny.
At the wedding held at the studio, his grandma wanted to see the BEAT MACHINE, since she has seen it on the television.

She saw it ,but died immdiately, at the climse and sound of it’s puls.
may she rest in peace

THE FEELING & GROOVE

The Beat machine never plays the same, it has a feeling like no other machine, the grove is alive the small delays in the different lenght of the air pressure tubes as well as the mecanical fact, makes the Beat machine one of a kind.

You can make it play like and old lazy laid back blues drummer or like a 24 armed armwristler beating the shit out of you.
The Beat machine is extemely expensive to travel with and fits only on big stages.

Which at that time was impossible for Louie Fontaine and his show to get.

THE NEW MACHINE

In year 2001 ,Louie decided to build a new ,better,lighter and smaller machine, a road version of the machine to bring with him to the New Orleans were he moved in year 2000.
The framework was made in Aluminium and the machine was cut down to half size ,but still with the same capacity of varius beats.

It has less holecards, to shorten the lenght.

The Machine still has about 20 -25 songs capacity, programmed for live shows.

It takes now 2 hours to set up and 1 hour take down.

A trigger system was made, so the machine trigged itself to avoid featback on the stage, only cymbals and percussion have microphones now.

THE BEAT MACHINE DEAD OR ALIVE 2001

While living in New orleans after 9/11, getting ready to tour the FBI/CIA surrounded Louie’s house in uptown New Orleans with 15 gunmen seaching for terror suspect Louie Fontaine.

What they really wanted, was to check if the Beat Machine was bomb meant for blow up the Superdome, well well well Louie was not there to answear questions, but his band and manager had to answear a bunch silly question, though it was obvius that it was not bomb.

The FBI took Louie’s computer and opened his emails, tapped his phone for mount to come.
Louie’s tour was cancelled because of 9/11, so he had tried to come up with something else to do, and had agreed with a club in Baton Rouge to play concerts on every monday with the slogan BIN LADEN present Black Mondays with Louie Fontaine.

New Orleans club The Howlin Wolf had declined Louie’s ideer to do Bin Laden presents Black Tuesdays with Louie Fontaine, since that was the day of the week,Mr.Bush landed his planes in the twin towers.
Inside Louie’s computer there was layouts for posters and flyers for the shows. The FBI agent, claimed to be called Jeffrey Seamuff must have been furius.

All this was happening when people was starting to joke about 9/11 in late 2001.

In the end Louie decided to leave the states, as the landlord kicked him out, cause of fear of the FBI, that was the end Louie time in the USA the land of the free.

HOW DOES IT WORK

If you know the principle of a self playing piano you are on the right track.

The Machine has hole cards 16 (4/4 rytmh) holes in one round, if you fill the hole with a beat bolt, it will hit an air valve releasing air, triggering the drum, as soon as the 5 port valve is released it tiggeres the drumstick to go back in position, all this happen in blink of an eye.

Other holecards has 12 holes (shuffle 12/8)
some special holecards with 15 (5/4 Rythm) holes was made for the song Evil Force In My Pants, other holecards has 21 holes (7/4 rythm).A self playing piano will play one melodi and then stop the Beat machine can play 24 holecards at the same and combine them as well as change them while playing , which gives an never ending number of variations. The machine dynamics (volume), can be controlled on each drum by turning the trigger pressure down, it has a master fader, fretless speed control all operated while playing. It has a upper machine and under machine, meaning while you play one song, you make the next one ready, strickly for live performance,2 machines in one.