Richmond is home to a wide variety of musicians, from hardcore to hippy, but it is also home to “the first ever virtual time-travelling rock band,” known as 1UPYO. The forefathers of 1UPYO are the time travelling guitarist/singer Doc B. Wildman, the highly evolved Pleiadian bassist The Messenger, AM91, and the present-day earthborn drummer, Tripp Watson. The band has merged in our nation’s capital to create this innovative project to be a force for positive change on the Virginia music scene. We spoke with Wildman regarding his band’s interstellar concept and the rotating cast of characters involved, their plans to turn their debut album Bye Time into a comic book, and their live show experience.

The concept for your band is described as “the first ever virtual time-travelling rock band.” What was the inspiration for this unique idea?

Originally, I thought that having a centralized concept would enable us to develop a unified sound and give us a creative direction. I was kind of tired of the traditional music scene, which is kind of egotistical, and I wanted to produce something innovative and not confined to the “play in a bar and be cool” mentality. Society itself is becoming increasingly virtual with social media, and I feel like we are just taking that mentality a step further. In a small way, it’s kind of a social experiment. Primarily, it’s liberating to do something unique and centered around a mission or a purpose. I actually traveled from the future, so that’s kind of where we got the idea.

What would you say is the mission or purpose of your band?

The purpose we have is to collectively be a positive influence on the universe in general.

Where did you travel from in the future?

It’s kind of fuzzy in my brain because I don’t know if the human brain is made to endure that sort of experience, but I think, from what I remember, was around the year 4200.

Can you tell me about the characters each member plays in your band and how the fit into the story you are trying to tell?

There is myself, who represents Doc Wildman, who represents a time traveler, mad scientist kind of anarchist, guitarist, songwriter, producer. Then there is The Messenger, AM9I, who is from another dimension. He is a Pleiadian person, not really human. He represents a more evolved, human type of life form. Tripp Watson is who united us on this current timeline. The Messenger plays bass, and Tripp Watson does vocals.

There have been several bands that tell stories through songs, and even a few in recent years that have turned their music into graphic novels. Do you have any plans to do this as well?

We definitely do. We are in the process of working on a comic book that I guess could evolve into a graphic novel. we have been working with some artists locally who are doing the designs, and we are telling the story. So we do the storyboards and the panels’ themes, and even do rough copies, and then we ship them off to our artist who does the original sketches.


Do you have a timeline yet for when those will be released?

We are hoping by the end of the year to have the first issue, but that’s just a target date. It’s very exciting to think about being a multimedia project, having multiple outlets to be creative and bringing in a collective community of artists that all work in a centralized theme.

On your new album Bye Time, you have a wide variety of other Virginia musicians featured as well, including KELLER WILLIAMS, SCHIAVONNE MCGEE of FIGHTING GRAVITY, Pandemic of GRITTY CITY RECORDS, and several more. How did each artist get involved, and what role do they play in this project?

We work with a couple producers — Will Mitchell, who set up this interview, and Joe Talerovich, who produced the project, and they have been on the Richmond music scene for a long time. So they just know a lot of people. They have helped a facilitate the collaboration because we really wanted a collaborative project. KELLER WILLIAMS came about because the drummer that we worked with also plays with Keller, and he was in town. So we just got him to come down to the studio and hang out, which ended up being a collaborative session. Pandemic from GRITTY CITY RECORDS is friends with the drummer Tripp Watson, so Tripp connected that because I really wanted to have an MC on a couple songs, and we really digged what he was doing. Schiavone McGee is from FIGHTING GRAVITY. He was friends with the producer Joe, and we got him in. He had a lot to bring to the table, which was exciting. There were also a lot more — THOMAS COLEMAN, who is a great singer/acoustic guitarist. He plays competitively at the Richmond Folk Festival. His wife FRAN COLEMAN, who used to be in SOLID GOLD FISH BOWL, which was a fairly popular band in the ’90’s, contributed. I think we ended up with 15 total contributors.

What was the concept for Bye Time?

The concept itself is examining society’s general view of time and how it’s kind of paradoxical. We always crave to have free time, and when we do we waste it. We spend all of our lives working to make money. We told each character about the vibe, what the purpose was, and what the concept was, and we asked them to tell their story and what they thought about it.



Are there any other Virginia bands or musicians you would be interested in collaborating with in the future?

We are pretty open to anything. It depends on what fits individual song, but there are so many great Virginia artists. I hard to pick just one. We are open to any and all collaborations, if it’s fitting the circumstance.

Since you are a virtual band, do you ever play shows?

We have done a couple shows locally, and a couple private shows. We performed as a three-piece with a lot of effects and computerized stuff going on.

If you have another person featured on the track, how is their music played live?

If it is a show that we are able to attend, then we will have them featured, and they will be part of the group on stage. We like to create a mob mentality on stage with lots of people, even if some people aren’t doing anything but just hanging out, and if they are not able to make the show, then we will fill the role.

Do you guys have any shows coming up anytime soon?

We’ve got a private CD release party sometime in October. We’re still working out the details for that. It’s gonna kind of be an underground party. Then, we are hoping to tour in the spring, but we’re still working out the kinks with management.

For more updates on 1UPYO, be sure to visit their website, “like” their Facebook page, follow them on Twitter, and check out their music on Bandcamp and iTunes.

Joe Fitzpatrick

Joe Fitzpatrick

As editor-in-chief, Joe is very passionate about promoting music and culture in Virginia and DC. A resident of Falls Church, Joe enjoys going to shows, checking out local breweries, and trying new foods with friends.


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