WASI
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WASI

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Dec
04
WASI @ Dean's

Houston, Texas, USA

Houston, Texas, USA

Nov
27
WASI @ Dean's

Houston, Texas, USA

Houston, Texas, USA

Nov
20
WASI @ Dean's

Houston, Texas, USA

Houston, Texas, USA

This band has not uploaded any videos
This band has not uploaded any videos

Music

Press


There is something graceful, damn near balletic, about doorman Carl "Wasi" Townsend in action.
His engaging, non-sycophantic manner is astonishing in the world of velvet ropes. He greets the guys
with warm handshakes and the gals with wet smooches. He makes every man feel important and
every woman feel beautiful. But most important, he treats everyone with respect. Even the drunks
who get ejected at the end of the night know not to give Townsend a hard time. He is the man Steve
Miller sang about in "The Joker."
With his boho charm, exotic charisma and rope-thick dreads that girls can't help but stroke and ask,
"Oooh, are these real?" it's easy to hate on his ass. But you soon learn that envy is pointless; it's much
more fascinating to just watch him work. As a wise person once said, don't hate the playa, hate the
game.
After a stint guarding the raucous portal at defunct Prague, Townsend is now manning the doors at
Club 511 (511 Main) and the new downtown after-hours spot Twisted (110 Milam). He wins
nothing but appreciation from the people he's worked for. "He just has the type of personality that
makes you say, 'I wanna work with that guy,' " says Spy (112 Travis) manager Bobby Stark. "I just
think he's amazing. He has that way of having controlled chaos."
But what most people don't know is that there is an ulterior motive at play. The reason Townsend
has been such a visible presence in the nightlife scene is that he's selling himself to prospective
customers. It's a plan he and his bandmates in Snowshoe 'n' Lewis have had for about a minute now.
They explain this to me one recent Wednesday night at their northwest Houston recording studio,
which is also the headquarters of their record label, Oblisque Records Group. Snowshoe 'n' Lewis,
originally known as Bonedance, is a rock/funk/R&B fusion band that started four years ago when
Townsend met drummer Jo Jowers and guitarist Dee Wade at the Westheimer Street Festival. Fresh
in from Shreveport, Louisiana, Jowers and Wade were looking for a bassist/vocalist to replace their
old bass man, so they signed Townsend up. After a couple of years under the Bonedance name, the
trio discovered there was another band by that name on the West Coast and made the switch to
Snowshoe.
The band is no mere sideline for Townsend, Jowers and new guitarist Casey Kimble. (Wade is on
sabbatical.) A December gig at The Gatsby (2450 University Boulevard) garnered such a positive
response that the club signed them up for a run of monthly shows beginning on Wednesday, February
12. Townsend and company hope to bring in local acts like Phuz, as well as national artists such as
Ben Harper and Chocolate Genius, to perform on the revolving bill with them. On the recording
front, they're looking to throw five songs on an EP, call it God and the Cigar Box and release it inMarch or April.
But even with all that going on, Townsend won't give up being a door guy anytime soon. As with
any true artist, he loves his work for its own sake. "I enjoy the challenge of working with people's
personalities and egos," he says. "Everyone is only thinking about themselves and [being]
fragmentary. To try to keep people patient and happy is a cool challenge for me. You're trying to
bring a little bit of serenity to the chaos of a line."
And let's not forget, it also gives him a chance to get the word out about his band. Snowshoe 'n'
Lewis is hoping that the same people who have faith in Townsend to lead them to a satisfying club
experience will trust him enough to lead them to a fulfilling musical experience as well. "He's still
the doorman, onstage," says Jowers. "When he opens the door to our music, that's 100 percent of
everything we got."
Weblink for article:
http://www.houston-press.com/Issues/2003-02-06/music/nightfly.html - Houston Press 2003-02-06


Discography

The First Five, an EP, released 2005 by Snowshoe & Lewis
Dark Noise, Wasi, release scheduled for March 2007

Photos

Bio

Wasi Townsend's voice has been described as a force of nature - earthy and airy, soft and wild. Like a breath of fresh air and the roar of the ocean. He's stepping out on his own after over 12 years with Houston bands Hueman and, most recently, Snowshoe and Lewis. Late night crowds are lured to Dean's in downtown Houston every Tuesday as Wasi opens the doors with emotionally charged acoustic versions of his original work, as well as some familiar covers. By night's end, Wasi's Songwriter's Workshop turns into an all out jam session with a regular parade of guest musicians. Delivering positive messages about the awesomeness of creation and the oneness of us all, Wasi proclaims - "I want to be larger than life, and then show people that we are all the same." The paradox of greatness wrapped in humility is a theme that spans his writings as he ponders the infinite limitlessness of our universe and our inherent fear of realizing our true selves. He is not your ordinary rock star, but he rocks nonetheless. His soon to be released solo recordings are a breathtakingly rich musical odyssey. Wasi is currently applying his wizardly touch in his home studio on electrified versions of his acoustic work and a ceaseless stream of new creations. Take a peak at his Myspace page. Feel the elements - the seductive bass lines, stirring guitar melodies and passionate vocals - weave an exotic dream world, fusing rock, jazz and soul with a splash of hip hop. Come and listen to truly experience the sound of this humble musician's soul.