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Thursday, July 7, 2016
The Consortium of Genius creates blend of scifi and music and fun
Photo courtesy Lewis D'Aubin
When Lewis D’Aubin saw his first episode of Doctor Who in the early 1980s, he was hooked. He was so intrigued that he even remembers the title of his introduction to the Time Lord,The Stones of Blood.
A few years later, he found a group named The Companions of Doctor Who and joined them. He acknowledges that he was a bit of an introverted tinkerer. He built his own version of the Doctor’s robot dog, K-9, among other bits of fan gear and got involved with local conventions.
By the late eighties, he got into music and started working with local bands. D’Aubin learned to use a synthesizer and a drum machine, as well as learning recording techniques.
“The music and the fandom sides of my personality didn’t crossover immediately,” he says. He and a friend began to work on their own material. They wrote their own “silly songs” which they recorded for practice. By 1996, the practices had grown into The Consortium of Genius - aka COG - a group of mad scientists and lab assistants creating off-beat, original rock music as well as covering genre music. Their fearless leader Dr. Milo Thaddeus Pinkerton III is portrayed by D’Aubin.
Now celebrating their twentieth year of rock music science (or is that mad scientist rock music?), the group has gone through several incarnations as some members left to pursue other things and new members joined. Drumbot, the video droid on drums, was added to the group, as well.
“The members of the band are all a bunch of big geeks, too,” D’Aubin chuckles. He notes that, although they don’t make a lot of money, they do have a lot of fun. They dress in lab coats and other wildly scifi costumes.
The group plays at conventions, as well as special events throughout the region. The COG channel on YouTube (underDoctorPinkerton) offers a peek into the crazy, fun world of COG.
D’Aubin hasn’t stopped growing as a musician, however. About four years ago, a Victorian-garbed group premiered to play Dixieland, jazz and ragtime, rather than the heavy metal and rock sounds delivered by COG. Like the old novelty tune “I am my own grandpa,” he portrays Professor Milo Reginald Pinkerton (grandfather of MTP III) in a second band,The New Orleans Steamcog Orchestra. Billing themselves as a “Dixieland/Ragtime band with a difference,” the group includes Cogsworthy, a clockwork drummer.
With changes in radio broadcasting, novelty and comedic music has become more difficult to find, according to D’Aubin. With COG and the New Orleans Steamcog Orchestra, listeners lamenting the lack of such delightful music have an outlet. Both bands have videos on YouTube and albums available for purchase.
Originally appeared 05/30/2016 at http://www.examiner.com/article/the-consortium-of-genius-creates-blend-of-scifi-and-music-and-fun