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Belfast couple wants to promote unconventional music

By Kendra Caruso | Jan 09, 2020
Photo by: Kendra Caruso Grant Corum poses Jan. 3 in his 170-year-old home in front of the vinyls he created as a member of trio Million Brazilians.

Belfast — When Grant Corum was in elementary school, he started making his own mock radio shows that he would share with friends. They usually featured music, noises and made-up stories inspired by comic books and other interests he wanted to document.

That is not very different from what he and his partner, Suzanne Stone, want to do with their 170-year-old Mill Lane property, named Ro-He-Ge, to bring lesser-known national and international musicians to Belfast.

Their production company, Psychic Sounds, was recently approved for a Kindling Fund grant, partially funded by Andy Warhol’s Foundation for the Arts, from Portland-based contemporary art studio SPACE Gallery to bring different musical experiences to the Belfast area.

“Part of that is to better fund some of the musicians and artists that are coming up here. Because we’re just left up to donations by the public,” Corum said. “People are touring often and (Maine is) out of the way … and we’re just trying to lure people up this way.”

The pair, who also travel as musicians, want to bring lesser-known performers who offer different musical sounds and talent than what is commonly offered in Maine. They have done tours abroad with a third performer in their group called Million Brazilians, which has a distinctive synthesized sound, Corum said.

Ro-He-Ge is the property’s barn, which was used as a gallery by the previous owners. Corum and Stone want to renovate it into a recording studio where they will put together shows and programs to be aired online and through Belfast Community Radio.

Corum is already working on some content between doing freelance graphic design and screen printing. Part of his vision is to accompany the radio show with some form of artist interaction with the public, to be documented through audio or video.

Psychic Sounds was founded in Portland, Oregon, where unconventional music is easier to find. They moved to Belfast, where Stone grew up, three years ago to continue their musical collaborations and grow their production company.

Million Brazilians has made 25 vinyl records, some of which were recorded on CD and cassette, since its founding in 2009. One of their records was recently picked up by Feeding Tube Records in Florence, Massachusetts.

The band will go on tour from Oregon to California promoting the record later this winter. It will be the first time the three members of the band have reunited in eight years.

Corum started a new duo called Timelash with a Chilean friend that features dark sci-fi synthesised sounds. They will tour southern Europe as a duo in May.

“We have a record coming out on labels out of Belgium,” he said. “So, we’re going to go there and support that.”

He and Stone thought there were a lot of people in the community who might embrace and enjoy their project when they moved to Belfast.

“I wanted to live in Belfast because I thought there was a lot of potential,” Corum said. “And a lot of great people to make things happen here.”

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