Published on January 10th, 2013 | by Ballard Lesemann


The Punch List with Outervention’s Alan Brisendine

Metronome Charleston‘s weekly Punch List puts local musicians on the spot with a questionnaire that touches on music, venues, gear, records, vices, and more. This week, local multi-instrumentalist Alan Brisendine (pictured above, third from the left, with local band the Outervention), responds to the big list of questions.

1. What is your favorite local hang (hangout/bar/venue) and why?

“I have three: the Pour House, Home Team BBQ, and the Tin Roof. All have consistently excellent music and food, and they’ve always supported local performing artists.”

2. You know you’ve played an excellent show when…  

“You receive appropriate response from the audience throughout, the band is upbeat and positive afterwards, talking about how they’ve pulled it off, and how it could be even better next time. Folks are hanging around afterwards to chat with you and express their appreciation.”


Alan Brisendine (provided)

3. What was the last show you attended that really got you fired up in a good or bad way?

“I saw a relatively obscure band in Carborro, N.C., at the Cat’s Cradle back in September called Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti. I was really impressed by their originality and diversity in music style, and they had a very modern approach to live performance.”

4. Define your musical style in exactly 10 words.

“Quirky, improvisational, occasionally reckless, although mostly methodical, outside the box.”

5. What’s your theme song?

“Pink Floyd’s ‘One of These Days’ [from the 1971 album Meddle].”

6. Gear-wise, what’s is your irreplaceable baby?

“Everything in my collection is replaceable, I suppose, but I really like my Tama Starclassic Maple Marine Blue Fade five-piece drum kit … and my Yamaha model 62-II Tenor sax.”

7. What’s the most overplayed album in your collection?

“It’s a three-way tie between Miles Davis’ Bitches Brew, Frank Zappa’s Roxy and Elsewhere, and Neil Young’s Tonight’s the Night.”

8. When was the last time you were genuinely star-struck?

“Performing with James Brown at a Camp Happy Days benefit in December 2005. His grin and nod of approval when I played the sax line during ‘I Got You (I Feel Good)’ almost made me pass out.”

9. What’s your poison?

“Macallan Highland 12 single malt scotch on the rocks or Maker’s Mark bourbon straight up.”

10. In 10 years, I will be…

“50 years old, hopefully still around, and lucky enough to still be performing great music with great people.”


The Outervention on stage at Home Team BBQ, 2013 (photo by Ballard Lesemann)

By day, Alan Brisendine works at MUSC with the cancer research team. By night, he plays drums, keyboards, and saxophone with a variety of rock, funk, jazz, and Americana groups. His main role these days is as the timekeeper with indie rock/groove quartet the Outervention alongside singer/guitarist Jeff Kozelski, guitarist Ian Grimshaw, and bassist Tom Eden.

Brisendine occasionally fills in with Athens Ga.-based Grateful Dead tribute band Cosmic Charlie, local soul-rock band Shonuff, and rock/pop bar band Baby Fat, among many others. His long list of collaborations also include Blue Sphere, Unisol, Suspicious Package, Booty Call, Kevin West, Ace & OC, the Key of Q, Brandy Robinson, Vehicle, Dave Landeo, and Permanent Vacation.

Visit for more.

[Editor’s note: I’ve played drums with Brisendine in different bands on various occasions, and I can vouch for his skills as a tasteful drummer, hilarious sideman, and multi-tasking sax man/keyboardist/tambourine-banger] 

Top photo by Ballard Lesemann.



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About the Author

Ballard Lesemann

is a musician and writer. Born and raised in Charleston, S.C., he spent years playing in bands and working for Flagpole Magazine in the bustling music town of Athens, Ga. He returned to his hometown and served more than seven years as the Charleston City Paper's music editor. He's better at drumming than he is at playing guitar.

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