BusCrates 16-bit Ensemble, a.k.a. Orlando Marshall is a DJ, musician and producer. He’s a Pittsburgh native, having grown up in the East End (Wilkinsburg/Edgewood/Swissvale areas). You may have heard him DJ at the Shadow Lounge/Ava, and Kelly’s in East Liberty, or Helter Shelter in Lawrenceville. With a moniker like BusCrates, I had to ask him how he got his name. “It came from being a DJ, not having a car, and taking crates of records on the bus.” He’s pictured here with a self-titled 7-inch 4-track EP, “Bus Crates 16 bit Ensemble.”
Crates heard about Locally Toned via another DJ, J. Malls. Making some ringtones sounded like a good idea to BusCrates, so Marshall invited me to the studio within his Lawrenceville apartment, and we sat down for an improv ringtone-making session. I asked him if he’d made ringtones before or if he’s ever purchased any for his cell phone. “I just use everything that comes [pre-loaded] on the phone,” he said.
We came out of our session with three Glockenspiel tones. The first two were designed as text message alerts–the Incoming Glockenspiel Message Alert goes from high to low notes on the instrument; the Outgoing Glockenspiel Message Alert goes from low to high. DJ BusCrates Glockenspiel Tone is a sweet melody that makes a charmingly happy sound. I’m certainly going to use and set this tone as an alarm–it says, “Get up!” with a gentle sort of urgency.
Thanks for contributing to Locally Toned, DJ BusCrates! And thanks to J. Malls for the introduction.