Quintron (real name Robert Rolston; born circa 1967, Germany
) is an American musician and leader of the eponymous one-man-band, "Quintron". He is a celebrated nightclub organist and inventor, who has patented a number of his own inventions and often performs at his own private club, the Spellcaster Lodge
, located on St. Claude Avenue
in New Orleans
’ 9th Ward
. He frequently performs with his wife, fellow musician and puppeteer, Panacea Pussycat (also known as Miss Pussycat), co-founder of the 9th Ward's now defunct Pussycat Caverns. Quintron's most notable invention to date is the Drum Buddy
, a mechanically-rotating, five-oscillator, light-activated drum machine.
Quintron is a multi-instrumental one-man-band. During performances, Quintron utilizes a custom-made Hammond organ
synthesizer combo which he has had custom outfitted to resemble the body of a car, complete with working headlights and a Louisiana license plate which reads "Quintron". Quintron is often accompanied by The Drum Buddy, a rotating, light-activated analog synthesizer, one of many which he has created and manufactured himself. Quintron frequently plays multiple instruments simultaneously, the Hammond organ acting as his primary instrument, and the Fender Rhodes supplying bass lines. He can often be seen keeping time on a hi-hat
with one foot while toggling between a volume and wah-wah pedal
with the other.
Quintron is regularly accompanied by his wife Miss Pussycat, who sings backup and plays maracas
Quintron has invented a number of innovative musical devices. His first invention was called the 'Spit Machine' a hand organ which used saliva as a tuning conductor. Describing how the apparatus works, Quintron explains that "You had to spit on a stick, like a paint stir stick, and you had two metal leads that you would touch to either end of the line of spit and then you would move the leads closer together - higher pitch - and farther apart - lower pitch. The weird thing is that, the way I built the oscillator, spit was the only thing that I could use as a conducter (sic). Lemon juice was too conductive, water not enough, etc. You actually had a lot of control over the pitch with spit - it wasn’t too sensitive - and could really play it in tune like a real organ. There was also some resistive quality to human spit that gave the oscillator some weird overtones too." 
His next invention was called the 'Disco Light Machine,' a device which, in his own words, was a "system of pick-ups that you would attach to a drum kit and the sound of the drums would light up a light inside a darkened box and this light would activate electronic sounds to go along with the drums - the harder you played the drums, the brighter the light and the louder the electronic sounds." 
His most notable instrument, however, is the 'Drum Buddy
'. The Drum Buddy is a mechanically-rotating, five-oscillator, light-activated drum machine which can either be set to play automatically, or manipulated to create a number of different sound effects. The drum buddy has its own informercial, The Drum Buddy Show, which includes a number of guest appearances and performances by artists such as Quintron, Miss Pussycat, Ernie K-Doe
, MC Trachiotomy
, and the Drum Buddy Dancers.
Quintron is very enigmatic about his personal life and rarely grants interviews. It is known that he was born September 15, in Bitburg, Germany, where his father was stationed in the military. He grew up in Mobile, Alabama, and St. Louis, Missouri, before completing high school and moving to Chicago at the age of seventeen. He attended Loyola University and was an active member of the Theatre Department before transferring to DePaul University. While in Chicago he played in a cover band called Idol Chatter, and eventually joined the legendary Chicago experimental outfit MATH (which also featured Jodie Mechanic and Michael Colligan). During his time in Chicago he opened his first club, Milk of Burgundy.
It was in New Orleans that he first met Panacea Pussycat, then-owner of the now-defunct Pussycat Caverns. While in New Orleans he founded his own club, the Spellcaster Lodge, which was severely damaged by hurricane Katrina. 9th Ward Breakdown, a song he had written several years prior to Katrina, predicted the human cost of the disaster with uncanny accuracy. The Spellcaster Lodge was reopened in September 2006.
Mr. Quintron is known for his eccentric behavior. In 1996, during an interview for a Times-Picayune article, he told interviewer Bill Grady that he and his wife were first cousins.
He also conducted the interview in a wheelchair, explaining that he had fallen from a roller coaster while at Six Flags over Mid-America. In an interview with Odyssey Magazine, Quintron qualified his unusual demeanor and explained his attitude towards the press, remarking; "I am aware that this interview is a game and I can step outside of this page to see it for what it is. You know, I may never say what I have just said in another interview ever. I can be inconsistent, unreliable, contradictory... like electricity or plumbing."