home, home on the range

I’m back, after three weeks of fun gigs, fun people, fun travelling, cd sales, namm schmoozing, masterclass teaching, phone dying, car renting, album recording, world domination scheming, cattle rustling etc. and now I’m exhausted. But can’t really collapse until tomorrow cos I’ve got a gig tonight at the National Theatre in London, with the wonderful Theo Travis – after that, I’m sleeping for 36 hours.

After that, and only after that, I’ll start telling some california tales.

Thanks very much to everyone who came to the gigs and bought the CDs – please feel free to post reviews in the ‘interact’ section of the website…

Soundtrack – nothing.

Call me The Accugroover… :o)

So, as I mentioned back on Nov 25th, I’ve changed my amp endorsement deal, and now I’m officially working with Accugroove on the design of a new powered cabinet!

I’ve known about Accugroove stuff for a few years, and have tried their cabs out at NAMM over the last couple of years – loved the sound, but at the time I was enjoying a slightly more low-fi, ‘stressed-speaker’ sound. Now, with my ever increasingly complex rig and the desire to go stereo, I really need to be using powered cabinets, and that’s what Accugroove has agreed to design for me, which is great!

Mark Wright, the owner of Accugroove has been a friend for ages – he’s been to my gigs, and Dan and I stayed at his house on my tour in CA last year. He and David (the other partner at Accugroove) are great guys, and make amazing bass cabs, so despite a few tempting offers from other places, Accugroove was really the only choice.

So now I’m REALLY looking forward to the NAMM show where the prototype ‘Steve Lawson Solo 110’ or whatever it’ll end up being called is going to be first available to try. How excited am I? Very. very very. this is roughly what it will look like (actually, it’s almost certainly exactly what it will look like…)

So there’s a press release that’s up on the news page on my website, and a bit about me on the front page of the Accugroove site, and I’ll obviously be playing on their stand at NAMM, and taking the prototype cab around with me for any other dates I do in California (at the moment I’m working on getting some dates with Trip Wamsley, which would be great. Trip’s a fantastic bass player, very fine songwriter, as mad as a box of frogs and anglophile to the point of actually wanting to live here (someone has to), and his latest CD, ‘It’s Better This Way’ is bleedin’ marvellous.

So anyway, go and have a look at the lovely Accugroove stuff on their website – www.accugroove.com, and if you email them, say hi from me.

Soundtrack – Moondog, ‘Sax Pax for Sax’; John Mayal’s Bluesbreakers, ’70th Birthday Concert’.

Evolution or Revolution?

The music industry is changing, that’s for sure. To do what I’ve done even 10 years ago would have been a heck of a lot more difficult and expensive to get off the ground. The cost of recording studio set ups has plummeted with the home computer market, the net has thrown the doors wide on forming underground niche networks through which to make a small-scale name for yourself, and online shops are waking up to the growing sales of independent albums (interesting that while the majors are all crying ‘foul play’ over file sharing, the indies are selling more records that ever…)

Maybe people respond well to having the chance to buy CD directly from an artist – I know I do! I love browsing CD Baby looking for interesting music, having a listen to the streaming stuff and then buying a CD or two, knowing that the artists are getting the dough for their hard earned work.

So is this a natural shift, or are we about to see the collapse of the industry as we know it? The mainstream charts are getting less and less relavent to your average joe – how many ‘big’ albums have I bought in recent times? Right now, I think I own two CDs in the top 40 – Athlete’s ‘Vehicles and Animals’ and Coldplay’s ‘A Rush Of Blood To The Head’ – that’s a pretty high proportion for me! A large amount of my time is spent listening to indie stuff, self produced CDs (with nothing to distinguish them as self produced other than the care and attention that’s gone into them, and the rather more matey sounding sleeve notes!)

But, if the truth be told, there are times when I wonder if the record company route might be easier – someone else to do the work. Then I read articles like this one by Steve Albini – he produced In Utero by Nirvana, and here outlines the details of a major ‘rock’ deal (some fruity language again, so avoid if easily offended). Thanks, but no thanks, I’ll stick with ‘jamming econo’ as the mighty Mike Watt calls it – the DIY ethic is a powerful one, and it doesn’t take much searching to find like-minded souls with whom to share a thought and a word of encouragement. I’ve met loads of indie musos through Looper’s Delight, the solo bass network, and just through gigs, web surfing, at NAMM and so on. Tomorrow I’m meeting up with a very fine solo bassist called John Lester, another solo bassist ploughing a furrow in London, and making some amazing music (check out his site, he’s great).

Anyway, I thank God I had the chance to go indie when I did, and that it’s all working out so well… looking forward to putting out the new record with theo, and then starting work on the next solo one! I’ve done loads of practicing over the last few days and am getting a few ideas together for new tunes… what fun…

Soundtrack – Terje Rypdal, ‘Skywards’, Duke Special, ‘Lucky Me’, and an advanced copy of Andre LaFosse’s album ‘Normalise’, which is marvellous. I mean, really really good! not easy listening by any stretch, but some of the most adventurous, funky, glitchy fascinating sounds ever to come from a guitar… Go and have a listen to some of the tracks in Andre’s MP3 archive, and then order the CD…

Sometimes we just don't know we're born…

A few days ago I commented on the passing of Rana Ross – a fabulous bassist and larger than life character from LA, who I’d met at the NAMM show a couple of years ago, and stayed in email contact with…

This was posted to TBL (a bass discussion list) – an open letter from her husband about Rana – time to sit back and count blessings, methinks…

“To give you an idea of what she overcame over the years we were married on
Sept 8th, 1988 but – before she would allow me to marry her – she went to
have an AIDS test done. She grew up in Brooklyn, NY and spent a wild time
(sex, drugs and rock & roll) during the late 70’s/early 80’s. She stopped
the wild side around 1982 but it was too late. The HIV test came back
positive in 1988 and at that time it was a death sentence with no drugs
available to treat the disease.

“I talked her into marrying me anyway, because it’s the person that you love,
not the disease. I was and remain HIV negative, and in fact never had any
fear of contracting the virus from her – can’t explain it, but somehow I
knew that she would never pass it to me.

“The medications that eventually came out over the years worked for her, but
it was like taking chemo-therapy year after year. One result was the erosion
of the sheaths that cover the nerves in her feet and hands, developing into
a diabetic-like peripheral neuropathy. She described it as feeling like
someone has driven red hot nails into her feet and sent her walking across
hot coals. How she performed and danced on stage I’ll never know, but she
never missed a step. Know one knew that many times I literally had to carry
her to the car from the pain, but she would never allow this to interfere
with her career or jeopardize any band’s performance. She was amazing like
that – and how she played when her hands were so numb that she couldn’t feel
the strings I’ll never understand, but she did it and only very very rarely
missed a note. She was a consummate performer.

“Over the last 7 years she has been in and out of various hospitals over 50
times, but never once did she miss a performance, regardless of how ill she

“Last year we found out that she had Hep C, which caused the cirrhosis of the
liver that eventually killed her. Basically, the decomposed liver allowed
blood to back up into the inflowing veins, which caused bleeding in the
abdomen and stomach. Unknown to us she was bleeding internally over the
weekend and collapsed on Monday. She was taken to the hospital ER where she
coded, but they brought her back to life – comatose. That was always her
biggest fear, to be on life support.

“I went against her wishes and told the doctors to do everything they could
to keep her alive so that her family, who are all on the east coast, time to
get out here to Los Angeles. I felt that her mother had to have a chance to
say goodbye to her daughter, there was no way I was going to not allow that
to happen.

“She had several cardiac and pulmonary arrests, the last one very severe.
That was the day I had to insist that she be taken off life support. She
passed easily, opening her eyes and looking at everyone in the room and
squeezing the hands of those holding onto her and simply stopped breathing.
For the first time in months she looked peaceful. No more pain, hospitals,
doctors, needles, medication. It was simply time for her to rest. She had
told me many times over the last few months that she was tired of fighting
and being in constant pain, and that the only reason she was fighting and
staying with us was she was afraid to leave me alone. Her body started to
shut down after I held her for hours, telling her over and over that I love
her and if she wants to fight I’ll be right along side her all the way but
that I know she’s tired and that I’ll be OK if she wants to stop the battle.
I think I finally got through to her, convinced her that I’d be OK and
please not to stay in pain for me. I told her it’s OK to just let go, and
her body started to shut down – kidneys, etc.

“I hope she gets the long rest that she deserves so much. But my God, I miss
her so much my bones ache.

John Ross”

And here’s me feeling put upon for having to practice each day…

A week in the life of…

…yep, sorry evil harv, I’m just going to write about what I’ve been up to again… ;o)

Main event of the week was another recording session with Theo Travis – I’d invested in a few new studio toys (a pair of powered monitors which make mixing a lot easier, and a new mic for recording flute/percussion etc…) so the session was better than ever, with some rather groovy results. The album’s really coming along – we’ve got loads of recordings to choose from already, but are in no hurry to just release anything. We’ll keep recording until we get a full album of stuff we love with no fillers. It’s slightly different to the way I normally work, in that we’re allowing ourselves to edit some of what we do (on one of the tracks we recorded on Thursday I removed an entire solo that I’d played, cos it was a bit dull…) but what you end up with at any one time is still just the two of us playing and looping in real time, with no additional overdubs… Theo was playing Soprano Sax as well on this session, which added a lot to what we were doing. It is, I guarantee, going to be a stellar album.

Thursday night, Evil Harv, Jimbob (AKA Sarda) and a couple of other chums went down to the Kashmir Klub – possibly London’s most important music venue, in that it costs nowt to get in, no-one gets paid, but the quality of the acts on is (usually) very high, (I played there with Susan Enan once) with occasional high profile people there (Lewis Taylor played there a lot earlier this year, and I’ve seen Nick Kershaw, Imogen Heap, The Dum Dums, Nerina Pallot and Doctor Robert (from the Blow Monkeys) play there). Anyway, Thursday wasn’t a great line up (better than most acoustic nights around, but not really up to The Kashmir’s usual standard) so we went off for coffee instead. The sad news is that the Kashmir is closing, at least for a time – the guy who owns the venue is doing something else with it, and despite them filling it night after night, he’s kicking them out. They are looking for a new venue, but who knows how long that will be. Please visit the website, and if you can sign petitions, write letters or just offer moral support to Tony Moore who’s been running it for 5 years, please do. It’s a great club, he’s a great bloke and London needs it.

Today, Evil Harv and I went to the London Guitar Show, at Wembley Conference Centre. It was fun, though alongside the NAMM show, it feels a little small and parochial. As most of the people there hadn’t been to NAMM, it was fine (I remember loving shows like that when I was a kid), and it was great to catch up with some friends I’d not seen for a while – Nick Beggs was playing on the Bass Guitar Magazine stand, doing his rather fabulous stick thang. It was fun to see the rest of the guys from BGM too. I had a nice chat and a coffee with John East, who makes the U-Retro preamp that I’ve got in my 6 string fretless, and bumped into Svetlana, who used to teach at BassTech, and is now playing bass for Moby! Also saw the Ashdown people, Nick Owen from the Bass Centre, lovely Hoda who now works for SWR and The Bass Centre, and all manner of other people that I only ever see at trade shows!

Another bizarre coincidence – was chatting to Barry Moorhouse from the Bass Centre about wanting to do more support slots. ‘You know who you should support’ says Barry, ‘The 21st Century Schizoid Band!’ – ‘I already have’ says me, and as I’m saying it, up comes Jakko Jakszyk, guitars from the Schizoids. which was a lovely surprise, as I’ve not seen Jakko since I did the tour with the them at the tail end of last year… We caught up on news and then I came home.

soundtrack – yesterday was the St Luke’s May Fayre, so I’ve got the usual haul of CDs, though it’s rather fewer than some years… Right now I’m listening to Lucious Jackson, ‘Fever In Fever Out’, which is rather good. Yesterday it was John McLaughlin, ‘Que Alegria’, which is also rather good, if a little note-heavy in places. Theo leant me a marvellous album – Arild Andersen, ‘The Molde Concert’, feature Bill Frisell on guitar – gonna have to buy that one. And in the car I’ve had Talk Talk, ‘Laughing Stock’ on regular rotation. And of course, in between all that, lots of the duo stuff with Theo…

A gig, a wedding and some very sad news

So what’s been happening?

Well, friday night was a very fun gig. Remember Ragatal? Possibly not, but it was a quartet that I played with for a time a few years ago.. It was started by Jason Carter and Nick Beggs, along with Steve Bingham on Violin and Sanju Sahai on tabla. Shortly after that, Nick became too busy to continue for a while, and I took over, recording the one album that the group did – Fragments Of Grace – on ARC (it’s not bad, though I’d advise against getting the re-released version, titled Elements, as there were a load of additional percussion overdubs by Hossam Ramsay that don’t add anything to it, IMHO…) Anyway, Friday night was Steve Bingham’s birthday, and he had a gig to celebrate, including some ragatal tunes! What a treat it was – it was great fun to get back playing with all those guys, especially Sanju who is quite possibly the most outstanding musician I’ve ever sat on the same stage as.

Saturday was another fun day, and a fine friends reunited success story. About two years ago, I got in contact with an old school friend, Dawn, met up for a drink, and then she arranged a bigger get together of old chums. Andrew came to that one. He’d always fancied Dawn, and apparently the intervening 17 years hadn’t dampened his adour at all. fast forward 18 months, and yesterday I went to their wedding! What fun! It was a fine day, they both looked great, and everyone seemed to have a great time. It was fun meeting up with some other old school chums too…

On an altogether much different emotional plane, I got an email today from the husband of Rana Ross, a fine bassist and someone I’d met at the NAMM Show in LA and emailed ona few occasions, to say that she’d been in an ICU after a series of heart attacks, and they were switching the life support off. I can’t even imagine what he must be going through – even at this stage he was giving thanks for the time he’d had with her, and described himself as the luckiest man in the world. She was only in her 30s, was working on a new album, and had a whole life ahead of her. what a terrible story. There are various threads on the bass discussion groups around the web, if you want to post condolences to John…

So what’s coming up? More recording with Theo, who came round last week to listen to rough mixes of the duo stuff so far, which are sounding spiffing! And hopefully some more playing with Sanju very soon…

soundtrack – right now, I’m listening to ‘and nothing but the bass’ – was teaching one of the tunes to a student earlier and it’s stayed on. Before that, and most of the day yesterday, I was listening to Athlete, ‘Vehicles and Animals’, which is great – best new british band I’ve heard in quite a while. The gig last week was great, and the album lives up to expectations. Also been listening to more stuff on kvmr.

Normal Service Has Been Resumed

Apart from a slight residual sore throat, it seems life is back to normal… or maybe touring is normal, I’m just not used to normal yet…. who knows. Whichever, I’m settled back in at home. The last couple of days have involved a fair amount of teaching, some tidying, though not much, lots of cuddling the aged feline, who appears to have pretty refined taste in vegan food – mushroom pate, Quorn sausages and vegan bacon to be precise!! Today I’ve been sending out CD orders, which keep rolling in, reassuringly, then went down to the Gallery, originally to see Martin Peterson who makes the Sei basses, but he’s away, so I spent some time chatting to Alex, who now runs the shop there – very nice chap, who used to work at the Bass Centre. Nice to see that they’ve got a Lexicon MPX-G2 in the shop (the same effects processor that I use, in case you were wondering) – so if you’re looking for one, that’s the place to look!

My E-Bow has broken! I mean, it still works, but the catch on the battery compartment has gone, so I’ll have to keep the battery in place with an elastic band. What with that and my mobile phone, which has the battery gaffer taped in place, it’s a bit of a heath robinson life I lead…

It’s nice to be back playing a four string bass again – on the US tour, I borrowed a 6 string fretted bass from Modulus, and has my own 6 string fretless with me, so coming home and playing my four string is like picking up a toy – it’s so easy… and what’s more, I’ve been doing loads of tapping stuff since I got home – a technique I almost completely dropped about five years ago, but one that I’ve been showing to a couple of students recently, and which has been presenting some fun musical options… watch this space to see where that ends up!

Was reading ‘Further Along The Road Less Travelled’ by Scott Peck on the train, which is a fascinating book. Basically, it brings together psycotherapy and spirituality. Scott’s a christian, but arrived at where he is now on his journey via 20 very valuable years as a zen buddhist, and his zen thinking still informs much of his life and writing, leading to a fascinating take on where his training as a psychiatrist and his spirituality meet. Reading this follows on nicely from a great section in Frank Skinner’s Autobiography that the small person read to me the other day, where he talks about his Catholic faith, and a very very powerful experience he has at a Catholic church in Japan, which lead his to talk about the strangeness of being a person of faith in contemporary society, where most people cringe if you mention God, and also have a pretty skewed view of what it is to be a christian… I tend to avoid the label, for the most part, at least on first meeting people – primarily so that people’s experience of me will inform their thinking of what a christian is, rather than their misconceptions of what a christian is prejudicing them against me… This can be particularly a problem in the US, where much of what happens in the name of ‘the church’ is pretty seriously f-ed up, and where ‘christian’ is synonymous with a certain type of right-wing, republican, moral conservatism that doesn’t really reflect anything of what I perceive the life and teaching of Jesus to be about… always seemed a lot more radical than that to me… Anyway – the point being, it’s always interesting to read stuff -be it Scott Peck or Frank Skinner – by people who are struggling with the same questions about integrating faith and life that I, and just about every other ‘normal’ christian that I know is dealing with… It’s hard not to end up embarassed by the horse-shit that happens in the name of God – poor thing, She’s got the worst PR of anyone in history, and it’s our fault…

Er, where was I?? oh yes…

Soundtrack – been listening to Dave Pomeroy’s ‘Tomorrow Never Knows’ album – all bass and voice, very good indeed. Dave was playing at the NAMM Bass Bash, and was brilliant. Also been listening to Mike Watt, another guy who played at the Bass Bash – his CD, ‘Contemplating The Engine Room’ is stunning – like a punk Tom Waits. Great story telling, some amazing guitar playing from Nels Cline, and Mike’s bass and voice doing baritone duets with eachother. outstanding.

California pt 2

…So where were we? Oh yes, gig in San Luis Obispo. Dan and I arrived nice and early, parked up, called into the venue, and promptly got a parking ticket – shabby…

Then headed off to do a radio interview with the local college station, which was fun (it was a film show, so I talked about being influenced by soundtracks… hmmmn)

Had a bit of a look round SLO (great second hand book-shop just across the square from Z-Pie where we were playing!), the Rick and Andre arrived and we started setting up. Opening for us that evening was Hans Lindauer, who had more gear than any solo act not playing stadiums that I’ve ever seen! Rack and racks of stuff, two tables covered in modules and turntables… interesting set, but boy, I couldn’t carry all that stuff around.

Once again, the trio set was very interesting – smallish crowd, but they seemed to enjoy it a lot, which is always good. Sold a few CDs, and then headed off to stay with the Z-Pie owners…

Following day we headed for San Jose, but not before calling in in Santa Cruz to see Victor Wooten – he wasn’t at NAMM, but I’d interviewed him a while ago, and it was sort of on the way and we had time to kill so we dropped in to say hi before his clinic, and he rather kindly announced our Santa Cruz gig which was happening the saturday after…

Headed off to Gryphon Strings in Palo Alto, a lovely shop with a focus on acoustic instruments that has recently started doing bass stuff, including Ashdown amps. Good staff there. Spent about 5 mins playing an upright bass and nearly ruined my hands and arms for the rest of the tour!! Boy, those things are hard to play!

Anyway, the clinic was small, but they were attentive and seemed to enjoy it (can you see a pattern emmerging here???) sold a load of CDs, which was nice, and then went to see a bit of the gig that Andre and Rick were doing with Cara Quinn and John Wagner from Loopers Delight, which was just round the corner and went really well… Stayed that evening with Mark Wright of Accugroove Cabinets – a very nice chap.

Er where next? ah yes, San Jose Museum of Art – a return gig for Rick and I, lovely place to play. Dan and I spent a lot of the day visiting music stores, handing out flyers and him talking to guys about some of the companies he reps for. Then off to the venue. Another cool gig – lots of people there from the dude pit discussion list, which was great – it’s always fun talking to people face to face that I chat with online on a daily basis. So meeting Harley and Lowell and Bob Amstadt and the others that were there was very cool indeed. The trio set was again very cool indeed, solo stuff going down well too, starting to shift a few CDs…

25th (the next day) was a busy day – started out with four sessions at the Christian Guitarist Conference in Castro Valley – one on basic bass skills and advice, one on choosing the right gear, one on more advanced techniques (mainly chordal stuff) and finally a performance set – lots of fun. Dan and I then jumped into our little bass-mobile and headed of to Santa Cruz for the next trio gig. If any gig I do is likely to be full it’s a show with Rick Walker in Santa Cruz. I guess it may have helped that the mayor declared it to be ‘international live looping day’ (your guess is as good as mine!!) but we filled Cayuga Vault and had a fine, if very dissonant and scary set. All in all a fine gig, though there’s always the trade off with playing to a crowd of people who know what you do in that a lot of them already have your CDs… :o)

On the 26th we headed north, and I’ll pick up there tomorrow…

There's no place like home…

So, I’m home, safe and as sound as I’ll ever be… Jetlag got me bad though – this is the longest trip I’ve had to the states, and after four weeks over there, my body had adjusted rather well to the time difference, so now my body clock is screwed up. So I slept a bit yesterday afternoon, then went to bed at 12 last night, woke up at 5.30, awake til 8.15, then was asleep on and off til 6.30pm!!!! Am up again now, ploughing through email and trying to rebuild some semblace of a life… Fortunately I don’t start teaching again til next week, So I’ve got time to sort through the mountain of post and email… Fortunately both the small person and the aged feline seemed to recognise me when I arrived home, so nothing to drastic can have happened. Still haven’t unpacked yet though… need to get some washing done…

So what happened while I was in the states? Really sorry for not keeping this thing up to speed – hopefully next year I’ll have a lap top with me and will be more concientious (spelling, harv?).

Anyway – first up was the NAMM show – huge great music gear trade show – equal parts hideous schmooze-fest, and great chance to catch up with musical chums I’ve not seen in ages…

Good people I saw who I already knew – Peter Murray, Geoff Gould, the Modulus and Ashdown people, Ed Friedland, Lee Sklar, Joe Zon, Matt Garrison, Doug Wimbish, Michael Manring, David Torn, Doug Lunn, Vida Vierra, Steve Rabe, Steve and Jill Azola, Mike Tobias, Norm Stockton, Adrian Ashton, Dan Knowlton, Mark Wright, Frank Gambale, Rufus Philpot, Pete McCann, Mike Roe, Dave Pomeroy, Trip Wamsley, Lenny Jordon, Bill Leigh, Jamie Faletti, Dale Titus, Kerry Getz, Rick Turner, Clive Roberts, John Ferrante, Kim Flint, Richard Zvonar…

And Fine people I met for the first time – Elijah Torn, Will Calhoun, Daniella Sheppard, Derry Daugherty, Mike Dimin, Mike Watt, Kira Roessler, Charles Normal and Softcore (his band), Tedd Killian, Chris Tarry, Greg Heet, Dan and Laurie Schinder, Kevin Van Pamel… and lots more in both groups that I can’t remember in my near comatose jetlagged state…

Playing-wise, I was playing at the Ashdown Booth each day at 3pm, doing my solo stuff, and also hanging around a bit chatting to people there… Also played a little on the Modulus stand, with Leo Nobre and then with Bill Walker. Spent a lot of my time at the show just catching up with friends, putting the word around about the gigs and clinics, and checking out new stuff, of which there wasn’t all that much (though Ashdown did have a couple of gorgeous fake-suede bass cabs – very sexy indeed…)

Music at the show that was worth watching was pretty scarce – Ed Friedland was playing some great stuff at the Carvin Booth, and Michael Manring was doing his solo bass twiddling for Zon and SWR and astounding everyone as always. Bill Walker was making a fine noise at the Duncan-Turner Research booth, and that was Matt Garrison spent plenty of time playing at the Fodera booth, playing beautifully. That’s about all I saw…

Evenings were taken up with going to or playing gigs and eating dinner – Thursday was Frank Gambale at The Baked Potato (a bit of a NAMM ritual for me, catching Frank at least once during the weekend), Friday was the bass bash, organised by Dan Elliott who booked my tour, and acted as road manager for me. That was a great event – a few technical hitches (the venue wouldn’t let them start setting up the stage area til gone 7!), and the whole thing over-ran (bit of a NAMM tradition there…) but all in all it was a great night’s bassic entertainment – have a look at some of the pictures from the event at www.bassically.net. I did a couple of long solo numbers (No More Us And Them and MMFSOG) and the Michael Manring joined me for an improv thing that I’ve got on CD, so will hopefully post here before too long…

Anyway, Saturday night was dinner with David and Elijah Torn, Dani, Doug and Vida, and then Sunday was the first gig of the tour at Roccos in Hollywood.

The gig went really well, though the turnout was low (if everyone else was feeling the way I did after four days of NAMM, it’s not that surprising) – we didn’t start til late… musically, we had no idea how Rick Walker Andre LaFosse and I were going to gel, but the trio stuff turned out great. We all did solo sets (the running order was a bit of a shambles but it sort of worked out) then Michael Manring did some marvellous solo tunes, and all of us played together… The nicest thing about it was how inconspicuous the looping element of it all was – last time we did a loop tour, partly due to the limitations of the jamman, the looping defined the music in a very strong way. This time, with the extra subtleties available with the echoplex, we were able to loop in a music more transparent way – bringing loops in and out to allow ourselves to mutitrack, but without having to just build a loop then stop…

A couple of days off on Monday and Tuesday were spent visiting Ashdown, and Dan was chasing up last minute stuff for the tour (he worked really hard and did a great job…), then Wednesday we left SoCal and headed for San Luis Obispo for the second trio gig…

…and I’m going to stop there for a while, or my arms will fall off, or I’ll fall asleep, or my arms will fall off in my sleep, or something equally bad.

anyway, the rest of the story will follow ASAP…

No more NAMM

NAMM over for another year – it was insanely busy, evidenced by my not being able to get to a computer to blog.

oops, just been told I’ve got to get off the computer!! i’ll write more later… suffice to say, it all went well, the two gigs went very well, saw loads of friends, sold a load of CDs, and generally had a great time…

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