If you’re a Green Day fan like me, you were probably a little hesitant to hear the new record “21st Century Breakdown”. I mean come on, the previous release “American Idiot” was such a monumentally awesome album – It seemed a tough act to follow. In fact, I’d almost say it was so good that I’d give the band a “get out of jail free card” for the follow-up record. Even if they had released “American Idiot 2 – Electric Boogaloo” I’d probably be ok with it.
I’m a big Joe Satriani fan. In fact, most of the guitar players I know share some sort of appreciation for what he has done. Personally, “Satch” was one of the biggest influence on my playing while growing up. I spent countless hours, sitting in my bedroom, playing an old B.C. Rich over “Surfing With the Alien” and trying to make it sound like the recording. Needless to say, I’ve been playing for twenty years and still can’t do most of what he can. Joe is the man!
I was looking around at some of my old gear in my basement the other night, trying to figure out what I have and what I could probably stand to replace. I came across a really, really powerful Peavey Renown combo amp that I never use because it has blown speakers and suddenly found myself reasoning this way:
In a perfect world:
- The Peavey Renown is such a great, powerful, classic amp and I would LOVE to be able to use it. I always considered this the ultimate jam-space amp and was very welcome in my guitar gear.
But there is an issue:
The show in Manchester last night was a great time, thanks to all that came out! I felt the energy on the stage was the best yet. Normally I just hide in the shadows and focus on my guitar lines, but for some reason I really got into it and ended up taking over a lot of the stage. Maybe it was because we had a decent sound guy and I didn’t get frustrated with the crappy stage sound that usually plagues our Milly’s sets. What ever the reason, I loved it.
Ok, day two of me trying to actually use this blog thing and I’m already wondering what the hell I can talk about…
The only real item of interest today is that my band (Building James) is playing tonight at Milly’s Tavern in Manchester, NH. I’m actually really pumped about this show. We play around pretty regularly, but Milly’s is sort of our original “stomping grounds”. Every month or so we go back and tear the roof off that place. For those that are Building James “Milly’s Regulars”, you won’t want to miss this one – we have a little something special planned you all. ;)
Radio Paradise (internet radio station I really like) allows people to upload songs for consideration. If they get approved, they get added to the rotation. There are three steps in this process:
1 – The DJs give each submission a quick listen and decide if it’s even a possible match for their station. Most (they get hundreds a month) get a “sorry” at this step – meaning they declined the song.
2 – If the DJ approves the song, it gets added to list and played on a “listener review channel (LRC)” radio stream. Users rate the songs on this channel as either good or bad.
I have been a big fan of the band Ra since I first heard of them in the fall of 2000. Their first major release “From One” was a constant in my car stereo for at least a year. The guitar work is tight and heavy, and the riffs have those “hooks” that seem to get stuck in your head for a week. Some highlights off From One are “Do you call my name”, “Rectifier”, “Parole” and “Sky”. I highly recommend this record.
Any band can spend a week in the studio, recording take after take until they capture that perfect track. With today’s software, you can just about make anyone sound like a rock star – but give them a stage, a huge audience and a set of complex songs and you see just what sort of musicians they are – or more importantly, are not!
I’m a guitar player and have a basement full of antiquated gear. Most of the crap I play though has had beer spilled on it, been dropped, kicked, and generally abused. My guitars are beautiful, but the rest of my gear needs badly to be updated. This was brought home to me the other day when I went downstairs to play for a bit.
I’ve been pondering buying a new guitar amp for a while now. I currently use this old Crate Guitar Combo Amplifier that I bought off a friend like six years ago. It’s good and all, but the clean channels crackle and the effects are only fair. I want to begin recording some tracks in my basement and the sound from the Crate just isn’t what I am looking for. I’ve had it for years, driven it hard, and it owes me nothing. I guess it’s time to move on.