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Posts posted by TomFoolery

  1. I ski mostly back-country. I don't wear a helmet when I'm touring. Its a pain in the ass to carry and keep dry in the backpack on ascents. You have to grab shit out of your pack all the time while climbing, so its totally in the way.

    Cat-skiing, snowmobile, and ski hill days. 100% helmet wearing. My helmet is super comfy and I don't trust other skiers.

  2. Last night was the first time I had the privilege to see Garaj Mahal since they opened for Karl Denson at the Commodore many years ago. It was worth the wait.

    The Spirit Bar in Nelson is a fairly small venue - similar(ish) to Maverick's or PJC. There was a pretty decent crowd, but I'm a bit shocked that the place was not packed. That's a Sunday night in a dance club town, I guess.

    The show stumbled a little in the beginning. Haque's rig was acting up and there were a few issues with the house system. Despite the problems, they still layed it down. These guys have an interesting way of warming up - they just give'r.

    You could see that Haque was a bit choked. His sound was constantly giving him grief through the show. And, some wasted dude decided he was going to be the band's personal server and kept climbing all over the stage to bring them drinks and bumping into them all while they were playing. All the same, the man is an animal on the guitar. Once they got into the second set and hit their groove, he really proved what he's all about.

    Kai Eckhardt is the man. He sits back to give space where its needed. Lays on killer funk lines with unthinkable rhythms. And, dances the scales at unreal speed. I kept finding myself fixated on him no matter what insanity was coming out of the rest of the band.

    The first time I saw these guys I was so floored with Haque and Eckhardt that I hardly noticed Eric Levy. Last night he grabbed a bit more attention with some of the crazy shit he pulled out. His soloing is pretty out of hand, but the sounds he's using now make for some incredible texture.

    I was a bit disappointed when I learned that Alan Hertz had left the band. However, the new guy is filling those shoes pretty damned well. Its impossible to say that losing Alan Hertz is a good thing. Given that he's gone, though, Sean Rickman makes for good changes to GM. As you'd expect he's an utterly mind-blowing drummer, but he also has a great voice and is bringing a new vocal focus to (some of) the music. During the first set, Rickman led the band through a very cool version of the Police's When the World is Running Down.

    Ottawa/Toronto/Hamilton - get ready. And, someone make sure there's some ganja around. I met Haque as I was coming into the venue. As he was heading to the stage, he was complaining to the promoter that there had been no smoke around...

  3. Its the backbone of the tune.

    Drummers give you accents and dynamics. Guitars give you the flavours and ass-kickin's.

    But the bass lays down the vibe.

    I had only played bass a handful of times over about fourteen years. Then, my brother brought me his (BC Rico Eagle) as it was sitting in a basement not being used. Now I'm gigging with two bands and can't get enough of it.

    My neighbour plays like Jaco and has agreed to take me on as his student. Pretty stoked to start developing a bit better technique.

    Buying into the technology will take a financial miracle...

    I have the Zoom B3 which lets me dick around with presets, but I fully see the limitations of the system. I bought it so I could practice with the pre-amp run into headphones then I was given the Cube 60.

  4. Wow. I really need to get my bass-geek on.

    I play an old cube 60 through a Zoom B3 and think it kicks ass.

    Ha ha ha ha ha.

    I only understood a tiny fraction of this discussion, but I've found it somewhat insightful all the same.

  5. So, Saturday morning I checked my email to see that a good friend was heading to Ymir BC to see David Grisman. I hadn't heard a thing about it.

    I emailed for tix and was told there'd be a pair waiting a will-call.

    My dad bought me a mandolin for my birthday ten years ago. The same day, he gave me a copy of Doc and Dawg. I spent about a year trying to learn the opening four bars of music. I have spent the last 9 lamenting the fact that I would probably never get to see Grisman play live.

    Needless to say, when I got word he was playing two hours down the road - I hit it.

    What a day. We headed down around three in the aft. Caught a couple of opening bands. John Reischman being the afternoon highlight. Reischman had a woman playing upright and singing the lead - holy smokes what talent! Traditional bluegrass arrangements of original material - great stuff.

    Grisman hit the stage around 8pm and played two sets of some of the most smokin' music I've heard in a long while.

    As a tribute to Jerry, Dawg and his son played an upright bass / mandolin duet of Dawg's Waltz. This almost brought tears to my eyes, it was such a powerful moment in the show. They followed this with Old and In the Way.

    The show continued on with the band doing a retrospective of sorts spanning the history of bluegrass music and demonstrating some of the stylistic changes that have occured while blowing the crowd's mind with their virtuosity.

    It should be noted that while the entire band is UNBELIEVABLE, the guitar player, Jim Nunally, played two full sets with Reischman then followed up with two more smokin' full-bore bluegrass ballztothewall mad sets with the Dawg. The guy was warming his hands over the stage lights during his second set with the Jaybirds. It was pretty cold out when the sun went down - but this guy just got better and better the colder it got.

    Anyway, they came back out for their encore and just couldn't stop. They played a mind-blowing four song encore (Shady Grove in there, of course) and left the crowd howling.

    Anyone getting close to Grisman shows should not miss the chance.

  6. My nugget of info would be to encourage her to try out as many guitars in that range as possible. Then she will come to terms with what you both know...

    If you can find a guitar that holds tune and has relatively decent intonation for $300 - take it. Doesn't matter what brand or model it is.

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