Busy Weekend: Five Calls in Four Days

Discussion in 'Bass Humor & Gig Stories [BG]' started by kjones, May 12, 2016.

  1. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004
    Well, in the spirit of our gig reporting leader, I'm going to try to give a taste of the crazy weekend that has already started for me. In the studio this (Thursday) evening, a musical Friday and Sunday, my originals band Saturday evening, and my worship group Sunday morning. I'm going to try to post some pictures from each of these, along with some description of how things go. Hope you all enjoy!
  2. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004
    Tonight, I went into a local studio to record a song with my originals group, the Greg Lunz Band. The song I worked on tonight was "Element," which will be on the new album. Greg already has an album available everywhere including iTunes, under the name Gregson Lunz. He's a great guy who is a superior singer and writes some cool tunes. I'm really privileged to be a part of his band.

    Going in tonight, the drum track was already done and we also had a click, and scratch vocals and acoustic guitar for me to listen to. This was a song we're going to be playing live on Saturday, so I've had some time to play it before on a number of occasions, and it was just a matter of trying to get it as nearly perfect as I could.

    I live halfway between the city of Baltimore and the Pennsylvania line, and the studio is in Anne Arundel County, on the south side of Baltimore City. I decided with the help of my maps app to go straight through the city rather than around the Beltway because of normal workday backups. Fortunately, I didn't have to go through any shooting or other untoward activity. I did get a chance to go by Ravens Stadium on my way (properly known as M&T Bank Stadium).


    I got to the studio in reasonable time. I got a chance to BS a little bit with Tony, the Engineer, and a great player in his own right. He had this amazing collection of guitars, basses, mikes, and drums, including a beautiful 1972 black Jazz that he bought new. It was in gorgeous shape and sounded fantastic. He also had a cool Fender Rumble 100, which I had never seen before much less played through. It had a great variety of tones and was super light. I did not play through, but did bow before his original SVT, also purchased new back in about 1974.

    Here are some more of the amps he had around the studio IMG_1136.jpg

    After Greg showed up, it was down to business. I tuned up, warmed up, and took a couple passes through the song.


    Besides my PJ, I was using my Sadowsky SA200 head through my relatively new Bergantino HDN 112. I was looking for a warm round tube tone, and that's exactly what I got. We were going to both mike the cabinet and take the DI out of the back of the head, but the engineer loved the live sound so much, we just used the mike. Not sure what type he used, but I know it was a ribbon of some sort.


    Here's a closer look at just the head:


    And here's a picture of the guys doing their magic:


    I have a lot more pictures of me they took, but I'm not going to inflict that on anybody!

    Got done pretty quickly with a couple full takes and a few punches. All in all, I was very pleased with how it came out, and the guys seemed happy as well (and as Greg is carrying the freight, that's what matters!) Got in the car for the drive home, and the Orioles went from 5-0 all the way back to a win, so a great ending to a fun evening (sorry, any Michiganders out there).

    Time to hit the hay and get ready for the musical tomorrow. Thanks for watching the thread!
  3. Wow pro stuff going on -excellent pics Kjones.
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  4. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004
    Thank you! I can't speak to the pro level of the playing but it sure was a great professional atmosphere to play music in. They made it very easy to get my job done and Tony really listened to my thoughts about how I wanted the bass to sound. Can't wait to hear the final mix. Doesn't hurt that he's a bass player (as well about a half dozen other instruments).

    It's certainly a different way of doing things. I've been used to going in with a whole band, putting down maybe bass, drums, and rhythm guitar all at once with the rest scratch, then the other people putting thing on one track at a time. IMO neither method is better or worse, just different.
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  5. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004
    Day 2 of this gig stretch.

    Tonight, I played in Third Wall Productions' performance of "13-The Musical." For those who never heard of it (don't feel bad, I hadn't either until I was asked to play it), it's a rock musical that played for several months on Broadway about eight years ago or so. Arianna Grande apparently happened to be in it. It's about a 13 year old boy from Manhattan whose parents split up, and he moves with his mom to Indiana, where there's some culture shock for him as he heads towards having his Bar Mitzvah, something none of his friends have ever heard of.

    Although it's a "rock musical," it has all the typical musical stuff like lots of time and key changes, like the typical song where I play the same riff in literally four different keys. It's almost like Circle of Fifths practice that my instructor makes me do. Thanks Ariane!

    Anyway, enough backstory, on to the performance. Tonight, because I wanted a little more cut to get through the drums and two guitar players (and a keyboard player), I used my B|Amp with the HDN 210. The strings were fairly new on this, so I set the tweeter flat (not off, flat). EQ adjustments were Bass +1, Lo-mid +2, Hi-mid +1, and Treble 0.


    Again, playing my PJ because I wanted the ability to get some nice Precision sound when necessary. Here I am warming up before anything started.


    The pit was a nice mix of young guys and older guys, and unfortunately these days, I number among the latter! A couple guys with degrees in Music Performance, a music teacher, a couple older guys who have been around the barn a few times and have played a gig or two.


    Music Director already has his degree and is a semester away from a Masters of Music in Conducting.


    I would estimate the crowd as being about 100 or so. There were enough people there that they had to put in extra seats right in front of the band. I guess that was a good news/bad news thing for those people. My advice: come earlier!!!!! In all seriousness, everybody did a pretty good job of keeping their volumes where they should be. Gotta specially give credit to the drummer who had so much touch he absolutely did NOT need a baffle. Very nice young man, good drummer, and his reading was fantastic.


    Interesting that you can see the corner of my iPad in the lower left corner of this picture. I scanned the entire score into ForScore, and used the Cicada Bluetooth foot pedal, which works perfectly for my purposes.

    A few more gear pics. Here's the tube amp used by the second guitar player:


    Here's both of the guitar players' gorgeous guitars, with the Guitar One's amp in the background.


    Great crowd, nicely responsive, and a lot of fun. Enjoyable gig.
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  6. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004
    Day 3, the Saga Continues!

    Tonight, the Greg Lunz Band played at Harvey's in Essex, MD. Details for the GLB are listed above in the "studio" section.

    The crowd at Harvey's was nice in size and in demeanor. They obviously were there to listen to music as there was applause at the appropriate times and not a lot of conversation while we were playing. And no, it's not because we drowned them out!


    The band had a little bit of food and some soft drinks before the show. On the left is Crash, our great guitar player, and on the right is Steve our drummer, a guy with incredible time.


    Here's Greg and Tony in the foreground (see studio entry), respectively the singer/songwriter and lap steel player tonight.


    Here's a view from the stage out from behind my microphone.


    Greg smiles for the camera while the rest of us set up.


    The band at work.


    One more.


    It's always good to play with these guys with their great songs, high level of musicianship and attention to detail. Now, though, it's off to bed to rest up for the double on Sunday.
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  7. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004
    Day 4 has come to a close. Whew!

    So, we started Sunday with our Worship Group, as we always do. First, let me show the rig I use in church. Note that everybody goes through the FOH except for me (so far). Here's my Sadowsky SA200 head (see recording entry above) with the Sadowsky 410 cabinet, made by Bergantino.


    We come in to rehearse Sunday mornings at 1100 (we also rehearse Wednesday evenings), then play for more than an hour. There's a sufficient number of people in the band that when, necessarily, a few people can't make it, we have enough to cover. Today we were missing our violin player and our acoustic guitar player, but it went well nonetheless.

    Here we are setting up.


    Here's our clarinet player, Tony. He's kind of amazing, as he is playing from "C" books and does all his transposition on the fly, no matter how hard the song. Very impressive.


    My son's drum kit, with his mix and match cymbals!


    This is our worship leader, Katie. She has a beautiful trained voice, and has a degree in Music Performance. She's a great herder of cats and doesn't mind an old guy kicking in some ideas once in a while. She really gets the most from the group's talents.


    Here's Tom, our electric guitar player. Nice player and an even nicer guy.


    And here's our main guy singer, Dino. Very nice range and can cover tenor down to the bass register. He loves when I mimic the bass voice parts, saying it makes his job easier!


    This is my viewpoint across the band, looking for cues from Katie. You can see my son drumming in the foreground, and two of our singers, Patty on the left, and Bernadette just peaking out in the middle.


    After about two hours in church, I left there and went tearing across town to do the musical's Sunday matinee. I made it with just a little bit of time to spare. Not going to repeat the pictures of the same subjects from Friday, but one change today was that the lovely Eliza (vocal trainer for the show), sat in for Will on piano. Dave is on the left, and Andrew, the Music Director, is looking through his notes just before the show is about to begin.


    One last picture: Here's the director onstage telling the customers what shows to expect in the near future. I'm hoping I have tons of regular work coming with these guys; they're both very generous and also a blast to work with.


    The show went great, and the cast definitely had improved from Friday. I'm looking forward to how much better they get next week.

    Wow, great weekend. Time to relax a bit, kick back, have a Coke, and read some TalkBass.

    Thanks for taking a look at the thread! Hope to see all your gigs soon!
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  8. trailer

    trailer Thumper Supporting Member

    Jan 18, 2008
    Guntersville, Al.
    Impressive amount of gear pr0n in this thread! Looks like it was great weekend. Good on ya!
    kjones likes this.
  9. BassCliff


    May 17, 2012
    So. Cal.

    I love playing gigs where I get to read real music. Thanks for sharing!

    Thank you for your indulgence,

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  10. kjones


    Dec 4, 2004

    It's a blast when you go from about 40 measures of Bmajor then switch to Dflat for a verse then some A.

    Gotta pay attention and remember where you are! It's challenging, but that's part of what makes it fun.

    The collaboration aspect of musicals is a lot of fun too when you and a number of musicians are working together with 25 actors and sound people, lighting people, etc. all to make a good musical experience for people.

    That's one of the things I love about music. A 50 person experience can be challenging and beautiful, and a singer and I sharing a mike doing very intimate songs is challenging and beautiful in a completely different way.
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