Fame Studios, Muscle Shoals.

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Just got back from a really cool road trip.  Long drive to AL, but did some really interesting things.

Got a private tour of Fame Studios by the founder, Rick Hall.  Spent about two hours with him and my two friends in his office.  Unbelievable the amount of artists that recorded there and how much music came out of the area.  Met several of the Swampers who recorded with Aretha Franklin, Wilson Pickett, the Rolling Stones, among many others.  Really cool, down to earth and humble considering the kind of things they’ve done.

Saw the Muscle Shoals documentary.  Great film.  Great cinematography.  Half the people in the film were seated at tables around me.  Many of them played in a concert afterwards.  Everyone there was so nice too.

Just one of those opportunities that I feel very fortunate to have had.

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Road trip…

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Don’t know if you’ve heard about this new documentary about the legendary music of Muscle Shoals yet.  It was just shown at Sundance with good reviews. Most of you who read my nonsense know that I rarely post anything but my own pics, but I’ll make an exception, as this is relevant to my next week.

So, a road trip…

Got a call last week from a friend who asked me if I wanted to go to the premier of this documentary, in Muscle Shoals AL, next Wednesday.  Had tickets to the VIP party, movie premier and concert.  Um… Yes!  This is right up my alley.  Just needed to re-arrange my schedule a bit, book a room and load up my iphone for 13 hours of driving music.

Should be fun…

Stereo cabinet for the shop

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Made a quick plywood cabinet for my shop to house my stereo. Finished assembling the other morning. Walnut frames and polycarbonate sheeting for the doors. Excited to have my turntable hooked back up. I even disassembled cleaned the pots on … Continue reading

My brush with a Hauser Sr.

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While I’ve been posting about guitar stuff…

Since I’ve been attempting to play and hopefully make a classical guitar, I’ve been searching for this picture. My friend had a copy he just sent me. I haven’t seen this pic in at least 9 years.

If you believe it, I’m holding a 1939 Hermann Hauser Sr. guitar. It was a 38 or 39, I can’t remember specifically. Look at the figure on that top!

This was on a trip to Germany in March 2002. I’d been there a couple times with my good friend Paul who taught music composition at a university there for a few years. He made a lot of good friends there, mostly musicians. That year our friend Barthold took us to visit his friend. What a house! He owned several Mercedes dealerships, had a doctorate in art of some sort, and was a great musician. It was low key, just a few people having some drinks. After a house tour, he started pulling guitars out of a room and playing them. I was milling around looking at all the art and antiques he had. The 3rd guitar or so, I noticed a huge difference that made me stop and go check out his playing. The sound just filled the room, I had never heard anything like it. Well it was this guitar. After he stopped playing, he told us about the guitar and the crazy story of how he got it. To make it short he had a few Hausers he bought and sold before he found the year he wanted.

I was a bass player, not a guitar player (guess I still am). But I remember it vividly. Wish I knew more about guitars back then to really appreciate what he had. But maybe if I did, I wouldn’t have asked to see it. Probably the finest instrument I will ever hold (definitely the most expensive).

Another weird guitar coincidence, two years ago I went back to Germany for the first time since 2002. This time stayed with another friend Peter who lives in a small village out in the country. Walked a couple doors up the street and saw a workshop in his neighbors window. Next time we were outside Peter introduced me to his neighbor, who builds guitars. It was Michel Brück, who turns out to be a fairly well known classical guitar builder.

Sometimes I just have to shake my head… I don’t know if its luck or what. But I am certainly grateful for all of the things that have come my way.

Music room updated and painted

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Before and after of my music room… I could call it a studio, but I really don’t have any recording gear.  Not sure what I was thinking with the red a few years ago, it was horrible.  Anyway, its much … Continue reading

First gig on electric bass in about 6 years???

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Played a rock gig on electric bass last night. First time in about 6 years. Had a 30 minute set of 5 originals and one cover. Sang one tune, only my second time singing in public. Practiced 3 times in the last 2 weeks. I was worried how it would turn out after just learning the tunes at the first rehearsal.
It went fairly well. Can’t complain. It was fun. I bet we could kick ass with regular practice. Guess we should work on that.