Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Day off, but a busy day nonetheless.

Last night ETB @ Friends was pretty dead. Thin crowd that built a little bit halfway thru and on, felt like we played well tho. Closed with a 3rd quick set of "Green Diamond II" and "Voodoo Child" and brought the fuckin house down. Man, those tunes felt good. Ah well, is what it is.

Been talking to Adrian Conner on email/text about doing some practice this week for the Adrian and the Sickness set on Sept 21 @ Headhunters for the HAAM benefit. Got 3 more tracks emailed, will be hitting the music hard next few days as this will be the only time I'll have before Europe w/Truckers. REALLY FUCKING STOKED. Nowadays I have so few opportunities to either play my own music or play for fun, and things like this are def worth the wait.

Speaking of HAAM, had a discounted eye/contact lens exam thru HAAM and picked up my prescriptions for Singulair (asthma) and Pro-Air rescue inhalers. 3 month supply for $3 each. Wow. The fact that the Adrian show is a HAAM benefit makes it even more worthwhile.

And speaking of bass strings, been using the D'addarios from the Truckers endorsement deal. So far so good. Seem to have a little more "grip" than the DR's I was using, which is good for finger picking but a little hard for sliding notes. Low E string is having sustain issues, but also just re-adjusted the truss rod for the heavier guage and maybe needs time to set. Had that problem before and turns out was just that particular string, changed them out and problem solved. Weird.

Saw yesterday a guy on Craigslist selling an Isovent cab like mine for a very very reasonable price. Will def try it out before I leave and grab it if my finances will allow. Probably cheaper to get another one than to re-speaker the one I have... Then I can sell that 4x10 I've been using and use the money to either fix the old Isovent or get a 2x15. Gear Gear Gear.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Yesterday was a roller coaster, what a ride.

Awoke in a foul mood after The Mother Truckers show Saturday, was one of those gigs where anything that could have gone wrong did. What should have been a heroes' homecoming was instead not so much, heh. Did our best to rally and think we did pretty good overall, but man. That was kinda painful, heh! Happens to the best of us.

So was in a dark mood really internalizing alot of shit when get word from my ex-wife that the buyer accepted the counter-offer on our house. WOO-HOO!!! Not a done deal yet, need to sign papers today and closing date set for Oct 7. But feels like the end is in sight, we can close this chapter of our lives and finally start a new one. Feels like I've been in limbo for almost a year, staying afloat but just barely. Can't afford to make necessary gear repairs because I need to eat as well.

Speaking of which, up since 9am and haven't eaten yet. About to head out to sign papers and maybe do some work on the house. And of course I feel pressed for time so am thinking of blowing off lunch now in addition to breakfast.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Almost threw up onstage last night but will get to that.

The Mother Truckers West Coast tour was GREAT!!! So many good shows, so many good people I saw or met along the way. Will try to start my recap today (maybe), never had consistent enough internet access on my laptop (or the TIME) to write it blow by blow so I'll have to go by my journals, pictures and what few intact memories I still have, heh.

Got back Sunday night. Being on tour is akin to time traveling. Like if astronauts flew around at the speed of light, time on Earth would have passed much more quickly than it would for those in the ship. Time passes different on the road, so many distractions: long drives, shows, loadins/loadouts, soundchecks, hotels, being in a different city or state every day. Sensory overload. Doesn't seem like you're gone that long, then BAM you come home and almost an entire month has passed. The angle of the sun is noticeably different, the yard is a jungle, the plants that are still alive are almost unrecognizeable. Crazy.

So got back into town and had to play the next night with ETB @ Friends. Good to be back. Only felt like I'd missed a weekend of playing with them rather than almost a month. Fell right back into place, tho did drop a few clams here and there, heh. Had a decent crowd after a slow start. Thought we were done after the second set, looking forward to going home as I was exhausted. Eric:"The club wants us to play a few more." Me: "Is that going to be reflected in our payout end-of-night? If not, I am going home." Eric: "Yes." Me: "Okay..." Played a few more and was pretty much on auto-pilot. So tired.

Photo courtesy Triniti Young

Tuesday went out to Valhalla (former Room 710) with Triniti Young, Tank from Ironclad/MOD/Mastery and his girl Lexi. Good times, and lots of good people out for a change. Last time I was there it was inexplicably all plaid shorts and Polo shirts. WTF?!? This time Jason (ex-710 soundman, Pong, etc) was working the door, Gian Ortiz (Amplified Heat), JT Drunk (Dixie Witch) and many other friends/family walking by or stopping in. Glad Red River hasn't completely gone away... yet, at least.

Myeself, Gian and Tank. Photo courtesy Triniti Young

So last night my near-vomiting incident:

ETB at Maggie Mae's. Arrive to set up around 8pm, rest of band onstage, sound guy not there yet. Set up, and turns out we will now be starting at 9:30 instead of 9 on Wednesdays. No big deal, wish I would have known that so I could have gotten there at 8:30, heh. Not sure when the soundguy showed up but he finally did. Start set at new later time, sounding good. Feeling strong.

Now there is this big industrial fan pointed at the stage so we don't sweat like women of ill-repute in a house of worship. Genius idea, especially since Maggie's is half-open air. Yeah, HOT. So playing and smoking a cig during "Green Diamond II", hair blowing around like Medusa. Find a point during the song to drop my ash, take another drag and feel a hair in my mouth. Can't tell which corner of my mouth it came in from, but I could feel it between my back molars (both pairs) and draped across the back of my tongue. Oh shit. Let's just say I have a finely tuned gag reflex. Turn towards my amp and paw at my face trying to find the hair, meanwhile I can still feel it grinding in my teeth and on my tongue. Start dry heaving, and finally spit a mouthful of saliva which thank the Gods of Rock contained the hair. Was able to continue the set without having covered my amp (or myself) in used Dos Equis.

So beginning second set, we start playing and realize the PA is not on. Nor is the soundguy present. Michael was able to run off stage and get most of the levels up before end of tune, but no monitors til the end of the set. Which is when that jackass of a soundman finally decided to return to his fucking post, for the last 2 songs. "Where the hell was he 45 minutes ago?!?" I asked all of my bandmates. So he did manage to finally get the monitors up, but then was doing all this horrible delay shit on Eric's voice and on Richard's rimshots on "Green Diamond II". What the fucking FUCK?!? Gestured to him to cut that shit out, which he did.

In 10 years of playing music in this city this new guy has been the worst soundman I've ever come across. Good thing he promptly disappeared after the show, as he would have gotten an earful from me at the least. Evidently Eric and the band have had to complain to him and about him 2 other times while I was gone. And that was maybe three shows total. So yeah. Still fuming about it. And I'm not being on a rockstar entitlement trip. If I disappeared for most of the second set, would I still get paid in full? Fuck no, yet I'm sure he did.

Bah. Mother Truckers tour recap coming soon.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Danny G - Ocean of Stars review!

Danny G - Ocean Of Stars
Reviewed By Andy "Dinger" Beresky (www.RiffRock.com)
Available Now
Self Released

So Stonerrock.com regular Danny G, (not to be confused with Kenny G) has taken up the challenge.

In response to the 2010 RPM Challenge, Danny has written, performed, and recorded an entire album's worth of material in a mere 28 days.

Is it the 2010 equivalent to Brant Byork's timeless Jalamanta? No, it's not. But it's certainly worth a listen, and perhaps a slab of your hard earned cash, because it's a very honest, expressive, and sincere album that has a lot to say considering that it's entirely instrumental. Danny performed all of the bass, drums, and guitar -- and while the guitar and bass are obviously his forte, he holds his own quite well on the kit, staying in the pocket and never overplaying. The basslines are deft and free flowing, but it's the guitar work that really brings this collection of basement jams to life. There's a fine sprinkling of clean and fuzzed out tones, a good balance of rhythm and lead guitar, and tasteful usage of effects plundered from the vintage vaults. The production is excellent for a home recording, and the performances, though rushed and hasty at times, have an admirable immediacy to their deliveries. It's not as single-minded as Karma To Burn in its instrumentalism, but there are definitely enough meaty riffs to sink your teeth into, and at 36 minutes, it doesn't overstay its welcome. Some of the effects and Southern inspired sections remind of middle era Alabama Thunderpussy, and that's never a bad thing.

If you're seriously into the whole "stoner rock" thing, then do yourself a favour and pick this up. It can easily follow up Jalamanta in a listening session, bong in hand, on a lazy Saturday afternoon. It's got that same mellow intensity, even if it's distinctively from Texas rather than Sky Valley.

Monday, August 9, 2010

1 Year Anniversary!

And I fuckin missed it yesterday...

On the road with The Mother Truckers right now, in Mill Valley CA on a day off. Will begin tour recap when I have wireless insternet for my laptop, will try to have pics ready to post as well. Shows in ABQ and PHX were great, been seeing some good friends I haven't seen in awhile, took a solo nature hike yesterday afternoon and it was amazing. Tour picks up in Santa Cruz I believe on Wednesday, will be home by Aug 22.

In the meantime, thank you all who've read this blog. It's been quite a ride for me this past year, and the ride ain't done yet. In fact it just sped up a notch. A Europe tour with the Truckers, a possible King's X tour, and a Truckers fall tour possibly following that. There will be much more to come, I hope y'all stick around to see what happens!

Thank you all,
Danny G

Monday, August 2, 2010

Doing the pre-tour shuffle all day today.

Getting my affairs in order, paying bills, stocking up on pet supplies, doing laundry, packing, etc etc etc. Woke around 5am with my brain doing backflips, thinking of things I needed to do and some other things on my mind. Was able to get back to sleep and slept hard, but been moving moving moving since getting back up.

Looking forward to this run of dates, will see some friends in the SW on the way out and California has always been kind to The Mother Truckers. Which is great as Josh and Teal are from the Bay Area, heh. Meeting at their place tomorrow 11am to ship out in the White Whale. Be back around Aug 22nd.

Rock on!

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Tis the season for dive-bombing crickets.

Guess all the summer rain has made the annual cricket population explosion kick in early this year. Been at least one flying around the stage at damn near every show for the past few weeks. Hell, when ETB played Sam's Burger Joint one stowed away in the front of my bass rack. Discovered it the next day when we did a private party for the company that made our stickers.

And Friday at Threadgill's was no exception cricket-wise. The Mother Truckers played the outside stage with the excellent Deadman opening. It was hands down the most amazing show I've played all year. Capacity crowd, 300+ people. All the usual cast of characters, friends and family as well. Was still sweltering at load-in time (8-ish), and the temp didn't drop much by the time we went on.

Over comped dinner talked business with Josh & Teal and Mark & Sarah Gonzales of M&S Artist Management, who are now our new management. I feel good about it, Mark and Sarah have been good friends to the band and been working their asses off. Now they will be devoting their full attention. Good to have people on our side, rather than a manager who every time we call to make a request or a suggestion are greeted with the reply "Well, what you need to understand..."

Deadman brought it and played a great set, very Drive-By Truckers with bluegrass and gospel-inspired harmonies. Teal got up to join in for a song and that really got the crowd going, and sounded amazing. Really good bunch of guys, the B3 and Leslie that Matt the keys player lugs around is always worth the trouble. Such an amazing-sounding combination of gear.

Deaman mobile pic courtesy Triniti Young

Place was packed and jumping by the time the Truckers took the stage, and it had not cooled off a single degree. 3 songs in and I was feeling a little dizzy and my pearlsnap so soaked in sweat I might as well have grabbed one out of the washing machine during the rinse cycle. But show must go on, did my best to pace myself for slower songs. Was having enough trouble trying to keep my bass dry, heh.

Josh and Teal seemed unaffected by the heat, jumping around and doing their thing. Had Matt from Deadman get up and play some keys on "Break Up Sex" and "Keep It Simple", the former sounded awesome and the latter literally brought the house down. Can only imagine what passers-by thought of the huge arena-rock roar that went up from the humble Threadgill's amphitheater. Fucking awesome!

Photos courtesy of Kristy Duff Wallace

For the grand finale we had most of Deadman get up to join us in "The Chain" by Fleetwood Mac followed by "Everyday People" by Sly & the Family Stone. No preparation or rehearsal, had discussed with the Deadman guys the week before and never heard back really. Talked to them before their set and they were all for it so we made some rudimentary mental notes and just went for it onstage. And it was awesome! Good times with great people in front of a great crowd. I love my job! And the crowd was not done with us yet, chants of "Oi! Oi! Oi!" went up so we had no choice but to rip their heads off with our countrified version of "TNT" by AC/DC, with Matt getting up to lay some B3 solos. Awesome!

Pics courtesy of JB the Superfan

Good times with great people!

We leave Tuesday for the West Coast, really looking forward to heading back to California. Not only had a great send-off show, but also the great news that Little Steven's Underground Garage has picked "Summer of Love" off the new disc for the Coolest Song in the World for week of Aug 6th! Not only that but Sirius Radio picked 4 songs total to add to their playlists. Bring it on!!!