July 9, 2013
bass rig at eton
pedal board & FAN!
mtn dukes had a blast this past weekend at the Eton House on the Danforth in Toronto! a set of mostly oldies followed by 2 sets of our faves from all decades. dig the setup there & the staff are top notch! no way were we gonna drip crazy sweat onstage again so we brought a fan that helped (somewhat… haha). we only managed to unplug ourselves twice during the night and got annoyed at the pedalboard once. pretty much par for the course!
farmers market setup!
so we followed up a gig night with an early morning rise to play a farmers market with the Hayley Carro band. despite our lack of sleep, it was a blast playing rootsy acoustic rock/country material in front of a mixed audience of young & old alike. we also got to bust out the cajon & gave the cowbell some good kicks! we love mixing up bass & percussion! playing some tunes only bass, some only percussion, & some both is fantastic fun!
cajon gets out & aboot!
totally dig how we managed to figure out a mic setup that works for the cajon! knew that briefcase would come in handy for more than just carrying gear to gigs one day! feels like us & the briefcase have a new understanding of each other… after all these years! it was a great day of tunes & we met a heap of ppl that were the hilight of our week! thx to all for stopping, saying hi & groovin’ with us!
audience busting out moves!
June 17, 2013
Well, its been 2 months since we blogged. That means we’ve been busy, busy, busy! Lets effort some blog fun this week!
Mtn Dukes keep rollin’ along. Adding new songs, playing a show every month, trying to squeeze in a weekly jam. The fun never ends! We recently played a HOT night with Dirty Rumours at Rancho Relaxo that has to be in the top 3 of hottest gigs ever for us! The bar had 2 AC units that only blew “coolish” air at the bar & not at the stage. The stage was sweltering! It took us most of a week to recover & get back to norm. We also had bass issues that night…
Since we bought the telebass, it had always had a loose cup. The “cup” is what holds the input jack in place. Sounds purty important and as we have discovered, it has a known design flaw on the new high end Fenders. It always gets loose! They opted to go for looks over practicality! We had been just finger tightening it whenever it felt a wee bit too loose. Maybe that was or wasn’t the right thing to do in hindsight. As it turns out, during the Rancho show, we picked up the telebass for set2 & went to plug in when everything holding the input jack fell out! Of course the show went on. No high leg kicks for set2 as we had to tape the cord into the input jack & then stay in a relatively still position to keep the connection going. Any movement & we’d lose it! So after jumpin our way thru a sweat filled set1, set2 was the most we’d ever NOT moved onstage. Talk about 2 sides of a coin!
new telebass input!
So we brought telebass into the shop for a fix. A new input jack holder was only $10 and about $20 in mechanic fees. Well worth the investment! So what if it doesn’t have the vintage look? Its just the jack & we’d rather have it working & reliable then lookin’ “vintage“.
Mtn Dukes next show is Saturday, July 6 at the Eton House. New tunes & some leg kicks on tap all night long! Be there!
April 18, 2013
WOW! our annual bday bash, Skipapalooza was a hoot! every year, it just keeps getting better on both the music side of things and the personal side. twas great to see soooo many familiar faces and play the night with the likes of our acoustic duo, Raised on Promises and rawk out with the mtn dukes! the special guests from Luke Dukes Dad to the reunion of our powerpop band, Blenderhead were crazy good! the melding of RoP and the Dukes for a few tunes was a sonic delight to behold and we even played a song solo by request. that never happens! the cupcake cake was a great idea too AND no plates or utensils required!
our thx to our hosts, OnCue for letting the night happen. also thx to Mad Mal for attending and bloggin’ about it! plans are already underway to have it again there next year. here’s how the night ended with some very tired mtn dukes…
looking ahead, we recently had to turn down an opportunity to join with a highly active band to keep doing what we love. which is playing the bass for fun and good times. twas a tough choice as the lure of decent $$$ had us thinking hard about it but in the end, we would have had to drop a few of the bass related fun we already have on our plate. speaking of which, here’s whats up for the next while:
- mtn dukes plan on a show every other month (a late May show perhaps and july 6th at eton house on the danforth is confirmed as next) AND to record some our songs live off the floor in order to get more gigs. more new tunes also in the mix as the dukes continue to fine tune a night of sonic goodness!
- raised on promises has a show tomorrow night in Barrie at the Local Gastropub. we also have a June date there as well. we hope to keep up the pace of a night there every other month moving fwd. so much fun to play a whole night as a duo and interact with the folk there in such a laid back setting!
- been casually jamming some 80’s alternative tunes with some locals. we may end up playing a house party here, a bbq there or maybe not at all. its all about the fun right now. 80’s tunes can be a hoot to play. as a bonus, so far we’ve stayed away from any serious 80’s cheese too!
- and speaking of good fun, we’ve recently joined the Jon Abrams Band to play a few festivals this summer/fall and hopefully beyond. getting our country on lately has been more fun than we first imagined! PLUS there are orgs in the mix. we’ve blogged often about our continued desire to play orgs and not covers all the time. this seems like the perfect way to do both as the sets are a good mix.
more bass news to come. hoping to buy a pbass in the next month or so stay “tuned” for that. we had to say goodbye to our SG as we weren’t playing it at all anymore and pbass is the direction we are heading. we are REALLY enjoying our telebass right now. also, expect a post about learning country songs at some point too. until then, thanks for dropping by!
April 9, 2013
so much to catch up on!
but first we gotta mention that our yearly bday celebration is this coming Saturday, April 13th at OnCue (349 Jane St) in Toronto!
mtn dukes are the main musical source with a sprinkling of Raised on Promises and some surprises. lotsa pool tables, Toronto’s BEST perogies, bevvy’s and YOU! it gonna be a hoot! party starts once the Leafs game ends and goes til close. lots of songs both new and old on the agenda. can’t wait!
January 29, 2013
happy. stoked. elated. when it rains, it pours show announcements!
first off, the mtn dukes return to Eton House for a night on Friday, March 1st. new songs will be in the spotlight as we inch along to a 40 song setlist. this poster nicely sums up what happened last visit!
and the BIG NEWS is that skipapalooza 3 has been finalized! this year we are taking the party from Newmarket (where our old band was based) and into the epicentre of entertainment, Queen St. West in Toronto! thx to The Sister for stepping up to the plate to host the hootenanny. we’ve had the pleasure of playing there a few times but none since the renos. lookin’ forward to 2 sets from the mtn dukes & then dancing the night away with celtic stylin’s of The Saints Are Coming! more posts on skipapalooza as the date nears. just today it feels great to have the event locked down & now we can just prep the fun stuff like… tunes!
January 14, 2013
time to do some catching up!
the Mightabins show late December was a great honour to be a part of. we miss playing original music to ppl & with ppl who play & appreciate the same… if that makes any sense. Mightabins in true Ramonesque style laid down 13 blistering songs in 30 mins flat. great venue at the Hard Luck & all the other bands on the bill impressed. for something thrown together last minute during a busy holidazed period, t’was nice to see it work out in the end!
mtn dukes are rawkin’ & a rollin’. fresh off our first ever all nighter (ie: a full nite of mtn dukes) even thou we did have an interlude featuring some very special Unlikely Guests. the night had its peaks & valleys but “the good” far outweighed “the bad” & rumours are that we will be back again sometime very soon to Eton House. mucho thx to every1 who came out & danced the night away with us! great learning experience for us as a band. onwards & upwards! here’s the setlists from this historic event!
had the pleasure of hitting a few open mic/jams over the past weekend with some free time on our hands. invaluable experiences to play with & see some different artists. fun times & a great learning experience.
next show is with Raised on Promises, our acoustic duo. the show is at The Local Gastropub in Barrie the first weekend of February. if our recent jams are any indication, it will be a stompy, singalong hootenanny! new songs & some tighter arrangements will make this a very memorable event!
gear wise, we’ve finally found the sweet spot between our little mark bass head & the telebass. the magical moment happened sometime during the 2nd set of songs during the last mtn dukes show. we kept tweaking & tweaking & tweaking til we got it right. likely something we should have done at home but now at least we found it, memorized it & it’ll be ready next time. load off our minds indeed! the other funny thing was that for the first time ever, our head kept moving on the cab as we were playing. its soo light! we kept having to readjust its position after every song as it was close to falling off. that was until we got fed up & just put the darn thing on the floor. gotta think of a better solution! open to suggestions here. hint, hint
one day we’ll likely jot down a post about exercise. for now, lets just say we have a snow addiction. its tough to balance that with everything else when the snow is only here for a short while. with that in mind, we gotta go. the outdoors is calling! thx fer dropping in!
December 20, 2012
mtn dukes 1st ever all nighter FRI JAN 11th in Toronto! Eton House-710 Danforth Ave! 3 sets! Pool! New Tunes! Special Guests! New Gear! Brews! and YOU!
December 11, 2012
its been far too long THAA blog! but we’ve been ever so busy! lets get bassploit rolling!
- recently, our association with Those Handsome Hooligans came to a crashing halt. ah, such is life as the lowly low end guy. “true bandmates do not judge each other, they just judge other bands.” could never be a more apt quote. we wish them nothing but the best moving fwd.
- mtn dukes played a last minute show mid November at OnCue that was a thrilling success! much thx to every1 that showed & our acoustic duo, RoP even opened the night again. both acts debuted new material so the hurried nature of putting the show together with some new tunes made for an exciting 10 days in the lead up! a defo hilite was a blazing version of Rockin’ in the Free World with super special guest Sarogunslinger! it was an hair raising epic will we never EVER forget! mtn dukes rumours persist of a big show in Toronto this winter with a slew of new material & some of the audio from our Dukebut back in Oct. may get posted online soon. stay tuned for news on that!
- our new fender telebass continues to impress. back from a recent vacay where we went 10 days without touching her so we thought our opinion might have changed in that time but it only made us fall for her more. we think we’ll call her “victoria“. she’s a keeper in our books!
- we’ve resumed jamming with loudest band we’ve ever jammed with… The Mightabins with a Dec 28th reunion show at Hard Luck Bar in the offing. as of writing this post, the show is a go but anything can happen. we are still looking for another band to join the bill so if u are a local punky/garage band check out this posting and apply within! can’t wait for this show so fingers crossed its a hey ho, lets go!
- the search continues for some1 to play mostly orgs with. a cool duo, trio or full band. boo for no news! hope springs onwards!
- finally, got some cool pics from anna laxton photography. she had seen us at a few shows & rehearsals over the early part of the year. HIGHLY RECOMMENDED band photographer! we are a hard person to get a good pic of since we groove alot & she still managed! 🙂 such an awesome treat to get some pics!
September 30, 2012
is that really the mtn dukes?
a day later & our ears still can’t believe the mtn dukes did their Dukebut! it was AWESOME! a mere 2 sets worth of favourites spanning the decades all done with a subtle sprinkling of dukealicious spice! it was great to finally get the opp to perform with the dukes & get some of these songs out there.
mucho thx to Bruce Hooligan for opening the show for us with a sweet set of acoustic songs with yours truly on the bass. T’was super memorable to have him also do a laid back version of “the waiting” with us. we will ever never forget that! as well, Ben was great singing an entire song with the mtn dukes and a HUGE THANKS 2 every1 who showed up. t’was nice to see some new/old faces so we were on cloud 9 the entire night! OnCue was a sweet choice of venue to have our Dukebut. new renos have made the space more band/fan friendly. the bar is now more in the middle of the venue and there’s a HUGE tv there. still tons of pool tables & delicious food. we were invited back so we will effort to get another Duke show there before the end of the year.
as for our playing, we will admit to just being a tad overwhelmed on 2 occasions. we got caught twice looking at our dukemates & getting lost in thought (ie: i can’t believe we are actually playing a show!) & then totally forgetting about the song we were in. too funny! also had some gear location issues during the warmup set with Bruce Hooligan. must remember to have everything set where we need it BEFORE we start playing! another too funny of a bass “DO’H!” moment.
now the mtn dukes take a week off before embarking onto making a 3rd set. good times lie ahead! next show TBA!
jumping for joy!
September 27, 2012
Road to the DUKEBUT
this Friday marks the debut of the Mtn Dukes.
its a cover band 3 years in the making. many moons ago, we read a “bassist wanted” ad on craigslist that listed something along the lines of “must be Pixies fan“. since they are a top 5 band of ours, we couldn’t resist responding even though we had just started playing the bass only 2.5 months prior.
we remember being a bundle of nerves that first jam(it was only the 2nd time we’d be playing the bass in front of ppl we didn’t know) but the other peeps seemed cool enough. the drummer & guitarist were solid & friendly. not only were we on audition that first jam but also were a bunch of singers. our low end passed the grade & so then the longstanding issue became finding a proper vocalist. one that could also play guitar & “actually” sing.
after that first jam, the 3 of us agreed to keep up the search for a singer. we knew we had 3/4 of what could be a smokin’ good band in the making. we needed a singer that shared in the same love of music we had & one that also believed in our motto of starting “not just another cover band”. we wanted to play songs we liked that we thought others would like too. we weren’t interested in playing songs that most cover bands play. there would be no “sweet home alabama“, “hard to handle” or “new orleans is sinking” in this yet to be named band. great songs as they were, they just get overplayed and we wanted to play some of the tons of other great songs that are out there with a keen eye on alternative/modern rock as well as some ‘choice” classics.
many weeks, months & actually years would pass. we’d try out a few singers & have a few jams & then we’d not be in touch for awhile. none of the would-be singers would quite fit the bill. some couldn’t sing, some couldn’t play guitar. some were too busy, others too interested in fame/fortune. some wanted a band to back their solo careers & others were just plain ol’ nutjobs. there was even one with an odd smell that we just couldn’t get past. looking back now, you name it & it feels like we saw it. sometimes we just get together as a 3 piece to rock out a few songs every few months. t’was a good way to keep the ol’ flame alive in what looking back was “the dark times“. the spark for this band was always there though on the backburner for all of us.
we turn now to this past spring. we had had the good fortune of witnessing the audition of a singer(for another band) who really, really, really wanted to play guitar in a band. this guy seemed good enough vocally during this audition and we could see that it was killing him inside that there wasn’t room for a guitar player in that band. we kept in contact & decided to have him out with the Mtn Dukes. pretty much everything clicked right away & well as they say, the rest is history.
Friday marks the start of our “live” shows. on one hand it feels like something brand new is starting. that is correct as we’ve only been a “true band” since the spring & a lot of our material is still quite fresh to us. on the other hand, it feels like this is the culmination of years of hard but fun work and not really the “start” of anything but the “result” of all that time well spent. regardless, no doubt that Friday will be Mtn Dukes history in the making.
a lot of songs have come & gone over the past 3 years. the 20 that make the setlist are like a roadmap of that time. hilarious to think back but only 2 songs remain from that first jam!