August 12, 2014
so over the weekend, we took the bass outta the case to find it covered in a coating of damp dew. which has us wondering if this happens more & we just don’t know it?
here are the deats of the events:
- gig the previous night ended around midnight beside Georgian Bay
- bass loaded & stayed in the vehicle overnight
- took out bass around 11am the next morning when we arrived at our next show only to find it soaking wet
how it ended up this way has us scratching our heads. was is the temp change from night to day? was it cuz we were further inland? did it have to do with the time of night we put the bass in the case?
usually (ok, 9 times outta 10), we bring the bass inside with us overnight but since we were back on the road again in 6 hours, we didn’t this time. if that was the big factor, we will never do it again. if this has been happening more often and we just didn’t realize it, we will be taking it out of the case or opening the case every night as well. from now on, we will be tracking this phenomenon!
September 25, 2013
peter hook & the light!
the dream continues & what a week that was! lets lay it out in quick fashion!
Tues: got to see the Selecter! one of the essential 2-tone era ska bands that we had not yet had the pleasure to see live. we even met the singer Pauline while she sat behind the merch table. a steady stream of pics & book signings were the order of the moment. she was great to chat with & share a few laughs. their set was energy filled from start to finish. we dared not leave the dancefloor so we could soak up the entire event. well worth the muscle soreness the next day & the chance to hear “celebrate the bullet” live. that song is pure magic. we posted some pics on our Flickr.
Thursday: Mightabins first full band jam of the year followed by a Peter Hook and the Light concert! first off, the Mightabins have been wanting to jam for a long time but every1’s sked’s have been just too haywire of late. but things now have cooled down & more jams are in order. 2 new punky songs came out of our first full band jam of the year. could a show be next? then after the jam… the Peter Hook show was literally off the hook! great to hear the early New Order material done so well & witness 2 bass players on stage! & a father/son combo to boot! memorable show indeed! we posted a few pics on our Flickr here. our ears just couldn’t get enough!
Friday: Gig! Amazing full night at Bigfoot Smokehouse! Very casual atmosphere there & we played well with the Hayley Carro Trio. can’t wait to return! debut of a new cajon kick device went well (more on that in another post). its a great step fwd that can’t be “beat”… hahaha.
Satuday: Outdoor Gig! Stage got flooded. Show cancelled. ah well… the thing about outdoor shows is that they are absolutely the best when the weather co-operates but on the flipside can be a nightmare when the weather takes a turn for the bad.
Sunday: Open Mic! always a treat! got to play a lot of bass & some cajon. many hilights but one in particular had to be learning & then playing Duran Duran’s “Rio”(not once but twice!) that SAME day. crazy fun!
its actually been a hectic past week & a half with 7 dates in the span of 11 days if u include our Open Mic duties. well worth every note & every moment. as we like to put it:
playing music is like reading a good book you can’t put down.
every note a word.
every jam a page.
every show a chapter.
& we cant wait for what is next.
July 24, 2013
Got the sublime opportunity to play last Sunday at the Riverwalk Commons with the talented Hayley Carro! Here’s some vizness of the show we did in front of an estimated 400 ppl. Dig that cowbell! If you listen closely, u can hear what’s inside it! Now if only we could mic the cajon that well…. Enjoy!
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 21, 2013
in the last while we’ve had a few chances to join a few country groups. each opportunity has been a wonderful learning experience. now some bass players may poopoo country music but we are finding it to be great fun. the hardest part seems to be holding back and knowing when NOT to play. which makes us understand why some bassists might not like country bass. we all want to play! learning to keep the space is great practice. its not just about the notes but also about the space inbetween the notes. think we once read that somewheres…
anyways, nothing concrete is ready to announce but when it does… it’ll be noted here! hoping to find a sweet blend of country and orgs to do! the telebass with its flatwounds is ready to explode on some country roots!
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!
February 5, 2013
time for a gear movement update!
acoustasonic 30 on arrival!
we swapped our circa mid 2000’s Ampeg BA210 for a Fender Acoustasonic 30 recently. “peggy” as she was called was heavy & great for many gig while we were first making our way around stages. recently though, she’d just been sitting at home. never being used. never quite loud enough anymore. never quite portable enough. she’d done her service(100 gigs approx) & really owed us nothing. so when the opp presented itself, we thought we’d change it up a bit. get an amp that is suitable enough at low volumes for both bass & guitar(trying to play more guitar, ie: once a week) & practice our mic/vocals with. the acoustimatic has 2 channels. one for instruments & another for a mic. a great practice setup that we can quietly tweek our pedals with. another long overdue task. we’ve also added our drum machine into the chain for practice service & so far so good! so nice to come home & plug into a comfy setup when u only have a few mins to play. if we ever want to get louder with it, it has a lineout that we can plug into anything else.
speaking of effects, we’ve begun to fall hard for our El Grande Bass Fuzz that we’ve had for awhile. keeping the settings for fuzz & volume really conservative while using the tone in the middle is giving us a great sound that is perfect mix of low end tasty dirt fuzz! our Carbon Copy delay is also making a rebound. such a fun pedal to practice with! messing with different delay times has been a blast! we are also thinning the herd. gone is the Bass Metaphors to a new lovin’ home. our Picasso Boost is likely next. maybe our chorus or the bf2 that have sat on the sidelines for awhile. ah, a pedal family pic from a few months back… we will ever have 10 pedals again?
pedal fam at the end of 2012!
we also got around to finally swapping out the nickel strings our telebass came with. they were interesting to play with for a time but as time went on, we lusted more & more for the flats we love so dearly. so this past weekend, we made the swap (despite our dream) to d’addario flats. one jam in & we’ve never been happier. a tad bright at the momement cuz they are sooo new but a huge step towards the low end thump thumpy sound we long for. telebass sound with flats= OMG!
d’addario flats in action!
speaking of falling hard, we are in the midst of dealing with our 2nd injury in the past 7 months. back in August of last year, we separated a shoulder that took awhile to heal. now we’ve gone & cracked/fractured a rib. amazing how much it hurts when we are in the wrong position or doing something that it doesn’t like. after getting it checked out on the weekend & being told by a doc to “take it easy, here’s some drugs“, we are finally heeding the advice. not merely the “we must have slept funny” event as we first thought it was, but the defo result of a very wicked tumble. hoping for a speedy enough recovery that we can get back to jumping around for Skipapalooza in April. well at least we can still play the bass, just have to keep the groovin’ movements down a few notches for the next while. in the meantime, our lightweight acoustic bass is getting even more playing time!
acoustic bass with foam fun!
February 1, 2013
woke up with a start this morn. we had been dreaming…
our dream was bass driven. inbetween takes during a mtn dukes jam session with started playing a goofy slap bassline on the new telebass. we’ve been trying to “get” slap recently. then all the sudden, the bass snaps in half right at the 7th fret! there’s a bit of dust in the air. shocked & amazed by what just happened, we peer at the spot where the split happened. the neck is made of concrete. we shout “OMG” & that’s when we wake up.
last nite we bought new flats for the bass. we want to take the factory set off finally. related? should we change the strings or not? what if… yes, what if…
some of the best responses yet:
– Its a warning-dont play in the key of B
– It’s time for you to buy a 2 neck bass? – You rock so hard you turn wood into concrete?
– watch what u eat before bed
– Must be a fear of technical difficulties while on stage!
– It means you can’t make an omelette without breaking some eggs. Keep slapping!
– keep your silly slapping above the 7th fret.
– your brain is telling you that you are taking your bass playing far too seriously?
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!