Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Waylon Fucking Jennings!

I just found a spare set of speakers floating around the office and now I am listening to Waylon Jennings comp my friend Kevin Karg made for me a couple years ago back when Waylon died.

Kevin's been a fixture on the Philadelphia music scene for god knows how long. Playing bass for his Waylon Jennings tribute not only made a Waylon fan out of me, but inspired me to get the bass I have now, a Peavey T-40.

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I wasn't really excited about buying the bass. At the time I was playing Mexican-made Fender P-bass that I was going to trade in for a Mexican-made Fender Jazz (over the past 10 years Mexican-made Fenders have been superior to their American-made counterparts, sad to say), when my housemate told me about the T-40. I've owned Peaveys before and was disappointed in the sound. For my money, there's really nothing like a 1960s or 1970s Fender Jazz for performance, tone, and all-around bass godliness. But he was adamant that the T-40 was a great bass, so I did a little research.

Turns out the Peavey is the bass you hear on Skynyrd's "Gimme Three Steps". It's known as the best bass for recording country music. And it's all over Waylon's "Honky Tonk Heroes" album, so it was a natural for Karg's project. It was only 50 bucks more than the Mexican Jazz, so I figured if I didn't like it, I could trade it in when the gig was over. I've had that sucker ever since, and outside of the BC Rich Warlock I used for UncleFucker, it's my main bass.

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Honky Tonk Heroes has the craziest production I think I've ever heard, and when I first heard the album I immediately disliked it. Imagine a country album produced to sound like a disco album. The bass is so prominent in the mix, it almost buries the drums, which are so loud in the mix, it sounds like Waylon recorded the guitar in another country. The beats are similarly odd: imagine a country band with a disco drummer. But I had a gig to do, and dutifully learned the songs. I'm damned glad I did to, because along the way I grew to love HTH. It is an amazing album (except, IMO, for We had It All, a gawdawful ballad).

And now, thanks to the miracle of speakers, I am listening to Waylon. In another moment I'll put on some Joe Val and drive everyone nuts with banjos.

3 Comments:

Blogger lexandromeda said...

Holy shitola! Two posts in one day?!?

3:24 PM  
Blogger Brendan said...

Yup, and a third one coming later tonight (OK, maybe tomorrow morning).

7:50 PM  
Blogger lexandromeda said...

*swoon*

9:32 PM  

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