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GP DAILY BLOG! Reeves Gabrels' Dispatches from the Road


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DISPATCHES FROM THE ROAD

The New Reality of Touring

By Reeves Gabrels

 

15 July 2009 -- Greetings. This is the first report from ten shows in ten cities in ten days by Reeves Gabrels and his Imaginary Friends. This summer mini-tour is my first time on the road since recovering from lyme disease, and it's a different world. GUITAR PLAYER Editor Michael Molenda thought it would be interesting to share what it's like to tour in the present economic climate and music industry maelstrom. A saner group of people quite possibly wouldn't bother, but my imaginary friends and I just like playing live too much to do the sensible thing.

 

So I picked up a van at 10:00 am this morning in Nashville, and met bass player Kevin Hornback and drummer Jeff Brown at our rehearsal space. We are the band, road crew, tour manager, merchandiser, back-line technician, and van driver for this tour. We managed to fit our gear into a 15-passenger van with a single bench seat remaining so one of us can sleep while the others are in the cab. We find this works better than letting the driver sleep while he's driving.

 

We drove in a straight shot east to Asheville, North Carolina, home of the Biltmore estate. We arrived at our club venue, the Garage at Biltmore, at about 7:00 pm, and loaded right in. Kevin got to try out a new bass rig that just arrived from Traynor this morning. Jeff has a new set of drums, too, but as you're guitar players, enough about those...

 

I'm playing through a Koch 50-watt combo with one 12-inch speaker and a Mesa/Boogie Rectifier cabinet with two 12-inch speakers. As a spare -- in case I should run into any unexpected amplifier problems -- I have my trusty Crate Powerblock. I brought three guitars: a soon-to-be-announced Reverend signature model, a Fender Custom Shop Stratocaster, and my Fernandes with a sustainer and a 1967 Telecaster neck. I don't usually bring three guitars, but I'm treating myself.

 

My pedalboard is pretty simplean Ernie Ball wah, a Boss tuner, an Ibanez TS-7, a Source Audio Soundblox Multiwave Distortion, a Phase 90 modified by Joel Turza, an old Digitech Space Station, and a Joel-Turza-modified Line 6 Delay Modeler. I figure you guys want to know all that.

 

It's now 10:00 pm, and we go on stage in a half hour. Tomorrow, when we get to our next gig at local 506 in Chapel Hill, I'll let you know how the show went tonight. Meanwhile, I'll also ask if the "Garage at Biltmore" refers to the GUYS AND DOLLS song about the oldest established, permanent floating craps game in New York. Hmmm.

 

 

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Thanks for the heads-up, Ed-Boy! :thu::cool:

 

Cool column. Will it continue to be posted here?

 

>>----> GP DAILY BLOG! Reeves Gabrels' Dispatches from the Road - MusicPlayer Forums

 

"...met bass player Kevin Hornback and drummer Jeff Brown at our rehearsal space. We are the band, road crew, tour manager, merchandiser, back-line technician, and van driver for this tour."

 

"We managed to fit our gear into a 15-passenger van with a single bench seat remaining so one of us can sleep while the others are in the cab."

 

"We drove in a straight shot east to Asheville, North Carolina, home of the Biltmore estate. We arrived at our club venue, the Garage at Biltmore, at about 7:00 pm, and loaded right in."

 

Wild! Wagons-HO! Go Wes, young man. :thu: That's dedication. (And good thinkin', not "letting the driver sleep while he's driving"! :D ) Bet the Bowie gigs were a bit different!

 

I'd like to see a similar blog or notes submitted by Joe Satriani describing his experiences with Chickenfoot's current tour, for comparison... !! :D

 

"I brought three guitars: a soon-to-be-announced Reverend signature model, a Fender Custom Shop Stratocaster, and my Fernandes with a sustainer and a 1967 Telecaster neck. I don't usually bring three guitars, but I'm treating myself."

 

Yeah, you're treating yourself! With style, too. Nice! :cool:

 

Now, these three instead of the Parker Fly, huh? ;) (Just a little good natured razzin'! I'd like a Parker Fly, AND a bunch of other guitars!)

 

"My pedalboard is pretty simplean Ernie Ball wah, a Boss tuner, an Ibanez TS-7, a Source Audio Soundblox Multiwave Distortion, a Phase 90 modified by Joel Turza, an old Digitech Space Station, and a Joel-Turza-modified Line 6 Delay Modeler. I figure you guys want to know all that."

 

More! More! How's the Multiwave, what's it like? What did Mr. Tirza do with the Phase 90 and the Line 6 delay?

 

We want pics, and even live gig-vid-clips of performances, too!

 

"Meanwhile, I'll also ask if the "Garage at Biltmore" refers to the GUYS AND DOLLS song about the oldest established, permanent floating craps game in New York. Hmmm."

 

:D:thu: Good call, pickin' up on that as a possible reference! Wouldn't have occurred to me, but now that you mention it...

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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Cool blog!

 

Judging by that first straight thru drive to Asheville, sounds like the travel part of this tour could get grueling. Well I guess "grueling" is relative, but kudos for the dedication, and surely the gigs will be worth it!

 

Looking forward to reading about the continuing adventures.

 

Side note: When my wife and I were relocating to Nashville a couple years ago, we looked at a house in a neighborhood where the coolness factor certainly ratcheted right up when we heard that "Reeves Gabrels lives on this block!". Sadly, we weren't able to snag that house, but we're now just on the other side of town where some coolness still pervades. :D

Just a pinch between the geek and chum

 

 

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Yes, gang...

 

I will post Reeves' daily blogs right here in the Forum.

 

Greetings from Nashville NAMM,

Mike

 

Swell! Thanks, Mr. Molenda! :rawk:

 

...we're now just on the other side of town where some coolness still pervades. :D

 

I'd say that when you guys moved in, the coolness factor of that neighborhood ratcheted right up! I'd love to have you folks up the road from me! (Already got some good neighbors, to be fair- and HONEST, too, as is evident from all the times Fed Ex irresponsibly dumped my packages off at the wrong address and marked 'em off as "signed for"!) :cool:

 

Sorry for the veering tangent, back ta tha blog! :thu:

Ask yourself- What Would Ren and Stimpy Do?

 

~ Caevan James-Michael Miller-O'Shite ~

_ ___ _ Leprechaun, Esquire _ ___ _

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Yes, gang...

 

I will post Reeves' daily blogs right here in the Forum.

 

Greetings from Nashville NAMM,

Mike

 

Swell! Thanks, Mr. Molenda! :rawk:

 

+1. Thanx much.

Always remember that you�re unique. Just like everyone else.

 

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

sorry for the time delay in answering your questions. after finishing my tour i had to fly up to nyc to do a gig with singer/songwriter jed davis (whose band included anton fig on drums and tim lefebvre on bass) so i'm a little late on things.

to answer your questions:

the source audio multiwave distortion does a TON of different distortion stuff but live i use it for it's octave distortion.

because it has a sustain, over/dist knob and vol control i tend to run the sustain near max and the distortion at less than half which gives me a sound that is almost like a distorted wurlitzer piano (i think). this also allows me to run it into other distortions to get more traditional octavia like sounds. i love that box.

what joel turza did to my line 6 delay modeler was replace all the footswitches (to make it road worthy) and improved the buffering so that it works in my efx loop or on the floor/pedal board in front of the amp.

his phase 90 mod consisted of increasing the sweep/depth, some other secret juju that he won't talk about and generally making it more "chewy". you can find him at rockblock guitars in nashville.

i hope that helps answer your questions.

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