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Impromtpu Jam on the 4th

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Been a long time since I hauled any amount of gear anywhere. Any more than the Blues Jr. and a Tele to the local blues bar, anyway.

A friend called Saturday night and said some kids in his cul-de-sac were going to have a PA brought in and play for the 4th. Told me to come on by Sunday.

Well, went over Sunday, and the 16 year old drummer and the 15 year old guitar player were there, along with the PA, but the bass player and other guitar player/lead singer weren't going to make it.

Keep in mind that a good fellow brought out a fairly impressive PA setup. 4 JBL mains, 2 JBL subs, 4 monitors, 3 power amps, rack mount dbx's, DOD EQ, etc., and a Mackie 1604.

Not being one to waste an opportunity to play, at least for a bit of comic relief, I grabbed my guitar playing buddy who lived there, and came home to pick up some gear.

I considered the Marshall and Boogie big boys, but decided to keep it light, since the guy with the PA had everything mic'ed up anyway.

I ended up taking the two Blues Jr.s, a case of pedals, a Tele and Strat, the Peavey Axcelerator bass running through an Ampeg SVP Pro tube preamp, a Ramsa WP1400 amp and Acme Low B4 cab.

The guy even ran the XLR out of the Ampeg into the board direct.

The kid on the guitar was playing a cheezo B.C. Rich through a DOD Death Metal (or whatever it was) pedal and a small (10" speaker) Marshall solid state practice amp. I offered to let him use my stuff, and he seemed to like it.

OK, so now we have a teenage drummer and guitar player, and 40+ year old guitar/bass players looking at each other and shrugging our shoulders. They actually knew what they were playing with the Metallica and stuff.

Us dinosaurs never played anything more metal than Judas Priest or Sabbath.

What to do?

The kids knew about 5 songs...total, but they had them down. We two dino's knew a bunch of songs each, but very few of what the other knew.

OK. Let's just start off with three chord standards that ANYone can play. Might as well stretch them out a bit. So we had a 15 minute Wild Thing-Louie-Louie-You Really Got Me free-for-all, which really didn't come out so bad. The kids picked them right up.

Hmmm...so next, I hit the starting of Hey, Hey, My, My...and the kids looked at each other, smiled, and joined right in. When that was over over, the drummer says, "I LOVE Neil Young!"

Who knew? :D

Start Purple Haze. Same thing.

Anyway, we told them to go ahead and play some of their stuff, and it quickly turned into a train wreck. I put down the guitar, sent the other old fogey off for another beer, and picked up the bass. Surprisingly, whether it was right or not, the 3 piece sounded pretty good. I managed to pick up most of it just by watching and listening. (The parts that I got lost, I just staccato-palm muted until I found where I was. Not really notes, but a thud was there, anyway).

Anyway, we managed to get a couple hours, with a couple breaks of stuff that, for the most part, wasn't half bad for a couple old fogeys and a couple kids that played pretty darn good, and were able to pick up stuff pretty easily.

At least the PA didn't go to complete waste.

The kids are now looking for more reliable bandmates. :thu:

Everyone seemed to have fun.

I think was a pretty cool thing, anyway.


Tele :)

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That's great!

I'll bet the "kids" learned a lot by playing with you "old" guys. Like the fact that music can be pretty much ageless. I suspect that, given their ages, they don't have much experience playing in a band situation, and you just gave them a wonderful taste of what it can be like. Congrats!


It's always fun when something impromptu like that happens and everyone has a good time. Sounds like you had a great day.


May all your thoughts be random!

- Neil






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Sounds like you had a great time Tele. I read in another post by you somewhere around the forums where you mentioned something about Tokepa; were you referring to Topeka, Kansas and are you still around these parts?
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Tooooo funny...

My friend called me at work today. He said someone wondered if we could have enough stuff worked up by late August/early September to play a gig. (Guess we didn't TOTALLY suck :D )

Dunno though...that may be a tall order. I imagine we'd have to know how to get through at LEAST 30-40 songs. (Although not sure. Could be a 45 minute-1 hour set, or something. I think we could pull that off.) Not to mention, us dino's would want to learn at LEAST 4 or 5 of the kid's metal/grunge stuff properly. (Don't want to neglect them, and it would probably be easier for them, in the short time frame, to learn a lot of easier songs, than have us learn a bunch of tightly syncopated stuff with a lot of changes).

We'll see what happens. Might be fun, and give the kids some extra experience. I imagine the guitar player would learn these songs, and blow my doors off in short order. That's OK. Heck, whoever plays the part best on what instrument...I'm all for it. I'll strap on the bass, if it makes it sound better.

If they get exposure, and some other young guns see their potential and form a kickin' band, I'll be proud. :freak:

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Hey, DO IT!!!! :thu:


Could be lots of fun hanging out with the kids and teaching them some new tricks... and maybe even learning a few. You can do it!!!


Don't let that age thing get in the way; you're only as old as you feel.... er... uh.... as you WANT to feel. :D

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