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What do we all listen to and why?

PostPosted: Tue Nov 04, 2008 6:31 pm
by Tosh Marshall
Apart from the mandolin, what other stuff do you listen too or are influenced by? Does it have an affect on your approach to the mandolin? I have a large and eclectic collection of music and it covers a wide ground of styles.

I started off as a drummer (Ray’s favourite instrument!) and still play occasionally and I obviously have a lot of drum influenced stuff. I like a lot of Jazz, Jazz Rock and Progressive/Blues Oriented Rock. But there again I like the kitshchy Glam Rock stuff and some New Wave & Punky stuff. I didn’t like the 80’s electronica period and a lot of newer stuff I struggle to listen too, never mind like. Although I do like the Feeling as they remind me of the early Kinks/Small Faces era.
I used to be in a 50’s/60’s rock and roll showband that toured Scandinavia and that genre is something I hold special. The Sixties especially is a magic period and a lot of wonderful creative stuff came out of that era.
If I had to pick a favourite album it would be the Beatles’ White Album. I would have to say my favourite musician would be the late Tenor Sax player Michael Brecker, whom I was fortunate to see live on a couple of occasions. I think the best gigs I have seen are Michael Brecker at the Barbican, Billy Cobham in Folkestone, Return To Forever in Victoria, Nazareth in Folkestone, Santana at Hammersmith, JSD Band in Folkestone, Jeff Beck at the Royal Albert Hall, the Cream reunion at the Royal Albert Hall, Bob Brozman at the Half Moon in Putney, and loads more.
Who influences you, who's your favourite musician and why? what’s your favourite albums and gigs?

PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 11:11 am
by Ray(T)
Can't believe I missed this post! No Tosh, the mandolin is my favourite instrument - certainly to play although not necessarily to listen to.

The trouble with drummers is that they usually have no idea of volume. The excuse is that they have to hit them hard to get the best sound. When you're trying to sort the sound for a stage show and the drums drown out the un-miced chorus, there is very little you can do. The drummer we used to use bought an electronic kit - great I could turn him up and down. Every night he broke a pair of sticks trying to get more volume out of the kit and worse, he even bent his beater trying to get a louder kick drum. He was a great drummer but had no sense of volume.

Transfer this to an acoustic session with someone playing a drum because they haven't the skill to play anything else and the consequences are obvious. I'm not alone in this view. I once saw Martin Taylor play a very intimate session and after the interval he was having a problem with his amp. A roadie appeared to sort it out whilst he chatted to the audience. He explained that the roadie was actually his son. Someone in the audience asked if he was also a musician. "Nah" said Martin, "He's a drummer".

As for what I'm listening to, as I'm writing this its Kate Rusby but it could be just as easily John Harle, Harry Chapin, Vaughan Wiliams, Dolly Parton (mainly for her band!) or the late great Jake Thackeray. My iPod currently has 14.6 days worth of music on it but that doesn't include my classical collection.

Thanks Ray

PostPosted: Sat Nov 29, 2008 6:45 pm
by Tosh Marshall
Thanks for the response Ray, Yep I guess drums are not the most user friendly of instruments and to sit comfortably with acoustic instruments is a skill in it's self. One of the reasons I took up mandolin was to be able to understand music notation and melody a bit better and I am surprised by what I have learnt in such a short space of time. Wish I had done it earlier but as my mate says, having so much fun now what's the problem?
I saw Tim O'Brien in Twickenham on Sunday and bought his latest album 'Chameleon'. Pretty much the same stuff as what he played earlier in the year at the Green Note but this time he didn't have his mandolin but the Bouzouki sounded great. Recommended, lovely relaxed playing style and a nice down to earth fella to boot. I must mention the two girls from the Toy Hearts who supported and played mandolin and guitar. Very talented and a bright future ahead and did a great job in such an intimate setting.
I have just bought most of Tull's albums, Kinks' Lola, Patrick Street's Streetlife, Andy Irvine & Paul Brady, Kevin Burke's Open House's and today I bought Solas's new one.
Just like to wish everyone merry Xmas with this clip of my old mate John Scott Cree: ... d=47260338
Enjoy Tosh

PostPosted: Sun Nov 30, 2008 10:45 am
by Fliss
I generally listen to rock, and particularly enjoy the music of Queen, Meatloaf and Bon Jovi.

Lately, I've started discovering and listening to more folky music, including Tanglefoot and Eileen McGann, as well as some of the local bands like Full House who are the resident band in the folk club I attend, and who include an excellent mando player :grin:



PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 7:12 am
by Tosh Marshall
My brother in law saw Queen & Paul Rodgers at Sheffield Arena recently and said they were good, would like to have seen that, especially Queen playing Free numbers!
Very Canadian influenced on the folk front Fliss, but there scene is pretty vibrant, just like the Scottish scene. I really like Eileen McGann, follows a long line of Canadian singer/songwriters (Joni, Judy Collins, Kate & Anna McGarriggle etc), great voice.
I like the clips of Full House, really nice band (seems their website is under reconstruction at the moment).
As for the Scottish players I can heartily recommend the new album by the harpist Ailie Robertson 'First Things First'. A beautiful album. Also the albums by Jenna Reid, the Shetland fiddler who plays in Dochas with Julie Fowlis.

PostPosted: Tue Dec 02, 2008 6:58 pm
by Fliss
HI Tosh, yes, a definite Canadian influence at the moment - not sure quite why that is except that I often find myself drawn to things that are Canadian - my first "good" acoustic instrument was a Garrison mandolin. :grin:

I stumbled upon Tanglefoot at the Chester Folk Festival (I was stewarding while they did their soundcheck, so I stayed to hear them and loved them!) and my singing teacher introduced me to Eileen McGann's music. I think Eileen McGann probably has the most beautiful voice I've ever heard. There's a definite Celtic influence in both her music and Tanglefoot's, I think, which speaks to me.

Another very gifted Canadian singer songwriter worth checking out is Lorelei Loveridge, who does very powerful music, often with a political / social comment theme.

I'll check out those musicians you suggested, cheers.