About This Blog

I am a musician living in Cape Town, South Africa and this blog is intended to document various musical projects I'm working on ... mostly after the fact, when I remember.

Unless otherwise stated the bass line (and quite often the mix) is my work.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

A little study in E Flat

Ok, I'm back with a study just before X-mass.

This is in Eflat Major (as the title says :) and has three main parts.

1) A bit of "clawhammer" with the Right Hand to start with.
2) A "tapping" section
3) Lastly finishing off with harmonics.

This is still a work in progress, and that's my excuse for some of the rough edges on the mp3 example that you can find here.

Eflat Major study mp3

pdf is here

Tone wise I have VERY old strings on ... not my fault I can't seem to get D'Addario EXL165 bass strings anywhere in Cape Town for some reason (quite miffed) and this is what I use ... any donations welcome :) .

I use a GT-PRO into REAPER, the latter I've mentioned before, and I'm still blown by what it can do ... everything I need so far and more besides, for the GT-PRO I tweaked a patch I found somewhere on the net GT_Pro-Jazz.mid GT_Pro-Jazz.gtl and kicked off the delay.

There are a few gotchas in this piece.

Section 1) I use my RH index, middle and thumb for all but the string skipping section where I use my ring finger instead of my middle.

Section 2) Apart from where it goes down to B it's a "Victor Wooten" type pattern that recurs in major and minor arpeggios.

Section 3) I really struggled and failed with my software to notate this nicely, so you'll just have to do the best you can listening to the mp3.
The first harmonics can be natural at the 5th fret ...or... fretted at 5 and pinched at 24 which you need to do anyways for the others (ie. fret at 6 and pinch at 25) the high harmonics are pinched near around 32 or so ... near my neck pickup, you'll just have to find it for yourself. The LAST harmonic may be resolved easily by fretting the G# and pinching the high note ... or in a more flashy manner, reach over with your RH and a) tune up the string : b) grab the string behind the fretted note and bend (it's surprising how FAR you have to bend it for a semi-tone)

If anyone reads, and can make sense of this, have fun with it, comments appreciated.

Sunday, September 5, 2010

A coupla tunes

Hi again,
After the (by now usual) long silence - been a bit (real world) busy in the meantime, here are a couple of tunes I've been working on.

The Elephant Song I did with Hugh Coutts, a really cool songwriter, he played guitars and sang, in a few different keys :) before we settled here.
He recorded the guitar and vocal tracks at home then brought them to me, I added and mixed the rest with a bit of backwards and forwards in between.
I'm more of an engineer than a producer when it comes to recording so I took it to a good buddy of mine Pete Stanford who then added a few deft touches, whilst giving me a lesson in things audio, thanks Pete, and here it is, comments welcome.

Looking Back (at you) I did with Lamecia who I used to play with back in the late '90s, her voice always impressed me, but we lost touch for years, then we connected again (via FaceBook), she said she has some songs, so I said lets do it.
This is one of quite a few songs, but The BarleyCorn was having a song-writing competition and as this was the one nearest completion we entered it. Again any comments welcome.

Just in-case the above links to the tunes don't work properly, you should be able to find them here.

'till I next add something ...

Sunday, March 7, 2010


Hi again,
Just thought I'd share my DAW (Digital Audio Workstation).

Well mostly the software, I'm totally converted to REAPER as my main editor.
It's fast - no long boot up and snappy when editing.
It's tiny - less than 6Mb, the size of an mp3 and it has a demo song included.
It's amazing - remarkable programing skills here with a vibrant, caring community and forum.
It's cheap

I use it both in WinXP when I need all the bells and whistles plugins and rewire, but it's really comfortable in Linux using wine-ASIO (see this thread ) which is the setup I use for my live recordings at The Barleycorn.
With REAPER's keyboard shortcuts and a CLI (Command Line Interface) I don't need a mouse to get around.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Been a LONG time

Well it's been a long time since I updated this blog, kinda like a diary when you're busy you haven't the time to write it down.
So ... the desk is working fine and I'm recording The Barleycorn every Monday as well as playing there a couple of times.
My original band (we do some Hendrix/Muddy Waters etc. covers as well) SHA (Sherwood, Haylett, Angilley) is practising more regularly.

This is our video of Quirky

You can hear more SHA songs on reverbnation.com as well as some studio (Gello) stuff.

We jammed some at the guitarists birthday (Clive Haylett) here is a clip with his son Arlo playing accoustic.

I am also working in a cover / corporate band called July Crisis for which there is a Facebook video of our first gig but I've no idea how to embed it, no doubt more gigs and vids will follow.

I also have a couple of ideas for tunes which I will put up here as soon as I have time to lay them down.

That's about it for now, will try and keep this more up-to-date but no promises.