Wednesday, 20 April 2011

"I Am The Music Man"

Or perhaps, more accurately, "I am a music man. Of a sort. Domestic necessities permitting". But then this isn't about me at all...except it will be a bit, but only tangentially. Really it concerns that mighty sorcerer of low-end noises, Mr. Tony Levin (as per the pic on t'right)...well, strictly speaking, more precisely his Music Man bass & the sound(s) that he makes with it. You know what? This hasn't been a good opening at all, has it? Far too much floundering around. Probably for the best if I simply start again. Sorry. This time it'll work beautifully...maybe.

In the aeons since I last scribbled anything here, many vast, traumatic events have swept across the world. Since, however, there are a great many folk who are far more experienced, educated in such matters & have much more spare time than me, I'm going to do this instead...

(with many apologies to William Topaz McGonagall, and indeed anyone else who has ever engaged in poetical endeavours)

"Oh, 'twas several months previously in the year of two-thousand-and-eleven,
When I finally touched what, for some, might well be bass guitar heaven.
For in the musical instrument establishment known by the sign of a dog that is red,
There hung a fine bass with five strings, as used by Tony Levin (who can be recognised very easily by his moustache and bald head).

Nor was that all, for when to plug-in this deep-toned beast did I beg,
Directly underneath lay its ideal amplificatory partner, from Ampeg.
In less time than to brew a decent cup o' coffee it would take,
I had dialled-in "that sound", and oh! Far too many were the poor-quality Tony Levin impressions I did make.

And yet there came a fractious thought, a clich├ęd fly in music's ointment,
Could it be that with the range of other tones there grew a sense of disappointment?
My treacherous eye did glance awa', its goal the price-tag's brief perusal,
Therein it did uncover a further reason for refusal.
The sum required may well have been entirely reasonable,
Quality control, transportation, the costs of weather most unseasonable.

Alas! On repetitiousness's tempests blown I felt compelled, an old theme to return to,
For any off-the-peg creation, such an amount I would not pay - nay, not were I you.
Instead, your bawbees clutching, hie thee to a luthier o' uncommon skill,
Your heart's desire to build, for a couple o' grand,in the current economic climate I'm sure they will."

Sorry about that. I'll try to make sure it doesn't happen again.

Probably ought to make it clear at this point that I'm a huge fan of Tony Levin, both for his incredible musicianship, and the fact that he was enormously polite when answering inane questions from a certain daft Scottish bassist at a King Crimson/DGM event in London back in 1997 (or thereabouts).



(grainy pre-digital snapshot of this momentous occasion by Martin Lennon)

He was then, and still is, The Man.


2 comments:

Guitar Lessons Brighton said...

Hey nice posts man, I have enjoyed reading your blog. Nice to heve something bring a smile to my face on a wet Moday evening :)

andy gilmour said...

Cheers! Can only apologise for my extremely sporadic output...as with most things, start out with the best of intentions... :-)