On my tunes it is usually me playing everything because, it is hard to find the time to bring in other people while I am in the writing process. So what you get is me programming drum tracks, then playing the bass, guitars, and keys, and finally the vocals and backing vocals.
When I started it seemed like everybody had a band and we all had more gigs than we could play. I did not anticipate playing so long. It has been the small island of happiness that would save and anchor my life while slowly beating me to death. It has also been my great good luck to always play with players better than myself and to never be without a band. When I think about all the people who ever picked up a musical instrument and tried to make it sound good, or tried to interest other musicians in forming a band and getting paid to play, I count myself extremely lucky. The stories about the road and gigs behind chicken wire are true. The stories about absolutely crazy situations involving every imaginable debauchery are also true. I spent most of my life playing dens of iniquity, or pits of perdition, as my religious parents referred to them. Ill get into all of that as time permits. For now just know it has been my pleasure to play and I hope you like what you hear.
We play about 80 to 90 shows a year mostly around the Portland area. This is a large undertaking for us because we all have day jobs as well. Do I like it? Well, I am relatively old and yet still believe my best work is in front of me. This is because I have spent many years sucking as a musician while still being just good enough to always have a band and keep getting paid. What can I say, except there was never a moment that was not special to me.
I have been influenced two ways: by artists you have heard of The Beatles, Stones, Zepplin, Clapton, Beck, Hendrix, Eagles, Aerosmith, ZZ Top, Van Halen, Peter Gabriel, AC/DC, Nine Inch Nails, Parliament Funkadelic, The Police, Stanley Clark, Jocco Pastorius, Satrioni, Nickleback, ect. More importantly I have been influenced by musicians you may not know that I have had the pleasure of knowing, working with or seeing live. The list is long, but here are a few: Norm Whitehust, Marty MacCray and his band The Kooltones, Dave Nelson, Jason Moore, The regulars at Hings, Jonny Smoke, Don Parsons, Matt Metcalf, Gary Renzetti, Vince Holcomb, Mike Axline, Ken Chenverre, Marty Albers, Jimmy Mitton, Dave Ferrini, Tom Lapsanski, Chris Lynch, Vauhn Zimmerman, Sunshine, Bob Gillis, Chuck Fields, Todd Bolton, Lawrence Herman, Hans Deede, Tom Burke, Pat Travers, The Tubes, Ross Rice, Human Radio, War, Ike Turner, Robin Trower, all those 70s and 80s bands I had the pleasure of working on the sound crew with as they skidded back down into oblivion. Also, the regular players at the Talk of the Town, (Bay Area in the 80s). There are many more but I am limited by my ability to remember last names.
I sound like UUUH, UMMM, well... I like loud funky bass and drums, Loud textured guitar, interesting and different vocals, (in key hopefully). It has got to groove somehow. I want it to feel old and rootsy while being new. I want to tell the story. I want to pour my heart in and out of every word. If this happens I am happy with the song I have written. If it does not, I try again. The Hipwaiters sound something like the artists we are copying or "paying tribute to". (I will never get the tribute thing, although it is fun when its perfect).
The list is so long it would take a while. My rule has always been to use the very best gear I can afford, and to only make informed choices when buying. Briefly, I use Fender, G&L, Martin, Takamine, Charvell (from the early 80s), and Music Man guitars. My amps are SWR, QSC, Crown, and EV. My speaker cabinets are SWR, Eden, Bag End, JBL, and Apogee (front end). They are loaded with JBL, RCF, and Apogee speakers. I also use Sure In-ear monitoring and recommend all musicians playing live do the same. It will make your life easier I promise. My front end board is Allen Heath. My bass pre-amps are SWR, Yamaha, Ashdown, and many others. My outboard gear revolves around a DBX Drive Rack 265, and Lexicon effects. In my barn/studio I have a small recording and video editing area that use both Mac and PC. My recording gear is too much to list but the main pieces I use all the time are Audio Technica, Cad, and Nakamichi, mics. A Focusrite Twin Track mic preamp. Various guitar amps and preamps, Peavey, Marshall, Johnson, Fender, ect. With Mac I use Logic and Final Cut, and on the PC I use Sonar. My live gear also includes an IBM think pad to run the Drive Rack, and Mac Book Titanium to run live sequencing. My computer interfaces are M Audio (live), Motu, and Presonus in the studio. Most studio mixing is done on my Mac although I keep an old Beyringer 9000 for mixing old tape and for rehearsal purposes. There is more, but that is enough. I am an amateur expert about gear and try to give honest answers about its performance with out boring anyone. (Hard to do.)
I try to write a song every week