Simon Daigle – Quebec’s Premiere Bass Player Talks Groove

Bass players unite !

th-7

Rarely are Bass players featured prominently on albums for promo. Once in a while – their pictures are front and center, on the back cover of CDs.

Simon Daigle – a Granby, Qc. resident, is shaking the normal world to it’s preconceived core.

th-4

Daigle is one of Quebec’s and Canada’s premiere Bass players. Collaborating with the likes of Victor Wooten, among others.

Please listen below to my chat with Simon.

After all – it is all about the Bass …

Isn’t it?

 

Visit Simon Here !

 

Your Ad Here !

 

The League of Rock Montreal – Cold Shot in The Final Showcase

No longer, deer in the headlights …

2100x1187-league-of-rock-final-showcase-313
Cold Shot

This was the transformation which took place within the League of Rock Montreal in the past two and a half months. An alteration of Rock n Roll clothes into Rock n Roll tuxedos.

Figuratively and literally …

2100x1376-league-of-rock-final-showcase-270

Cold Shotthe band.

A mixture of Blues, Funk and Pop. A potpourri of versatility. A ship led by an entertainment scholar with a natural ease on stage and buoyed by a guitarist ( Gregory Gallagher) with one year experience under his strings. Martin Jaz on Bass along with Jordan Gosselin on drums – a battery section capable of slow trances and lightning fast beats.

Texas Flood ( Stevie Ray Vaughn), Billie Jean ( Micheal Jackson) Uptown Funk ( Mark Ronson) and Snuff ( Slipknot). The staples of a dynamic set in the last showcase and except for Snuff, the staple of the band’s involvement in The League of Rock Montreal.

1813x2100-league-of-rock-final-showcase-296

These tunes were hashed, rehashed and hashed again in rehearsals, gigs and the recording studio. Like any band, practice creates creativity, discipline  and next to perfection. Like any band – the journey to ‘the show’ is filled with arguments, agreements and bonding.

Cold Shot was no different. 

1449x2100-league-of-rock-final-showcase-253

Martin Jaz on Bass. A twenty year player who cites John Myung of Dream Theater as his go to guy.

Jaz uses a Music Man Bongo 6 Bass and incorporates patience and a calmness to the songs at his fingertips. Bass players are the unsung hero in most bands and Martin’s personality suits the role like a round peg in a round peg hole. No squares allowed on Bass if a band is to succeed.

2100x1118-league-of-rock-final-showcase-309

According to Martin – himself and Gallagher brought The Blues to the band, Slipknot was for drummer Gosselin and Billie Jean and Uptown Funk was to fit the versatility and dynamics of singer Apos’ performances. Jaz does concede it was difficult to make the song arrangements since the guys were together for a short time.  They decided as a unit to have a great time and put aside anything which was non beneficial to the sum of the parts.

1731x2100-league-of-rock-final-showcase-330
Apo D. Kali

As far as the future goes, Martin would like to work together with Gallagher. Jaz believes Gallagher is a very talented kid and can’t wait to see how Gregory  grows as a guitarist.

Jaz also plays in a corporate band named Unison Band . They are currently seeking a male singer. Apo was approached and the future may or may not see Martin and Apo together again.

As far as Martin’s involvement in The League of Rock Montreal? 

“I grew as a musician and was very surprised how the band came together in such a short period. It was an awesome experience and I got to meet people in the industry”.

Gregory Gallagher, the ‘new kid’ on the Montreal music block, used a Gibson Flying V and a Fender Strat for his time in The League of Rock Montreal. Gregory sums up his learning curve …

“For me, being new to playing in a band, I learned a lot. ” Admits Gallagher. “The most important thing was I learned when to step up and when to step back. To not take away from a song but add my element. Everyone has a different part and makes a different noise but at the end we all come together to make one giant noise. “

Gallagher is a big fan of  Albert King, Stevie Ray Vaughn and Muddy Waters. Being part of The League of Rock Montreal exposed him to different genres which he realized he is able to play. The musical world opened up in a big way for Gregory.

The future for Mr. Gallagher?

“I want to study music here and hopefully actually work in Korea later on but right now I learn from guys like Dwane Dixon and Corey Diabo who I know on a friendly basis and hang out with. I get a lot of tricks of the trade from them…  The music industry in Korea has a huge demand for musicians of all genres. I will do another League of Rock when the next session starts. It gave me a taste of what it is like to be a working musician from going to rehearsal to recording to gigging with a band you play and practice with for a good amount of time.  It differs greatly to going to jams so at first I was scared but I found that I could keep up with my fellow musicians and you learn each other’s strengths and weaknesses and use it to your advantage as a band.

Overall it’s a great experience and it’s given me the idea of what I’m kind of going for in my future. I learnt a lot and the price you pay to do this cannot even compare to the amount of experience you get at the end. It’s worth the money and time. “

Please listen below to Texas Flood / Billie Jean by Cold Shot.

Visit The League of Rock Here !

received_1063456117069833.jpeg

 

Visit Cliff Here !
Visit Cliff Here !

 

Your Ad Here !

 

One Road Keeps on Riding …

Mike and Tracy of the band One Road, are two guys who will not quit. Why should they …?

375834_517037588313301_590332614_n

They waited seventeen years to put out their dream album. It is a fantastic album backed with great videos. It’s not easy for the two – considering their music is caught in between.

In between what? Right in the middle of genres …

Their music is considered ‘country’ by rock radio. Somewhat funny because – the same stations play Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Allman Brothers and Stevie Ray Vaughn. Tracy and Mike do not consider themselves in the same breaths as these acclaimed artists. They do not ( admittedly) come close. They do not however understand the dilemma  …

Country music in Quebec, as far as air play goes – relatively non – existent. In order for them to get airplay, the two men along with their friends have worked painstakingly hard to get noticed. Harder then they should have to.

“Right now – we are playing on 126 stations.” Says Tracy.” We have received ( as far as we know) 7,709 spins. It has taken a lot of phone calls all over Canada and the States to get noticed and right now we are considering hiring a publicist to make our lives easier …”

One Road are having fun. They have filmed two videos so far and are about to start their third. A new album is also in the works and these guys are very fan – friendly …

They always have contests going.

Like the new one. Jamaica anyone …?

That is where you may end up if you win the $3.000  gift certificate!

Buy their album from their site,  iTunes or at participating Harley Davidson dealer. Buy from the site –  send them a proof of purchase via email to  contact@oneroadtheband.com    Forward your confirmation of purchase email from iTunes or pay-pal.  At the Harley dealer fill out the card and you are automatically entered into the contest.  It runs from March 1st and ends May 1st.  All entries must be received no later than May 1st.

The winner will be announced on their show ” at the bar”  on May 15th 2013.  for contest details and rules visit their website at.

Jeff Healey meets Rick Keene

It was at the height of his popularity.

image

I was a roadie for a summer. My cousin’s group; Sleight of Hand, put me through the rigors of Rock n Roll. The girls and drugs completed my basic training.

Sleight of Hand was the opening act for Jeff Healey in Lindsay,Ont .

It was exciting for everyone in the band. The Canadian blues-based guitarist was a homegrown star with songs like; ‘Angel Eyes’ and ‘ Hideaway’. The latter nominated for a Grammy award for best rock Instrumental song.

The Jeff Healey Band had also portrayed the house band in the Patrick Swayze film; Roadhouse. Bassist Joe Rockman, drummer Tom Stephen and Healey were on the top of the Canadian music mountain – peaking at just the right time.

I was setting up Sleight’s equipment and was approached by Healey’s manager. Apparently, the guy who operated the lights for Jeff’s group was running late. The manager asked me if I could do it if he did not show by the time Healy was starting.

Who was I to say no? A job which may lead to an encounter with bigger stars or prettier girls. Or prettier stars and bigger girls?

image

Once Sleight of Hand finished, their equipment packed away into a run – down Chevrolet van, the manager of Healey acknowledged the absence of the light guy. I was in as the man responsible for fans ‘seeing’ the blind guitarist in different colored lights.

On top of a stepladder was my position for the following two hours. Altering on cue ( according to Healey’ s solos ) – the spotlight on the band and it’s leader.

I advised the manager, although I was a fan, all of Healy’s songs were not in my repertoire as a fan. Especially not as a light dude. ‘ No worries’ stated the forty – something guy, ‘Jeff won’t notice if you screw up!’

The show went on. I missed a few cues by a few seconds while the ladder shook under my ‘skaky -due-to-nerves’ legs. All in all, a successful debut in front of 5,000 small town screaming inhabitants.

Afterwards, it was time to live the backstage life with backstage rock folks and various backstage hangers-on.

My cousin and I – sandwiched between a table of booze and a table of food, noticed Healey sitting on the couch with his arms around a not-so-pretty woman. My cousin, the sleuth he was, figured that Jeff’s bandmates had told Healey the woman in question was attractive as a joke. A ‘blind’ stab at humour.

It was confirmed later by the bass player. By then, the point and joke were moot. Healey was in love and vice versa. A match in Lindsay,Ontario.

Healey himself, following a conversation later on – one of the most down to earth guys. Not a presumptuous bone in his body. He discussed his record collection consisting of 78’s. A collection which was famous. He shared his tales of kinship with Patrick Swayze while filming the movie Roadhouse. The two had the utmost respect for one another.

Swayze having to overcome his pretty boy image to prove his acting and Healey to overcome the stigma of blindness. An unlikely bond created by the weaknesses of others. A bond created in death as both left too soon …

Healey never quite matched that period of success again – commercially. He passed away in 2008 from cancer. It was another form of cancer, retinoblastimo, which lifted his sight when he was eleven months old.

Jeff worked with many famous musicians over his career. It was Stevie Ray Vaughn who discovered him which led to his first record contract. Healey informed me of the first time they spoke.

“He comes up to me, introduces himself and goes on to say how good I am. Imagine, Stevie Ray – one of my heroes, praising me …!”

Jeff also did not realize that night he was in the presence of another famous person – sorta …

Sleight of Hand’s lead singer; Dave Bingham, was also the singer for a group called The Ugly Ducklings back in 1967. The group had a number one song in Canada for a few months. ‘Gaslight’ was a homegrown hit and managed to surpass the Rolling Stones – if only for a brief period.

George Harrison and Jeff Lynne were also two guys Healey worked with as the Toronto born singer covered ‘ While my guitar gently weeps.’ Harrison and Lynne sang back-up.

image

Healey was a month away from releasing his first blues/ rock album in eight years when he died. Between the time I met him, he recorded and played various Jazz oriented albums, releasing three cd’s and toured Europe extensively.

Don’t know Jeff Healey that well? In the words of the man himself when I asked if I could have a drink from the table filled with booze;

” Go ahead – explore! That’s what it’s there for …”

%d bloggers like this: