Saturday, 26 May 2018

Surprise Gig Invitation

When you get together with the band for a rehearsal you don't assume people can hear you through the door. And you certainly don't think they'll be impressed enough by what they hear to immediately offer you a showcase gig - but that's exactly what happened at Vineyard Rehearsal Studios last Monday.

As mentioned in the previous post, this was our first rehearsal with our new bass player, Bora so we weren't quite sure how things would sound. Bora had learnt all the material, certainly well enough to play along with us using occasional charts and his natural feel and experience contributed to an overall sound that was both tight and expressive.

We started out by jamming over a simple A7, D progression which more or less materialised and then worked through several songs from 'the list'. After a couple of hours we took a short well deserved break, only to find Amanda, one of the studio owners was so impressed with our sound she wanted us to perform at a public event they put on every so often to showcase the best bands that use their facilities.

It is quite a compliment to have seasoned music professionals really like your stuff (Amanda is a drummer in a Prince tribute act) and so of course we agreed to do the gig! It will be at the Shortywave Cafe in Bermonsdey on Friday 13th July.

Hope to see you there!

Thursday, 24 May 2018

Back To Bassics

Now that we're starting to be offered some decent gigs, we need to be able to play them. That not only means a tight professional sounding set but everyone being available to play when the gigs come up.

Unfortunately Marcel hasn't been able to commit to the necessary availability through no fault of his own but through work and other circumstances. He has therefore needed to step down as our full time bass player but has at least agreed to fill in as a dep player when we need one and he can make it. (This may also explain a lack of blog posts for the last month or so...)

And so the search for a bass player began again. Several people answered the ad with three ending up jamming with us: Suleiman, Herman and Bora. From which Bora turned out to be the right guy for the job.

All three were good - as were the other people we didn't see directly (based on recording and videos of previous work) but Bora had the rare combination of ability, the right feel for the music, enthusiasm for what we're doing and availability to be able to play more or less whenever we need.

He had actually contacted us from Turkey (where he was living) saying he was looking for a band for when he arrived in London. I had a one on one jam with him two days after he arrived and then last Monday he played with the full band for the first time less than a week after being in the country. He had learnt the songs and sounded great!

It is not surprising he is such a good player. He has recorded several albums and toured with a number of acts in Turkey including a singer called Can Bonomo, who I am assured is a household name in the country. He did sing the Turkish 2012 Eurovision song contest entry, Love Me Back so I'm sure it's probably true (with Bora playing the bass on that performance - even though the band was supplanted with dancers for the actual show).

For the first time now it feels like we can start actively going after gigs knowing we can play just about whatever comes up. And that's a great position to be in with such a great sounding band...