I put together a Virtual Open Mic Night a few days ago for the students at all five of my teaching studios. As with most open mics, the host usually kicks things off with a performance.
The COVID -19 lockdown provided me with the time and opportunity to work on my original music and to better explore the seven string Prat that arrived here last year. Some of my efforts made their first appearance tonight when I kicked off the open mic event with an original song called, “A Cold Hello”.
If you follow the link through to my YouTube channel, you’ll find the complete lyrics to the song.
Thanks for listening, and as always, comments and feedback are most welcome.
“A Cold Hello” – Written in 2017, this was intended to be lyrics to the song “Soul Amputation”. However, when the music for “Soul Amputation” showed up and was actually worked out, the song stood better as an angsty rocker, replete with simulated air raid sirens on the intro (using a Gizmotron and brass slide). The lyrics, now feeling like a poor fit, were laid to the side until April 2020.
If there was to be an album order to some of these songs I’ve written, “A Cold Hello” is the peaceful and somber prequel to the angst of “Soul Amputation”. A live concert video of “Soul Amputation” is here, if you want to try listening to these two tracks back to back (just try to visualize a fade in on the drone at the beginning of Soul Amputation…that would be the actual transition between the two, as best as I can actually visualize it).
Here’s where I stepped out of my comfort zone with this one; this is an original song that uses a lot more tapping than I use in previous arrangements. Singing and tapping has always been a serious challenge to do at the same time. This is also the first song that’s been written with performance on this 7 string Prat bass in mind. Playing the 7 string has been an adaptation, and I’ve spent a lot of time during the COVID quarantine actively trying to get comfortable with this bass. The bass was a gift from two other players in the bass community last year (Edo Castro and Chris Cardonne) and I’d like to honor that gift by being able to play it out more at shows…however playing 6 string is really more natural to me. That being said, after trying “A Cold Hello” on the Spector Euro, it just didn’t work…the Spector was too dark and growly. The minute I started playing it on this bass, this song had found a natural home.
Artwork in the thumbnail by yours truly.
Signal chain – Prat bass to Soundblox Dimension Reverb, Seymour Duncan Vapor Trail, followed by a Carl Martin Bass Drive (gain turned down…basically using it as a tube preamp). Followed by a Warwick LWA1000 into a Hellborg Hi Cab. The bass is strung with GHS Progressives.
And no, that sound is not fret rattle. Something is rattling in the room…my amp is making something vibrate on certain notes. I’ll be hunting it down and trying to eliminate that for future videos.