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4/30/2012

WBBM profiles our own Paul Wargaski

WBBM radio had a nice piece on our own Paul Wargaski today. They took a tour of his studio, and spoke with Paul about his craft:

Honestly, I’m a young violin maker,’ he said, ‘or young for a violin maker.’

Wargaski says he learns something with every violin “ or viola or cello or double bass“ he makes.

‘Learn stuff, forget stuff,’ he said.

Read more, and listen to the piece here:

http://chicago.cbslocal.com/2012/04/30/musician-hones-craft-of-violin-making-in-wicker-park/

5/1/2010

Build a washtub bass with The Viper, part II

In part one, our friend The Viper showed you the materials you’ll need for your gutbucket. In part two, he shows you how to put it all together.

4/25/2010

Build a washtub bass with The Viper, part I

In our ongoing effort to promote bass portability and homemade instruments, our friend and yodeler extraordinaire The Viper shows you how to make your own washtub bass. In part one, you’ll learn what materials you’ll need to pick up at the hardware store to make the Stradivarius of gutbuckets.

We were very happy to have The Viper sit in with us for a few songs on our last sojourn to the land of cows and beer. We have some recordings that we’ll share soon.

7/9/2009

Dancing Charlie Chaplins

By Paul. Filed under: GeneralMusic, TweedBlog.

pgil_wgn

We were on WGN’s morning news this morning.

Here’s a shot we took with Ana Beleval.   We’re playing the Square
Dance this Friday (10th) for the Great Performers of Illinois
Festival.  10 dancing Chaplins is nothing to sneeze at.

3/31/2009

The Golden Horse Ranch Square Dance Band tonight @ The Hideout

By Kenneth Rainey. Filed under: GeneralMusic. Tags: ,
The Golden Horse Ranch Square Dance Band

The Golden Horse Ranch Square Dance Band

I’ll be at The Hideout tonight (Tuesday, March 31st) with the Golden Horse Ranch Square Dance Band, 5/7ths of whom are pictured in the adjacent photo. We’re filling in for Devil in the Woodpile. We’ll also be playing this weekend, with an early evening set Sunday at The Whistler in Logan Square.

We’re actually performing as our musical alter-ego, the Golden Horse Ranch Musical Band.

From the GHRSDB MySpace page:

The Golden Horse Square Dance Band was founded in 2000 by Annie Coleman and Anthony Burton. Annie grew up calling square dancing at her families resort (The Golden Horse Ranch. www.goldenhorseranch.com). The Golden Horse Ranch Band’s 5 part harmonies and good time stomping cowboy style is not to be missed. This 7 piece ensemble features mandolin, fiddle, upright bass, banjo, guitar, snare drum/washboard, and the occasional bassoon, played by a stellar group of musicians from a cross section of Chicago bands, such as Reds and Blue, Palliard, the Lawrence Peters Outfit, The 1900′s, Tangleweed, and everyone’s favorite marching band, Mucca Pazza.

3/22/2009

My Fender FM-60E electric mandolin for sale on eBay

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin and case

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin and case

I’m in the early stages on an equipment purge (or, to use the terminology of the day, “equipment right-sizing”). One of the early casualties is this Fender FM-60E 5-string electric mandolin. It’s up for sale now on eBay. Fender no longer makes `em, so if you want one, this is your chance.

I bought this mandolin back in 2000, and used it live and in the studio with the Kennett Brothers. I also used it on some recordings with Consortium.

It’s a 5-string instrument, tuned C-G-D-A-E, like having a mandolin and mandola all in one. Like a Stratocaster, it has individually compensated saddles in on the bridge, and it uses ball-end electric guitar strings.

It plays well, and, equally important, the intonation is solid up and down the neck.

It’s all original except for the toggle switch. The one that came with it was crap, so I replaced it with a higher-quality switch. If you prefer crap, the original is in the case.

The auction runs through Apr-01-09 16:34:38 PDT.

Sound samples:

This mandolin performs well in a variety of different live performance and recording contexts. With the pickup in the bridge position, it’s bright and cuts well. Here it is with the Kennett brothers:

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And here it is with the Kennett Brothers again, using the out-of-phase toggle and the lower register:

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And here it is with a wee bit of distortion, in an excerpt from the Consortium record:

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

Images

Click on any of the images below for a larger-scale version. The instrument is in excellent condition. There are the usual belt buckle scratches one would expect on the back. These are detailed in one of the images below.

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin and case

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin and case

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin headstock

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin headstock

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin, back

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin, back

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin, detail of scratches on back of the instrument.

Fender FM-60E electric mandolin, detail of scratches on back of the instrument.

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11/23/2008

Tangleweed Banjoist protests Promoter Ordinance

Tangleweed’s own Ryan Fisher was recently featured in a documentary about the proposed Promoter Ordinance in Chicago. You can check out his segment below, and also view the entire documentary here. The documentary was produced by JaGoFF, presented in conjunction with TheRecordIndustry.com.

Since its proposal, the ordinance has been tabled thanks to the large outcry by Chicago’s independent music community. This means the issue can still become active at any point, so it’s important for everyone to stay vigilant. We’ll keep you updated on the TweedBlog if any new information becomes available. Also, here’s a good resource with links related to the issue:
http://therecordindustry.com/chicago-promoters-ordinance.htm

Related Posts:

Promoter Ordinance update

Oppose Promoter Ordinance! (please?)

8/5/2008

Looking forward to the Ola Belle Reed festival

We’re very pleased to be among the performers at this year’s Ola Belle Reed Homecoming Festival. We recorded Ola Belle’s song “High On a Mountain” for our second CD, Where You Been So Long, and we’re going to learn another of her songs especially for the festival.

The trip will bring us to North Carolina for the first time. On the way to the festival, we’ll do a radio show in Knoxville, and a show in Fletcher, NC. We’re riding a high right now. On our last trip, we passed through three states, and weren’t threatened with a firearm once. Take that, Wisconsin!