Thursday, August 5, 2010

08.05.10 - Uncle Mike's, Eagles Flight Night, Beatles

Sup everyone, and welcome to the latest edition of the Stolen Rhodes blog. My name is Dan and I will be your bass player today.

Last Saturday SR was in the great city of New York playing at Uncle Mike's in Tribeca. The atmosphere on stage and in the audience was electric (at least it appeared that way to me). There was never a dull moment in the SR set was we blazed through a 45 minute set that included the classic Peacemaker/Life Was Never Finer 1-2 opener and was also highlighted by over-the-top out of control renditions of Falling off the Edge and Keeps Us Moving.

Life Was Never Finer
Brand New Cadillac
One Day Everyday
Sympathy for the Devil
Falling off the Edge
Keeps Us Moving

Keep your ears open for our next journey to New York City.

For those of you in Philly. TONIGHT!!!! make sure you get your tickets to Eagles Flight Night and make sure you get there when the gates open and check out Stolen Rhodes before the Eagles take the field. We'll be playing from 5-6:30 so make sure you get down to the Linc for the show.

In honor of Paul McCartney's visit to Philly next weekend, and the fact that myself and Matt will be playing a set of Beatles music at Doylefest 2010 (if you know about it, and you know how to get there, then you will be there); I will be talking a lot about the Beatles the next week or so. I'll be recommending albums, songs, solo stuff, guitar solos, and to start it off...McCartney's best bass lines.

10. I Saw Her Standing There
Upon first listen the song just sounds like your basic I-IV-V early 1960's rock and roll tune. Upon closer inspection of Macca's bass part you realize that his note selection is just another reason why the Beatles were years ahead of their time in the world of rock music. Not too mention I've tried singing and playing this song and I just can't figure out how he does it while keeping the groove. The perfect bass line to one of the most awesome rock and roll tunes ever.

9. Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except Me And My Monkey
This album track from the White Album truly is a gem that not enough Beatles fans know about. Underneath Lennon's rambunctious lyrics, and George's fuzz filled guitar is Macca doing his best James Jamerson impression. A classic funk filled Motownesque bass line is what really kicks this song up another notch.

8. And Your Bird Can Sing
Another classic album track, this time from Revolver. While this song is most memorable for the duel guitar lead of Harrison and McCartney, it is also Macca's beautifully flowing bass line that keeps this song (along with most songs and Revolver) in constant forward motion. The note selection for the bass line in the second bridge, and then the occasional octave hits during the verse are just another reason why Macca is one of the all time great musical minds.

7. Paperback Writer
First off, this song just rocks. End discussion. Add McCartney's creative use of a G7 arpeggio, and his call and response with Ringo before kicking into each of the songs four verses and you have yet another amazing two and a half minutes of rock and roll. The song is also notable as it is one the Beatles best vocal performances.

6. Taxman
No Beatles bass discussion can be done without this song. The song is driven by Macca's funk filled bass line that only gets dirtier during the songs bridge. Easily one of the greatest bass grooves ever. Not too mention Paul also plays a solid guitar solo on the tune.

5. All My Loving
Perfect example of Paul's knowledge of American jazz music. The bass line in this perfectly complements George's frantic lead guitar part. This song was one the Beatles earliest forays in taking jazz type chords and melodies and setting them to rock and roll music. Once again proving that as a songwriter they (Paul in this case) were years ahead of their time.

4. Rain
The B-Side to Paperback Writer is a song that many people don't give a full listen too. Upon first listen you hear the middle eastern vibe of the song, which was typical of many Beatles songs recorded during the Revolver sessions. Upon closer listen you hear McCartney playing just a beautiful melodic bass line that complements John's vocal line perfectly. His bass acts more like a piano in this tune, and is no doubt the lead instrument on the tune. If you're a bass player you need to give this one a listen.

3. With A Little Help From My Friends
Like Rain, With A Little Help From My Friends is a beautiful melodic bass line. Unlike Rain though this song takes melody and combines it with a driving rhythm to give this song its distinct feel. Sgt. Pepper's is also the Beatles album with Paul's best bass tone. It can be heard loud and clear on this tune and also on Getting Better (which just missed making this list).

2. Hey Bulldog
Definitely the most technically challenging bass line, Hey Bulldog moves at a feverish pace, full of sixteenth note syncopation, and creative melodic and rhythmic interpretation. Another example of McCartney playing a Jamersonesque bass line at times.

1. Something
Definitely the most beautiful bass line to the most beautiful love song ever written. Paul's and George are just at their musical best on this tune. Their bass and guitar parts, their vocal parts, and just the nature of the song in general. The bass line in the guitar solo is the most beautiful bass part ever written. Not too mention it complements one of the most beautiful guitar songs ever written. There can be no debate that this is the best Beatles bass tune (if not the best Beatles tune period).