Tag: Stuart Martin

Prince The Artist and Generation X

Prince The Artist and Generation X

Prince (the artist) and Generation X

Prince Rogers Nelson was an artist and music icon of “Generation X”, but what is it? 

People born between 1965 and 1979 are described as generation X. A group sandwiched between the Baby Boomer and Millennial generations.

Born in the year 1973, I have some empathy with being stereotyped in the media as having “a lack of direction”; and “a culture of cynicism”.

Generation X: “Coffee drinkers ~ quietly revolting against cultural and social norms of previous generations”.

Generation X | April 2016 | Blog | InfinityBass.com

My generation are influenced by a wide range of cultural and political shifts and technological development.

There were VCRs, personal stereo cassette players and the Nintendo game boy to keep us entertained.

We saw the invention of the microwave oven; and lived through the death of Princess Diana, the Sinclair C5, and the fall of the Berlin wall. We watched Stephen Spielberg’s E.T. “The Extraterrestrial at the cinema.

We listened to Bon Jovi, Dire Straits, Queen, U2, Madonna, Michael Jackson, Prince… and plenty more.

Continue reading “Prince The Artist and Generation X”

Easter and Old school Drum and Bass

Easter and Old school Drum and Bass

Easter and Old school Drum and Bass

Easter. The Easter bunny bringing eggs has become the most commercially identified symbol of Easter.

However, for many Christians, it is unthinkable that the Easter bunny and Easter egg hunts are the focus of Easter Sunday. Biblically, there is absolutely no connection.

Blog | Easter Sunday | InfinityBass.com

According to the Bible, Jesus Christ came back to life or was raised from the dead, three days after his death by crucifixion. This is celebrated by Christians on Easter Sunday.

“Without Easter Sunday, there would be no hope”

Most people understand that Easter Sunday has something to do with religion, but are confused as to how the resurrection of Christ relates to eggs and the Easter bunny.

Essentially, the ancient Roman Catholic Church mixed the celebration of Jesus’ resurrection with spring fertility rituals, to make Christianity appear more attractive to non-Christians.

These rituals are the main source of the egg and bunny traditions. The German tradition of the Easter bunny or “Oschter Haws” migrated to America in the 1800’s, likely accompanying German migrants, many of whom settled in Pennsylvania.

Anyhow, I hope you all had a great Easter Holiday ~ and celebrated its meaning in your own special way.

Blog | Easter Eggs | InfinityBass.com

A different corner: Old school Drum and Bass

It was time to pack up my Bass and catch the early morning train to London. I was embarking on a sentimental journey, back to the place where I first started out.

In the year 2000, Stuart Martin and I were rehearsing songs for theTHEOS millennium celebration.

We also played on a track last year called “Merry Go Crazy”, which we recorded on our own, and then uploaded and downloaded files via the Internet. This time it was much easier working on an idea in the same space!

It’s almost exactly the same, but a different corner. Today, the same two musicians, with no less heart or soul than all those years’ ago. It was good to be playing in the same space again.

Three hours went by in what seemed like 5 minutes. Some things never change!

Blog | Stuart Martin and Simon Edward | InfinityBass.com
Stuart Martin and Simon Edward (2000 and 2015).

We did not plan to cover old ground. I wanted to see what would happen when we played. What can you do with just Drums and a Bass guitar? Not very much, you would think.

It’s based (no pun intended) on a riff I often play on the open strings; ‘E’, ‘A’, ‘D’ and ‘G’ when tuning.

Stuart was playing something he had been working on during his studies at BIMM called “Four-way co-ordination’, and when we played together, it sounded like something we could work on.

Stuart managed to capture a video recording of the 2nd time we played it through on his tablet.

This is what we call “Old school Drum and Bass” in about three minutes. Thanks for watching!

The last word

I won’t name any names because this might afford someone a little more unnecessary publicity.

They are trying to make a name for themselves off the backs of people, who are less fortunate.

The Independent Press Standards Organisation (IPSO) has already received a record number of complaints.

Elsewhere, they have been described as “The potty-mouthed pundit”, “The failed ‘Apprentice'”, a “Bully and a Bigot”.

This person claims to speak ‘for the people’, but have made it clear they are not ‘of the people’.

Blog | Katie Hopkins | InfinityBass.com

They believe they are on a “crusade to save freedom of speech”. This could not be further from the truth.

We cannot go on confusing “neocon” politics with the reality TV style bluster of the modern age. That is not entertainment. There are laws in place to deal with this sort of individual.

“Free speech” comes to an end somewhere short of inciting hatred, insulting people and generally conducting yourself like a person who believes they are a law unto themselves. I agree with this sentiment.

To conclude, and in light of what she has said recently, and going further back, how any responsible media outlet could continue to employ her, should be beyond all of us.

InfinityBass.com | by Simon Edward | April 26th, 2015.

Level 42 What Wikipedia can’t tell you

LEVEL 4What Wikipedia can’t tell you

Level 42. Almost everyone knows I am a ‘Levelhead’. A long time fan of the Brit-funk/rock Band, since 1985.

The term ‘Levelhead’ describes some fans of the band, many of them musicians themselves, who have at some point played in bands and gigged regularly.

At 12-years old, I was too young to have any real understanding of the early 1980’s underground music scene, where they gained a large following.

The first time I heard Level 42 play ‘Live’ was at the Hammersmith Odeon in 1990, which was three years’ after two original members, brothers Phil and Boon (Gould) left the band.

Level 42 | 1985 | Something About You

Level 42: The musician’s Band

They are still to this day, the ‘Musician’s band’. A working band, who have always played instruments Live’.

They were different to most of the other regular pop-stars of the 1980’s. It was all about the music first. Musicians to learn from and aspire to be a little something like.

Level 42 weren’t a very ‘fashionable’ group with the British media, but this made me want to follow and buy their music even more.

One night in September 1985, I tuned into BBC Top-of-the-Pops and watched a music video for a new release called ‘Something about You’. I hadn’t seen or heard the band before.

Level 42: Something About You

Watching music artists on TV was nothing new, but promo videos were fairly new, and every song had to have one if they wanted to feature on satellite channels like MTV.

As I watched the video, I wanted to hear the song again and again. The melody, vocal harmony, the right-hand keyboard hook, the percussive bass sound and drums locked in.. the guitar solo.. and the lyrics.

The song is about coming to terms with the fact that nobody in life is perfect.

We all make mistakes, but despite everything, there will always be something about someone that means we can’t be without them.

The song reached number 6 in the UK singles chart, and number 7 in the US Billboard chart.

Saturday came around and I got paid the usual £10 by the Newsagent for another week delivering red tops.

I walked down to my local record store and bought my first record on vinyl: –

Level 42 | Something About You | 12" SISA Mix | 1985
First vinyl: “Something About You” by Level 42

Level 42: Mr. Mike Lindup

I was interested in synthesizers and intrigued by the quiet guy in the video, sitting in the corner of the train carriage, who played those brilliant keys and sang.

I was the quiet one in the corner too. Could there be someone out there who was in a band; looked cool, and could really sing and play the Piano? It was Mr. Mike Lindup (of course).

Level 42 | 1985 | Something About You | Mr Mike Lindup

May 6th, 1999. I was in the audience to see Mike Lindup play a sell-out solo gig at the Komedia Theatre, Brighton.

At this time, Mike (and Mark King) had stopped touring. He gave an interview and answered questions from the audience about being in the band, that he co-founded in 1980.

Mike played some ‘Level 42’ songs and tracks from his brilliant solo album ‘Changes’ on the Piano.

He also recorded an arrangement of ‘Something About You’, which remains my favorite version of the song.

You can listen here: –

Afterward, I discovered that I spent the entire gig sitting next to Mike’s Mum, Nadia. I don’t think she could have been more proud!

Mike has enjoyed a varied and diverse musical career, as co-founder of the much-admired band ‘Level 42’ (still going strong), his solo albums, and appearances on keyboards for ‘The Princes Trust’ house band.

You can find out more on his official website ☛ Mikelindup.com

Level 42: The ‘L’ word

The man on my right in the photo is Stuart Martin. He knows more than anyone about how I manage to weave the band name into almost every conversation. I’m exaggerating.

The L Word | Level 42 | Simon Edward and Stuart Martin

By the end of this post, you will see that I have written ‘Level 42’ more than a dozen times.

Stuart did have the last laugh. He managed to mention the ‘L’ word at least 42-times during his ‘Best Man’ speech at my wedding in 2003.

A while ago, I took a sentimental look back through my vinyl, cassette and CD collection; and these are my top tracks in chronological order, as they first appeared:-

Level 42: My top tracks

Related Articles | Basschat Bass Bash; Run of Hope; Level 42 | by Simon Edward

Bass bash; Run of hope; Level 42

InfinityBass.com | by Simon Edward | November 25th, 2014.

First things first

First things first

First things first: with Stuart Martin

This is my first Blog post on Infinitybass.com and a new start!

It was great to meet up with my ‘brother-in-rhythm’ Stuart Martin who arrived for ‘freshers week’ at BIMM London just before starting a Degree course in ‘Popular Music Performance: Drums’.

‘Good Luck’ Stu! I’m certain you will do very well indeed. Keep on keeping on!

207 To Acton Vale | First things first | Stuart Martin | Studrums.com

First things first: Starting out as Musicians

Stuart and I played in one or two Band’s together as teenagers. When we started out it WAS the be-all-and-end-all to be a band member, or start a Band.

The 1980’s had just about ended, and despite more and more dance music coming to the fore, we believed it was more important than ever to be able to play our instruments ‘Live’.

We had a regular slot to play traditional and modern praise music in Church. We would also play covers of records at invite only functions.. learning by trial and quite a bit of error.

There was no pressure, and it was a lot of fun for about 10-years. By then, it was the end of the 1990’s;

First things first | Simon Edward and Stuart Martin | InfinityBass.com

All good things ~ come to a (temporary) pause!

I got to a point where I felt I wasn’t really growing as a musician. Priorities changed and I made a choice to stop playing music ~ almost completely.

My wife and I met in 2002 and we married in 2003. Our first baby arrived and we moved house a few times.

Most of my gear was moved around from place to place or placed into storage. Then during the summer of 2012, I re-discovered music. There were a number of reasons why I wanted to pick up a Bass guitar again.

By this time, the whole musical landscape had changed. Having an on-line presence is essential now.

I joined ‘Basschat’; The UK-based Basschat bass guitar players’ forum over the summer of 2012, and once I’d done all the regular ‘look at my gear’ posts, that everyone does, I turned to the BC Recording forum.

My web pages started in 2014, and this is what I’ve been doing since then; In no particular order: –

Listening, learning, writing, reading, collaborating, recording and shamelessly promoting myself (!)

I’m having fun again and getting more out of writing and recording than I ever did with gigging.

InfinityBass.com | by Simon Edward | October 2nd, 2014.

Links

Links | Friends, and Musicians

What are you doing here? You’ve come to nosey around those with Links from my website. Here they are: –

Stuart Martin > Studrums.com

Links | Stuart Martin | My brother in rhythm

“For more than 25 years, Stuart has developed and maintained a reputation among friends, worship bands, and musicians as a versatile drummer and musician.

His broad experience ranges from gospel, big band, blues and rock; funk and jazz fusion, and much more. 

Stuart’s warm, easy-going and down-to-earth manner is refreshing; his professionalism and strong work ethic comes across clearly whether he’s recording or playing Live.”

He is currently studying for a BMus (Hons) Degree in Popular Music Performance: Drums at BIMM London

Links to some great gear!

Jaydee Custom Guitars

Official | Jaydee Custom Guitars | Logo:

Established in 1977, Birmingham UK by guitar luthier John Diggins.

John and his two sons’ (Andy and Mike) have been making and repairing guitars and basses for musicians all over the world.

Their impressive list of clients include: –

  • Mark King (Level 42);
  • Tony Iommi (Black Sabbath);
  • Angus Young (AC/DC);
  • George Anderson (Shakatak);
  • Roy Orbison

Eden AMPS

“The bass player is the foundation of any band. A strong foundation is key to a great performance.

One of the toughest parts of any performance is getting a good consistent Bass sound. 

For this reason, we have designed and produced a complete range of Bass amplifiers and loudspeakers. 

Built with commitment, pride and a love for music, rivalled only by the artists who have chosen them”.

David Eden | WT-550 | Hybrid Tube Bass amplifier

Trace Elliot

“Trace Elliot®, established in the United Kingdom during the 1970’s, is regarded as the first true specialist Bass amplifier manufacturer. 

Musicians all over the world laud Trace Elliot’s unique circuitry and performance. 

Trace Elliot® amplifiers are designed in the U.K. and made in the U.S.A.

Distributed throughout North America and Europe by Peavey Electronics®“.

InfinityBass.com | by Simon Edward | September 25th, 2014.

Merry Go Crazy | by Simon Edward | Brit-funk

Merry Go Crazy (Brit-funk)

Merry Go Crazy. Stuart Martin (Drummer) and I played together in some groups from the late 1980’s to the early Noughties (the decade between the 1990’s and the present decade).

We were also serving musicians at a church near to where we grew up in Romford, East London.

At other times, we would play ‘covers’. It was really about trying to grow as musicians, by learning from the artists we liked at the time.

I had acquired a multi-track tape recorder to hear how we sounded, and although Stuart had electronic drum sounds, he had built his first studio in a spare room at his house to play and record his acoustic drum kit.

‘Studio One’ was the ideal place to capture Stuart’s ‘natural’ drum sound, without compression or effects.

Stuart and I produced a 6-track Compact Disc (CD) in 1999 called ‘X’, under our band name: ‘2nd Generation’.

2nd Generation | CD | Generation X

Merry Go Crazy: with Stuart Martin

March 2014: For the first time in 15 years, we’ve written and recorded a new track. Some things have changed, but still the same two guys; the quiet ones at the back.

Stuart says, “All it took was an internet connection, cloud-based web storage, some microphones and lots of fun; “A tweet from Simon, “Check out the Dropbox”.

The next day I imported the Bass track into Cubase and sat behind my kit. It was like Simon was in the studio with me. It didn’t feel like 15-years had passed.

We just picked up where we left off, after a very long tea break!”

More tea | Stuart Martin | Studrums.com

“I was surprised by how much I liked the sound of the first version. From then, the track just kept on growing.

Version 4 had some vocals on it. Up until then, I had no idea what the song would be about!”

“I record my drums with no effects and trust Simon to mix the drums to fit the song.

In 25 years, I’ve learned that a drummer never hears what their kit really sounds like, until they hear it from the other side.

The only way to do that is for someone else to play your drums while you listen out front.

Thank’s Simon, for letting me hear my true sound. My DW drums sound awesome! Boooooom!”

The creative process | Merry Go Crazy

Although it took about 6-weeks to produce the song, from the initial recording to final mix, It was great to finally hear us playing together (on something new) again.

InfinityBass.com | by Simon Edward | June 2016.