My new show: Jamie Bonk | “No Tuition”. Coming soon!
Watched “Restrung”, a very cool documentary on Wyn Guitars last night. It was great to hear Abraham Laboriel and James LoMenzo playing the basses, but just as interesting to me was getting to see and hear about Wyn’s workflow. He’s incredibly organized and deeply considers the ergonomics of his shop. I try to do the same thing, albeit on a lesser scale, in my studio. Also, Randall’s comments on efficiency versus enthusiasm hit home. I’m sure sanding necks for three days straight can’t be a ton of fun, even though it maybe highly efficient. I come up against similar issues when recording an album. Do I do all of the MIDI stuff for the entire record first? Record all of the rhythm guitars in one go? That sort of thing is more efficient, but it’s not nearly as exciting as taking a song at a time from nothing to a finished master. Anyways, the documentary’s good, so if you have about an hour to spare, check it out!
Tech day today. Updated to macOS Sierra and hooked up my brand new Apogee Element 24 and Apogee Control. Really nice bump up in sound quality from my Apogee Duet 1.
Sonya and I would like to wish everyone a very Merry Christmas! We hope your Xmas is filled with all the things that matter most to you. We also hope you’ve been (mostly) not naughty this year and Santa will bring you something cool! : )
Here’s a version of “The First Noël” that Sonya and I recorded a few years back that features the vocals of Wendy Irvine.
Yay! My new company (Jamie Bonk Music) is finally up and going. BC government registration, business bank account and SOCAN/ASCAP publisher agreement all in place!!
Yesterday I put together a new acoustic pedalboard. I was hoping to keep my gear to an absolute minimum and just have a Radial PZ-Deluxe on the floor, but I found I needed a few extra pieces of the puzzle. The only real effect on the board is the TC Electronic Hall Of Fame Reverb and I’m going to use that mainly as a way to compensate for room acoustics. Right now, I’m into playing pretty much as effect free as I can be.
There were a few “challenges” putting together this board. The first one is size. It was tough getting everything to fit on the Pedaltrain Nano +, but I wanted the board to be as compact as possible. The second one was powering the PZ Deluxe. I’m a huge fan of Radial gear — it’s built like a tank and sounds absolutely first rate. But I’m not a fan of their 15v 400mA power requirements. Tough to find a power supply that can meet their needs. Thankfully, Radial came out with the StageBug, which is a signal buffer and 9v to 15 v converter. Basically, I’m taking one 9v 400mA and one 9v 100mA from the Pedal Power ISO 5 and feeding those into the StageBug. The StageBug then powers the PZ Deluxe. Works perfectly and keeps the board neat and clean.
The third challenge was learning about true bypass pedals. I was surprised to find that having a true bypass pedal first in the signal chain would cause a level increase when I engaged the pedal. When I use the StageBug to buffer the signal there is no level change. I’m also not really into the “pop” you get when you engage a true bypass pedal. This is not going to affect me as I’m going to either have the pedal on or off for entire gigs. The Hall Of Fame lets you switch the pedal from true bypass to buffered via a DIP switch inside the pedal. I think my board sounded and felt better with the Hall Of Fame left in true bypass, so that’s how I’m using it.
The TC Electronic PolyTune Mini 2 is great for my needs — small, bright and most importantly accurate. I’ve used the PolyTune app on my phone for years now and love it, so it made sense to get the pedal for this board.
This is best pedalboard I’ve ever had/made. Truly sounds incredible!
Over the last 35 or so years, I’ve gone through quite a few pedalboards. From literally having pedals velcroed to a piece of plywood in the 70’s/early 80s to a rack of gear with MIDI switching in the 80’s/90’s to having four different pedalboards until recently. I lost those four boards this summer. The upside (if there ever is an upside to getting robbed) is that you are forced to look at what you need. And right now, I need less. My two new “pedalboards” in the photo below (acoustic on the left and electric on the right) are pretty darn minimalistic and I’m going to try to keep them (mostly) that way.
Received my Ear Trumpet Labs Edwina yesterday and man do I ever love it! Sounds as great as it looks. I need to play around with it for a bit to figure out what its strengths are, but my guess is, it’s going to give me exactly what I was hoping for — a natural, unhyped sound.
There are lots of songs I don’t try learning because I don’t want to “ruin” the mystery. Don’t want to start listening to a piece of music in an analytical way. Couldn’t help myself with Gary Jules “Whiskey For Everybody” — started learning the tune today. Love Gary Jules music in general and “Whiskey For Everybody” in particular. Now I just have to find something creative to do with the song.
Wow… Interesting that Apple studies Gould at their internal Apple University. I’ve been a long time fan of Gould and have used Apple products for a very long time now. Hadn’t thought there was any correlation until now. Makes sense when I think about it though…