Brent Tone!

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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby Grant » Mon Aug 08, 2011 8:05 pm

If we're talking about playing then Keith takes the cake easily in my book. Brent had plenty of energy, pig had the soul, but Keith could really go with the others when they wanted to delve into a truly exploratory jam - eg. 73 dstars and playin.
That's the area I feel k was miles above the rest. I always love listening to a jam where Jerry and Phil are ripping and all of a sudden you realise "holy crap listen to Keith!". he never overplayed and allowed others to shine
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby Grant » Mon Aug 08, 2011 8:09 pm

Tennessee Jedi wrote:
Grant wrote:
Phil Lesh101 wrote:Did you just say there isnt much to Brent Mydland's electric piano tone! wow :shock:
and his playing isnt something you just get when you start playing a B3, Mydland played better than pigpen


Uh! Blasphemy!! "Brent was in the dead, how dare you speak of him this way!?" haha

Since when were we talking about playing? Your OP is BRENT TONE

like I said - the B3/les wasn't any different to anyone elses B3 - great sound, but nothing unique

All his other sounds were stuck in the 80s bar a couple pre 83- his sounds dated very badly unlike the rest of the dead.

The pigpen reference was regarding it being pig's b3.

You seem to be one of those people that think anyone in the dead couldn't put a foot wrong.

Well he he criticized Pig - so what do mean about " anyone in the Dead can do no wrong " ?
And I would rather have someone who could play their ass off ( Brent ) than someone who could barely play ( Pig ).
.02 $
:D

Fair call, I retract my statement
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby playingdead » Mon Aug 08, 2011 8:34 pm

Keith was a terrific player ... unbelievable on the Europe 72 tour in particular ... but, man, if you saw him at the end in January of 79, it was pretty appalling. It was terrible how he progressively degraded from playing brilliantly in 73 and 74 to playing well in 76 to okay by late 77 to sometimes iffy in 78 to barely there in 79.

I love this archive.org comment from the Utica 79 show:

"They were mid-way through the first set when Keith woke up from his keyboard and staggered over to where Donna was standing and popped a balloon right behind Donna's head. She turned around and smacked Keith across the face and walked off. It was a terrible show."

I remember him staring Weir down and just pounding down on middle C four beats to the bar all the way through Beat it On Down the Line.
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby mijknahs » Mon Aug 08, 2011 10:27 pm

I really love Brent's marimba tone around 1984. I guess it was the Yamaha GS-1. Reminded me of a toy piano/xylophone.

Jim
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby Tennessee Jedi » Tue Aug 09, 2011 6:58 am

Grant wrote:If we're talking about playing then Keith takes the cake easily in my book. Brent had plenty of energy, pig had the soul, but Keith could really go with the others when they wanted to delve into a truly exploratory jam - eg. 73 dstars and playin.
That's the area I feel k was miles above the rest. I always love listening to a jam where Jerry and Phil are ripping and all of a sudden you realise "holy crap listen to Keith!". he never overplayed and allowed others to shine

Maybe the one drummer thing had something to do with that - the 1973 / 74 exploratory jamming ?
:-)
The early years with Kieth are def one the best era's though.Maybe the high water mark ! Maybe ... they are a different band in 1965 , '75 , '85 .....
One thing about the different era's - I find myself wanting to mix and match
Like what would Brent sound like in the '73 version of the Dead or Wanting Jerry to do the 80's Scarlet riffs in a '77 version.
When I think of Brent I think of ripping 'Dews and I love that sound
:-)
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby mkaufman » Tue Aug 09, 2011 7:12 am

To me, '77 is a great year, however, Keith's heavy-handed Yamaha banging is a turn off. I much prefer his earlier jazzy playing.

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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby jeffm725 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 8:40 am

Love the Marimba jim!!!

here is one of the best examples of it:
check out the Intro to Scarlet 10/14/83:

http://www.archive.org/details/gd83-10-14.beyer-ficca-brennan.ficca.20023.sbeok.shnf

after the Marimba, brent uses the wonderful chimey piano sound during the verses.

If your up for it, this Scarlet>Fire Clocks in at 33 minutes or something like that....maybe not the all time greatest but it is a top ten.

The Pre- Drums Scarlet Fire / Estimated Eyes checks in at well over an hour! (68 minutes I believe)
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby mijknahs » Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:36 am

Jeff,

I'll have to check that out later when I get home. Are you familiar with 3/31/84. Love the Scarlet/Fire from that show.

jeffm725 wrote:Love the Marimba jim!!!

here is one of the best examples of it:
check out the Intro to Scarlet 10/14/83:

http://www.archive.org/details/gd83-10-14.beyer-ficca-brennan.ficca.20023.sbeok.shnf

after the Marimba, brent uses the wonderful chimey piano sound during the verses.

If your up for it, this Scarlet>Fire Clocks in at 33 minutes or something like that....maybe not the all time greatest but it is a top ten.

The Pre- Drums Scarlet Fire / Estimated Eyes checks in at well over an hour! (68 minutes I believe)
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby Rusty the Scoob » Tue Aug 09, 2011 9:50 am

Oh, THAT's the Marimba we're talking about! That is a cool sound.
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby jeffm725 » Tue Aug 09, 2011 10:27 am

mijknahs wrote:Jeff,

I'll have to check that out later when I get home. Are you familiar with 3/31/84. Love the Scarlet/Fire from that show.

jeffm725 wrote:Love the Marimba jim!!!

here is one of the best examples of it:
check out the Intro to Scarlet 10/14/83:

http://www.archive.org/details/gd83-10-14.beyer-ficca-brennan.ficca.20023.sbeok.shnf

after the Marimba, brent uses the wonderful chimey piano sound during the verses.

If your up for it, this Scarlet>Fire Clocks in at 33 minutes or something like that....maybe not the all time greatest but it is a top ten.

The Pre- Drums Scarlet Fire / Estimated Eyes checks in at well over an hour! (68 minutes I believe)



I love the 3/31/84 S>F! Probably universally rated higher than the 10/14/83 too. In my opinion The Scarlet>Fire High water mark was 80-85, 82-84 even more specifically.... you can find a top 10 version in Each of those years (just my opinion).... The Marimba on 10/14/83 is just for about 20 seconds, I have never heard the "marimba" as pronounced as it is on that 10/14/83 intro. I remember for years when people traded that show (before it came out as DP6) that people would SWEAR that it was mickey playing it on a real Marimba (or most people would say Xylophone), but I was only a few rows back at 10/14/83 and knew that it was Brent (plus Mickey was sitting down at the kit) so I burst a lot of Bubbles on that one. What made matters more confusing for people is Mickey did have a similar sounding real xylophone/marimba type deal he would use during some Drums>space in the Early>mid 80's. But on that intro those were Brent "riffs" all the way, and you can even here him switch over to the Piano patch when Jer starts singing.
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby mttourpro » Tue Aug 09, 2011 3:58 pm

Phil Lesh101 wrote:Why is there no Forum For Brent's tone! :shock:
:lol:



Prolly because I think I might be the only keyboard player who posts on this site....
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby mttourpro » Tue Aug 09, 2011 4:11 pm

JamminJommy wrote:Regarding Brent's tone being just like any other B3...

I beg to differ. I happen to be a real believer in a persons instrumental "voice." On a keyboard instrument like a Hammond, this comes down to a few main things; drawbar settings, leslie speed, and chord vocab.

Brent had a lot of stabby chords voiced in a particular way on the B3 that really changed a lot about the over all sound of the band particularly in the late 80s and early 90s. Dozin' and the Nick is a great example of this kind of stuff. I would venture to say that Brent would gain a fair amount of respect from traditional B3 players whereas pig pen, I'm sorry to say, had a fairly week idea of how to use the instrument. Pig Pen was a singer. Woah boy could he SING. Brent had a damn good voice, too, but his organ playing sang pretty damn well. I think keyboardists could have quite a discussion on Brent's playing style and rig during his era.

Admittedly, the type of keyboard rig he toured with is way way way out of date. But then again, there's Jeff out there every night with Pig/Brent's SAME B3 with a different tone and a different style. I'm sure Jeff has looked into Brent's playing from time to time.

Just my 2.5 cents.

Peace,

Jommy



Couldn't have said it better.....

Brent always had what I consider the best layered electric piano sounds in the mid 80s. I am far from a knowledgable gear head but always thought he primarily used an EMU board, rather than a GS-1 to get that percussive marimba-type piano sound. I know one thing for sure---the guy was an absolute master of the B-3...and, he could sing pretty well.
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby playingdead » Tue Aug 09, 2011 8:03 pm

The "marimba" I was referring to was more like a piano crossed with a marimba. Listen to a Tons of Steel from 85, that's the GS-1.

The only other time I've heard it used by another artist is on Rickie Lee Jones' tune "It Must Be Love."
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby Grant » Tue Aug 09, 2011 11:34 pm

Tennessee Jedi wrote:
Grant wrote:If we're talking about playing then Keith takes the cake easily in my book. Brent had plenty of energy, pig had the soul, but Keith could really go with the others when they wanted to delve into a truly exploratory jam - eg. 73 dstars and playin.
That's the area I feel k was miles above the rest. I always love listening to a jam where Jerry and Phil are ripping and all of a sudden you realise "holy crap listen to Keith!". he never overplayed and allowed others to shine

Maybe the one drummer thing had something to do with that - the 1973 / 74 exploratory jamming ?
:-)
The early years with Kieth are def one the best era's though.Maybe the high water mark ! Maybe ... they are a different band in 1965 , '75 , '85 .....
One thing about the different era's - I find myself wanting to mix and match
Like what would Brent sound like in the '73 version of the Dead or Wanting Jerry to do the 80's Scarlet riffs in a '77 version.
When I think of Brent I think of ripping 'Dews and I love that sound
:-)

Oh hell that played a part, but I think keiths jazz style really lent itself to that style of playing. See brents peaks were in really energetic, typically loud segments, whereas I feel Keith tended to peak in the more spacy moments.

I know it seems like I'm bashing Brent, dont get me wrong, he was a GREAT player.
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Re: Brent Tone!

Postby mttourpro » Wed Aug 10, 2011 7:56 am

playingdead wrote:The "marimba" I was referring to was more like a piano crossed with a marimba. Listen to a Tons of Steel from 85, that's the GS-1.

The only other time I've heard it used by another artist is on Rickie Lee Jones' tune "It Must Be Love."



Right--very percussive elec piano/marimba layer---I simply thought that was from the EMU and, I will assume I'm wrong about that...in any event, some people don't or didn't like his electric piano sounds over the years, but it always appealled a lot to me---I try to replicate it by using and Ensoniq KS-32, mixing a straight concert grand piano with a very nice pad-sounding electric called Encore (mixed across the whole keyboard at "100" and "80"--vol. levels) with a player-piano from middle C up (vol at 60) with no sustain on the player piano. I haven't achieved it perfectly but I think it's pretty close to the kind of sound he had on say Alabama from 85.

I also was intrigued at how he seemed to be able to take a given sound (elec piano say) and change it on the fly in an evolving kind of way where it would kind of add another timbre or layer without any noteable start point--just a gradual "blend"-----was listening to 10-14-89 last night and it's fairly noticeable on Chima Doll---which BTW we'll be playing for the first time at our next gig. What a great tune.

BTW----I read that there were only 100 GS-1s ever made---apparently they are very difficult to come by at this point.
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