ima punk ima punk ima punkpunkpunk (bass edition)

It might be a few days before i get back on the drums (as i am waiting for some materials to do some further soundproofing)… i miss playing- a lot, but playing other things, that’s fun too!

i don’t have a lot of space (or a lot of money), so i feel like i accomplished something with building a mini studio (with the help of Casey, who is much more tech oriented than i am. i have been extremely grateful for his knowledge, and his assistance). i’m using a Behringer U-Phoria UMC404HD audio interface (for the drums and keys), and a Spark 40 amp (which is technically a practice amp, but again, i don’t have money like that to get both a bass and guitar amp. The Spark works for both). For vocals, i have a Shure SM7b.

Now that you know the equipment, you can now hear what it does (HA)! Today, i’m playing some punk rock on the Ibanez GSR105EX 5-string bass. The interesting thing about the bass is that i kind of play it like a guitar, and i play the guitar kind of like the bass. i cannot tell you why. i know i also don’t play songs like how they’re ‘supposed’ to be played; my guess is because i’m just playing by ear, as opposed to reading the tabs… but then again, from what i hear a whole gang of tab books are wrong.

Recording all of this was an interesting process. Usually when i film drum stuff it’s recorded directly from the phone (until i get a better/more dedicated camera some day). i realize that filming piano stuff isn’t that easy, because there’s no good place to put the camera. In terms of guitar or bass, the Spark app is on the phone, so i have to record the song, then film myself playing to what i played. It’s not ideal, but if i’m gonna be on film then that’s what i gotta do for now. (i may opt for just audio later, who knows?). i know there is a way to film through the Spark app, but i haven’t explored that yet.

One thing that’s a bit different about this post is that you also see my legs… well the one and a half of them. Say hi… i see my legs all the time, but i don’t look in the mirror much, so i don’t see ALL of me. So seeing this is kinda interesting and strange. i have to prop the right leg (her name is Mbuya) on a pillow, so the guitar or bass won’t fall.


i was doing some writing and cleaning, and i was listening to Agnostic Front’s United Blood EP (which to me is one of the greatest hardcore records of all time) and i said to myself, i’m gonna play some AF. i remember being 15 years old and seeing them for the first time at CBGBs- someone gave me their wristband, and the rest is history. i had a few of their albums at that point, but Victim In Pain was the one i wore out.

So the title track it is.

This next song is definitely one of my favorite hardcore songs of all time, from another record i wore out. i had Out Of Step on vinyl, and the Minor Threat compilation on cassette. The folks i was in my first band with, we actually met at a Fugazi show. We covered the song ‘Minor Threat’ in that band (where i played guitar).

And now, i play ‘I Don’t Wanna Hear It’ on bass. It comes full circle.

And finally… we actually have a repeat here- but not really. A number of posts ago i played drums to the final live performance of (the) Ramones’ ‘Pinhead’. Here, i’m playing bass to the album version. In between, there are posters of the film Freaks, which the song is based off of. i haven’t seen it in almost 20 years, but i remember that it was a big deal, because it’s one of the few movies that have folks in the disabled community as clear protagonists. That of course was a big deal at the time it was made. Does the film (and its promotion) have contradictions? Of course. Still, the film industry hasn’t greenlit many films with disabled actors as primary characters to this day; and when they do, the stories tend to be tragic.

Yes, i know i play it more like Johnny than Dee Dee… i have met Dee Dee though. He was quite nice.

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