Another monthly round up of news from Cold Flame HQ so do read on, enjoy and Happy Easter one and all but do try to go easy on the chocolate.
New updates have just or will soon be included on the About, History, Gallery and Gig sections. A big thank you to Pete McDonald who has put in time, effort and paitence in helping the band to maintain the website. Pete will be coming along to the Thatched House gig this month to capture brand new action shots of the band for website inclusion.
Recent changes on the band website have included a complete revamp of the gig guide which we hope will be more useful to everyone in finding out just where we are performing over the next few months. We have retained the colour scheme to denote the type of music being performed per venue as well as ensuring that all venue links work. Regular viewing is recommended as we strive to sort out further gigs. Updates will be posted on the page straight away. Whilst wanting to highlight all Cold Flame performances, of particular note is the band's return to Stockport's premier rock venue "The Thatched House" after a two year absence this coming Friday April 7th. Its free - starts at 9.00pm with a late bar (1.00am) - naturally - and promises to be loud and proud. For those of you living in the Altrincham area, where the band have always enjoyed a very healthy following, we will be returning again very soon to a new venue in the town centre - "The Station House". Just a quick note as well to welcome the return of Dave Conner and Keith Bonthrone who will be playing a few gigs with the band during late April and early May. See you all soon!
BIG CHAS & THE BUSINESS
Alter ego time....Ever wondered what Cold Flame would sound like with a four piece brass section.Why not come along to the Glove Works Wine Bar, George Street, Glossop to celebrate St.George's Day - Sunday April 23rd - and all will be revealed as members of Cold Flame will be belting out blues and soul classics with a vindaloo rock and mega brass twist. Within the brass line up are two musicians who have appeared on Cold Flame albums in the past namely trumpeter Johnny P and manic trombone player Gerald Bostock. The band will be on stage from 4.00pm ish performing two one hour sets. Admission is free but you are advised to arrive early as the popularity of this occasional line up is huge.
Following the recent release of Peter's solo album SHINE , the band are now working with Wal at Shipwreck Studios with a view to a brand new studio album being released sometime in May. Entitled STILL BURNING THE BLUES VOL.2 the album is a compilation of previously unreleased original tunes and new recordings of older Flame material spanning the last four years. Featuring the current Cold Flame line together with guitarist Simon Dowling, Drummer Keith Bonthrone as well as our ex flautist and singer Ben Daglish. Stay tuned for further updates on the release of this album.
MESSAGE BOARD & SHOP
Following the blatant misuse of the Northernbands message boards recently , Wal has reluctantly decided to disband the whole of the Northernbands website. In effect this means that there is currently no message board or shop facility on the Cold Flame website. However the band are committed to setting up shop facilities on the website as soon as possible not least as there will soon be brand new Cold Flame products available. Regarding message board access, Davyd is currently looking at setting up something which will be linked to the website. More details very soon. Meantime if you have anything to say please use the band email at email@example.com
Cold Flame - April 2006
Patrick speaks.....What can I say but thank you to my family and my friends for sticking by me all these years and putting up with my passion for music.A huge thanks also to all current members of what is now a very extended Cold Flame family. Without you chaps and your support Cold Flame would just be a figment of my imagination. Oh yes...Italy was really brilliant: Thanks Aldo !
Peter says......Well what can I say. Its good to be back working within the Flame again. The pressures of life(and these do get in the way if you let them) got in the way and… I let them. Its taken a good 18 months to clear out my psyche of past rubbish and debris. So now I can get back to what is important in this relatively short life time. Some old friends and influences have past on and Michael Brecker whom I aspired to be many years ago is very ill. So life is indeed precious my Precious. The Italy gig with the Flame was clearly a highlight last year and to be honest the experience was fantastic. To get some way back into Ian Andersons head and band was interesting and rewarding. Of course there is more to life than Tribute work and I am focusing this year on creating more music and songs, and working on my newly acquired Soprano sax. (Watch out for this at forthcoming Coldflame gigs).The Tenor sax has sadly been sold to a grateful owner whose back is considerable stronger than mine these days. So what’s in store for the Coldflame electric show? Again watch this space and get to the gigs and all will be revealed. Of course doing the Tull must go on.To any musician who knows their stuff Jethro Tull is very challenging to play and requires a great deal of commitment from all the band equally. I am still learning new things from the Tull back catalogue.And now the Flame have an enormously talented keyboard to add to the already high levels of musicianship within the band, anything is possible. So request away for possible new additions to the Tull and/or Flame set list. See you at the gigs.
Davyd speaks......So says Patrick, how about that diary entry that you have been promising for months Davyd? Sure Patrick I’ll have it finished quicker than you can name every Tull song that has been recorded in chronological order!!!!So as Patrick struggles with his little trial, I will begin with a sincere apology for not replying sooner to some of your questions. In truth a mixture of computer problems, failed internet connection, muddled brain and maudlin morbidity did nothing to motivate me. However I’m here now so onward and upward! The white suit. Now, I had thought what a good idea. Then I sat and thought seriously about it. Problems included, the cost, keeping the bloody thing clean, where to get one from? Being accused of being an ice cream salesperson and frankly I’d look a bit stupid. So, for now I intend to go with the white shirt, collarless of course, as favoured by more recent Tull keyboard players and a pair of jeans. The long hair. Well I have had hair all my life but since being about 13 it had indeed been long. Sometimes only to my shoulders, sometimes long enough to sit on. Always a mass of corkscrew curls; it was my freak flag to quote Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young from the Stephen Stills song "almost cut my hair". Then just before Christmas ’04 I decide enough was enough and had it all cut off. My mum cried, my mother in law started talking to me, my dad shook my hand and Susan, my wife, stared for a little while. Patrick regularly suggests I Get my “rock back” and grow my hair. Susan on the other hand says I look cute!! So will I grow it back? I don’t think so, though I do miss being wolf whistled by lorry drivers. My songs. It’s nice to know that Oh Laura is appreciated, thank you. The song was written a good few years ago for my eldest daughter, Laura. It was intended to be something that she could remember me by. Hence the wind that she can feel being my loving fingers running through here hair. I’ve got loads of other songs some of which may well be suitable for the Cold Flame treatment. Keep your eyes and ears peeled and who knows what might appear on the next album! To be honest I usually end up writing ballads or the kind of Lo-Fi tunes made popular by bands such as Eels and Cake. Check them out they're cracking bands though perhaps not to everyone’s taste. I have recorded a couple of “solo” CD’s my favourite being “Big Songs For Little Girls” I don’t have any pressed ones left but if anyone’s interested I can always do a copy for them.
It would be remiss of me not to mention the line up changes of the last few months. One minute I was the new boy, the next the longest serving current member after Patrick!! Although it may be sad that people want to move on it also provides an opportunity to try some new, exciting and frankly scary things. Anyone that was at the Saddleworth gig when Gordon Mousetrap was playing will testify to that. A couple of people have commented on what my preferred instruments of choice are. Now I don’t want to be accused of being an anorak but there’s nothing we musicians like more than discussing how many gigabytes of memory our new sampler has or why we favour a particular light gauge of string over another so this is a quick guide to how much gear I need to try and drown out Patrick’s noisy bass. Korg PS200. 88 weighted and touch sensitive keys of pure bliss and the centre of my keyboard setup. Although it doesn’t contain many sounds it does have some nice pianos (like for the beginning of locomotive breath) and the organ sounds are ok if a little limited. (Though they are spot on for what is probably the greatest blues song ever written, why do you treat me this way). For smaller gigs I will probably use just this keyboard. The “Rack”. When something a little more substantial is required I will bring this along. It’s a bit of a mish mash but is built around a Korg Triton rack unit and a Roland Fantom rack unit. Both these synths have some excellent sounds as well as being samplers and sequencers. A 12 channel rack mixer helps to keep the sound levels in order. A few other bits and bobs fill the rack up and contribute to making it rather heavy to lift. As well as the SP200 I will also use another midi keyboard when the rack is required. Yamaha guitar. Sorry I don’t know much about this. It’s a semi acoustic, has six strings and sounds like a guitar. I’m no great guitarist but it’s nice to be able to get out front and move about a little.
For those that are watching closely you will never see me playing any complicated chords i.e. C minor or E flat. I can play them honest, but for some reason my guitar won’t let my fingers get into the correct positions. The squeezy thing/ Musical bra. Like a piano on your chest (but not as heavy). I have no idea what make it is. It’s purple though! The right hand is easy enough but the left hand is a little more complicated. I tend to ignore it. It is fun to play honest but puts small creases down the front of your shirt. In summer it allows me a nice little sideline travelling between Italian and French restaurants playing soothing melodies to lager swilling, pasta munching ingrates. Amplification by Roland, Drinks by Asda spring water, chocolate by the Kilo!! So that’s it for now. Nursie is shouting lights out and coming around with cocoa and horse strength sedatives. Again, thanks for all your support and next time you’re at a gig come and say hello, maybe even help us carry some of that blooming heavy equipment to the car! Good night matron.
Rob speaks......Welcome Cold Flame fans to a little insight into who Rob Barnes is,and what I do.For approximately Eighteen years now I have been playing guitar and performing in bands as both a guitarist and vocalist but only part time as a semi professional musician and the majority of the time as a mechanical engineer. Now as the years are starting to catch up with me (a bit like the rest of Cold Flame) I have become a full time musician playing in morethan just Cold Flame but other bands also such as Dust, who I have been with for many years now. I also teach guitar and assist in a recording studio, I do session work for live performances and in the studio. Being so fond of music in general I really enjoy doing various styles and was immediately attracted to the possiblity of playing with Cold Flame in both the rock'n'blues and the Jethro Tull tribute and now along with the diversity of Davyd we are doing some folk and Irish areas as well"COOL!" Perhapes luckily for me Patrick actually knew me already when I auditioned, through both reputation and he taught me at school( he'll not like me mentioning that) -" Ha I thought it was the other way round Rob "
I now look forward to doing as much as possible with the band and get a little better known amongst the Flame fans. For those of you interested in the equipment I use here's a rundown :ELECRIC GUITARS: Fender Deluxe Fat Stratocaster,Gibson Les Paul Studio(self customised),Fender Telecaster 1950's re-issue, Fender Mexico Stratocaster and Fenix floyd rose locking tremolo fat stat. ACOUSTIC GUITARS: Breedlove AD25 SR+, Washburn Festival series EA10N, Yamaha 12 String FGX-412C-12 AMPLIFICATION: Marshall JCM 2000 TSL 100 head with Marshall 300w 1960 4x12 cabinet,Marshall 2x12 cabinet and Marshall 200w Valvestate EFFECTS: Well, this is not small!! I have a custom made(Box) board with a Boss V-Wah, Boss TU2 tuner, Boss compressor/sustainer ,Roger Mayer Voodoo Vibe,Boss dual overdrive,Marshall Guv'nor,Boss Equiliser,Boss Flanger,Boss Digital delay,Boss DD20 Giga Delay and a Samson Airline Transmitter for wireless guitar playing ( BEWARE I CAN WANDER AND GET TO YOU!!!)Well thats enough from me for now, see you out there sometime! Cheers Rob.B
Phil speaks .... my weapon of choice is the drums although I do play a mean tambourine!! As you may or may not know, I have been with Cold Flame since July last year and have played a number of gigs already, most noticeably the Jethro Tull Convention in Italy. OK, lets go back a few months, how did I get to hear about Cold Flame looking for a drummer? Well, I was window shopping in music stores in Macclesfield (where I live) and saw an advert for a drummer for a blues rock band and rang the number. After a few conversations with Patrick we arranged an audition, I got sent a Cold Flame CD to learn a few songs, went along and did my thing and now here I am making my first diary entry! In case anyone was wondering, here's a bit of history about me. I'm 27 and have been playing the drums for more than half my life (that’s scary). I'm originally from Grantham in Lincolnshire (yes that is Margaret Thatcher's birthplace and also where Sir Issac Newton went to school) I joined my first band when I was 15 and had my first gig when I was 16, we charged a pound on the door and by the time we paid for the PA hire we were about -£10 each, that’s rock and roll! I've been in many bands over the years playing all sorts of music, both original material and covers ranging from Iron Maiden and Metallica to KC and the Sunshine Band and The Beatles, with all the other crowd pleasing favourites thrown into the mix at one time or another.
I now live in Macclesfield and have played with one local band before joining Cold Flame. My musical influences are varied but its fair to say that if the tune has balls and I can inject my passionate playing into it then I'm game for anything! The blues rock that Cold Flame play instantly struck a chord with me, it allows me to let go and drive the song. I'm not one for sitting behind the drums and stroking them gently, I like to beat the s**t out of them! In fact a previous nickname from one of my earlier bands was Animal, as in the Muppets! I am also really excited about playing the Tull material that the band does. Before the audition I hadn't really heard of any of the songs but now there is always a Tull CD in the car or on the stereo at home and I do consider myself a fan. It's not the easiest stuff in the world to play mind you, the time changes and off beats are all over the place but at least its challenging for me! Well I hope this has given you some idea about what the band has let themselves in for. As I'm sure you know, we have a lot of gigs booked already for this year and I look forward to seeing you there. Take it easy.
Cold Flame - February 2006