Mike Overly's 12 Tone Music News

The Latest Guitar and Bass News from around the World Wide Web . . .
September 20, 2018
In This Issue

How Miles Davis Changed Jazz

Why is it that even people who hardly listen to jazz, adore Kind of Blue?

Many thousands of words have been written about its legendary composition and recording, about the extraordinary ensemble responsible for its existence and about the year of its release, 1959, a watershed moment in the history of jazz.

Where most forms of jazz had built increasingly complex chord changes over which soloists improvised, Davis shifted to using modes as the basis for song structure.

Without needing to get overly technical with music theory, you can understand immediately upon listening to the album that modal composition allowed Davis and his band to slow down, simplify, and create subtle, complex shifts in mood that can be at once lilting, cool, and kind of... blue.
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Epiphone has announced its new Limited Edition Slash Firebird guitar. A more affordable version of the superstar Guns N' Roses guitarist's Gibson Firebird, the guitar will be available in two editions: the Premium Outfit, limited to 100 guitars, and the standard edition, which is limited to 900. Both editions feature an AAA flame maple top in Translucent Black finish on a three-piece mahogany body, a pau ferro fingerboard, Seymour Duncan Slash open-coil humbuckers and Sprague Orange Drop capacitors.
Maurizio Uber Basses, aka MuB, has unveiled a new model called the MuB-F, a fretless-only bass they say was designed from the ground up to be a true fretless bass as opposed to a bass without frets. A fretless bass is a different instrument. It is played differently, with more attention to nuances and subtleties, with fewer boundaries and a more creative mindset. Which is exactly what the MuB-F wants to be, uncompromisingly designed to be only fretless.
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The vinyl resurgence of recent years has impacted the music business in many ways, with more and more artists opting to get their music pressed and more and more fans entering the record buying world for the first time. Between these two sits the realm of vinyl production, which relies on a small handful of vinyl pressing plants operating at max capacity to keep up with the ever-increasing demand.
The blues are a unique-and indigenous-American music and the foundation of most contemporary popular styles including soul, funk, R&B, most rock styles (yes, including prog), metal, country, and hip-hop. But if you don't know much about the blues, where do you begin? Believe it or not, that's a loaded question-because blues fans are opinionated and loyal-and it depends who you ask.
Ah, the 1990s. When angst-filled music from the fringes took front stage and the rack effects dynasty was toppled by compact pedals. Dirt boxes may have led the charge, but they did so flanked by a growing arsenal of sophisticated echo effects. A few decades on and the used market is flush with '90s-vintage delay pedals that offer cosmic sounds at crazy prices.
Multi-genre and multi-situational bassist Robert Hurst has been part of three innovative jazz groups. From anchoring the mighty Tony Williams band, to his all-star showing with trumpeter Wynton Marsalis' celebrated mid- 1980s ensemble, to the muscular and joyous music of tenor saxophonist Branford Marsalis' early quintet, Robert has been a first-call magic man for over 30 years. In that time, he has lent his supple technique and organic tone to the music of Paul McCartney, Diana Krall, Beyoncé, Willie Nelson, Barbra Streisand, Woody Shaw, Geri Allen, Diane Reeves, Lou Rawls, Norah Jones, and many more. 

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