John Bendy : Osiamo/Mooer Artist Update

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John Bendy was born in Brooklyn, New York October, 5 1980. He started playing guitar at age 10 and his first gig was a school talent show at age 12 after just 2 years of playing. Since then there have been hundreds upon hundreds of gigs and late night jams.

Early in the 2000s John was taken under the wing of blues masters Bill Perry and Popa Chubby. He also shared the stage with the Bendy Pastorius Group of which he was a founding member along with his brother Mike Bendy on bass and Julius Pastorius on the drums since 2007.

John played guitar on Chrissie O’Dell’s 2010 release “If I Had a Dime” which charted extremely well on blues music charts around the nation. Also in 2010 John started playing with the Hipster Assassins featuring Felix Pastorius and Mike Bendy on bass, Chris Ward on saxophone, Michael Purcell on piano and Kenny Growhowski on drums. The band would go on to have a two year Monday night residency at New York City’s Zinc Bar where John was able to share the stage with such luminaries Jeff Coffin (Dave Matthews Band) and Roy Hargrove.

2013 found John in Felix Pastorius’ The Social Experiment (1313) as well as the group Bendy Effect which he leads with his brother Mike.

Here’s a short YouTube playlist where you can hear some of John’s inventive guitar work. We’ve had him perform in our booth at NAMM, Brooklyn Guitar Show and have had the pleasure of catching him live numerous times at the 55 Bar and the Zinc Bar.


The story continues in 2014 and beyond. If you get a chance go see John play live.

John uses the Ana Echo, Hustle Drive, Ninety Orange, and Trelicopter, from the Mooer micro series.

Mooer pedals

The Mooer FireFly M6 : A Pedal Board that Fits in your Glove Compartment!

Osiamo Music Group and Mooer Audio are excited to announce the update to the popular Firefly pedal board. The Firefly – already the world’s smallest pedal board – now holds 6 Mooer pedals firmly and securely in place. It’s a small ergonomic gem. The Firefly features 6 form fitting slots,  a heavy duty polymer shell to withstand the abuse of being stepped on for many years, a removable lid and  a DC cable with 6 ends to power all your pedals with one power supply.

mooer firely m6

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Did we mention it can fit inside your glove box?

Image a pedal board with 6 true bypass micro pedals that weighs less than 6 lbs! Small enough to fit in a backpack; easy to carry from house to car to stage. Go straight to the gate on your fly dates. No need to check the Firefly at the airport just carry-on with you. And don’t forget, Mooer now has 54 models available with more to come! Imagine the sound and tonal possibilities.

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Kool Fact 1 : Customize your board for any gig with pedal swapping,

Kool Fact 2 : Say 6 is not enough, then chain 2 M6 boards together for 12 pedals!

tonynataliziomooer_01_700x5Join our the growing number of guitarists that are building micro boards for their fly dates and gigs were a backline is provided. We’ve quite a few artists making the switch because of the many benefits:

  • high quality, true bypass Mooer pedals
  • affordable, all Mooer pedals less than $98!
  • light easy to carry
  • nearly endless tonal possibilities
  • full 1 year warranty on all Mooer pedals

Not Band_Silhouette_01to name drop but a certain Guitar God from the most Iconic 80’s Pop/Rock band just picked up a loaded Mooer M6 for a Brazilian “fly date.” Stay tuned for a complete review!

Well 1000 words ain’t worth one video review so check out the informative video from Neal! He does a short demonstration of just one of the many possibilities available to you with Mooer micro pedals. His pedal choices: Repeater, Mod Factory, Soul Shiver, Solo, Funky Monkey and Sweeper. In all, 16 effects plus overdrive in a board that weighs less than 6 lbs!

Comment on this post with your 6 choices for a Firefly M6 would be and Neal will use his favorite suggestions in his next Firefly demo.

Let us help you find your tone and sound with Mooer pedals.

Meet the Builder : Rhys the Reason Behind Bigfoot Engineering

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01) What was your initial inspiration the led to creating pedals?

In a nutshell, it was Les Paul who inspired me to pursue musical electronics. I always admired him as a performer, and I was lucky enough to see him before he died, but he was also fantastically inventive and technologically minded. He built gear out of necessity as a musician, and I’ve always strived to create equipment that serves a real musical purpose. I built my first guitar amplifier when I was 16 from an old valve Hacker radio because I couldn’t afford a real tube amp. I even made a 2×12″ cabinet for it because I lusted after a Fender Twin. I felt a real affinity with Les that still motivates me to this day; his resilience was remarkable.

102) Do you play guitar? If so, what’s on your pedal board?

I’ve been playing guitar since I was 9. I always loved unique gear, so I was swapping out pickups, respraying guitars, and modifying amps and pedals from an early age. Over the years I amassed quite a sizeable collection of valve amps in particular, and frequently ran multiple amp/cab setups on stage and in the studio. I think this lead to me being very fussy when it came to pedals, because I had the real deal stacked up behind me. The ‘board I used for many years had 2 original Tubescreamers, a DD-3, a DM-2, and a TU-2. I could pull a lot of sounds out of it, but I always had at least 2 amps with me. Now I only use the Bigfoot ‘board and a single amplifier, and for me it’s like having a whole range of vintage amps lined up, not just in terms of sound, but feel too. The ‘board is wired with the Trouble Booster first, then the Octo Puss, the King Fuzz, the Thunder Pup, then the Octo Puss Prime.

603) What’s the strangest request you ever received (besides this questionnaire)?

An old friend of mine, a very talented guy if a little unorthodox, thought of each frequency band like a certain type of cheese; an analogy he thought would help people to understand him where his technical knowledge was limited. For example, the bass frequencies were referred to as the blue cheeses, while the lower mids were the creamy, milder cheeses. He once asked me if I could help him get a little more Camembert from his Jazzmaster!

 

504) Who are some of the more famous Bigfoot Engineering’s users and endorsees?

We are really lucky to have some incredible players using Bigfoot. I’m particularly proud to have Marc Ford as an endorsee. He is one of the most naturally gifted guitarists I’ve ever heard, and it’s very affirming to know our gear is responsive enough for such a dynamic player. I was also really excited to see the Thunder Pup on the Black Crowes’ Lay Down with Number 13 tour; Rich Robinson is just incredible. Bigfoot are also finding fans in the studio. Brendan Benson from The Raconteurs has been using his King Fuzz on a whole host of production credits, so you may well have heard us on record by now.

 

405) What’s coming up in 2015 for BFE?

I’m really excited about what we have lined up for next year. Now we have a great range of preamp, overdrive, boost, distortion and fuzz sounds, we’re moving into modulation territory, all with our trademark responsiveness, fatness, and lots of character. First up for release will be a throbbing, thunderously deep tremolo.

Year of the Bull! Smaller and Lighter Effects from Taurus

Osiamo Music Group is proud to announce the arrival of the Taurus MK2 Pedal Series!

The trend in effects pedals is smaller and lighter and Taurus has come through BIG TIME with a brilliant redesign of their popular and successful Silver Line that reduces weight, saves space, autodects 9VDC polarity and doesn’t compromise sound tone and features.

Taurus White Line

Let’s check out the New Line-Up, click on the images to learn more about each pedal:

Abigar Multi Drive MKII

MK-2-ABIGAR

The Taurus Multi Drive provides an unprecedented range of bass drive – from gentle murmur up to extreme mad bull low, mixed with diesel like engine sounds. Sounds too scary for you? Stay cool; its wall-breaking sound won’t destroy your amp ‘cause you’re always in the driver’s seat for the ultimate control. Dynamic Drive – our special feature – keeps even most distorted sound of your bass, full of attack and pulse so very important for the sound of the instrument. The Taurus Drive won’t let the all classic tube lovers down ‘cause of its main characteristic feature of warm tube alike sound.

Taurus Compressor-Limiter MKII

MK-2-TUX

The Taurus Compressor-Limiter controls the dynamics of your instrument. Imagine, that its effectiveness is as powerful as a bull itself. The Taurus Compressor-Limiter allows for modification of dynamics by two main features: limiter or compressor. Taurus has built the compressor based on transparency and on the quality of passive sound optical components. That means there are no side effects to your sound. No hum, noise or any distortion whatsoever.

Zebu Reverb-Delay MKII

MK-2-ZEBU

The Taurus Reverb-Delay has excellent memory. It will store and repeat all you can play – as many times as you need to and for as long as you need. It will echo what you play. It will follow the sound leaving natural reverb, or it will do both. The Taurus Reverb-Delay is a fusion of two stereo effects: delay and reverb. It allows for any given mix between the two effects with or without the original sound of your instrument. This effect features high quality 24 bit DSP processor.

Taurus Octaver MKII

MK-2-DEXTER

The most natural-sounding, best tracking, Octave pedal ever made! Other polyphonic Octave pedals sound cold and synthetic; Dexter delivers multiple-Octave voices, with amazing tracking, while leaving the character of your Guitar/Bass intact! Bass notes can be made to sound dark and menacing, while even the highest notes are “Chipmunk-Free.”

Taurus’ unique DSP algorithm adds a note one Octave above and one Octave below the original signal. Dexter’s Range knobs allow you to control the frequency range of the upper and lower Octaves; you can tailor Dexter to your specific instrument, for optimal results. Individual output controls, for High and Low Octave signals, are also provided. Of course, Dexter is True Bypass.

Using the various controls, Dexter can deliver sounds that include Bass Synths, 8 String Basses, 12 String Guitars and incredibly huge Organ effects. Your imagination is the only limit.

Vechoor Multi Chorus MKII

MK-2-VECHOOR

The Taurus Multi Chorus is a unique conductor that makes even the thickest strings sing. Such a choir – bass guitar and a lyrical monster “singing” so sweetly and powerfully, that you will love to play it. The Taurus Multi Chorus mixes its three voices together creating an unusual polyphonic space that will expand your sonic palette. It will take you by surprise with its smooth, rich and colorful sound.

But that’s not all! The Taurus Multi Chorus is not just a multi-chorus; it also offers a perfect flange effect. Just switch between an “A” and “B” positions, it’s that easy!

Jaco, Trujillo and Me!

Robert Trujillo, John Bendy, Rawn Randall, Mike Bendy at Winter NAMM!

Robert Trujillo, John Bendty, Rawn Randall, Mike Bendy hamming it up at Winter NAMM!

(Editor’s Note : Happy Birthday wishes to Robert Trujillo’s – 10/23)

The story spans over 30 years and this is all true; Me, Jaco Pastorius and Robert Trujillo.

The first time I saw Jaco play live was at Avery Fisher Hall in New York in 1982. I would never quite be the same.

The last time I saw Jaco was at the 55 Bar on Christopher St in NYC in 1986.

I was taking lessons from guitarist Mark Barasch. My main teacher, Steve Logan was on on the road with David Sanborn. Steve recommended Mark thus placing me in his West Village apartment once a week not far from The 55 Bar.

55 BarOn this particular night I just finished a late lesson and thought I just pass by to see who was jamming. Yikes! it was Jaco playing in a trio setting. I have completely forgot the other musicians. It may have been Kenwood Dennard on drums and Hiram Bullock on guitar. I know Hiram because my teacher/sensei/guru Steve Logan played with Hiram as well. Come to think of it, it probably wasn’t Hiram because he would have been out on tour with Sanborn as well.

Here I was a few feet from one of my 2 bass heroes. (Yes, Stanley Clarke was the other.) I am up close and personal with Jaco and to my utter dismay he is playing through a combo amp with a blown speaker and not sounding like the Jaco I know.

On the break he went outside and as if if in some sort of surreal comic book now here I am speaking to my fallen idol. “Hey man, can you get me a better amp?”, he says. I didn’t know him and had never spoken with him before except maybe once on the West 4th St basketball courts. Now my mission was clearly laid out for me.

FIND JACO AN AMP!

jpastorius_1I ran back to Mark’s place. I just played through his Polytone Minibrute III, not great but it’ll get the job done. I run full speed the 5 or 6 blocks to Mark’s apartment. I ring the buzzer. There’s no answer. I ring again and recall Mark saying he had his own gig that night.

Now what…I think to myself – I’ll buy an amp from Matt Umanov Guitars (just a block away). This is for Jaco and I gotta save the day. It’s after 9pm and Matt is closed. I walk back to The 55 with my gig bag on my back.

I failed my mission. The cats are back inside jamming. Shamed, I can not go back inside.

Fast forward 6 or 7 years to 1992.

I’m living in LA and working for Mike Tobias, the greatest luthier on the planet. I meet one of our top endorsees, Robert Trujillo. He’s a super nice guy playing for Suicidal Tendencies and Infectious Grooves. I organized a series of clinics in the LA area with Rob and some of his band mates. These clinics are being held at various Guitar Centers. Well here we are at our first event in Lawndale and the boys start playing a grove that turns into a sixteenth note high speed barrage of noise. Much to my chagrin the predominantly male audience whips themselves into a frenzy and a mosh pit forms. Sweat forms on my brow as I imagine the 100s of thousands of dollars worth of damage that is about to ensue. (Please don’t mention ‘sue’!)

I stopped the performance and begged for order and narrowly escape the evening with my life and my job. I also fall in love with a Guitar Center lady who would break my heart 7 weeks later. But that’s a story for another blog.

Fast forward again to the Winter NAMM 2013 convention in Anaheim. Twenty plus years later and Mr Trujillo has gone on to work with Ozzy Osbourne and a little band you may have heard of called, Metallica. I hadn’t seen Rob since but here he comes with an entourage walking into the Osiamo Music Gear booth. We greet and catch as much as his many fans around him would allow. Then he says too me, “Do you want to play it?” I say, “play what?” Just then the very talented Osiamo endorsee bassist Mike Bendy appears with THE HOLY GRAIL! It’s Jaco’s bass. Rob had purchased it some years previous and now here it was being delicately placed in my unworthy hands.

How did it play?

Rawn Randall with Jaco's Bass, the Bass of Doom

Rawn Randall with the “BASS of DOOM’!

Osiamo Dealer Spotlight : BestBassGear.com

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Managing Director Max Kay with Osiamo Endorsee Zak Loy of Alpha Rev. (look out for a feature on guitarist Zak Loy in a future blogisode)

I opened http://www.BestBassGear.com as dealer of Osiamo product in the 2012. After speaking with Max via vis the the phone for many months I finally got a chance to meet him at the 2013 Winner NAMM show. Max is a great luthier/builder/repair guy and bassist! as well I promised to buy him a beer but I’m pretty sure he paid for it. Max I owe you another beer! – rr

 

How long have you guys been in business?

11 Years.

What Osiamo product do you carry and why?

Taurus Abigar MultiDrive SLTaurus pedals
The Taurus overdrive is the richest, most harmonically pure I have ever heard. After hearing the demo I didn’t want to give the pedal back. All the Taurus pedals are phenomenal.

 

 

rockready ultrastrap 3.5

Ultrastrap
When I injured my left shoulder I could barley wear a bass until I got my Ultrastrap. My guitar player that has a bad back wanted to try it and he refused to gave it back, so I had to get another. The clever Neoprene and shock-banding construction make it the perfect prescription for a bad shoulder or back. It makes my bass feel 3 pounds lighter compared to a traditional bass strap.

(ed. note : now the Rockready Ultrastrap)

R.Cocco
RCocco strings are descendents of a string making family legacy in Italy that sold strings to Stradivarius, the greatest luthier of all time. String to string consistency is good and the sets are well balanced in tone, timbre, tension and feel.

What does the future hold in store for BBG?

We are doubling up our effort to stock hard to find parts for basses. When you need a less common bass part we will be ready for you.

5 Questions with “J. Schwing” Joshua Lozada

Joshua Lozada

Joshua Lozada hitting with Mooer Pedals!

Why are we talking about J. Schwing? I met Josh at the 2014 Gerald Veasley Bass Boot Camp. He was playing at my buddy David Seagal’s (New York Bass Works) booth. We hit off from the beginning.  Josh is a spiritual cat, a phenomenal bassist and a great person. Why do we call him J. Schwing? Because he Swings his a** off! Let’s listen to what he has to share with us! – rr

1) For those not familiar tell us a bit about your career?

I’ve been playing bass for 17 years. My beginnings were in my local church and through the years, has grown to International travel with worship leaders and Christian Artists. I have also expanded outside of the Christian/Gospel market in live performances with Hip Hop & R&B acts throughout NYC. Salsa music and Latin Jazz, was a big influence in my development as a bass player and my introduction to being a professional musician. As the genre began lose some of it’s momentum in a live performance setting, I found myself getting more involved in R&B and Rock music as a means to earn a living. With the increasing popularity of Christian Contemporary Music in houses of worship throughout the world, I now find myself fully immersed in that scene and staying very busy.

2) What do you see coming up for the future of music?

It’s tough to say. We’ve seen the ever expanding world of technology used in music and things have drastically changed. From the recording process to the distribution of the final product, technology is showing itself to be more relevant. I’ve benefited from tracking bass from my home but it’ll never replace getting together with great musicians in one room and hitting the record button to bring that feel to life. But the reality is that space is expensive and the pure convenience of recording virtually is appealing to many. Also, accessibility to musicians that you may have not been able to get in a studio to record your project is now possible thru virtual recording sessions and social media. As we’ve seen, technology has hurt many artists financially and I can only hope that this tide will turn in their favor in the near future so that good music can be created and the people that bring it to us can earn their living and continue to be inspired to create.

3) What role has music education played in your life?

I am a self taught bass player but I did have formal musical instruction in my school years. I played trombone from middle school thru high school and took part in the concert and symphonic band as well as award winning jazz bands, which is where I really learned my true appreciation for music. Jazz music and the study of jazz really took a hold of me and inspired me to be a musician. After I graduated high school, I took up bass and the rest is history…

4) Why are you using Mooer pedals?JoshuaLozada

I was first attracted to Mooer Pedals because of their size. Real estate on a pedal board is precious and I wanted to get the most out of the space but when I finally tried out some of the Mooer Pedals, I found that it was way more than just it’s small size. They are built extremely well, and they sound amazing. Most products can give you one thing but you’ll normally find that it’s a trade-off but I’m getting the compact size with an amazing effect in a well built pedal. It’s a win-win. I’ve been using the Mod Factory and the Ensemble King as a main stay in my pedal board and I couldn’t be happier. Amazing pedals!

5) What future projects do you have coming up?

I’ve been working on a solo demo for about a year now. I’m hoping to release something by the end of the year, time permitting. I’ll be continuing my travels in Latin America, US and Canada throughout the year with Ingrid Rosario and you can normally find me on Sunday’s at Christ Church in NJ.