Today I’ll be playing rumba flamenco guitar as duo with percussionist Lyndon Dewitt. This is an exciting gig for me because I’ll be trying out my new, home made electronic bass kick pedal.
You are most likely wondering what the heck I’m talking about… A what? Yes, I created a home made electronic bass kick pedal!
For years we have been playing these rumba flamenco, Latin jazz gigs and every percussionist I work with brings a cajon, shaker, maybe congas and a djembe. These are all great instruments however no one ever brings a kick drum! The kick drum is so essential to this style of music as it’s a very key element to driving the energy within each tune.
The main reason for not having a real kick is due to it’s size and volume within a small corporate venue. It also makes it difficult use to hear our own nylon string acoustic guitars.
So I finally found a way to create a great kick drum pedal using an old B-band guitar sound board pickup and pre-amp. Today we’re going to put it to the corporate concert test!
The venue we’re playing in today will be the new Vancouver Convention Centre West in the Ballroom overlooking the beautiful Vancouver waterfront.
I left my home just a little before 3pm to make the drive into downtown Vancouver. My plan is to arrive at the venue no later than 4:30pm. With a Vancouver Canucks play off game tonight and our regular rush hour traffic I was a little concerned as to how long it would take me to get downtown.
Fortunately the traffic wass very light and I arrived a head of schedule! Now it’s time to load in my gear and set up for as 6pm start. The gig itself will be relatively short. We’ll finish at 7:30pm.
So here is the worst part of playing at the Vancouver Convention Centre, the parking is super expensive! I arrived at 4pm and hope to be out by 8. That 4 hours will cost me… $23. Ok, so that wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be.
Once I arrived at the ballroom I met with the client to find out performance location. We were to set up to the left of the main stage. The cool part of not being on the main stage was that we could watch the Canucks big playoff hockey game on the big screen beside us while we were performing!
Shhhh, don’t tell anyone, however this was becoming an extremely awesome gig and I wouldn’t want anyone to know how much fun were having. This is supposed to be work…
Lyndon and I set up the sound system and began our performance at 6pm. At 7pm we stopped for a few speeches and a raffle then we played a couple more tunes until the end of the gig at 7:30pm.
Then it was time to pack up. Lyndon was off to Vegas and I’ll be performing the next couple of gigs with a different percussionist.
Next up I’ll be in Richmond to play a corporate luncheon for 300 people at the Delta Vancouver Airport Hotel.
Btw… my home made bass kick pedal worked really well. I’m going to modify it slightly then use it again at the next gig!