• OK peeps, some stuff to read if you're bored!

    Monday, 28 July 2014 20:58


    Written by  Rudie Humphrey

    Growing up on the outskirts of a dying auto industry, Jeb listened to the pop, rock and R&B sounds filtering across the Detroit river on Windsor, Ontario’s CKLW-AM.  The inevitable quest for fame, or at least the opportunity to find the garage door opener, led Jeb and his rock band to Los Angeles where they landed several industry deals that never quite saw the light of day.  While all this was going on, Jeb began to produce other artists.  But the drive to write his own songs remained strong, and he formed a band with Solomon Burke, Jr., whose music he still produces. Fresh from fishing in the backwoods AUK caught up with Jeb.

    Tell us about yourself and what you do? 
    I’ve always been a songwriter, I also sing and play guitar. Additionally, I engineer and produce records for others in my studio, Big Scary Tree, in Los Angeles. I’m also a staff teacher at Pinnacle College for Music Production and Recording Arts. When I’m not making music, teaching, or hanging out with my two-year-old son, I like to go fly-fishing, bird hunting and tele-ski.

    How did you start out? 
    Over the years, I’ve played in many bands. In fact, I still play in a band with Solomon Burke’s kid. I write all the songs, play guitar and produce. It’s really cool, he sings like his dad and it's exhilarating to have that creative R&B outlet. However, my solo project is what’s really close to my heart. I work with session musicians when necessary, but at the end of the day I am 100% responsible for the music.

    What is your current release? 
    My newest record is called Patina, released on Rankoutsider Records, featuring twelve original songs. As for future releases, I’ve already begun the process of putting together the next one. I plan to record in the fall of this year for a release in early 2015. Half of the songs are a little more rocking than Patina and I’m looking forward to cutting those with a live band. The rest will likely be acoustic and cut in a similar fashion as Patina, perhaps with a few string arraignments on top of my basic finger-picky guitar tracks. I’m pretty excited about getting back into the studio for my own music instead of everyone else’s!

    What is the best part of being in a singer/song writer? 
    My favorite part of being a solo artist singer songwriter is that I have no one to blame but myself if things are not going right or sounding right. I also love the fact that I can draw an audience in with just my voice and a guitar. These days, so much can get lost in arrangements and layers of over-produced sounds. When you have a song that works with simple picking and singing it can be an amazing experience, pure and simple.

    What is your most significant moment yet? 
    Hands down, watching my son being born! Musically speaking, it would be those moments when special songs seem to write themselves. I feel like they must have already existed, because the really good ones always seem to write themselves in under fifteen minutes. 

    What are your biggest musical influences? 
    I grew up listening to CKLW Radio in Windsor, Ontario which came in strong on the east-side suburbs of Detroit. They mostly played Motown and great, classic pop hits. I realized very early on that I wanted to create my own songs. As I got older, I became fascinated with progressive rock bands like King Crimson and hard rock bands such as Led Zeppelin and Humble Pie. After my rock/prog rock days, I moved to Arizona and got turned on to great country music. I fell in love the simplicity and soul of the lyrics and hearing the best musicians in the world playing with raw emotion and feeling. To get back to your question though, if you were to steal my travel iPod you would find mostly Tom Russell, James McMurtry, Greg Brown, Dave Alvin, James Taylor, Gordon Lightfoot, and Meatloaf’s Bat Out of Hell.

    What venue/gig do you most want to play? 
    Anywhere and everywhere —- I treat all gigs the same. I tell my stories and play my songs with the same passion whether it's to six people at a bakery, a road gig in Texas, or a festival. That said, I seem to be at my best in the great West, where antlers hang from the saloon walls! 

    What is your favourite song you have written? 
    People are really responding to That's All She Wrote off my first album Grain, which I just released a new video for. It was one of those ten minute to write songs, from start to finish, and not much has changed over the years. I also think Pocket Knife off Patina is a special song, especially now that I have a son. 

    What is your favourite album of this year? 
    Lately I’ve found myself rocking out to a little unknown band from Durango, Colorado called Farmington Hill. They have a record out called Bridge to Nowhere and it rocks! Great slide guitar and funny, real-deal lyrics… check em out. It puts me in a good mood and is a great listen on road trips, too. Also, I’m hoping Tom Russell and James McMurtry will release a new record this year since it's been forever, and when they come out I’m sure those will be my favorite records of the year. I’m pretty confident about that!

    What does the next six months have in store for you? 
    I'll be finishing up the songs on my next record and playing lots of local and a few regional shows… hoping to hit the road again soon!

    Where do you see yourself in ten years? 
    Working hard and feeling grateful to to still be doing exactly what I'm doing now, which is writing music my way, recording folks my way and living my life my way!

    What is the best thing about Americana-UK? 
    I love the way that you guys are constantly raising awareness of the genre and supporting both individual artists and bands. I also like that I can go there any time to get a quick view of what’s happening now in the Americana landscape, and when I have time I savor the more in-depth features and interviews. Americana-UK is always inspiring!

  • Bamboo porn!

    OK trout bums, here's some late night bamboo porn! My Paul Young Rod with my new to me (thanks Mark) Hardy reel.

  • The Great Unwashed Trout Bums.

    A week well spent camping and fly-fishing Idaho and Montana, with good friends Mark Huff, Carla Ferrari, our new regular camping buddy Tom, my new friend Dane and his wife, Brad from the grub steak market and his wife Dione and the rest of the great unwashed troit bums we shared the ranch with!

  • The old stuff is better.

    Yes once again the old stuff was better! A few years ago, my Lamson LP2 fly reels were giving me trouble. They had developed deep stripping grooves in the aluminum stripping guide and were cutting up new fly lines which got expensive. I called Lamson who had been bought by a company called waterworks and I was told by the hag on the phone I needed to learn how to strip out line properly. Great, I thought to myself, I’m going to be blamed for a mechanical melt down for fishing improperly when my 60 year old pfluger reel was still just fine and had seen 50 years more abuse than the 8 year old Lamsons and stripping was done in the exact same fashion on all models. Keep in mind I had purchased two identical Lamson reels, lost one on a hike and replaced it and also purchased 6 spools total. The warranty on all Lamson products was unlimited lifetime. When I got down to business and finally talked to the guy in charge, I was informed that the parts were no longer available to fix my reels but I could trade in my 2 reels and 6 spools and get ½ off on any new reel and spool they made. I hesitated because I like the old small arbor reels and the heft of solid bar stock aluminum and the sound of a click and pawl reel ( yes the LP2 had a click and pawl and a very smooth disc drag too). Anyway, I traded up to brand new lightspeed hard alox reels and that cost me ½ of 300 twice and ½ of 120 something 4 times. If I had it to do all over again, I would have gotten a grinding wheel and smoothed out my old reels or fabricated a line stripping piece to solve the problem. The old ones were superior in every way. Smoother drag system, better over all feel, better weight, better sound and even better look i.m.h.o. I guess I’ll just dump them all on e-Bay and look for some older LP2 reels or perhaps I’ll ditch Lamson all together and buy a stack of Orvis Batenkill bar stock reels and spools for my plastic rods. Of course for the bamboo rods, I will stick with the beautiful old Hardy marquis my good friend Mark Huff just found for me in Canada! Now there’s a reel that will last through my great grandsons fishing career without some stupid trade up policy! Take my advice and don’t be fooled by shiny fancy American corporate crappy new and improved products! Yes, the old stuff was really in fact better! cc to the good people at Lamson.

  • This Gets Easier Every Year!

    Holy crap, I'm booked solid from now through july 3rd around midnight then leaving 4 hours later at 4 am on the 4th for a week... When will I pack ? hmmm waders, spare waders, (never again will i be far from home with one pair of waders since cold cold wet Alaska 2003) wading boots, fly vest, sage xp 5 wt and 6 wt, both Lamson reels, Phillipson 8' 5wt bamboo, paul young 8' bamboo to show my Alberta hunt/fish buddy, yeti cooler fully stocked and iced, mattress pad, marmont sleeping bag, pillow, hobitat 4 tent plus garage, camp chair, camp shower, rain jacket, fleece jacket, duffle of clothes, tooth brush, bottle of crown, i-pod, sunglasses, sunscreen, wasabi peas, peanut butter pretzels.. oh hell, i'll just wait till the morning of the 4th to pack, this gets easier every year!

  • Vinyl at bedtime...

    Zone B is complete with my newly refurbished Dual 1229. I wanted a Vinyl deck that shut off when done playing a side... I'm surprised but it sounds really good too even compared to my modern audiophile table! I must now find comfy audiophile headphones! Ahhh, vinyl at bedtime without disturbing wife and child, perfect or what???

  • Maximum Overdrive

    "I don't always record other peoples amplifiers in my studio, but when i do I prefer Randy's Dumble Overdrive!"