Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I got an e-mail Sunday morning from my friend Derek, bass player of my favorite band of the moment, The Electric Mess. "Do you know the album, 'The Ventures Live In Japan? Sick recording and amazing drumming."

I didn't know the record. I've seen it. The cover looks familiar. But I don't recall ever hearing it. Well, I tracked down a copy and now it's a minor obsession.

The Ventures have always been known a guitar band. But, the star of this particular show is Mel Taylor, the maniac behind the drum kit.

Here's what All Music has to say:

Originally released in Japan as a double album, this live set was unavailable in the U.S. until 1995. So cleanly recorded (the drums are especially crisp) that one is tempted to believe these tracks might have actually been laid down in the studios. It has a speedy, frenetic, well-executed edge that makes this worth checking out by Ventures fans.

I couldn't find video of "I Feel Fine," The Beatles cover where Mel Taylor sounds as if he's about to kick the bass drum right into the front row of fans. So, you're only getting audio with a nice picture of the album cover. I did find video of the opening track, "The Cruel Sea>Walk Don't Run." Look at Mel. And thanks Derek.


Anonymous said...

Mel Taylor would have been a great punk drummer.


Derek (aka Stoney Roma) said...

This never happened - I NEVER wrote to Sal telling him about this amazing record and we never discussed Mel Taylor. What an imagination these creative writer-types have! But yes, I do play bass for The Electric Mess.
Thanks for the shout out, Sal!

steve simels said...

I actually have a pretty close to virgin Fender Bassman amp of that vintage. With the original, still working fine, tubes.

Just saying...

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