Central Snark

Saturday, 9 February 2008, 10:33am
Filed under: Lampsha Spins

the cloudmanIt’s only fitting that since TheSnark started out as a communal venture, so it should end – at least for my last Spin here. Today’s artist has become one of our contributors in TheSnark fairly recently, but is about as affable and fun a guy as roams the Blogosphere. I’ve been trying to get together a little spin over the past few weeks of his band’s music, so today’s the day.

I’m speaking about Jeff, the Harmonica Man of View from the Cloud. Jeff plays music with a band called The Receders (we over 30, okay over 40 gotta love that name) and is himself, as his moniker would indicate, quite adept on the harmonica as well as the keyboard (oh and vocals). But Jeff’s hairline wasn’t always receding and he wasn’t always married with children (quite bright ones at that). No, Jeff was a rock star! Go muck through his musical archives HERE. Trust me, the pics of Jeff in eyeliner and other 80’s garb alone are worth the price of admission. Anyway, to get some idea of Jeff’s background, I fired off a few questions:

When did you start playing music?
I actually began playing the piano when I was about 5 years old. My mom was an accomplished pianist and I used to sit on the bench with her while she played and “help” her. I guess she thought I would be more help if I actually took lessons. My next big milestone came in high school when I started playing piano for the choir. A guitar player approached me and asked me if I wanted to start a band and so we spent the next 3 years playing for every dance, talent show and assembly the school had to offer. Following that a local “professional” band asked me to join them when I was a senior and while I was still only 17, began playing in local and area nightclubs on weekends. Please don’t ask me if I behaved myself.

Have you made a living doing so?
Yes. I spent the entire decade of the ’80s on the road, full time, living in hotels and playing in nightclubs and showrooms. At one point I even toured with the USO, where we played military bases over in Asia and the South Pacific for 3 months. It was the experience of a lifetime – which I unfortunately used up when I was only 19.

How often do The Receders get together and play?
We play about once a month. Then the guitar player and I get together and do an acoustic duet thing about once a month as well. So on average I’m playing somewhere about every 2 weeks.

Who writes your original material?
So far all of us except our drummer, although the majority of the original songs we’re doing have been written by our guitar player.

Major influences?
Growing up when I did, I was heavily influenced by Elton John and Billy Joel. Then later I became a huge Springsteen fan, in part because of his orchestral use of keyboards and because of his amazing storytelling capability. More recently I’ve started collecting all the Tom Waits material I can find. I know he’s an acquired taste, but he blows my mind.

Anything else you’d like to throw in?
The Receders are very close to recording our first CD. We have the material, the studio and the money, but for us the hardest part is finding the time to commit to the studio and recording process. The four of us have very diverse careers and personal schedules so it’s extremely difficult to find time to get together.

What would a spin be without a little visual entertainment and so here we have TheReceders rocking the joint with, The Blues Don’t Get Off at Night with our man, Jeff, rocking one of his own songs on the harp:

Thanks so much Jeff – it’s great getting to hear some of our own “local” talent. The Receders rock!!! Whaddya say folks? Let’s give them a big round of applause!!!

In the spirit of the Grammys, I’d like to say it’s been a blast doing these spins over the past year or so and also thank everyone for dropping in and listening to some tunes with me. Since I am a bit of a music junkie, I’ll probably continue the spins in some form in my own little corner of the world, Simply Said. Saturdays work fine by me, so drop by and say hi.

Don’t forget to tip your bartenders and waitresses over at Humor-blogs.com who’ve been calling out for Freebird since my first spin.

Have a great weekend.


7 Comments so far
Leave a comment

FAB SPIN featuring one of our FAVS!! this is awesome, to say the least!! 🙂

i remember when Jeff posted a few of his songs on his own blog, and i was just blown away! what a perfect way to spin outta here, dearest Lampsha!!

and, yes, i AM a doofus for not doing a proper “buh-bye” with explainers, pie charts, and “thank yous” all around. thinking i’ll try to pull one together next week. then, of course, we’ll be making an announcement about one of Diesel’s upcoming ventures a few days after that, so, um, y’know, we’re not quite gone. just sorta fading away. (for now)

,,\/(^^)\/,, Peace, Love, and Bluesy Joy!!

Comment by writer formerly known as: Snuppy

Great tune and appropriate both in content and relationship. Blow, Jeff, Blow. Spin, Lampy, Spin!

Comment by Walela

Just running in between our own little concert tour today! Glad you guys enjoyed. I really want to thank Jeff for agreeing to a Spin and helping me get all the info together. The guy’s a real pro-fessional.

The Receders will have to play at a Blog get together – now that would be fun!!!

Hope everyone enjoys the day and The Receders’ music. TTFN!

Comment by DJ LAMPSHA

Wow nothing like a man who knows how to work a harmonica. What a fantabulous final spin.

Comment by littlebluepill

Thank you DJ (lil’ g) for asking me to be part of your most excellent Saturday Spin series. I’ve been loving your work every week for months now and I’m flattered to be included in it.

I’ll definitely be watching for more spins over at your place. 🙂

Comment by Harmonica Man

Jeff is one hell of a harmonica player! I listened to this song then immediately threw in Blues Brothers Greatest Hits and Full House by J. Geils Band because the song reminded me so much of their music which is a good thing. 🙂

Sorry to see you go Lampsha. It was great to see a lot of music I would never have been exposed to so many good and interesting bands.

Comment by Chris C

Jenna, agreed. I thought it was one of our finer.

Harmonica Man, thank you for offering up your band. Traffic is light this weekend, but not in The Lampsha Household where you garnered the coveted “Julian seal of approval.” It goes something like this:

Julian as soon as he sees a YouTube link: “Play that.”
Mom DJ clicks and Jeff is blowing his harp
Julian: “Yeah baby!” and to Mom DJ:
to which we get up and dance around the kitchen.

Nicely done.

Chris: I could see where The Receders might inspire those bands for you. They’re great, arent’ they?

Yeah, it’s been a fun ride. I’ll miss The Snark in its current incarnation but there’s always something interesting on the horizon. Thanks for coming by and being a part of the fun.

Comment by Lampsha

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