Vivian Campbell was instrumental in designing the Kramer
Nightswan, This picture was taken at SIR studios in NYC at a private party
thrown by Kramer introducing the guitar. I am holding Vivian's Original blue
lightning bolt Nightswan.
Most of the younger people I went to the party with became
violently ill. Yes there was projectile vomiting involved. Kramer really knew
how to throw some serious parties.
In any case Kramer is gone and will never be back. (oops
that's right Gibson or Music Yo' owns it today) Well as I was saying Kramer is
gone and will NEVER be back. The 80's are gone. But the music will never die.
(It was just too much fun)
In the 80's, you had to know how to play your guitar or you
couldn't join a rubber band. I mean today a lot of these so called garage bands
can barely tune their instruments. So instead of learning how to play their
instrument or how to use their gear, they just babble on about 80's hair head
bands and call them spandex sissies.
The truth is they are just a bunch of jealous little fags who
wish they could play as well as some of these guys who got caught up in the 80's
hair head thing. I truly believe that the reason these little punk snots all
play s#!tty older designed retro guitars is because they wouldn't know what to
do with a real performance guitar.
I don't want to get off on a rant here
Originally I wouldn't pick on these little turd heads, I
assumed they would eventually get better on their instruments and maybe grow up
a little and just shut their little cake holes. No such luck.... Just the other
day a friend of mine from Washington DC moved to LA. He proceeded to try to join
a band. The little fascist, elite, snob, douche bag members of the first band
that he auditioned for, told him he couldn't join their band. He was playing a
Hamer Californian. They said he was a great player and easily good enough but he
would have to cut his hair and play a Les Paul if he wanted to join their faggy
little gaggle of idiots band.
My friend happened to also own a white Les Paul custom that
he had for close to 20 years. He never played it much because it was too heavy
and he couldn't reach the higher notes easily. In fact it was short 5 Frets from
his Hamer Californian which is a 27 fret guitar.
Imagine the size of the balls of these people. It's
unbelievable. My friend told them to pound sand up their asses and promptly sold
his Les Paul.
A similar story happened to a friend of mine from Toronto
last year in LA, Only he had a BC Rich Bich.
Here's Ed Roman's theory.
The Record Companies... Yep that's what I think is to blame
for this type of ignorant attitude.
In Los Angeles there used to be a great music scene, This
scene happened coincidentally in the 80's, Baby Boomers were in their late 20's
and early 30's. Great bands played everywhere every night and life was good and
music was good. This eventually ended just like the Disco craze of the 70's did.
When the 80's ended there was nothing there to take it's place.
The 50's had excellent Rhythm & Blues, Instrumental Bands
& Doo Wop, The 60's started with the Surf Music and ended with Zeppelin,
Hendrix, Cream, The Doors, Mountain, Jeff Beck & Woodstock and somewhere in the
middle came The Stones, The Moody Blues The Who and oh yeah the Beatles. The
70's were a bit weaker but you still had Southern Rock, Grand Funk, the Eagles,
KISS & The Stones, Moody Blues and the Who, the 80's came and all Hell broke
loose, There were so many great guitar players you couldn't keep track of them
all, Van Halen, Lynch, Schenker, Rhoads, Vai, etc etc and of course you still
had the Stones the Moody Blues and the Who, When the 90's arrived Rap had
started taking hold of the younger kids, there was a short time there when
playing guitar wasn't even cool anymore....... s#!t!
Why am I blaming the record companies?
OK, read this carefully and maybe you will understand what I
am trying to say.
Prepare to be slightly deprogrammed.........
The record companies exist solely to make money, they are
cruel heartless people who if they didn't work for a record company they
probably might work for the tobacco companies as a spokesman or
It is my firm belief that the record companies do not want
the musicians to make it, They do not want to create any more super groups or
superstars. Understand that once an entertainer reaches superstar status he can
write his own ticket. Just like a professional athlete can command 80 million a
year to run around a field knocking someone down and/or get knocked down
himself. An entertainer the likes Mick Jagger or Elton John doesn't need a
record company they can snap their fingers and start their own record
Record companies don't want any more Mick Jaggers or Frank
Sinatra's or Elvis Presley's or Jim Morrison's or Jimi Hendrix, They want bands
like Hootie and the Blow Fish. They want bands that will never make it past
their third album which usually doesn't even get released.
If a band has a great first album they usually don't make
squat, All the money goes to the record company. After all they paid for the
original promotion, the actual recording and, oh yes those magic advances that
they waved in front of your face to get you to sign the contract. The only
trouble is no one in the band is keeping track of where the record company is
really spending the money. For all the band knows the record company could be
recouping promotion costs from 5 other bands that didn't show a large
Remember the day the band went down to that Great Big Music
Store in Hollywood or NYC and bought all that vintage incredibly expensive
garbage that the record company paid for. It's payback time! Your guitar player
says he doesn't remember that 59 Les Paul costing $145,000.00 in fact he thought
it was much less.
That's right....... there are all kinds of kickback
sweetheart deals with many of the bigger music store chains and the record
companies. In fact one chain of music stores actually has an artist relations
department. These people are paid to go out and pitch record companies for
their business... I wonder what they say to them to get them to buy.... Can you
(Hollywood Rock Walk)
How do I know about this stuff, Because I have been in this
business for 30 years. My first taste of it came when some guy walked into my
store and bought an Eventide Instant Phaser. I was selling it for approximately
$500.00 or so dollars, He told me he needed it for a recording session, the
producer wanted one and they had been looking for one for a long time. He told
me he wanted to insure it for a real lot of money because it was discontinued
and almost irreplaceable. He needed a larger receipt so I obliged him, I think
it was for $2,000.00 or something like that. Curious, I asked him who the
producer was he told me, Phil Ramone who was currently producing the Eagles new
album called Hotel California. Cool....... Several months later I heard "Life in
the Fast Lane" for the first time... s#!t that Eventide Instant Phaser was so
incredibly predominant in that song. I will always wonder what the Eagles paid
for that strange new effect they were using (I think Eventide made the very
first Phaser ever).
Ok, I didn't mean to segue into that story. Let's get back to
how and why the recording companies are trying to hold you back.
Start thinking about it, there are no more super groups,
there are no more Eddie Van Halen's No Jimi Hendrix's. Because the record
companies are purposefully spewing out bland garbage to sell CD's and next month
they want to sell you something totally new, forget that other band... listen to
this great new band.... In this way the poor mindless lemming consumers never
really get to be staunch fans of any band. No more Grateful Deadheads, well
maybe, there are some benefits after all... Just kidding.
So here we are in the 90's and Country & Western is Kickin'
Butt.... My theory is because, it's all about the pickin' The rock bands today
are usually flash in the pan barely memorable carbon blobs. Who remembers Hootie
and the Blowfish. Lets face it dudes. If ya' wanna make it for real ya' gotta
practice the damn guitar, If'n you don't learn how to play it.... no matter how
retro cool you think you look with your baggy shorts and dirty messed up hair
you ain't gonna make it.
This is SHOW BUSINESS that's two words, SHOW and
It's about the SHOW If you want to be remembered you better
learn how to play and put on a good show and oh yeah, look the part.
It's about the BUSINESS, If you have limited talent, and you
can't play real well, Keep pluggin' you'll get better, look at KISS they barely
could play when they started. But they got better and they gave their fans the
shows of their life and even though Gene Simmons is a hard guy to like, He has
my vote as one of the best businessmen in rock. Gene discovered a lot of bands
and is responsible for a lot more than most people know.
So what can we do about this shit......
Hey don't look at me, I don't have all the answers, just the
One of my favorite sayings is "Resistance is
Futile" (I also
like to use the word "cromulent" but that's a different show).
A very Cromulent show indeed.
Fender has recently assimilated Jackson, Gretsch, Hamer,
Tacoma, Guild, Ovation, Takamine, Kaman. Gibralter & I hear they are
talking to PRS also.....
Maybe if we started to think for ourselves, maybe if we
ignored all the media hype, maybe if we didn't blindly believe everything we
read in a magazine that accepts advertisers. Maybe just
Naaaahhhhh, "Resistance is Futile"
Locutus of Borg
Shit, did I go off an a rant or what? Originally this was
supposed to be a short story on the
and I tripped and fell into a rant... Oh well, the Kramer Nightswan was a great
guitar. Because it hasn't been available for almost 13 years, I decided to
Vivian Campbell also played a Rand Guitar which is basically
nonexistent today, Strangely enough I personally own one of his old Rands. The
Abstract Caligula's below are awesome versions of the Rand.