The Yellowjackets. Wow.....where do I even begin? The beginning, that’s where. It was 1981 and there was a car stereo joint on Long Island named Car Tunes. They ran a commercial on one of the local radio stations with one of the hippest, freshest sounding groups I had heard to date. I was an aspiring bassist, avid listener and collector, and knew that right there and then I was hearing something innovative and new. The fact that commercials used backing music and didn’t credit the artist was a point of great frustration, because I
wanted to know who this artist was, in the worst way! For you youngsters, there was no internet back then.
Finally a few months later, the firstYellowjackets album would fall into my hands after one of my famous and weekly record store jaunts. I dropped the needle on the first cut and it was Matinee Idol, the song from the car stereo commercial, and you would have thought I hit the lottery! Every tune on that album is a gem, then and now, and I think it’s an essential album for any serious musician or music lover alike. What began with one album released by four like-minded individuals in 1981, has become an institution. An institution celebrated the world over by thousands of fans from all walks of life. That’s what great music can do, it can unite people who have nothing at all in common except the love of music and how it makes you feel.
If ever there were a group that could accomplish this feat, it is The Yellowjackets. While personnel have changed and the music has taken different directions over the years, one thing remains a constant. The commitment to the music and the fans. We are always treated to top notch compositions, performances and recordings. A new Yellowjackets album is indeed a celebration.
David Segal and I are fans of The Yellowjackets. That my friends is an understatement. I’ve known David for over 30 years now and I still remember how he would always have one of their albums or another playing in his shop as he made basses or did repair work. I also remember thinking, that common thread, was one of the many that wove our friendship together.
Here we find ourselves in 2018, working with an amazing bass force of nature, and super nice cat. Dane Alderson, bassist forThe Yellowjackets and fellow kindred spirit. If you are not yet familiar with this young Aussie, bass assassin, do a YouTube
search. Buy The Yellowjackets last release, Cohearance, he will blow your mind. You’re welcome. Few players possess his facility and musicality on the instrument and I came away immediately realizing that I don’t practice nearly enough. Dane is one of those players that hits you over the head like a sledgehammer and has a transformative affect on you, such is the impact of his musicianship. His deep, soulful and scholarly vocabulary on the bass never obscures the vision of the music he’s playing. He knows what to play and when to unleash that now legendary prowess. A young master is now revealed and deservedly elevated to the world stage. We couldn’t be more excited and look forward to hearing what Dane does with the instrument we are building and fine tuning for him.
His bass will offer some cutting edged advances while still providing that bulletproof reliability we built our reputation upon 20 years ago. We feel privileged to be a part of the journey and will keep pushing like we always do and, The Yellowjacketshave been for over 35 years so stay tuned!