Monday, August 24, 2009

Rock Pyle

This could very well be another laboring read on the influence of my older brother's college record collection. One would bring home the folksy, troubadour style, Kingston Trio then The Byrds then Judy Collins. The other would bring home the Stones, Cream Disraeli Gears and Blue Cheer. Meantime, the folks taste ran along the lines of the Mills Brothers, Sing Along with Mitch and the theme for Dr. Zhivago. The house seemed to swoon to music while my brothers took turns beating me to a bloody pulp. But as I rose from the liquid, it was the Stones and Byrds and maybe a touch of Dinah Shore that stuck with me, or because of my gelatenous state, stuck to me.
Rick Pyle never allowed me to fall on the Beatles side of the Stones/Beatles fence. And from there, I became a devout Keef, hit-the riff-hard disciple. It was Rick Pyle again who shed light on this other much more gifted Keith devotee, and soon to be sideman down the road, Waddy Wachtel. Waddy, he must be a Brit with a name like Waddy. Then I heard Linda Ronstadt's rowdy, Cali-style version of Tumblin' Dice.
Bud Cowsill urged Waddy and his band, Twice Nicely to head west to L.A. from their base in Connecticut. After 2 years of not much/not enough, Waddy began recording and producing the Cowsills, which lead to the swingin' door for artist's and musical directors, The Everly Brothers where he met Warren Zevon, which, lead to an ever growing laundry list of stints with Carole King, James Taylor, Jackson Browne, Linda Ronstadt. Buckingham/Nicks and my personal favorite, the X-pensive Winos. How do you like that, Keith playing with Keith. Waddy Wachtel, besides Ron Wood is the only guitar player I've heard that can hand Keith back to himself. They
both perfectly exemplify rhythm-as-lead. Keith being a bit more artisan rootsey vs. Waddy's studied, no-nonsense chops.
If you've ever seen Martin Scorsese's Shout at the no, Shine a Light, you'd be witness, I think, to the finest recorded performances on film especially on IMax. It's so freakin' loud, in a good way. I could feel myself wanting to stand up and cheer after my favorite songs. The mix and seperation is so clear you can pick out the nuance between Ronnie and Keith.
Those out-of-left-field rhythmic flourishes pop in and out. I'd like to think I can easily tell the difference between the two but I don't think I'd ever put money on it.
Waddy also had and has his hand in scoring films. He played on and in The Poseidon Adventure, FM (in Linda Ronstadts band), Up In Smoke, The Longest Yard, Joe Dirt, The Bench Warmers, House Bunny and Paul Blart Mall Cop to name a few. During a break while working with Adam Sandler, Waddy made a call to Keith to say;"Guess what, I'm playing with a comedian" to which Keith replied;" Yeah, aren't we all?"

A little Wikipeepee
Photo of Waddy from
Photo of Keith and Ronnie backstage 78' from

No comments:

Post a Comment