First up was Deke Dickerson, and his Eccophonics. Deke is one of those guys I don't think about going to see all the time. But when I do, I always enjoy myself. He plays a style/styles of Music I'm not really into. As in I don't buy the cd's of Rootsrock/rockabilly, but Live I totally dig it and can get into the vibe, and appreciate the music more.
I'm not even going to try to go over a song list. But needless to say, I'm sure they covered his career, and Dave Stucky got up and they did a few songs with him also. Garret from the Ghastly Ones is Deke's new rhythm guitarist.
Then Ventures Mania took the Stage (minus Nokie) and did an excellent set of not totally obscure, but more obscure than the standard Ventures set of originals and covers. Diamondhead, 2000 lb. Bee, He Never Came Back are a few I can think of. They sounded really tight, and well rehearsed. I thought the treble could have been turned up. But Marty Tippens said up front the guitars sounded fine. It must have been all the bodies filling up the place (about 300 some said). I wish they had some reverb on the guitars. But I know that no reverb is more the Ventures sound. Such is life.
Next up all 4 of the Ventures Mania were joined by Nokie Edwards. You can tell he's getting up there in age, but walks and moves around very well still. And I saw him talking to some people and he has all his wits to him still, and seems to be in good spirits. Deke said he has been in town filming the Deadwood series on HBO. So he asked him to join them for the show. So the first thing that shocked me was that he sits down on a stool to play. So there went any chance of seeing him play from where I was. I did go up front for a song to see his fingers fly on a song, but then went back to my seat. Venturesmania played a more run of the mill set of Ventures songs, and covers, such as Perfidia, Lullaby of the Leaves, Penetration, Pipeline, Wipeout, Caravan, and others. I will say he's a very good guitarist, but I was a bit let down by all the hype. I was expecting to see a Chet Atkins / Joe Maphis caliber type player. Not even close. Just sounded like a good instro/surf player. No mistakes that I noticed, and his timing and sound levels very consistent. Just not the style, or intensity I'm really into.
I'm glad I got to see him before it was too late. and I'm not trying to take anything away from him. He totally deserves all the recognition he has got, and will get. And I think that he and the Ventures should definitely be in the rock and roll hall of fame.
PS. Venturesmania used old Ventures model Mosrites, plugged into Showman amps. Nokie had the newer custom model guitar he's been using lately (sorry don't know the maker) but it has gold hardware, and a flammed maple top I believe. My buddy Ran told me that he saw one reverb tank on stage. But I have a feeling it never got used. :-(