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Author Topic:  Funkiest Nastiest pedal steel playing ever recorded
Fred Treece


From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 12 Apr 2019 10:06 am    
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Pardon the hyperbole in the topic, but who besides Rusty Young played in this style? Not being rhetorical. I love it and I’d really like to know. Did other players think they would be accused of copy-catting it?
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=ZMyUjGdqBps
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Donny Hinson


From:
Glen Burnie, Md. U.S.A.
Post  Posted 12 Apr 2019 3:41 pm    
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Hard to tell what the steel's doing in there, but most of what I hear is straight guitar. Maybe Rusty's doing the Leslie-organ stuff? Anyway, Mike Nesmith of The Monkees did some pretty funky pedal steel playing on their "Headquarters" album. (Check out "Peter Gunn's Gun".) The steel's definitely not up-front, though.

Other good stuff includes:

Dave Ristrim's "Crisis At The Theme Park", with some avant-garde stuff done, I believe, with an IVL Steelrider (steel-based synth).

Anything by Robert Randolph, Roosevelt Collier, the Graces, or Elder Joseph Randall. Most all the Sacred Steelers can get down with some pretty funky stuff.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ElTsu6xvOko&t=1164s

Put "Sacred Steel" in YouTube, and you get to see some pretty talented players.


Last edited by Donny Hinson on 18 Apr 2019 6:20 am; edited 1 time in total
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Fred Treece


From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 12 Apr 2019 4:09 pm    
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Yes, Donny, the Leslie/wah-wah stuff is Rusty, in between the weird rhythm guitar and sparse lead guitar right there in the intro. There’s a solo over the A section too.

Just wondering who if anybody else ever recorded pedal steel in this funky style. I will check out those Monkees tunes.
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David Nugent


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Gum Spring, Va.
Post  Posted 13 Apr 2019 3:39 am    
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'Sneaky' Pete Kleinow comes immediately to mind as well as Buddy Cage.
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Pete Burak


From:
Portland, OR USA
Post  Posted 14 Apr 2019 4:21 am    
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Here's one for you, Fred.
Gene O'Neil - Funky Monkey
https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=vroXlv9gXTI
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Jack Hanson


From:
San Luis Valley, USA
Post  Posted 14 Apr 2019 8:37 am    
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Depending on how one defines "funky & nasty" of course, but some of the bluesier passages on Big Hits on Big Steel does it for me.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nYQ2rCuedc0
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Fred Treece


From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 14 Apr 2019 8:53 am    
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That’s so 🆒, Pete! Looks like Mr. O’Neil had some fun with that one.
Curly Chalker’s take on Boots...love that one too. The intro is a super tease!

Still not dirty enough, though... I think Rusty might have had the market cornered on what I’m talking about. Maybe it was a thing that only fit with Poco’s music, I don’t know.

There were certainly other great players in that era rockin it up on pedal steel. One of my favorite’s is Buddy Cage’s solo at the end of Bob Dylan’s “Meet Me In The Morning”, which should have been given another minute or two before fading out. The interplay between guitar and steel throughout the song is brilliant against the vocal and half-time groove backdrop, and a perfect setup for the solo.
https://vimeo.com/202391985
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Jim Robbins


From:
Ontario, Canada
Post  Posted 14 Apr 2019 9:35 am    
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A couple RR examples:

https://fairfieldtheatre.org/shows/robert-randolph-family-band

https://www.infinityhall.com/Events/robert-randolph-and-the-family-band-upbeat-uptempo-funk-and-soul-7-18-2019/
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Mike Daly


From:
Tennessee
Post  Posted 15 Apr 2019 5:30 am    
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Here is some more Robert Randolph... His solo starts around 1:25...
https://youtu.be/i0tGNCB7iR0
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scott murray


From:
Asheville, NC
Post  Posted 15 Apr 2019 12:28 pm    
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I think Emmons and Chalker could play as funky and nasty as anyone. Julian Tharpe, Sneaky Pete, Paul Franklin and several others come to mind also.

reminds me of something Sneaky said when he was described as the only steel player who used distortion... something like, "other players could have used it too, they just chose not to" Laughing
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Dennis Olearchik


From:
Newtown, PA
Post  Posted 15 Apr 2019 4:34 pm    
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I think Rusty created that sound on the 2nd Poco album. It’s a great album!
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Fred Treece


From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 15 Apr 2019 5:53 pm    
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Dennis Olearchik wrote:
I think Rusty created that sound on the 2nd Poco album. It’s a great album!

👍Nobody’s Fool👍
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Jack Aldrich


From:
Washington, USA
Post  Posted 16 Apr 2019 10:59 am    
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Donny Hinson wrote:
Hard to tell what the steel's doing in there, but most of what I hear is straight guitar. Maybe Rusty's doing the Leslie-organ stuff? Anyway, Mike Nesmith of The Monkees did some pretty funky pedal steel playing on their "Headquarters" album. (Check out "Peter Gunn's Gun".) The steel's definitely not up-front, though.
Actually, it's Red Rhodes playing steel on all of Mike's LP's. Mike and Red played McCabes regularly in the 70's.
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Mark van Allen


From:
Watkinsville, Ga. USA
Post  Posted 16 Apr 2019 1:19 pm    
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It’s a different kind of “funk”, but Roosevelt Collier with the Lee Boys...
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Pete Burak


From:
Portland, OR USA
Post  Posted 16 Apr 2019 1:35 pm    
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Fred, Have you heard Dirty Business by NRPS?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wtqBneWHmMk
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Darvin Willhoite


From:
Roxton, Tx. USA
Post  Posted 16 Apr 2019 6:36 pm    
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Even Lloyd Green did a funky thing on one of his old albums, was it "Tom's Tavern Blues"? I can't remember for sure.
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Fred Treece


From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 16 Apr 2019 7:26 pm    
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This is great, I love all these entries. They’re all familiar names except for Roosevelt Collier, and all worth a listen. Thank you Pete (wow that was some dirty steel by Mr. Cage!), Darvin, Mark, and everyone else for contributing.

So far it seems just me and Dennis Olearchik think Rusty Young is the king of funky nasty steel. For me, it has to do with his percussive phrasing, the timing of his wah pedal, and almost no sliding. And the Leslie w/overdrive tone, of course.
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Mike Bacciarini


From:
San Luis Obispo, California
Post  Posted 17 Apr 2019 2:09 pm    
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One more vote for Rusty. Not only nasty-funky, but bluesy, rocking, sweet, ethereal... whatever the song called for. Poco's 2nd album really showcases this, as well as the DeLIVErin' live album. Sitting at his steel with a dobro on his lap, and switching between psg, dobro, "organ"... it was such a great show live. Fred's right about Rusty's technique being the key... using the wah to simulate B3 drawbars, as well as bar technique. A very talented and clever guy.
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Joe Goldmark


From:
San Francisco, CA 94131
Post  Posted 17 Apr 2019 8:30 pm    
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If you're talking funky steel players, my vote goes to Lew Huston with Conway Twitty (before John Hughey).
Check out "Working Girl" first a live version, then the recorded version.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOZ4AWWLtXw

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Onus8N3AROE
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Donny Hinson


From:
Glen Burnie, Md. U.S.A.
Post  Posted 18 Apr 2019 6:01 am    
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Jack Aldrich wrote:
Donny Hinson wrote:
Hard to tell what the steel's doing in there, but most of what I hear is straight guitar. Maybe Rusty's doing the Leslie-organ stuff? Anyway, Mike Nesmith of The Monkees did some pretty funky pedal steel playing on their "Headquarters" album. (Check out "Peter Gunn's Gun".) The steel's definitely not up-front, though.
Actually, it's Red Rhodes playing steel on all of Mike's LP's.


I know that Red played on a lot of Nesmith (Monkees) stuff, and my personal fave is "Joanne". But Mike is said by several sources (see below) to have played steel on this particular song:

Quote:
"Peter Gunn's Gun" (Jam Session)

Written by Henry Mancini
Spoken words by Peter Tork, Micky Dolenz and Michael Nesmith
Steel Guitar: Michael Nesmith
Drums: Micky Dolenz
Tambourine: Davy Jones
Piano: Peter Tork
Engineered by: Hank Cicalo
This was one of numerous studio jams the boys concocted during recording.
Recorded at RCA Victor Studio C, Hollywood, March 11, 1967 (12:00 P.M. - 12:00 A.M.)


Quote:
The Monkees
Peter Gunn's Gun
Overview
----------------------
User Reviews

Song Review by Matthew Greenwald
Another in-the-studio jam that was recorded while the Monkees were recording Headquarters, this slightly demented version of the Henry Mancini classic actually works -- sometimes. A weird, dissonant mixture of piano, bass guitar, drums, and Michael Nesmith on a somewhat untutored pedal steel guitar, it's both strange and infectious at the same time, and could almost be called avant-garde. Nevertheless, it showcases the Monkees evolving into a loose ensemble, and even a rock band.


Quote:
Headquarters (album)
Session information
The Monkees

Micky Dolenz - vocals, drums, zither, rhythm guitar, shaker, timpani
Davy Jones - vocals, percussion
Michael Nesmith - vocals; electric and acoustic lead, rhythm, and 12-string guitars; steel guitar; organ
Peter Tork - vocals, acoustic 12-string and electric guitars, piano, organ, celeste, electric piano, bass, banjo
Additional musicians and production staff'

Chip Douglas - bass, producer
Hank Cicalo - engineer
John London - bass, tambourine
Jerry Yester - bass
Frederick Seykora - cello
Vincent DeRosa - French horn


Jack, my main interest is always accuracy. If you can come up with some more info on this, let me know.

Very Happy
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Glenn Suchan


From:
Austin, Texas
Post  Posted 18 Apr 2019 6:05 am    
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The one that spun my head around is from Buddy Emmons' One For The Road album titled "Plus Nine (Minus Three)". I don't know if it can be heard on line, but it's completely solo pedal steel guitar and it's killer.

Also, since Buddy Cage was mentioned, NRPS' "Death and Destruction" from the Gypsy Cowboy album:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IZXmj6KjK2I

Keep on pickin'!
Glenn
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Georg Sørtun


From:
Mandal, VA, Norway & Weeki Wachee, FL, USA
Post  Posted 18 Apr 2019 8:48 am    
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Darvin Willhoite wrote:
Even Lloyd Green did a funky thing on one of his old albums, was it "Tom's Tavern Blues"? I can't remember for sure.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UASaVxkN_o8
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Darvin Willhoite


From:
Roxton, Tx. USA
Post  Posted 18 Apr 2019 7:00 pm    
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Thanks Georg, that's it.
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Darvin Willhoite
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Dave Zirbel


From:
Sebastopol, CA USA
Post  Posted 18 Apr 2019 8:22 pm    
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Not really nasty but funky?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Gqa_-Q-vgNY

Steel comes in at about 2 minutes

Very Happy
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Fred Treece


From:
California, USA
Post  Posted 18 Apr 2019 9:46 pm    
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Dave Zirbel wrote:
Not really nasty but funky?

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Gqa_-Q-vgNY

Steel comes in at about 2 minutes

Very Happy

Not to be confused with John Hughey, but that’s John & Huey...
Good stuff, Dave. Yep that’s funky ah-ight!

And that Conway Twitty tune Joe G. posted sounds like something Rodney Crowell would do about 15 years later. Mr. Huston was quite the chicken picker on steel.
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