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X JAPAN: Music Documentary ‘We Are X’, Featuring Bassist HEATH, Accepted To SXSW Film Festival

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X JAPAN (L-R): Pata (guitar), Heath (bass), Yoshiki (composer, drums, piano), Toshi (vocals) and Sugizo (violin, guitar).

X JAPAN (L-R): Pata (guitar), Heath (bass), Yoshiki (composer, drums, piano), Toshi (vocals) and Sugizo (violin, guitar).

X JAPAN: Music Documentary ‘We Are X’, Featuring Bassist HEATH, Accepted To SXSW Film Festival…

The new music documentary on the Japanese rock group X JAPAN titled ‘WE ARE X’from Passion Pictureshas been accepted to the SXSW Film Festival happening March 11-19 in Austin, TX. The documentary will be shown as part of SXSW Film Festival’s “24 Beats Per Second” which showcases the sounds, culture and influence of music and musicians with an emphasis on documentary and is open to both music and film badgeholders. ‘WE ARE X’ is the only documentary accepted to both the SXSW and Sundance Film Festivals this year.

WE ARE X produced by two-time Academy Award winner John Battsek (Searching For Sugarman, Listen To Me Marlon) and directed by Stephen Kijak (Stones In Exile, Scott Walker: 30th Century Man) which won the Special Jury Award for “Best Editing”at the 2016 Sundance Film Festival Awards (Jan. 20) in Park City, UT.The film, edited by Mako Kamitsuna and John Maringuoin and assisted by June Okada, earned rousing ovations during its six Sundance screenings throughout the week.

‘WE ARE X’ explores the evolution, groundbreaking history and hopeful future of the land of the rising sun’s most legendary rock group. From X JAPAN’s massive success (over 30 million albums, singles and videos sold) and sold-out tours worldwide, ‘WE ARE X’ chronicles the triumphs and tragedies of this legendary quintet who will never give up and continue to tour the world performing sold-out shows to massive arenas in 16 countries throughout the U.S. and Europe.

Following the world premiere screening Sundance, YOSHIKI–songwriter, drummer, classically-trained pianist and the creative leader of X JAPAN–stated, “The dark doors I had closed from my past became an entrance to the future. If there wasn’t music and the band members would not have been there, it’s clear I would not be here today.”

During Sundance week, YOSHIKI thrilled audiences performing at live venues including the official Sundance Festival Base Camp and the ASCAP Cafe playing classical versions of X JAPAN’s songs with a string quartet.Following the’WE ARE X‘ film premiere, Chef Dance hosted a dinner honoring the film prepared by Los Angeles-based chef Louis Tikaram (of EP & LP). The Chef Dance dinner and party featured guests including actors Octavia Spencer, Donovan Leitch and Julliette Lewis along with singers Josh Groban and Keb’ Mo alongside industry luminaries.DJ/Producer Balthazar Getty and EDM pioneer DJ Paul Oakenfold entertained guests for the official after party.

Japan’s most iconic rock band, X JAPAN initially split up in 1997 after playing their fifth New Year’s Eve show at the 55,000-capacity Tokyo Dome;theyhave now sold out the Tokyo Dome a record 18 times. The group reformed in 2007 and have released three singles: “I.V.” in 2008, “Jade” in 2011 and “Born To Be Free” in late 2015. They’ve been touring worldwide ever since and in October 2014, the group performed their debut Madison Square Garden show in New York before announcing the new album and ‘WE ARE X’ film releases slated for 2016.

X JAPANYOSHIKI (drums/piano/composer), TOSHI (vocals), PATA (guitar), HEATH (bass), SUGIZO (violin/guitar) alongside their fallen brothers HIDE (guitars, 1987-1997) and TAIJI (1986-1992)–are currently laying down tracks in a Los Angeles studio for their as-yet-untitled album, which is due for a worldwide release in late 2016.

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Interview With Bassist Curly Hendo

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Interview Wity Bassist Curly Hendo

Bassist Curly Hendo…

Hailing from Sydney, Australia, bassist Curly Hendo has been super busy. Starting with dance from a young age, Curly took up bass shortly after and has been going strong ever since. She has collaborated with numerous acts worldwide and is an in-demand session/touring bassist and musical director.

Join me as we learn about Curly’s musical journey, how she gets her sound, and her plans for a very bright future.

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New Gear: Aguilar Amplification Next-generation Tone Hammer and AG Series Amplifiers

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New Gear: Aguilar Amplification Next-generation Tone Hammer and AG Series Amplifiers

New Gear: Aguilar Amplification Next-generation Tone Hammer and AG Series Amplifiers…

Aguilar Amplification is excited to unveil the next generation of Tone Hammer and AG series amplifiers. These amplifiers are designed to meet the exacting standards of today’s bassists, enhancing their musical expression through in-demand features and fresh new designs.

The latest innovations in the Tone Hammer and AG series include the introduction of the Aguilar Cabinet Suite, dual XLR outputs, expanded connectivity options, and power section upgrades. These features not only provide superior sound quality and flexibility but also maintain the classic Aguilar performance that musicians have relied upon.

Key features of the next-generation amplifiers:

Aguilar Cabinet Suite: This new software allows players to load Aguilar ’s custom-designed SL/DB cabinet impulse responses (IRs), or their own custom IR files. This feature is available through both XLR and headphone outputs, offering new tone shaping and cabinet emulation options.
 
Dual XLR Outputs & Expanded Connectivity: Musicians can now tailor their tone and utilize cabinet IRs for their monitor mix, while also sending a pre-EQ ’d signal directly to the front-of-house. This dual functionality ensures optimal sound for both the artist and front-of-house. The new amplifiers include auxiliary input and headphone output options for silent practice. They also feature mix controls to fine-tune the listening experience, ideal for both practice and performance.

Upgraded Power Sections: Previously exclusive to Aguilar’s 700-series, the upgraded power sections in the Tone Hammer and AG 500 now support a 2.67 ohm load and include universal mains. These enhancements make the amplifiers perfect for international touring, offering seamless voltage adaptation.

“The new Tone Hammer and AG series amplifiers are a testament to Aguilar ’s commitment to world class sound and performance, providing bassists with the tools they need to define their sound on the global stage,” remarks Jordan Cortese, Brand Manager, Aguilar Musical Instruments.

The next-generation Tone Hammer and AG series amplifiers are available for purchase through www.aguilaramp.com and Aguilar’s extensive dealer network worldwide. For more information about the new amplifiers and other Aguilar products, please visit www.aguilaramp.com.

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Artist Update With Bassist Derek Frank

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Artist Update With Bassist Derek Frank

Bassist Derek Frank…

Many of you will remember the last time I chatted with Derek Frank was back in 2017. The main thing that impressed me was how busy Derek was and how he juggled playing with many huge acts.

Now, I am happy to hear that Derek launched a new album last March titled “Origin Story” where he digs deep into his roots and pays homage to Pittsburg.

Join me as we get caught up after all these years and hear the details about the new album, how Derek gets his sound, and his plans for the future.

Photo, Stephen Bradley

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www.derekfrank.com
www.instagram.com/derekfrankbass
www.youtube.com/derekfrankbass
www.facebook.com/derekfrankbass

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String Instrument Humidifiers

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String Instrument Humidifiers

String Instrument Humidifiers

After living in some very humid parts of the country for decades, we moved to a dryer, much sunnier location. As a result, I started noticing some fret sprout on my string instruments and recently did a video on fret sprout correction.

It occurred to me that I should take a more preventative approach to string instrument humidification. Of course, I turned to my instrument maintenance experts, Music Nomad Equipment Care, for a solution and they suggested their Humitar series. (Note: They sent two press samples and I purchased the remainder online.)

Join me as I look at these useful tools for keeping my string instruments in tip-top condition.

The Humitar series is available online at Music Nomad Equipment Care, as well as Amazon.com

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Interview With Bassist Graham Stanush

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Interview With Bassist Graham Stanush

Bassist Graham Stanush…

Return to Dust is keeping Grunge alive and well! They have a new self-titled album that went out on May 3rd, 2024 and will be super busy promoting this project in the near future.

Graham Stanush is the bass powerhouse driving their sound and adding vocals to the mix. Join me as we hear all about Graham’s musical journey, details about the new album, how he gets his sound and their plans for the future.

Visit Online:

linktr.ee/returntodust
instagram.com/returntodustband/
twitter.com/Returntodustbnd
youtube.com/@returntodustband
tiktok.com/@returntodustband

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