About The Los Dawsons

We were originally an intrepid acoustic quartet from in and around Greenwich, we are now vocals, 2 guitars, electric Bass, Drums and occasional harmonica. We perform as close to acoustically as possible in small venues or amplified in larger ones, we have headlined large festivals but we are just as happy playing in your dining room and have done so on more than one occasion. We play music that encompasses 75 years of popular music; jazz, blues, swing, country, rockabilly, rocknroll, latin, soul, Rhythm and Blues, pops, standards, folk, punk, brit pop and even some originals too... so Rent Parties Bar Mitzvahs or any other suitable occasion is our pleasure or hopefully yours! A snapshot of our latest tracks are featured in the Flash player here, they were recorded live with no overdubs – so this is what we sound like live...

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Super Geeky stuff – our equipment

Someone at the last gig wanted to know how we have a distinct clarity when were playing: (which can be a disadvantage if we make a mistake…) So apart from not playing very loud, and being acoustic and not doubling parts; here is what we use for the tech heads out there.

Daves set up is simple – he uses a top of the range spruce and mahogany cut away Alhambra Spanish nylon strung which has a pickup in it, straight into a AER classical combo amplifier.

I use a variety of steel strung guitars – a cutaway lowden 012 with a fishman magnetic active humbucker p/u, a mahogany 000 martin with a fishman active humbucker, a Hohner Gruhn with a lace magnetic passive or piezo (I think its an artec) or a Maton EGB 808 which is piezo, all of them through a Trace Eliiot acoustic combo, I prefer the fishman sound set up with a jazzy tone though Dave prefers a sparkly acoustic sound, so the Maton currently gets the biggest thumbs up.

Chris uses a Double Bass (usually my Hungarian ply one) with a David Gage transducer into a Gallien Kruger combo. We use condenser AKG handhelds on phantom power into a Peavey PA for vocals only. so nothing that special really. We are very aware of not stamping over each other which may have more to do with the separation of our sound.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

The British Library Gig for Perforce

We were invited to provide the musical entertainment at Perforce Softwares annual event which this year was at the British Library. We were very well treated by Perforce, Leiths (the event company) and the Library security.

For any musician or other performer corporate events have a slightly surreal quality, as the logistics make an interesting pathway to the actual performance... Compliance with risk, health and safety and electrical applance safety testing go hand in hand with whether weve managed to consider the right balance for the sets we have to provide for our audience.

This is all before youve actually struggled round the odd oneway system that now exists round the back of the new Kings Cross St Pancras conurbation, I remember reading a blog of a classical double bassist saying that musicians should be exempt from the congestion charge: I think the congestion charge is a good thing, but it doesnt seem to actively discourage the many vehicles we were in competition with to get into London for 4.30pm.

The thing that seems dramatically to have changed over the twenty years of playing in the west end apart from the increase in the sheer volumes of traffic is the total inability to find reasonable cost for parking as there seems to be nowhere to park, what I like about Italy or France is that it doesnt seem to be one large parking meter like London seems to be these days. Rant over..... I found somewhere to park (with the help of thr Library security man) that didnt have a yellow line - wow a rarity.. and an enormous thank you...

Now theres an idea for a membership website, a route finder for avoiding the congestion charge and then free parking - back to 1980s bliss...

And back to the gig; everyone we were involved with were charming, thoughtful and helpful.. A big thank you to Anna Spiering and her colleagues at Leiths, and Dave Robertson (Director of European Operations at Perforce) his colleagues and Fay for her fantastic Front of House duties.

We seemed to go down well and we were paid a few compliments, a nice evening all in all..