Tamboura Productions' Latest Print That's News to Fit!
Long Time Here. . . Soon Come!
IN 2013, Tamboura Productions celebrated twenty-four years of creating ways to accommodate the diverse demands and shifting sands of the musical marketplace by providing distinctive, diverse and high-quality artistic entertainment at affordable rates for music lovers of all ages.
SINCE 1989, Tamboura has claimed the enduring reputation for being the one and only folkrockin' reggae/calypso beach party dance band in the Berkshire Hills of western Massachusetts...and way beyond. Little did we know at the time what a journey we'd begun, taking us through time and space to venues throughout the Northeast USA, the Caribbean, Italy, Switzerland, England...even Bulgaria!
WE INVITE YOU to peruse the pages of our website. Get acquainted with us by listening to Audio & Video Clips from our musical artists, viewing our travels and adventures in the Photo Gallery, visiting our General Store for recordings, hand-made shakers and cigar box instruments. Or, read some of David Reed's (mostly) light-hearted stories and essays in our Journal. Better yet, come on out to a live show! We believe you'll enjoy what you find under our big red umbrella and hope you'll come back for more!
THANK YOU for supporting Tamboura Productions over the past 24 years!
Doctor Easy Debuts His Cigar Box Guitar Video
For almost three years, Dr. Easy has been sneaking down into the woodshop and foolin' around with David's tools and nicking as much of David's decorative wood as he dares to use on his cigar box instruments. Over the years Dr. E's amassed quite the collection of used cigar boxes, cookie & candy tins, funky hardware, used plumbing parts and whatever interesting things that catch his fancy. He thinks they're interesting, but you should watch this video and reserve your own judgement as to that!
To date, Dr. E has made over 101 instruments from all this junk: 3- and 4-string cigar box guitars, cookie tin banjos and ukeleles, calabash diddly-bows (and a banjo!) and even a bass out of an old mahogany silver service box. Once, when he discovered that the carpenter renovating David's bathroom had tossed out some finished birch plywood and shower board scraps, he gathered them up and made a cool wooden cajon and bongo that he regularly beats the daylights out of!
Dr. Easy has been bugging David to make a video of his creations for many moons. So this year while he was sequestered in his Shackteau in the USVI for several weeks, David got to work on said video. Using iMovie, he mounted a rather steep learning curve, gathered a number of photos of the Doctor's CBGs, recorded a soundtrack using just a pair of CBGs, a detuned acoustic guitar (for a bass!) and a drum loop; and then he dubbed in the narrative voiceover.
"Looks pretty OK, meh-son," quipped the Doctor upon seeing his work for the first time as a video montage. "But don' go lookin' for no Oscar. Or nah money from me!"
Origins of Reggae Banjo Revealed
Six string banjoist and self-proclaimed founder of the 'reggae banjo', Banjo Buoy, attempts to join Bun E. Twinkle's new reggae band. He tries to convince her that her band really needs the wonky new sound of the reggae banjo, but finds Bun E. to be a hard sell. But Banjo Buoy can be very convincing as you shall see in this cartoon from Noodlicious Productions. We can't say for certain, but this cartoon seems to have Dr. Easy's mark all over it. What do you think?
Renaissance Junkies Go For Baroque
photo credit * Rural Intelligence
FOR THE fourth consecutive year in a row, David Reed was asked to provide the music for The Bidwell House Museum's annual fundraiser (www.bidwellhousemuseum.org). The Bidwell House, built in the mid-18th century was the parsonnage of the Rev. Adonijah Bidwell and is one of Monterey, MA's earliest dwellings was to be the setting for the annual gala. As he typically had done in previous years, David was preparing a program of mostly instrumental music played upon guitar, banjo and cigar box instruments. But this year, the Bidwell Board of Directors decided they wanted "music that Reverend Bidwell might have listened to...maybe some recorder music might be nice?"
Uh-oh. Not entirely sure of what ol' Adonijhah might have been groovin' to back in the 1750s (or how !), and never having been too fluent with a recorder, Reed was momentarily flummoxed. But then, he had a flash of inspiration!
Miss Mary, of course! Known for her prowess with her flutes, Mary Knysh is also redolently reliable with recorders. A quick phone call to the peripatetic Miss Mary procured her and six of her recorders for the November Bidwell benefit! Not only would attendees be enthralled by her soprano and alto recorders, they would also share the shrill excitement of her diminutive 5" Garkelein and the deep voice of her giant 48" bass recorder as they played the Baroque and Renaissance music of Praetorius, Bach and Wilhelm the Elder. Besides taking up space, David agreed to provide accompaniment to the mellifluous melee by harmonizing the recorder tunes with his guitar and providing spritely percussion parts with his djembe, though not at the same time.
At one point, the duo decided to improvise quasi baroque/jazz inspired melodies with bass recorder, djembe and foot tambourine. This resulted in benefit participants gathering around, spell-bound and crying out "Bravo! More, more!" It was at this point that David solemnly quipped the new duo would be coined "The Renaissance Junkies" and that their music "would likely gather momentum and influence as American society regresses further into the Dark Ages."
Rumor has it that The Renaissance Junkies will return to benefit the Rev. Bidwell next year. Go figure.
photo * jaime elliot/Tradewinds, St. John, USVI
Rattlin' de Riddim Wit' Wesley
KOKO & THE SUNSHINE BAND is a popular West Indian quelbe, or "scratch band", group from the island of St. John, USVI. Here they are performing for the 20th Annual Folklife Festival recently held at the Annaberg ruins near Maho Bay. Notice that the percussionist, Wesley (left), is playing a pair of genuine RattleCaps made by David Reed hisself! The man obviously knows what de riddim needs! You, too, can shake it (almost) like Wesley...just go to our Dry Ducks Records General Store page and order a RattleCap or two for your own self!
David Reed Helps Celebrate Max Creek's 40th
ONE OF THE COUNTRY'S most legendary and beloved jam bands, Max Creek, were still rockin' hard in April, 2011, as they celebrated forty years of stirrin' up the rock 'n roll jam.
As a founding member of the band back in 1971, David Reed was invited to join his old high school pal and first Max Creek drummer, Bob Gosselin, along with original bassist and current MC member, John Rider, for a lively set of musical reminiscences. Among the tunes they selected to play before an enthusiastically adoring crowd of 400 "Creekers" at The Old Well in Simsbury, CT were "July" (a John Stewart-penned chestnut Reed still keeps in his solo set-list), "Crystal Clear" (a Rider original), and "Wreck of the Old '97" (both tunes added to Reed's solo repertoire since the reunion!).
Later in the set, the original trio was joined by current keyboardist Mark Mercier (who replaced Reed when he left the band in 1976) and guitarist Scott Murawski (who once was a music student of Reed's and can sometimes be found moonlighting with members of the Allman Bros. Band, Phish and Jeff Pevar!) for a rousing version of Paul Simon's "Diamonds On the Soles of Her Shoes" and Reed's chicken-pickin' barn-burner, "Back Porch Boogie Blues" (a tune covered by Phish...see "A Real Phish Story" in the TamPro December 2008 WebJournal).
Here's our Live Performance Schedule. We hope to see you at a show soon, and that you'll continue to support LIVE MUSIC in your community!
"GUITARS, BANJOS & CIGAR BOXES...Oh, My!"
Sometimes occasions arise where a full band might be just too, too much. You know, such as at a family Bar-B-Q, house concert, fine restaurant, coffeehouse, rodeo, etc. (Forget the rodeo). You can always turn to the beachy-keen raggy blues, funky tunes and original music of that eclectic songster/guitarslinger/sailor kinda guy, David Reed to add that special musical je ne sais quoi to your event.
THOUGH DR. EASY is fond of reminding him, "Mistah, you jes' a analog man in a digital worl'!", when David and his eclectic collection of stringed things (and a suitcase bass drum!) appears on the scene, you can be sure your event will be anything but ordinary!
THEN THERE'S TuTu Much, the hardworkin' li'l electracoustic duo that started it all in 1989 with its great, BIG sound ~ hot as Miss Marie's Belizean pepper sauce, cool as a Nantucket breeze!
SOMETIMES FEATURING either the talents of drummer/percussionist Sam Earnshaw or flutist/mandolinist/steel drummer Mary Knysh together with guitarist/singer David Reed, this mighty duo has entertained throughout New England, Switzerland, Italy and enjoys touring the US Virgin Islands as it has every winter since 1999, sharing its unique brand of original folkrock spiced up with a bit o' rootsy reggae & jumpin' calypso.
WE FIGURE if West Indians like you and keep asking you to return to their islands, you must be good!
OF COURSE, there's Tamboura
itself, with its myriad permutations visible to the world, happily playing its own blend of sunny, good-time folkrock'n beach party dance music - with just a touch of Caribbean soul!
EXOTIC STEEL pan, groovin' guitars, fantastic flutes and percolating percussion make you want to grab a lime 'n coconut or Red Stripe, let the sunshine in and dance to Tamboura's easy, breezy escapist music!
IT'S ALMOST like being on Mallory's Pier in Key West at sunset!
And for those who want to shake 'n quake along with de band... or just in the privacy of your own home, check out Dr. Easy's hand-made, Rattle-Cap shakers and, new in 2010, his line of Sonic Boxes - cigar box guitars. You'll just love groovin' to life with your very own Rattle-Cap or Sonic Box cigar box instrument. Can you really afford not to have one? Or two? Go on...take a peek on the Dry Ducks Records Booking/General Store page...you know you want to!