The boys in the band

outridersKen Layne is peddling some of his old crap. I’m a sucker. I bought a copy.

I never heard the Outriders before. The band was history by the time I met Layne, but not by much. But I should have known these guys. Rick Wilkens and I have crossed paths several times over the years, with many friends in common. Paul Denton played in the Road Hogs, which as I’ve said before, Ken Layne used as a backing band, which is how I met Layne, because the bass player for the Road Hogs was my best friend from high school (and roommate at the time), Todd Hilton. Todd and I were once bandmates. If you remember how Cream used to do band geologies, you can notate all of this some where for future reference.

And how are the Outriders? Not bad. If I had been in San Diego during their salad days (while these longhaired shitkickers were smoking weed and doodling around with six-stringed instruments, I was off protecting my country from the Rooskies), I would have liked these guys. There’s plenty to admire here — good (though not as good as Layne and Denton would later get) musicianship, tight arrangements, good recording quality and songwriting that at least holds your interest. If all that sounds like a left-handed compliment, it’s only because I don’t want to oversell these guys. They were young, and it shows, but there is also a lot of promise, promise that Layne’s later work helps validate. Ditto Denton.

Speaking of music, I’ve dug my old Dell NT Workstation out of mothballs and am turning it into a dedicated digital audio machine. It’s going to server one purpose — recording music. Mostly, it will help me turn some of my LPs into CDs. I’ve found some cheap-o software that is supposed to help make this process easier. We’ll see. I’m trying it out now by recording some Julie London for Billie (she love’s London’s version of “Summer Place”). I’m also hoping it will make it easier to digitize some of my own compositions, such and as few as they are (I can hear the stampede away from my site now with the threat of me putting my own music up).

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