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Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Social Distortion and Neil Young

Social Distortion's Mike Ness

The Neil Young and Crazy Horse 1991 Ragged Glory/Weld Tour is remembered fondly for a lot of reasons.

Most folks remember a couple of distinct moments. The volume described as being at jet noise decibel levels is often remembered because folks ears still ring 20 years on.

Another memory is the two opening bands: Social Distortion and Sonic Youth. Sonic Youth have vividly described their memories of the tour in the 1994 Sonic Youth biography "I Dreamed Of Noise" written by Ignacio Julia and Jaime Gonzalo.

Now with Social Distortion going out on tour with their new album Hard Times and Nursery Rhymes, singer and guitarist Mike Ness recalls opening for Neil Young and Crazy Horse on the 1991 Ragged Glory/Weld Tour

From Social Distortion Gears Up for Tour, Talks New Album | Rolling Stone Music by Greg Prato:
Mike Ness: It was a great experience.

It was also a dues paying experience, because back then, even if we did have 500 fans there, which would have been large for that period of time, they were scattered because of this prearranged seating thing that our fans were not used to. Second of all, we were going on at 8, where most people were just finishing their dinner and figuring which off-ramp to get off at.

I know we got some converts from that, but the main thing that I got out of that was that was the main period of time where I was going back and forth searching for my guitar tone, amps and all that. I really learned a lot from those guys – from Neil's guitar tech [Larry Cragg], as far as Fender amps, Gibson P-90 pick-ups and Les Paul Deluxes. And the other thing was it was right when I was becoming very 'groove aware' – realizing that if a song doesn't have a groove, you're just bashing through chords.

I would watch Crazy Horse basically turn their back on 10-15,000 people, face the drummer, get this groove and then come back out.

Rig Rundown - Social Distortion's Mike Ness & Jonny Wickersham

Premier Guitar's Chris Kies is On Location in Council Bluffs, IA, where he catches up with Social Distortion's Mike Ness and Jonny Wickersham and they talk to us about their current live rigs and setups.

Ness' current live setup includes 70s Gibson Les Paul Deluxes (two-goldtops), a '67 Fender Bassman head going through two Marshall 1960B 4x10 cabs. The only pedal in his setup is a Boss SD-1 Overdrive. Wickersham's setup includes original '60s Les Paul Juniors and a '50s Telecaster that run through a Satellite head and two Marshall 4x12 cabs.

More on Neil Young and Crazy Horse on the 1991 Ragged Glory/Weld Tour and Sonic Youth.

Also, see Neil Young's Rig: his Sound, Guitars, Amps, and Equipment.

Also, other bands influenced by Neil Young.

Thanks Scott! Thanks Keith!

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At 4/05/2011 11:22:00 AM, Blogger Keith said...

Mike also discussed the Ragged Glory tour (saying pretty much the same thing, with some more interesting guitar talk) in this video from last year:

At 4/05/2011 12:35:00 PM, Blogger Jonathan said...

I'm pretty sure in 'Shakey' Thurston Moore claims that neither he nor anyone else in Sonic Youth actually spoke with Neil throughout the entire tour - but of course I could be mistaken.


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