Being a TV comedian/director/TV producer does not mean that you cannot play and record music that you like.
That's what I do both on stage and in my cozy home studio.
My influences are: Frank Zappa, ELP, Igor Stravinsky, John McLaughlin, all that crazy Drum'n'Bass, neat Scandinavian jazz, Steely Dan, Allan Holdsworth, etc.
Although I perform live with my band SSG quite a lot lately, I cannot call myself a true professional guitarist. Playing both bass and guitar, I consider myself a snob of the both worlds, and even a luthier, in a sense.
As a dedicated Citroen lover, I do believe that musical instruments must have proper aesthetics in the first place. Yes, this is more important to me than all that technical data. Or at least it used to be so until recently...
I remember buying my first Citroen ten years or so ago, it was this huge CX. At the time, I didn't know that those cars were equipped with hydropneumatic suspension and lots of other sophisticated stuff, - to me they were merely nice things, pieces of art. It was quite astonishing to know them better...
The same happened to me "Steinberger-wise". Of course, when I first saw an L or XL bass on TV two decades ago, I didn't realize how advanced this thing was technically, I had no idea it was the graphite, I knew nothing of Steinberger tuners, just kept wondering how those guys kept their basses in tune.
Having at that time a Hohner guitar (not a Steinberger copy) and an Ibanez bass in my arsenal, I don't know when and why I decided to obtain a Steinberger. It was rather programmed in my mind, I guess. And so it was, on one faithful afternoon in Edinburgh, I found a music store and a black cheap all-wooden Spirit in it. I bought it, rather on a whim.
When I got back home, I went through eBay seeking for Steinbergers and eventually googled nearly everything about the brand. And it was only then that I got acquainted with the graphite thing (which explained why my Spirit was so cheap - a £200 and why it was called Spirit). And, just like in my love story with the Citroen, I realized why these guitars and basses were so technically superb, not only looking like nothing else.
Although my judgements are merely a personal thing, I do believe that British aircraft engineers of the pre WWII days could pass their "What looks right is right" not only on the Spitfire, this very same could be said about the Steinberger, too.
And then it all began. As a complete madman, I subsequently bought all my Steinbergers: 5 string fretless Synapse, XL 2, XM 2, two GM7TA's, and a ZT3 (not counting my Spirit and yet another Hohner, the GT3 which I would never recommend if you use the tremolo). Yes, I do now posses not only my modest Citroen collection (a CX Limousine included!), I can now proudly introduce myself as a Steinberger collector, at least in my country.
A television comedian, grouped with professional jazzmen, his friends, in a sophisticated jazz/rock/funk band SSG, lucky enough to care not about audience's opinion on his music, playing proudly his Steinbergers on stage. It's all about me.
A Closer Look...
Here are some links that you just might find interesting. I've known Algis for some time now and his popularity has grown by leaps and bounds since I first met him. For those of you that are interested in contacting him please simply email me and I will forward to him.
Tony Hajicek, Indiana