Guild Sighting - Benjamin Orr (The Cars)

twocorgis

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Sooo, my band is in the final throes of rehearsal for our Ukraine Benefit (with Harry Chapin's Long Island Cares food bank). While we're the house band and will play our own set, the headliner is Long Island's own Elliot Easton, and I'm pretty excited to be playing with a guy that's legitimately in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame (and yeah, I know the RnRHof is kinda lame, but I digress). Of course we have to do a set of Cars music, and one of the selections is "Just What I Needed" which if not their biggest hit, was certainly one of them. Oddly enough, I've been using my blue Pilot bass a lot lately, and will probably play it for the benefit because the blue almost matches the blue in the Ukrainian flag. And it sounds pretty damn good too!

While working on the bass lines, I stumbled into this clip from "Live Aid" in 1985, and lo and behold, what is Benjamin Orr playing? A black Pilot bass! It looks to be an early one with a pickguard, which would figure, this is from 1985,


For those of you that might be in the area, (shameless plug alert), please consider coming down and supporting these poor Ukrainian folks. $65 isn't a bad deal for free food and grog for four hours, and all proceeds are going directly to relief.

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We even managed to get a little digital ink from the local Patch, and are hoping for a good turnout. Plenty of room at Mulcahy's for those worried about crowds.

 

HeyMikey

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Very cool. He is definitely one of my 80’s guitar heroes. Very talented player. Saw the Cars a few times in the 80’s. Loved their music.
 

twocorgis

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I never realized that Orr did some of the vocals to some of these classics. I always figured it was the other guy. How cool!
Sadly he died tragically of pancreatic cancer back in 2000, and he was lead vocalist on some of their biggest hits.
 

twocorgis

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Very cool. He is definitely one of my 80’s guitar heroes. Very talented player. Saw the Cars a few times in the 80’s. Loved their music.
Definitely a talented guy, and considering he went to Berklee College of Music, he has some credentials for sure. Going to be a real honor to play with him.
 
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HeyMikey

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Yeah, Ben had a very good “singing” voice which really stands out on ballads like Drive, while Rick had the quirky new wave voice that gave them a trendy edge on songs like My Best Friend’s Girl. Both sadly gone now but their music lives on.
 

Westerly Wood

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This is my favorite Cars song:


The video itself is equally amazing to me, a large moving van shows up out front of the house/apt etc...this band was so straight edged and sheer. At the same time, had great humor in their perfection. I am sure Ocasek kept them just odd enough.
 
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crank

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That one is in the setlist. Always thought it was kind of a dumb song, but the guitar solo is great!
I saw the Cars right around that era at Nassau Coliseum. They were one of those bands that sound live just like they do on the record... Which is not my favorite thing. However, they were so tight and sounded so good that I'm really glad I went.

I remember reading an interview in Guitar Player or somewhere; he used 3 different guitars on that Shake It Up solo.

Should be a really great time. Wow, backing up Elliot Easton!
 

Westerly Wood

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I saw the Cars right around that era at Nassau Coliseum. They were one of those bands that sound live just like they do on the record... Which is not my favorite thing. However, they were so tight and sounded so good that I'm really glad I went.

I remember reading an interview in Guitar Player or somewhere; he used 3 different guitars on that Shake It Up solo.

Should be a really great time. Wow, backing up Elliot Easton!
They also were known for being totally sober. That could have something to do with the live performances. And I bet their goal was to totally nail the recording when playing live.
 
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