Rob Grange

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Rob Grange
Born 1950 (age 63–64)
Origin Flint, Michigan, United States
Genres Progressive rock, hard rock, heavy metal
Occupation(s) Musician, songwriter, composer, singer
Instruments Bass guitar, vocals
Years active 1965–present
Labels DiscReet Records, Epic Records, Warner Bros. Records
Associated acts Sonny Hugg, The Amboy Dukes, Ted Nugent, St Paradise, Duke X
Website Official website

Rob Grange (born 1950 in Flint, Michigan, United States), is an American rock bass guitarist, best known for his work with Ted Nugent and his unique phase bass lines in the song "Stranglehold"[citation needed].

Career[edit]

Sonny Hugg[edit]

Grange was a member of Sonny Hugg, a Michigan early progressive rock group that released one single in 1970 on Silo Records in Lansing, MI. It was a cover tune titled "Daybreak" and was written by Richard Zehringer later known as Rick Derringer of The McCoys. Sonny Hugg was composed of Craig Marsden on lead vocals and guitar, Barry Best on keys and vocals, Rob Ross on drums, and Grange on bass.[1]

The Amboy Dukes[edit]

In June 1971, Grange (vocals, bass) became a member of the rock band Ted Nugent and The Amboy Dukes with Nugent (vocals, lead guitar, percussion), John Angelos (vocals, harmonica) and Joe Vitale (drums), the latter replaced in January 1972 by K.J. Knight (vocals, drums). In March 1972, Angelos left the band and was replaced by Danny Gore (lead vocals, rhythm guitar). In October 1972, Knight and Gore left the band and were replaced by Vic Mastrianni (vocals, drums).

In 1973, the band recorded an album titled Call of the Wild with the help of session men Andy Jezowski (vocals) and Gabriel "Gabe" Magno (organ Hammond B-3, piano, synthesizer, flute). Magno also went on the road with the band, but after a few gigs, they decided to drop having a live keyboard player and went back to a three piece line up.[2]

In 1974, the band released the album Tooth Fang & Claw, and soon after Mastrianni left the band and was replaced by Derek St. Holmes (vocals, rhythm guitar) and Brian Staffield (drums). At this point Nugent dropped The Amboy Dukes name and the band became The Ted Nugent Band. They were definitely a "band" and all of them wanted that and discussed it. None of them considered themselves as "back up players". One of the conditions of St. Holmes joining them, was it was called a "band". So, they toured as The Ted Nugent Band and, in 1975, after replacing Staffield with Cliff Davies on vocals and drums, they went into the studio to do their first album, which at the time was unnamed, for Epic Records.

Ted Nugent[edit]

The Ted Nugent Band

At this point, David Krebs of Leber & Krebs Management, who also managed Aerosmith, convinced Nugent to drop the "band" and just call it "Ted Nugent". This was a total surprise to the "band" and it was the beginning of the end. The nucleus of Rob Grange, Derek St. Holmes, and Cliff Davies for songwriting, as well as arranging, was forever broken. The make up of the original members was really as a "band". In 1978, three years later and with four platinum albums titled Ted Nugent, Free-for-All, Cat Scratch Fever and Double Live Gonzo!, Grange and St. Holmes moved on to form a new rock band, St. Paradise, because Nugent did not want a "band concept". In Martin Popoff's book, "Epic Ted Nugent", Nugent admits that the song "Stranglehold", was co-written by Grange, yet he never received a share for co-writer.[3][4] Their last concert together, as the original line up, was Cal Jam 2 on March 18, 1978.[5]

St. Paradise[edit]

St. Paradise

Grange and St. Holmes moved forward with a new band called St. Paradise featuring Denny Carmassi of Montrose on drums and John Corey later of the 1994 reunion of The Eagles on keyboards. They released one eponymous album for Warner Bros. in 1979, before splitting up. The LP album BSK 3281 contained the following nine tracks:[6]

Track Title Composed Time
1 "Straight To You" St. Holmes 3:52
2 "Gamblin' Man" Eric Kaz 2:56
3 "Jackie" Carmassi, Grange & St. Holmes 3:43
4 "Miami Slide" St. Holmes 3:36
5 "Hades" Grange 4:01
6 "Live It Up" St. Holmes & Nugent 3:30
7 "Jesse James" Carmassi, Grange & St. Holmes 4:52
8 "Tighten The Knot" St. Holmes 5:06
9 "Beside The Sea" St. Holmes 5:23

2010 Dallas International Guitar Festival[edit]

Grange, St. Holmes and Nugent were reunited on stage after more than 30 years at the festival and played "Just What The Doctor Ordered" from their first album Ted Nugent and the classic Chuck Berry tune "Johnny B Goode" featuring blues guitar legend Bugs Henderson.[7][8]

Duke X[edit]

"Duke X"[9] is a new project with Rob Grange – Bass (Sonny Hugg, Amboy Dukes, Ted Nugent, St. Paradise), Danny Gore – Guitars/Keyboards (Ormandy, Amboy Dukes), and Matt Bowers – Drums (Kill Betty, PRS Band and Derek St Holmes). "Duke X" is some cool, proggy vibes. Modern, super hi-fi recording…… this is really interesting instrumental writing." Martin Popoff[4]

Equipment[edit]

Rob Grange live rig

Grange plays early Fender basses, circa '56–'62. In 1973 he was one of the first bassists to modify his '62 Fender bass, by adding a Pre-CBS Fender Jazz pickup, later to be known as a "P/J" bass. This resulted in adding highs to the tone. He took this a step further and added a toggle switch and an "out of phase" switch. This bass became known as the "Stranglehold Bass".

His favorite live bass was a vintage '56 Fender P-Bass. Grange also obtained a Sunn Amp from John Paul Jones of Led Zeppelin, which he used in his live concert rig. He used an 8-String Hagstrom Bass on "Snakeskin Cowboys". Grange wrote the main phase bass for Stranglehold and used an early MXR "Script" Phase 90 and an Ampeg B-18 in the studio. Grange also plays a Sadowsky Metro P/J, black finish with a maple neck.[10]

Comments from Nugent biography[edit]

“Rob Grange, I mean, some of those bass licks on those first three albums are astonishing. Back in those days, '76 especially, Rob was quite often in bass player polls as a favorite bass player. He was a favorite bass player among bass players. He's still very good. I mean, I played with him a couple of years ago and he was still playing great." Cliff Davies[4]

“When you listen to Rob Grange play the bass in a room, you go, motherf**k, that's f**kin' perfect." Ted Nugent[4]

“Rob Grange was good and just a quiet guy". Tom Werman[4]

“Ted Nugent's old bass player, named Rob Grange was one of my very favorite bass players." “And he's still a hero to me." Jason Newsted of Metallica in an interview on "That Metal Show"[4]

“Rob Grange, the rock of the classic Ted Nugent lineup." Martin Popoff[4]

“Rob Grange, one of the greatest bass players in rock." Derek St. Holmes[4]

"Ted kept Rob Grange so long into the '70s, because Rob played like Greg Arama, the original bass player for the Amboy Dukes, and Ted loved that about Rob. Rob was a really great guy and very dedicated, and he was very dependable." KJ Knight[4]

“Rob Grange's bass lines are legendary." Greg Smith[4]

“I grew up watching the original Ted Nugent Band, it was great to see Rob Grange, Derek St. Holmes and Ted back together at the 2010 Dallas Guitar Show". Andy Timmons[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Daybreak (R. Zehringer BMI) by Sonny Hugg". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  2. ^ Bruno Ceriotti (August 26, 2010). "Rock Prosopography 102: THE AMBOY DUKES FAMILY TREE – SHOWS LIST". Rockprosopography102.blogspot.com. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  3. ^ "Home". Robgrangebass.com. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k "Epic Ted Nugent". Toronto, Canada: Power Chord Press. 2012. pp. 64–65. 
  5. ^ Sterling Whitaker (2013). "Cal Jam 2". Ultimate Classic Rock. Archived from the original on March 18, 2013. 
  6. ^ "St. Paradise – Jessie James". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  7. ^ "Rob Grange Derek St. Holmes Ted Nugent April 2010 Dallas". YouTube. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  8. ^ "Bugs Henderson w/ Rob Grange Derek St. Holmes and Ted Nugent". YouTube. April 22, 2010. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  9. ^ "Rob Grange – "Woodward at 9 Mile" – Duke X – Danny Gore – Rob Grange – Matt Bowers". YouTube. April 27, 2013. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 
  10. ^ "Gear". Robgrangebass.com. Retrieved 2014-07-16. 

External links[edit]