SONG #63

  • vocal, bass and piano: Doug Koempel
  • electric guitar: Kevin Conner
  • drums sequenced by Doug on E-mu Systems Drumulator
  • recorded in 1983 at: Bird-On-Fire Recording Studio / West Union, Iowa
Doug Koempel © 2016

In setting the background for this week's featured song, I have a slightly convoluted story to tell you about a piano tuner, some broken piano keys and my "wild and crazy" performance style of the '60s and '70s!

A while back - after my longtime piano tuner had retired - I contacted a gentleman from Decorah (Iowa) to come over to West Union to tune my piano.

After he finished working on the piano, we chatted a bit. I found out he was currently the piano tech for Luther College, however he'd been tuning pianos for a lot of years in the NE Iowa area.

Our conversation eventually turned towards some of the more-challenging projects he'd had over the years. I listened with interest as he recounted a few stories.

"Oh yes, years ago there was this duo that used to play around the Waukon area. The piano player was brutal towards those old club pianos. He'd pound 'em so hard he'd break the keys and the hammers - and sometimes even the strings!"

The smile on my face froze, and I sunk a bit in my chair as he continued:

"I'd spend hours working on those old pianos repairing hammers and getting 'em back in tune! Ah what did they call themselves? Hmmmmm, oh yes, 'Doug & Larry!'"

Many of you who now follow the Memory Brothers have never heard the original instrumentation that we used when we first started out as a two-piece. So I thought I'd dig through some of the early (and decidedly primitive) recordings that we did decades ago featuring real piano and that Jerry Lee Lewis, two-fisted style that I so enjoyed playing!

"High School Confidential" is one of Jerry Lee's lesser-known tunes, but it's a real foot stomper! I hope you like our version of this classic rocker!

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play "High School Confidential"