Learn How

We need your help in 2018

Support All About Jazz All About Jazz is looking for 1,000 backers to help fund our 2018 projects that directly support jazz. You can make this happen by purchasing ad space or by making a donation to our fund drive. In addition to completing every project (listed here), we'll also hide all Google ads and present exclusive content for a full year!

11

Anton Fig: Behind The Bandstand, Part 2

Ben Scholz By

Sign in to view read count
Part 1 | Part 2

The last chord has been played, the lights have been dimmed, and the iconic NYC skyline (in miniature) behind Dave's desk has been disassembled and stored. The airing of the finale of "The Late Show With David Letterman" on Wednesday May 20th and the accompanying performance by The CBS Orchestra marks the end of a television era.

This past year, Anton Fig teamed up with guitar wizards Eric Johnson and Mike Stern to release Johnson's latest album Eclectic. We caught up with Fig after a performance with Johnson and Stern to discuss their rehearsal process, the album and tour.

All About Jazz: What was the rehearsal process like? You were talking earlier about how you went down to Texas to rehearse?

Anton Fig: We read thru all the stuff, one day, and then the next day we read thru all the stuff again and Mike was saying "what did we even rehearse for?" (laughs). It took a few gigs to figure out how to shape it and set things up a little bit.

AAJ: Whose idea was it to do "Red House?"

AF: Not sure -We recorded it, its on the album, yeah it's a good encore. It's so much fun playing with these guys.

AAJ: So you've got your small tom to the right now, why'd you do that?

AF: Yeah, well you know a long time ago I saw Tony Williams do that, and I thought, it's actually kind of fun because you can hit it with your right hand, and you've got the high drum to the right, you can go round the toms and it sounds a little bit different. But also, often I can't get the middle tom where I want it. Sometimes it hits the bass drum if I've got a big bass drum and then it's up too high. So if I've got it like this it sits up really well. And then I often play a 3 piece kit, so it's just like two toms, so I've still got that. Then I've got high tone on the right as well. So, it all works out nicely.

Now, the question looms -"what's next?" The finale of The Late Show marked the end of a 29 year television relationship with Paul Shaffer and David Letterman. All in all, this trio has contributed to two networks, six emmys, 22 seasons, and 6,028 episodes of comedy and music. For Fig, the answer is, "plenty."

On May 30th, he'll be in the house band for The 2015 Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony. Airing on HBO, this primetime special will feature performances by Ringo Starr, Paul McCartney, Beck, John Legend, Jimmy Vaughn, Stevie Wonder, and a host of other legendary artists. Clearly a staple of the broadcast industry, Anton Fig shows no sign of slowing his rolls.

Tags

Related Video

comments powered by Disqus

More Articles

Read Julian Priester: Reflections in Positivity Interview Julian Priester: Reflections in Positivity
by Paul Rauch
Published: December 8, 2017
Read Aaron Goldberg: Exploring the Now Interview Aaron Goldberg: Exploring the Now
by Luke Seabright
Published: November 24, 2017
Read Pat Metheny: Driving Forces Interview Pat Metheny: Driving Forces
by Ian Patterson
Published: November 10, 2017
Read Bill Anschell: Curiosity and Invention Interview Bill Anschell: Curiosity and Invention
by Paul Rauch
Published: November 9, 2017
Read Tomas Fujiwara: The More the Better Interview Tomas Fujiwara: The More the Better
by Troy Dostert
Published: November 6, 2017
Read "Bria Skonberg: In Flight" Interview Bria Skonberg: In Flight
by R.J. DeLuke
Published: April 4, 2017
Read "Lwanda Gogwana: Tradition and Innovation" Interview Lwanda Gogwana: Tradition and Innovation
by Seton Hawkins
Published: September 9, 2017
Read "Nat Hentoff: The Never-Ending Ball" Interview Nat Hentoff: The Never-Ending Ball
by Ian Patterson
Published: January 9, 2017
Read "Mark Guiliana: A Natural Progression of Research" Interview Mark Guiliana: A Natural Progression of Research
by Angelo Leonardi
Published: September 8, 2017
Read "Tom Green: A Man And His Trombone" Interview Tom Green: A Man And His Trombone
by Nick Davies
Published: March 27, 2017

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google ads that appear on every page for a full year!