|By BankHouseDave (18.104.22.168) on Saturday, July 05, 2003 - 05:56 pm:|
Gordon Staples was concert master for those members of the Detroit Symphony who played on Motown records. He also featured on an album called STRUNG OUT by the STRING THING, if memory serves. Does anyone have any biographical stuff on Gordon or recollections of working with him?
There were some really special string things done with Motown - Reflections, Come Round Here I'm the One You Need (Miracles) and the superb cello on Gotta See Jane (R Dean Taylor) as some of many examples.
|By Ralph (22.214.171.124) on Saturday, July 05, 2003 - 07:34 pm:|
Gordon staples was a very busy man. Besides his job as Concert Master for the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, he was the leader on basically every string session in the city.
He was an extremely talented person who took his tasks seriously. There was a certain segment of the Symphony string players that thought playing these type of sessions was beneath them. Not Gordon. He and his select group of players were very enthusiastic about doing this work and their enthusiasm was rewarded with much money. Gordon's biggest problem was he was forever trying to stop smoking.
|By Dennis Coffey (126.96.36.199) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 09:28 am:|
Hi. Gordon was a great musician and super nice guy. Mike Theodore and I used him as Concert Master on all of our string dates. His wife Bea and his son play with the Detroit Symphony. Motown arranger Paul Riser told me I am playing a lot of guitar riffs and solos on the strung out album. He was going to send me a copy but I never followed up on it. Gordon played a Stradivarous on our sessions. What a sound he had! I have worked with string sections in New York and LA and Gordon's playing was up there with the best of them.
|By Eli (188.8.131.52) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 11:13 am:|
Of course, Philly had it's equivelant in Don Renaldo, who's real name was Vincent Pignotti!
He was also a super nice guy and quite the character and I believe that paulie 3 shoes is related to him in some way, capice???#$%^&*(
Directing our string section was like working with a rhythm section as they really knew how to dig in and swing!!
They got so used to our way of doing things , that it became second nature.
They even put away their racing forms and pepper and egg sandwiches for us!!
By the way, I ran into Richard Jones of the Philly Strings at the awards ceremony last Sunday.
|By Ralph (184.108.40.206) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 11:22 am:|
Geez Bobby, with a name like Pignotti, no wonder they were into pepper and egg sandwiches. My father, Russell Horatio Rafael Terrana ( God bless him ) would eat pepper and eggs over just about anything else. Che cosi Italiano...
|By MEL&THEN SOME9 (220.127.116.11) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 12:30 pm:|
yet another great name from my records
would loved to have seen Gordon Staples on and playing that stradivarous.
|By Dennis Coffey (18.104.22.168) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 01:52 pm:|
Hi Mel. That Strad had a warm mellow sound and you would miss it in the section when Gordon wasn't playing.
|By MEL&THEN SOME (22.214.171.124) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 01:55 pm:|
Really sounds the Buisness Dennis.
|By 1RarelymetamealIdidntlikeWicked (126.96.36.199) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 02:41 pm:|
Uhhh...Eli & Ralph: With my knowledge of Italian foods consisting primarily of the menu from Olive Garden I needta know...what kinda pepper you'se guys referring to ? Black ? jalapeno ? Pepperoncinis ?
|By A. Milanese (188.8.131.52) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 03:16 pm:|
The kind that one would roast or if not then the plump "cherry pepper" variety.
|By paulie3shoes (184.108.40.206) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 03:18 pm:|
hey youse guise, ididnot know dat dere wuz a violin guy in da staple singers..jus dat old guy wit da giddar an dat broad who grunted a lot#$%^&*()
|By Ralph (220.127.116.11) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 03:33 pm:|
Wicked...Bell peppers. My father would saute them in a pan and then crack a couple of eggs over them. He swore food didn't get any better than that.
|By Ralph (18.104.22.168) on Sunday, July 06, 2003 - 03:42 pm:|
Gordon first showed me his Strad at a session at Motown studio B. We were in the control room waiting for the beginning of the session. He was continually playing it. He told me it hadn't been played for years and it was important to play and play and play it. That this would increase the quality of it's already magnificent tone.
I also remember that the financing of this incredibly expensive violin was arranged through National Bank of Detroit. They did a real slick TV ad showing the Detroit Symphony in action and then the camera zooming into Gordon while he was playing and the voice over saying something about Gordon coming to NBD to finance the purchase of the Strad.
|By Dennis Coffey (22.214.171.124) on Monday, July 07, 2003 - 07:03 am:|
Later in his career Gordon bought an even rarer Italian violin and showed it to me on a session. I do not recall the name of that instrument. Talk about being committed to music. Gordon certainly was.
|By matt (126.96.36.199) on Monday, July 07, 2003 - 12:57 pm:|
if i remember correctly, gordon also found time to teach violin lessons. i grew up a few blocks from him in the university district and was friends with his son bernard (?)...our next-door neighbors were husband-and-wife violinists from the detroit symphony orchestra who also did motown session work...
|By BankHouseDave (188.8.131.52) on Tuesday, July 08, 2003 - 01:19 pm:|
This is fantastic. Thanks all you guys for your input. Keep it coming. I alsways loved the string parts on Motown records and Gordon is really coming to life from your recollections.