Welcome

Welcome to Fat Knuckle Freddy!

Fat Knuckle Freddy is not your typical artist as he has a split musical personality.

Personality One is as a solo guitarist playing acoustic guitar, specifically a National M1 Baritone Tricone, and cigar box guitars in the style of American Primitive, which was coined by the late John Fahey. The music is intimate while being "hauntingly beautiful" at the same time. FKF uses a slide to obtain the true primitive sound while incorporating influences from classical composers.

Personality Two is a singer and slide guitarist playing fretless and cigar box guitars with a drummer. The duo is a cross between rock -n- roll and blues known as Graveyard Blues or Demon Crossroad Blues. FKF's fretless guitars are unique as they have a bass string added to the open tuning, which fills out the duo's sound and gives the illusion of a bass player. The influences for the duo are Mississippi Fred McDowell, Hound Dog Taylor and The House Rockers, RL Burnside, John Lee Hooker and Black Sabbath. The duo is known for playing three hour sets without a break. They are the bastard sons of Hound Dog Taylor and Black Sabbath.

Fat Knuckle Freddy's split personalities do not play together. They require different venues and settings.

Fat Knuckle Freddy got his name when he broke and dislocated his fretboard pinkie at the middle knuckle. It's now the size of a thumb knuckle and points a few degrees outward. This gives FKF a little extra stretch on the fretboard but he mostly covers it with his stunning slide.


 

May 17th. New Solo Instrumental Guitar Record. 

I'll be releasing "Alfred Hitchcock Plays Guitar" On May 17th, at Blue 650A Congress St, Portland, at 10pm. Samuel James and D. Gross will be opening at 8pm, so get there early for a night of great music. All compositions on the new record are played on a National M1 Tricone Baritone Resonator Guitar. All tracks incorporate a slide except for one. This is the acoustic record I've been trying to make for years but never had the right instrument. Some of the tracks were previously recorded with a cigar box guitar or a standard acoustic without a slide. These recordings will be the definitive versions. A sample of the title track on soundcloud is below.

https://soundcloud.com/user-295185892/alfred-hitchcock-plays-guitar

 

 

Live Videos and Updates! 

Hello Knuckleheads!

On 9/1/18, Feels Like Media filmed FKF and drummer Timothy "BB" Webber live, on the patio, at Amigos, Portland, ME. This was a long time coming and FLM captured the chaotic raw energy of our performance. There's a total of five videos. "No Love" is on the website, YouTube and Facebook. FKF is playing a fretless slide guitar, with an octave bass string. Fretless slide cigar box guitar. Fretted slide baritone cigar box guitar. Shovelcaster aka 3 string slide shovel guitar. And fretless slide cigar box guitar with octave bass string.

What is a fretless slide guitar with an octave bass string? I'm glad you asked. FKF doubles his low guitar string, with a bass string an octave lower, so it thickens the sound and gives the illusion of a bass player in a duo format. So, check out "No Love" , subscribe to FKF's Youtube page (link on website) and be ready for the next video release.

Also, FKF just finished recording his solo American Primitive tour de force. Over 60 minutes of solo acoustic guitar music on a National M1 Tricone Baritone Guitar. The most haunting and beautiful guitar in the world. This has been a work in progress for a very long time. Sample videos will be released on instagram. CD Release some time in the new year.

BONES- New EP! 

On 1/20/18, I recorded and released BONES, instrumental music for fretless 3 string guitar in 72et. What’s 72et? It stands for 72 equal temperament, meaning 72 notes to the octave, 6 notes to a half step. The 12 standard notes are still present. Why do this? Because it gives me the ability to tune my notes very closely with nature aka just intonation. I do this all the time when I play slide but since I’m playing a fretless on this recording, I can finger the adjusted notes as well.

Just because I’m using microtones, that doesn’t mean the music sounds like the greatest hits from some alien planet. Let me explain. Take the 12 notes and divide them into a 100c (cents) each. A just major third, one that sounds beautiful is 386c. An equal tempered third is 400c, 14c sharper than nature. This is usually the big problem on all guitars, the major 3rd is out of tune. The smallest interval in 72et is 16c. So, when I play a major 3rd with my slide, I flat it from ET by 16c as a guide and use my ear to tune it properly. So, most of the times, I’m probably 14c flat, but why be so specific? I just need a guide to get me there and 72et does the job.

A just minor third is 316c and an ET 3rd is 300c, 16c flat. This is why every blues guitarist bends that minor 3rd up. The so called sweet spot. Well, that sweet spot has a name, meaning a just minor 3rd, the right note. So, with my slide, I play 16c sharper than ET and I get the just minor 3rd. If you’re playing slide guitar, you can do this on a fretted guitar as well as a fretless. 

So, as a guide this is how you can adjust your notes to sound sweeter. Minor 3,6 & 7 up 16c. Major 3,6 & 7 down 16c. Augmented 4 down 16c. Diminished 5 up 33c. Depending on the melody note or chord prior and following, minor 2 up 16c. Major 2 down 16c. 

I do this to all scales, including the blues scale. 

Here’s the link to the EP on bandcamp. Stream it with the app, or buy it for $3. That’s right a whopping $3 for 72 notes to the octave. Sounds like a deal to me.

-FKF

 

 

Dig My Blues!-Available at Bandcamp 

Target On My Chest-Available at Bandcamp 

 

Hi-Fi/Lo-Fi Dual CD Release at Portland House Of Music  

Fat Knuckle Freddy will be releasing two CD's on 10/27/17 at Portland House Of Music and Events (PHOME)., Portland, ME. The Hi-Fi , "Target On My Chest" features cigar box guitars and BB Webber on drums. Recorded at Pigcat Studios, Portland, ME by Scott Webber. The Lo-Fi, "Dig My Blues" is solo with all songs on a Shovelcaster, 3 string shovel guitar, vocals through a telephone microphone and a license plate stomped for percussion. Recorded at Brass Knuckle Studios by FKF.

Special guests will be Clara Junken and her band and Meanmugg.

$8 in advance. $10 day of show. For more information click on events.

Introducing The Shovelcaster! 

A sample of a new video project. Sugar Woman performed on a 3 string shovel guitar through a Pignose fuzz pedal, directly into a bass speaker. Vocals via telephone microphone into a Pignose amp. Percussion is a Maine license plate. Music and lyrics by Fat Knuckle Freddy. Subscribe to my YouTube channel. 

The Legend Of John Von Bern (The Minute Sessions) Limited Release! 

The Legend Of John Von Bern is now available on Bandcamp. 15 instrumentals with 15 bonus videos. Buy now for $4! 

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Sep28

AMIGOS SUMMER DEMON BLUES SERIES V

Amigos Mexican Restaurant, 9 Dana St, Portland

The end of The FKF Duo residency at Amigos. BB Webber on the drums. Never the same. Always an adventure.

A party not to be missed. Graveyard Blues. Demon Blues. Punk Blues. Booty Shakin', Foot Stompin' Blues.